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Nursing schedule and parenting access

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  • Nursing schedule and parenting access

    My X is just finishing nursing school. She is named as Primary residence on our last arbitration from 3 yrs ago. Her schedule for the last 1 1/2 yrs has been all over the place with her schooling, late nights and placements making her place anything but a primary residence.
    Once she has graduated, she will be working 12 hour shifts.
    I am going back to arbitration to try and get a 50/50 in the best interest of the girls regarding the school/bus scheduling. However, there is more ...
    Who has experience with an X that has a nurses schedule. What happens when they don't get home until 7:45 pm or do the overnight and won't even be there for the kids in the morning? I would prefer to see the children in my care then overnight at someones house. What is the usual protocol for this?
    I appreciate all that nurses do, but to be a single parent doing this is a total different ball game.

  • #2
    Here's the thing:

    It's always about the best interests of the child. Is it in the best interests of the children to be ramping up conflict by bringing it to an arbitration?

    You have all been experiencing/living this crazy schedule for three years and you want to change it so primary residence is with you because she might be working 12 hours shifts? You don't know what her schedule will be, you haven't know for the last three years; and yet nothing was done? Why now?

    Primary residence is for practical purposes (passport addy, school district etc.); you intend to shake the tree, changing this? How is that in the best interests of the children?

    If I was in your position, I would sit down with her and attempt to come to a workable solution between the two of you if you are concerned that she will not be caring for the children during her time. That's a relevant issue.

    But you want to change a schedule and residence of the children based on maybes. Sounds like jumping the gun to me.

    I am sure others will chime in with some excellent ideas to work with the other parent; but the important thing is to work with her, not against her.


    • #3
      Thank you Mom2Three for your insight. I have definitely tried to work with the mom. This schedule has only come about over the last 14 months regarding her schooling. It has taken me until now to get into the arbitration. I began this process 10 months ago when I noticed it being so difficult on the children.
      Of course I have attempted to sit with her and talk about this but she insists nothing has changed, as she does not want to lose any access time with the children. I presently have week one: Mon, Thur, Fri, Sat, Sun and then week two: Thurs.
      She insists her schedule has not changed and that she does everything on her own but I do know she uses 9 different people to get the children on and off the bus and watch them until she gets home.
      There are many many changes to the childrens lives (which they worry and talk about) since our last arbitration and before I go back into asking for a 50/50 I want to know how others work around a nursing schedule.
      She has already stated that she is guaranteed a job when school is finished (this June) in a hospital in the next town.
      I have only ever been for the best interest of the children. How is a 50/50 not in the best interest of the children with such a variable schedule on their hands as it is now? I am looking into the future as well when their mom gets a nursing job of 12 hour shifts and I would rather address that now then to deal with it again 3 months from now.
      I am not seeking primary residence, I mentioned that because there is no way her present schedule and circumstances reflect a primary residence. I also assumed primary residence meant that parent was more available, but I guess I was mistaken. I am only interested in getting the children on a 50/50 rotation so that there is more consistency in their lives.

      I want to change the schedule not because of maybe's but because of what it is now on the children compared to what it was 3 yrs ago when we signed the arbitration. The children have been affected for the past 14 months with this change and has become more erratic over the past 8 months since she and had to change daycare providers and locations due to the late shifts. This in turn changed the entire bussing schedules ect.
      I feel a 50/50 would be in the best interest of the children so they would know exactly who they are with on what weeks and what bus they are taking, ect.
      Hope this better explains my position and I am still awaiting the midnight shift concerns any parent would have regarding their children.


      • #4
        Fair enough.

        I do not doubt for a second that the children are being affected and that a change should occur to reflect the circumstances.

        However, you keep mentioning 50/50. Do you want to work within her schedule to maximize the time a child spends with a parent? If that is so, it appears to me that at this moment in time that cannot be done until the other parent has a determined schedule; you are basing the change on assumptions.

        You don't state exactly what you plan to propose at an arbitration, save for the fact that you want 50/50. That means didly to an arbitrator who does not have accurate schedules upon which to base a determination. What do you hape to possibly gain from arbitration at this time?

        Without her schedule, you will just be wasting valuable time and money. I don't think a custody schedule can be made at this time.

        Once she is on fulltime/parttime, whatever, THEN you can attempt to work with her to establish a schedule thats in the BIC; if she won't work with you, then you bring it to arbitration.

        I just don't know how you can design an amicable, BIC, schedule on suppositions.


        • #5
          lets_be_fair, a couple of points
          mom2three is right you need to have the schedule before a change in schedule that maximizes time with both parents can be set.
          That said, if you have overnights then what you can ask for is a clause for "FIRST RIGHT OF REFUSAL" be added to the agreement.

          As such the following would be added.
          "When a parents needs care for more than 3 hours the other parent is given first right of refusal."
          What this means is that if the parent requires overnight care, then the parent must ask the other parent if they wish to take the children.
          This keeps the costs of care down, while promoting maximum time with both parents and keeps the children in their familiar beds.

          If you need help with schedules check out the parenting plan guidelines from the orange county of California on the web, it has some great schedules.


          • #6
            As mentionned above, you should wait till full schedule is set. 12h rotation provides also more days off so Mom can spend equal time with the children.

            It is important you work out this amicably and this could benefit both everyone.

