A concerned father may face a tougher battle regarding child custody decisions. Society traditionally views mothers as the natural caregiver, and courts award custody to women more often than men. For instance, the U.S. Census Bureau reports that nearly 80% of custodial parents are mothers.
Loving dads can use smart strategies to pursue fair custody and visitation rights.
Negotiating in a spirit of compromise
Any efforts of one parent to alienate a child from the other likely provoke hurt feelings and strained relationships. A father who makes clear through words and action his desire for the co-parent to remain fully active in the child’s life is more likely to have the court and his ex-spouse acquiesce to his requests.
Attending to finances
Earning sufficient income shows the ability to care for a child properly. A court may render a more favorable order when a father proves he can provide financial security.
Collecting references and documentation
Emails with teachers and the child’s doctors show active involvement in the child’s life. References from neighbors, workmates, family and friends can establish a father’s character. Testimony from volunteer, religious or charity groups can also demonstrate his positive influence on the child.
Keeping the children out of the battle
Parents should not make children chess pieces in a match against the ex. Manipulating the child’s feelings by disparaging the other parent will only serve to make a father seem devious and harm his perception by others. A calm, rational demeanor helps a man appear like an appealing custodian.
A father need never give up in the fight to receive fair time with his children. By keeping the best interests of the kids top of mind, a man can make strategic moves to preserve precious time with his family.