As you undoubtedly know, the cost of raising kids in Massachusetts and across the U.S. is rising steadily. A significant part of that expense is due to increases in childcare costs. But how much are American parents spending to have their kids looked after? Business Broker Network, an online marketplace for businesses up for sale, put together a set of maps that shows the average cost of childcare in every state. Spoiler alert: it's a lot.
The transition from an intimate partnership in which the parents share a personal relationship to the more distant co-parent relationship is difficult for many Massachusetts parents to manage. The difficulty is compounded because often each parent has different preferences and expectations for co-parenting.
Although you can't predict what will happen in Massachusetts custody cases, you should draft standard language in custody agreements and court orders that will address common problems that arise in joint legal and physical custody situations. Doing so will help align parental expectations and minimize conflict for children.
When there are challenges around communication while co-parenting after a Massachusetts divorce or separation, a parenting plan, either court ordered or by parental agreement, can structure the ways in which co-parents will communicate about their child. Including communication terms in a parenting plan can help to deescalate conflict, decrease misunderstandings, ensure that both parents have access to vital information, and insulate children from exposure to adult conflict.
Domestic violence officially become a separate crime under the Uniform Code of Military Justice under the defense authorization act.
Abuse should never be considered discipline and good discipline should never be abusive. But in the heat of a disciplinary moment, particularly one fraught with stress, Massachusetts parents can quickly approach the border of abuse before they even realize it. The speed at which correcting a child can turn into damaging a child makes it hard to pump the breaks, and even harder to be self-aware enough to recognize the danger.
Today's smartphones offer near limitless access to information, but they also access porn, violent imagery, and other disturbing content your Massachusetts children might not be ready to see. And then there's the very real possibility of addiction to the device's entertainment. But, rest assured, with the rise of these devices' ubiquity has come a number of parental control devices and apps that help you do everything from block problematic sites to set weekly screen-time limits.
Military life is not always the most stable for Massachusetts families. Those who are in the military or grew up in a military family can attest to that. But now, more adoption agencies and child welfare groups are recognizing that military families are just as capable of providing a loving and welcoming home for children as any other family. Though being in the military does pose unique circumstances, it also means that you may be able to receive certain benefits when adopting a child that are not available to anyone who is not in the armed forces.
It's easy to know why Massachusetts couples divorce. What's difficult to figure out is if couples will divorce. The business of divorce prediction, that is to say, is murky. However, there is one factor that's one of the best predictors for the collapse of contemporary heterosexual marriages: whether the husband is working full-time. It has nothing to do with money or whether the wife is working too. When husbands don't work, things fall apart. Why? Well, that's when the data gets really interesting.
As a Massachusetts parent, you are likely to be feeling a mix of emotions about sending your children back to school. On one hand, it is a little sad that summer will soon be over, but on the other hand, you could probably stand a little extra quiet time after being around your children more consistently. If you share co-parenting responsibilities with your former partner, however, back-to-school is a perfect time to re-evaluate your rules, boundaries, and other elements of your parenting arrangements.