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Equal parenting time is in the best interest of the children

Over the years, there have been many theories involving the relationship between children and their parents. It was once believed that, when parents divorced, the children needed their mothers more than their fathers. Among New Jersey residents these days, there is a more balanced view toward parenting time.

The traditional outcome of divorce has been for the children to remain in the custody of their mothers, while fathers became relegated to the role of an occasional visitor. The implication has been that fathers were somehow less important than mothers in the lives of the children. These views have been all but overturned over the past few years, and the valuable contribution of both parents is now being more widely recognized.

Recent studies tend to confirm that both children and the non-custodial parents -- usually but not always the fathers -- benefit from spending more time together than is usually considered enough. Where many divorce agreements may stipulate that the non-custodial parent may visit with his or her children every other weekend, it has now been shown that children who share time between their parents more equally benefit in a number of ways: psychologically, emotionally and academically. Both they and their parents also benefit from closer and more stable relationships with each other.

Children are seen as resilient and able to bounce back from most situations. There is no doubt, however, that most New Jersey parents -- and their children -- will benefit more from engaging in calm discussions centered around the best interest of the children. Coming to an amicable arrangement about parenting time will reduce stress, time and potentially money; however, where this is not possible, seeking the help of a mediator can assist in smoothing the legal process moving forward.

Source:, "After divorce, shared parenting is best for children's health and development", Richard A.Warshak, May 26, 2017

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