Separations and divorces are painful for everyone involved.  Emotions are all over the place, and sometimes even the simplest things become difficult.  When children are involved, the situation is even more difficult.  Oftentimes, having a place where children can have a supervised visit with the other parent is the best route.  With the safety (mental, emotional, physical) of everyone involved in mind, there must be a safe environment for supervised visits.

Key Components of Creating a Safe Environment for Supervised Visits

  • SafeChild(ren) and adult victim safety is the first priority.  Be it a visitation center or a public place the safety of everyone is of utmost importance.  Children exposed to domestic violence can become healthy adults if they are able to receive the support they need.  Having a secure place to meet is a step in the right direction.
  • Have a staggered arrival and departure time for the parties involved.  Having everyone walk in and out together can create a dangerous situation.  Think about all parties involved and schedule accordingly.  Ideally, have custodial parents wait on, or off, site depending on the needs and ages of the children.  Then ensure the waiting area is safe and secure.
  • Ensure everyone is aware of the plan and protocols for each visit.  This gives peace of mind to the adversely affected parties.
  • A qualified approved supervisor must always be able to hear and see the child.  The supervisor is a critical part of a safe visit.  They must be ready to enforce the court’s directives and keep personal opinion(s) and feelings out of it.
  • Communication is the key!  Be sure everyone understands how visits will go and what to expect.
The Importance of a Safe Environment
To Help the Children
Children who are unable to see their parent(s)/guardian without supervision often struggle to process what’s happening. They may be emotional or withdrawn. With a supervised visit, the child often feels more protected and able to engage. Being in a safe and comfortable environment can help them focus on their time with the visiting parent, without fear or anxiety.
The Custodial Parent
The custodial parent can allow the child(ren) to visit the other parent without having to interact or have contact with the person they are trying to separate from. This is especially important if there is a restraining order in place!
The Visiting Parent
The visit will be coordinated so they are not in contact with the other parent thus keeping accusations or recriminations out of the visit.
Having a safe environment for court-ordered visits is critical in moving beyond this stage of a relationship.   You can find the environment you need through Family Alliance Services. We have the space, moderators, and training needed to help you make each visit a healthy and productive one.  Reach out to us today.