            If you are flexible to offer to have the children on the days she works and she has them on her days off that the 5.0/50 remains as 12hr rotation is basically 3 days on week and 4 days on the next week.

            But if you are just looking into taking the kids when does work 12hr without exchange time then I consider that unresonnable request.
            Last edited by Moolight; 04-09-2013, 03:51 AM.


            • #7
              Seems to me you currently have 6 out of 14 days... Is one day really going to make that big of difference? If you are truly aiming for 50/50 what will change? There will only really be 1 less day the kids are affected. Besides, you have no control over what she does on her parenting time. With a schedule like she will have, it doesn't surprise me she doesn't want to talk about an extra days because there is a possibility you could end up with more than 50% and then she loses out on her access.

              You really do need a parenting plan before you start this process. While I have no doubt you are concerned and I do think 50/50 is best, you need to be prepared, you cannot just walk in and ask for 50/50


              • #8
                To begin with, her nursing schedule is secondary to my actual reasoning for 50/50. I have always wanted 50/50 and have made that known right from the start since we broke up. Since the children were young and not in school yet, the arbitrator came up with the current schedule. As any parent, i have always wanted to have equal parenting with our children. Since we are entering arbitration again, I thought I would throw this question out about the schedule of the night shift so it would not have to be addressed in the future.
                Once the children were in half school and at the daycare, the last arbitration agreement surrounded around the daycare and hours of the daycare. All pick ups and drop offs at the daycare ect. Once my X changed from her job to going back to school last year the daycare no longer fit her needs. She quit the daycare. She needed later and earlier hours than it could offer. This has messed up the entire pick up/ drop offs/ when there are snow days (we are rural so there are many)/ because she is in the care of the children at 8 am once I would normally drop off at daycare. Also, the children took one bus in and one bus out to school (1/2 hour ride) from the daycare. Now the bussing is split, and with our schedule the children now take bus #1 from moms house monday morn back to dads Monday night on bus #2. Dad drives into school Tues morning then back on bus #1 Tues night. Thurs morn #1 and Thurs night #2 with Fri #2 ect ect.. only to be different the next week when it is a different rotation. This is very confusing for the children. (we live 22 km apart).
                It gets worse when there are snow days or the children are sick. Since the old P.A. states X has children from 8 am onward, then when it is a snow day or they are sick, I cannot get a hold of her to find out what she wants for the children as she is in school. I would rather make the decision myself what to do, it usually is not what X wants and causes problems. I have learned to live with and adjust to her need for control.
                My thought is it would be a much smoother process for the children if we had a 50/50 (sun-sun) so the bus comes here and leaves here Mon-Fri. If they are sick or have a snow day I can make my plans and not worry about not appeasing the X or having to drive all over to make drop offs afterward. There are less exchanges and longer blocks.
                This would entail X giving me two of her days and me giving X one of my days of our weeks. A change of 2 days a month would give the children less exchanges and more consistency.
                Come summer it will be a whole new ball game. I am not looking forward to that. She is now using a daycare lady in her neighbourhood who the children say has nothing to offer them and they sit on a couch and watch tv. Come summer I have a daycare provider who will come to the house and watch the children. The children like her and she does outdoor / beach/ zoo activities with the children. If it were 50/50 they could sleep in and enjoy their summer off. Instead, I will wake them and have to drive them to their moms area to the ladys home where they don't want to be anyway. Sleeping in for 5 days straight and enjoying their week of activities to me is more enjoyable than waking at 7 am and driving 20 km to only sit in a daycare home all day. The children are 7 and 9.
                I feel a 50/50 is in their best interest and the nursing schedule was second to my main concern of 50/50 but only wanted to know for future reference.


                • #9
                  First, paragraphs are your friend. It is incredibly difficult to read a post that is that long and only two paragraphs.

                  Your first post indicated that there was a change in circumstances that precipitated a need for change in parenting schedules. Now your argument is that you have always wanted 50/50.

                  Going into an arbitration with differing arguments is not going to win you any favours.

                  It is interesting that you use the nursing schedule but then suggest Sun-Sun. This turns the argument from the best interests of the children to 'what Dad wants'. Because who works one week on/one week off?

                  You adjust to her need for control? The way in which you have that written suggest to me that you are unable to make a decision. Who cares if it is past 8am and you cannot get ahold of her? You are the father. Step up and make plans and then let her know. You have to stop letting her walk all over you, not 'adjust to her need for control'!

                  If you go into arbitration with the issues and proposed plans you have indicated so far, you will have spent money for nothing. You will not get what you 'want'. A change needs to be centred around the best interests of the children.

                  May I suggest that when you DO have a tentative schedule, you come back here and post it so that others can chime in on what would be a workable schedule and bring THAT to arbitration. But at the moment, you really have nothing.

                  It is not fair (IMHO) that at the very beginning parenting was not divided 50/50. But you have aquiesed to that schedule for several years; without a substantial, VALID argument against maintaining the status quo, it is unlikely that this will be changed.


                  • #10
                    look up orange county of california parenting guidelines.
                    Look up the age of your children and then look at the access schedules that the children can handle for their given age.


                    • #11
                      Thank you involved dad for the web link.
                      Thank you MomofThree for your input.
                      I will see what happens in the near future and see where I go from there.


                      • #12
                        The orange country of California - superior court (the states) Parenting Guidelines



                        • #13
                          Thank you involved dad I will look further into the schedules.
                          Thank you mom2three for your insight.


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