How Do I Make the Most Out of My Virtual Visitation Time?

How Do I Make the Most Out of My Virtual Visitation Time?

Personal Injury Lawyer

American judges are increasingly ordering that so-called virtual visitation provisions be included as terms of child custody orders and co-parenting agreements. Regardless if parents share custody or one parent has sole legal and/or physical custody, virtual visitation provisions may apply to any parent who is not residing with his or her child on any given day. As a result, these provisions may be more appropriately referred to as “virtual parenting time” but that phrase isn’t as catchy as virtual visitation.

If you have been awarded virtual visitation time with your child when he or she is residing with your co-parent, you may have questions as to how to make the most of this time. Communicating with your child electronically may feel awkward at first. And depending on your child’s temperament and unique circumstances, you may even fear that your child resents this time. Thankfully, there are numerous tools available which are designed to help facilitate healthy, “productive” virtual visitation time. If you have questions about your virtual visitation terms, please do not hesitate to connect with an experienced family law attorney whenever those questions arise.

Virtual Visitation Tools Worth Considering

Any video chatting app (Skype, Google Duo, Facetime) will allow you to communicate face-to-face with your child, regardless of how old he or she may be. In fact, interacting via video chat has been proven to be so beneficial for kids that the American Academy of Pediatrics treats it as an exception to its screen time guidelines for young kids.

In addition, numerous apps will allow you to record your voice so that you can read books to your kids and/or sing them songs that they can listen to over and over again. Older kids may prefer to text with you and to interact via social media. If you have a reader, you may want to get a mutually accessible Goodreads account so that you can review and discuss books together.

Email and instant messaging may be great for older kids. Phone calls work for anyone that is preschool age and up. What is most important about “live” virtual visitation tools is that you consider a child’s age when setting expectations. A 20 minute phone call is not unreasonable when you are talking to a 10-year-old, but may be if you are talking to a four-year-old.

Legal Guidance Is Available

If you have questions about child custody matters broadly and/or virtual visitation matters specifically, please do not hesitate to connect with an experienced family law attorney at your earliest convenience. Even if your questions and/or concerns are not strictly legal in nature, an attorney experienced in these areas of law may serve as an excellent resource. Too often, individuals only seek the guidance of legal professionals when they find themselves in “hot water” due to some kind of legal challenge. In reality, attorneys may be approached whenever you have questions that need to be answered. Voicing your questions and concerns in a proactive way may save you (and possibly, your child) a great deal of time, trouble and effort down the road. A law firm has extensive family law experience and would be happy to speak with you, so please consider connecting with a Bloomington family lawyer today. 

Thanks to Pioletti, Pioletti & Nichols for their insight into family law and virtual visitation.

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