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What to do and not to do during the summer with your child

You probably see your child more during the summer than at any other time of the year, as school lets out and children come home for three months. If you're divorced and sharing custody of your child, the following are a few things to do and not to do over the summer months in North Carolina.

1. Do focus on communication with your ex. You're going to have to make plans, and working together is the key to keeping everyone happy. Don't just try to make those plans on your own, without consulting your ex.

2. Don't be offended when you know that the child misses your ex. Remember, even if you and your ex are not on good terms, your ex and your child probably are. Both parents are a big part of your child's life, and that's a good thing. Your child is going to miss your ex, but you should never take this personally.

3. Do set up any trips and vacations as far in advance as you can. Spur-of-the-moment trips may sound spontaneous and fun, but they can create a lot of issues. If everything is in place and cleared with your ex weeks or months in advance, it'll all go more smoothly. This also helps your child know what to expect.

4. Do think about your child's emotions. Any time there are big changes, emotions can run high for kids, and that could happen during the summer. Be considerate and help your child through if things get tough.

All in all, planning and communication are the key, but you also want to make sure you know about your legal custody rights and obligations.

Source: FIndLaw, "Child Custody Over the Summer: Dos and Don'ts," Betty Wang, accessed March 18, 2016

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