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Making medical decisions for your children after divorce

On Behalf of | Dec 8, 2021 | Child Custody |

As a divorced parent, you might not see you kids as often as you did while you were married. But whether you have sole custody, split custody with your ex or are limited to visitation time, you are still their mother or father.

Two types of child custody in Naperville

Under Illinois child custody law, there are two types of custody: physical custody and legal custody. Physical custody refers to the children’s living arrangements — where they will physically spend their time. Legal custody, on the other hand, is about the right to make important decisions about the children’s upbringing. This includes the right to make medical decisions, including potentially controversial ones such as which pediatrician will treat the kids.

Divorced parents must work together on the kids’ medical decisions

Except in cases involving things like abuse, neglect and/or abandonment, divorced parents share legal custody. Though you are divorced and your relationship is probably, at best, strained, you and your ex must find a way to work together to raise your kids, even regarding sometimes controversial issues like vaccinations. Making an effort to keep your child-related communications with your ex cordial and limited to the facts (not emotional outbursts or accusations) can help. So can working with a family therapist, who can help teach the two of you how to meet this challenge.

In some cases, parents have very different views about how to keep their kids healthy and safe. But with hard work and a solid custody order in place, it is possible to work out a system that both you and your ex can live with.