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Child care can quickly strain co-parenting relationships

On Behalf of | Oct 30, 2023 | Child Custody |

When parents in Texas divorce or separate, their lifestyles inevitably shift. After all, everything from basic cost of living expenses to the daily schedule will change dramatically. Parents and children alike typically have to brace for a lot of adjustments during and after a divorce.

Certain decisions made by either parent could put a lot of strain on their co-parenting relationship. Child care is often one of those issues. Parents sometimes fail to discuss child care when negotiating custody matters and then end up embroiled in a bitter dispute later. These are a few of the reasons why child care may lead to heightened tensions between those sharing responsibility for minor children who are going their separate ways.

They question the choice of provider

Child care can be incredibly expensive. Those just moving out on their own after years of living with a spouse are often worried about covering those costs. They may go with the cheapest option available or try to find someone who can watch their kids without any charge for the services provided. Cheap childcare professionals may cut corners regarding how many staff members they have on hand or what amount of support they provide for each individual child. They may take on more kids than they can reasonably watch, which can be particularly damaging for young children.

Free childcare from romantic partners and family members can also prove problematic, as those people may grow to resent their unpaid obligations and may mistreat the children as a result. Parents can sometimes prevent such conflict by including the right of first refusal in their custody order so that they have the option of being with the children when the other parent cannot.

They argue about covering the costs

Professional child care services can be quite expensive when going to a licensed facility that has a limited number of children per adult working. A parent just starting to rebuild after years of putting their career on the back burner may expect that the other parent will contribute most or all of the cost for child care during their parenting time. That expectation can cause conflict when negotiating terms for the divorce.

Taking the time to address child care needs early in the divorce or separation process can help parents minimize the likelihood of a messy conflict developing in the future. Seeking legal guidance for personalized feedback is a good way to get started.