You and your spouse are splitting up. You're far less concerned with that than you are with your child. The relationship that the two of you have means the world to you. Is it going to suffer after the divorce?

A split can be hard on kids. You naturally spend less time together. But that doesn't mean it has to destroy your relationship. If you're intentional about building it up, it can stay strong.

For example, simply making as much time together as possible should be your focus. Often, it doesn't even really matter what you're doing. Just be with your child. Play with him or her. Interact and show your child that you care. You may have less time, but make the most of what you have and make sure it's quality time.

To this end, try to avoid electronic distractions. This doesn't mean throwing out technology entirely; maybe you both love making popcorn and watching a movie together on a Friday night. That's fine.

What it means, though, is that you really want to be focused on your child when you're together. Don't just watch TV on the couch while your child plays on the floor. Don't sit around texting while he or she is trying to play catch with you or read a book. Don't spend your time browsing Facebook on your phone when your child is craving that emotional and physical interaction.

As you work out your child custody plan, keep all of these goals in mind. Remember your rights and strive to create a parenting plan that will keep your relationship strong.

Source: Psychology Today, "Ten Habits to Strengthen Your Relationship with Your Child," Laura Markham, accessed Aug. 18, 2017

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