Tag Archives: special needs children

IL custody lawyerDivorce and child custody are complicated enough for the average family. For families that have a child with special needs, figuring out the best living arrangement and caretaking responsibilities is even harder. Extra attention needs to be given to creating a carefully drafted parenting plan that takes all of the child’s best interests into account. An experienced Hinsdale child custody attorney will be able to help you throughout the divorce process.

Shared Custody Is Often the Best Custody Arrangement

Numerous U.S. and international studies have shown that children thrive the most when they have both parents in their lives. As such, shared custody is usually a desirable outcome for custody decisions. Even if the child lives primarily with one parent, as long as the other parent has a constant presence in their child’s life, the child will be much better off than if one parent is seldom around.

Parenting is a demanding job. For children with special needs, the demands placed on parents are greater. Having two parents play an equal role in caretaking, driving the child to appointments and school, and homemaking can be a great asset to everyone involved. However, in certain situations, it may be best to fight for sole custody if the other parent has proven themselves to be unfit for the job.

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autistic-children-and-divorceDivorce is difficult for any child to cope with, but for children with autism or other special needs, it can feel like the entire world is coming to an end. Their difficulty in handling change, troubles in communicating or expressing feelings, and the never-ending struggle to cultivate deep and healthy relationships can further compound this feeling and manifest itself in a number of ways, from regression of stemming behaviors to aggression, anxiety, or depression. Thankfully, there are ways that both parents can help their child cope with the divorce in the months leading up to it and the years after.

Make Your Child’s Needs the Priority in Your Divorce

One of the absolute best ways to help any child through a divorce, including those on the autism spectrum, is to put their child’s needs first. This means not arguing with one another in front of the children, never bad-mouthing the other parent, not using your child as a negotiating tool or a pawn, and working together to create a custody and visitation arrangement that will ensure your child still has much needed quality time with both parents. It can be difficult, especially when there are hurt feelings involved, but the result is always worth the effort.

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