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Resolving parental conflicts over screen time

Illinois parents who have gone through a divorce may wonder how much control they can exert over rules about bedtime, video games and other issues when their children are at the other parent's house. While experts advise that consistency is best in these matters, a parent might not be able to control all of the other parent's choices.

For example, one parent might object to what is seen as the child playing too much Pokemon Go. The best approach in these circumstances might be for the concerned parent to sit down with the other parent, outline the concerns in a concrete way and try to reach a compromise. However, the other parent still might not agree.

At this point, a parent has some options. One is to drop the issue altogether. This might be the best choice depending on the issue because the parent might want to save the escalation of a situation for more critical conflicts. However, parents do have the option of going to court if they truly believe the child is endangered. They will need to provide evidence of this such as demonstrating physical harm or that the child is struggling in school as a result. The other parent may counter that the game is bonding, however, and the judge might see the parent who brought the case to court as difficult and uncooperative.

Parents who have specific concerns about these types of during parenting time issues might want to speak with their respective attorneys about how to address them in an agreement. It may be advisable to leave some flexibility so that problems that arise can be resolved expeditiously rather than having to seek a formal modification.

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