Does 50/50 shared access ever work?

(15 Posts)

And what is your experience of this? Also what age were your children if it has been successful for you?

Sorry for the questions dp and I are heading towards separation by the looks of it. I won't get into that but I'm just interested on how often 50/50 access actually works out practically.
TIA

Sorry, just to add, in cases where it has not worked out what agreement did you come to? Thanks again.

Anyone?

FeralStreep Sat 13-Jul-13 19:46:29

Hi.

We do it. Our kids were 12 and 14 when we separated.

STBXH has them Monday night until Thursday. I pick them up from school on Thursday. I have them every other Saturday night, although through circumstances they've been with me the last few Saturdays. We are flexible.

It works well for the kids, though I miss them terribly when they're not with me.

Lonecatwithkitten Sat 13-Jul-13 19:59:08

I do it and it mostly works. DD was 8 when we separated she is with me Monday and Thursday, ExH Tuesday and Wednesday and then every other weekend Friday through Monday morning. This carries on through out the year apart from when we have holiday from work when we have her for whole weeks ( I use all my holiday with her he uses about half of his and I have more holiday).
What doesn't work? ExH constantly telling DD he missed her so she feels guilty about not being with him. That he never tells her in advance if she will be at his house, OW's house or Grandma's.
Why does it largely work? Because DD is mature and organised for her age. Also because I work really hard to make her life with me 100% consistent and that she always know what we are going to be doing in advance.
Do I think it will last long term? No I think due to ExH's behaviour we are going to hit massive teenage backlash against him (I have never said a word) and I believe OW's long term plans don't include children hanging around!

Hassled Sat 13-Jul-13 20:05:43

Worked with my older 2 - their father had them Sunday - Wed, I had them Wed - Sat. I missed them like hell but genuinely believe it was the best thing for them. And we both rang each night and morning when they were at the other house.

Downsides - PE kit/homework at the wrong house etc. You have to be able to be civil with the other parent or it won't be manageable.

PrettyPaperweight Sat 13-Jul-13 20:06:39

Has worked brilliantly for DD for 4 years - she was 8 and we've always done alternate full weeks - although the changeover day has changed over time. Now she's older its more flexible to fit around her activities and social life but the default is 50/50.

Ex and I have been anything but amicable, but both determined to make this work; it's meant repeated mediation sessions and we parent very differently, but DD's life is so much richer than it would be if she lived primarily with one of us and had EOW contact with the other.

Thank you for your reply Feral. I suppose an amicable relationship helps the situation?
DS is only 2 and I'm not sure if it will work quite that well.
DP is very upset that he'll see DS a lot less than now because he works f/t (I'm p/t at the moment). I typically work Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday but the week days can vary.
I thought the best thing would be that DP has him Saturday, Sunday and either Tuesday or Wednesday night. That way we both get 2 full days with him and a work night. DP has already mentioned about having him each weekend but obviously I'm happy to be flexible.
Does that sound fair?

Oh wow thank you for the replies!
It's so helpful to get some perspective.
ExP (I should have called him that from the start of the thread!) is a very hands on father. He is very much an equal so I have no qualms with that. I really believe that DS will be better off with 50/50 contact.
DP is struggling with the split anyway so having to deal with this is really taking its toll on him. We are amicable though (so far!) and still living in the same house. I'll be moving out soon though and obviously that's when it'll all change.

pilotbecky Thu 18-Jul-13 18:31:33

We did it initially (kids aged 10 and 12). After 9 months though, custody is swinging in my favour as my ex feels like he 'needs more time to himself' - ha! It worked brilliantly for the kids - they were so pleased to see us equally. Like Hassled said though, we quite often find that books/clothes are in the wrong house and it always seems to be me hopping in the car to pick them up. Grrr.

I would recommend it if you are happy to put the work in with your ex. Good luck!

Lovingfreedom Thu 18-Jul-13 22:00:55

It works quite well for us. My kids are 15 and 11. I'm not on especially good terms with my ex...it varies. But the arrangements work well. I have kids weds pm to sat am then every other sat night. Ex has then Sunday pm to weds am and every other Sat night.
Kids know what they are doing. Holidays we work out differently.

Trumpled Wed 31-Jul-13 21:29:04

As others have said, it only really works when XP/XH is responsible and wants to make it work for everyone's sake. When you have a shit of an irresponsible XP, it's a nightmare, and means you end up running your life around his inefficiency. Be careful - state exactly what will happen in terms of paying for extra childcare, clubs, uniforms, - who's going to run in forgotten PE kit, etc.
If he's a normal human being, then it should be fine, if he's a twat, tread carefully.

Thank you for all your responses. Just knowing it can work is very helpful.
I'm not sure what exactly will happen yet but I will take all your advice on board. thanks

thelostgirl Sat 03-Aug-13 20:55:00

It didn't work well for us. Our DD's were 3, 3 (twins) and 5 when we divorced and although the twins weren't too badly affected, the 5yr old was hysterical each time she had to go to her father (which would leave me devastated to see her in such a state). We lived 10mins walk away from each other so that was perfect, but still, making sure everything needed for the girls was taken back and forth was a nightmare in itself (especially if things were left behind, or lost on his weeks). Also he would try to emotionally manipulate me all the time into having the girls on his weeks - which I wanted because I missed them desperately, however I had organised with my employer that I work longer hours the weeks the girls were with their father and shorter when I had them. I simply couldn't afford to repeatedly drop hours to pick up the girls from playschool on his weeks because of whatever excuse he came up with...and if I wouldn't do it, then he'd make things difficult (wouldn't sign papers for their passports for example, unless I agreed to collect the girls that week....).

Thankfully he then moved hundreds of miles away and only now sees the girls about one weekend per month on average - though he still manages to cause problems...but that's another story!

Good luck with your situation.

creativevoid Fri 22-Nov-13 22:36:40

Loving freedom I am also considering 50/50 and like the sound of your arrangement. Could you explain how the weekends work in a little more detail?

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