The rules governing parenting have been relaxing for decades. The way our parents did things and the way their parents did things before them is vastly different from how parents today rear their children. One primary difference between then and now is the divorce rate has increased. Couples finally realized that staying together for the kids wasn’t always a good thing. More kids are growing up between two households. That doesn’t always have to be a bad thing, either.
Because views on rearing kids have changed we have more room for individuality when it comes to figuring out child custody and visitation arrangements. It doesn’t always equate to following along with what everyone else is doing. It really comes down to finding what works for your family and it certainly isn’t a one-size-fits-all issue.
Fortunately, with so many people being tech savvy these days, app developers have been able to create a niche just for coparents who could use a little help.
Our Family Wizard. This is one of the first apps created for coparents who need a fair amount of help with a wide range of issues. If you have a somewhat volatile relationship with your child’s other parent, this app may help you avoid frequent trips to court, or at least help you be prepared for them. For about $200 a year, the app offers you both:
- An instant messenger feature that doesn’t permit deletions, which forces parents to think before hitting send. There’s also a built in sensor that will help you tone down certain language that could be construed as antagonistic to help keep you on task.
- Event and information sharing to keep you both up to date and engaged in your child’s life.
- Expenses tracking and payment to help avoid back and forth asking for payment confirmation.
The Family Core. This platform works well as a coparenting app, but that’s not its only use. It offers the same features no matter your family situation or who you are taking care of together – children, sick parents or siblings, or elderly grandparents. This is probably better suited to coparenting relationships that are less strained and just in need of a little more help managing logistics and information. The app is incredibly affordable at just $1.99 per user per month, which gives you:
- Secure and private chatting among family members.
- A geolocation service so that you always know where everyone is.
- Encrypted web based data storage to keep your personal details private.
- A Google compatible-task driven, color coded assignment calendar to ensure organization.
2Houses. Is great for newly separated parents who are just trying to figure everything out while awaiting their divorce to be finalized. The app also allows you to operate in four different languages: English, French, Dutch, and Italian. The app will run you $150 per year for both of you and provides.
- An online shared calendar to keep you both in the loop with your kids.
- A financial management feature so that you each remain up to date on expenses and who is responsible for payment.
- An information sharing tool that lets you upload photos or videos, important updates such as medication changes, and other details.
Cozi. This is the app for organizationally challenged coparents who have a friendly relationship. In fact, this app may work wonders for the coparents who have chosen to engage in bird nesting with their children. Nesting keeps your children in their family home while you and the other parent rotate living in the home on a schedule that works for you. Cozi offers similar features to the other apps like a shared events calendar and family journal, but when you’re sharing a home part-time, certain communication becomes even more necessary to running a smooth ship. Cozi is free and you’ll have the help of:
- A real-time shared grocery list to prevent doubling up on items that may spoil before you can use them.
- A recipe storage feature that includes a meal planner and ability to shop for ingredients.
- A to-do list so you know if the pool traps have been cleaned for the week or if an electrical repair needs to be scheduled.
Coparenting can be a trying responsibility for both parents that can end in litigation because of stark differences in child rearing beliefs, or just because both parents are unable to set aside their personal issues with one another for the benefit of their child. Holland Law, LLC recognizes that no matter how hard you try, it takes two cooperative parents to raise a child. Sometimes you need the help of the legal system to enforce or make decisions when you can’t come to an agreement on important issues.
To discuss your legal options for pursuing a child custody matter in York, Lancaster, or Chester County, you are invited to schedule a case evaluation in either of Mr. Holland’s offices conveniently located in Fort Mill on Gold Hill Road, or Rock Hill on Oakland Avenue by calling 803-219-2630, or you are welcome to reach out to him through his contact page.
Tom Holland previously served as the General Counsel for the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office, the City Solicitor for the City of Lancaster, and as a Special Assistant United States Attorney for the Sixth Circuit Solicitor’s Office. He is a single father, and through his own divorce gained valuable insight he now uses to represent Fort Mill and Rock Hill, SC families with the best representation. Learn more about Tom Holland.