Parenting in the aftermath of a divorce is challenging, whether you are trying to manage the currently-popular co-parenting arrangement, or if you have a custodial parent and a non-custodial one. In most cases everybody involved has the best interests of the kids at heart, but that does not make it any easier when the child decides that he or she does not want to go and visit with the other parent. According to Helpguide.org, when this happens it is extremely important to follow the child’s lead at first.
The absolute last thing you want to do is force the child to go with the parent that he or she does not wish to visit with. There are many potential reasons for the child to refuse to visit one parent, and many of them are comparatively innocuous in nature. Of course, everybody wants to be wary of abusive circumstances, but many times the cause of refusal is much more simple. It may be that one house has better access to friends (or is the house that the child is used to living in), or more toys or technology. It may also be that one parent is more lax on rules than the other.
Clear communication is imperative during times like these. It is important to have difficult conversations with your ex when your child does not want to visit with a parent to try and figure out what the heart of the issue is and move forward. In most circumstances the child does end up changing his or her mind about refusal, which is why it is important to give the child space to do so.