Unique to each family: Each member’s needs and desires should be taken into account: running the family business and involving the older children to ensuring younger children have stimulating after school programs and optimum sports involvement to further develop their skillset. Parenting plans are more than mimicking another family’s schedule. Make it wholly relevant to your family. Developmentally receptive: As each child grows, the plan should be flexible and fluid to empower parents to modify their schedules and build their skills to meet these developmental transitions. Meet with the sports coach, the home room teacher, the school guidance counsel for insights. Responsive to each child’s temperaments and idiosyncrasies; capabilities and interests. The parenting plan builds a foundation to foster positive relationships between the parents, extended family and the siblings with each other. Cooperating together why and how a child acts out or refuses to do their chores keeps discipline comparable, reasonable and appropriate. Problem-solving process: When indecision or roadblocks arise, focus on the children’s best interests keeping parents’ egos at bay and out of the way. Some simple steps: state the issue without any emotional tags, identify documents are needed; involve advisor(s) already involved in the children’s lives or an independent mediator to tackle complex issues; in some cases test out a solution; tweak until mutual satisfaction is reached Practical, reasonable: Both parents should be involved in the upbringing of their children barring any illegal or inappropriate conduct harmful to the child. Stepping in for each other when scheduling is difficult, being on the same page for curfews and bedtimes, sharing homework strategies or sharing the same tutor. The children are watching and learning from these positive modelling behaviours. Separated and working on a parenting plan for your family? Call Lorisa Stein for a confidential discussion of the merits and strengths and where some assistance may be helpful. Use the Contact page or call her at 416-596-8081 to schedule an appointment today.