It’s not easy being a noncustodial parent. Try to let go of the anger that led to the divorce and do your best to help foster the relationship between your child(ren) and your former spouse. The marriage is over, there was probably a lot of hurt, but the children should not be tools for revenge. Be gracious in your role.
1. Be flexible. Your ex only has the kids for short visits. If there is a hiccup in his or her schedule be gracious enough to trade weekends or meet them at a halfway point if they have a long drive.
2. Be proactive. Send report cards and progress reports with kids or in the mail. Send a school schedule and let the noncustodial parent know when the spelling bee is, and where. Often noncustodial parents feel out of the loop.
3. Send circus tickets with the kids. I’m not kidding. Noncustodial parents love their children too, but child support payments make it difficult to enjoy extras with the kids. This is about the best interest of the children. If your ex has some fun, so be it.
5. Return phone calls. How is a noncustodial parent supposed to know that the children are in the bathtub or shower? One major complaint of noncustodial parents is that they can never get through to their kids. If the noncustodial parent is calling at the wrong time, have the children call.
Maintaining custody is a privilege that not every one enjoys. It should not be a tool to abuse or take revenge on your former spouse.