Co Parenting during COVID-19
Everyone knows we are currently in the midst of a pandemic like no other. Domestic boarders have been shut, social distancing rules are being enforced and restrictions have been put on who can visit us. People are working and schooling from home. Society as we knew it no longer exists.
What does this mean if you have parenting orders in place? If you can comply with the orders, the Family Court has made it clear that you need to. However, you may be unable to comply.
You may be in a situation where your ex lives interstate and children won’t be able to spend time with them because of the travel restrictions. Or you or your children may have been exposed and are required to stay in isolation for a period of time. If this is the case you should look at other ways you can facilitate some time. Can you start video calls, phone calls or even emails between your children and their other parent? I know that this ‘may not be in the orders’, but when the orders were made, none of us (including Judges) expected to be faced with what we are currently dealing with.
If your children are unable to spend time with the other parent for whatever reason – now is not the time to say “no” because you can. Now is not the time to say “I am just following the orders”. Now is the time to show your children that you can be creative. That just because they can’t go to Mum or Dads doesn’t mean that they can’t spend time with them. Just as schooling has turned into home schooling – time with the other parent can change as well.
I know that this won’t always be easy. I know that sometimes you can try and try to do the right thing and it never works out. I also know that for some of you it may not be safe to do this by yourself. If you want to be able to look at alternative ways to facilitate this time, or how any makeup time might take place in the future the first step is to open up the conversation. If you can’t do this by yourself mediation is the best way to do this.