In a world which is changing rapidly (it seems by the hour!), families need to ensure that they work together to show a united front during times of adversity.
This will be more difficult for parents who are in conflict with each other after separation or divorce and already trying to figure out a new “normal” for their children.
Younger children will likely not remember the specifics of this troubling time, but they may remember how their parents and wider family reacted and how their home (or homes) felt in navigating through this period. It is essential that parents work together to ensure that children’s routines are adhered to as much as possible (in line with any risk to health and in accordance with Government measures) in terms of contact arrangements with their parents.
The health and welfare of all members of the family need to be considered and, as noted, Government guidelines followed. If there are any disagreements as to self-isolation/social distancing that do affect the usual contact schedule, we would encourage parents to take a pragmatic approach. This should of include taking into account the children’s health and wellbeing in addition to logistics of how the contact can take place; whether this be considering transportation between parents or using technology as a means to promote and uphold contact.
In times of crisis, human relationships are so important and reassuring, particularly to children. Contact arrangement should be promoted, encouraged and adhered to by both parents as much as possible. Contact between children and their parents should not be prevented unreasonably, but a decision should be made together for the benefit of the health and relationships for all involved.
A common sense and collaborative approach should prevent unnecessary stress and legal fees, if at all possible.
Stay safe and we hope that everyone can work together to get through this strange time.
If you require any advice on any family matter, please do not hesitate to contact DQ for further information.
This article should be read in conjunction with any advice given by the Isle of Man Government and Public Health Directorate. We do not repeat in this article any advice given by the IOM Government.