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What Are the Benefits of Shared Parenting?

Child custody decisions play an integral role in any divorce agreement involving children. While you might feel like you should receive sole custody of your children or as though you never want to see your ex again, it is worth considering how beneficial it is for children to have both parents in their lives.

After divorce, shared or equal parenting can help your children feel close to both parents even if they never see them together. This can be an important step toward creating a comfortable environment with which you may support the best interests of your children.

Shared parenting leads to better physical and mental health

Studies on joint physical custody reveal that children who spend at least 35% of their time with both parents tend to do better in social settings. Plus, they are less likely to suffer from mental health problems like anxiety, depression or stress. Given the stressful transition of divorce, children can feel more secure knowing both parents care deeply about them.

Also, with stronger mental health comes healthier lifestyle choices. In fact, across the U.S., 75% of children placed in chemical abuse centers come from single-parent households. Meaning children with strong connections to both parents aren’t as likely to pick up unhealthy habits like smoking or drinking.

Building a strong relationship with both parents

Spending significant time with each parent allows children to build strong, long-lasting bonds with both their mother and father. Young children might not understand the concept of relationship building, but when they get to spend nearly the same amount of time in the care of both parents, relationships will naturally blossom.

It is important to note that even infants and toddlers can benefit from living between two homes and spending time with both parents. Mothers might want to keep young children in their care the majority of the time, but not allowing a child to see his or her father may stunt the development of this important relationship.

Navigating child custody can be complex, but an experienced family law attorney can help you through every step of the divorce process.

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