Alternatives to alternating weeks co-parenting

Alternating weeks is a custody plan that may sound good in theory but has been shown to have its faults when put into practice. When creating a custody plan in Pennsylvania, the alternating week schedule is the simplest option at face value, but the logistical difficulties of a 50/50 co-parenting tend to come out when the plan is enacted.

Why an alternating week schedule often doesn’t work

Separation anxiety is common for children and even parents sometimes. There’s always a pull in one direction or the other and never a complete family unit. Just as the kids have started to adjust to one environment, it’s time for them to go back to the other parent.

Work and school schedules are made more difficult to manage, and it’s even harder when the couples aren’t getting along. This often puts the children in the midst of a fight that they may blame themselves for.

There’s also the logistical struggle of having their lives scattered between two locations. Keeping track of homework and medicine is challenging enough when it’s all under one roof.

Fortunately, there are other options that may work better for your family. If a 50/50 child custody schedule doesn’t seem manageable or ideal, there are different versions of a 60/40 custody schedule that may work better.

2-2-3 schedule

This routine gives the kids two days with one parent and two days with the other. They then stay three days with the first parent. This arrangement is reversed for the next cycle to give the children an equal amount of time with both parents.

3-4-4-3 schedule

In this setup, kids live for three days with one parent and four days with the other. The setup reverses for the next cycle.

5-2 schedule

In this custody schedule, children live with one of the parents five days a week. The remaining two days are spent at the other parent’s home.

Every extended weekend

An every extended weekend schedule involves the children staying with one parent for a long weekend while going back to the other parent on weekdays. There’s also the extended every other weekend schedule, which is a different version of the extended every weekend schedule that happens half as often.