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Common misconceptions about post-divorce parenting

On Behalf of | Mar 25, 2024 | Child Custody and Visitation

For divorcing parents, their top priority is most likely getting a schedule together that meets the best interests of the children. In many cases, parents are able to agree upon custody terms that are then approved by the court. This will only happen if those terms meet the best interests of the child. 

Nonetheless, it still takes a lot of work to put a custody arrangement into practice. Some parents land themselves in trouble by falling for the following misconceptions

If communication is tricky, the children can take over 

Marriages often come to an end due to conflict between spouses. Sometimes, the divorce itself can be highly contested and communication between parents post-divorce can be problematic. This is something that parents will have to work through. There are numerous co-parenting tools and apps that can help improve communication. Methods of communication between parents can even be included in the custody agreement. 

One thing that should not happen is for the children to be used as messengers between parents. For example, if one parent asks the child to inform the other parent that they need to collect them at a different time next week. This can result in tension and a vicious cycle of the child being used to pass negative messages from parent to parent. A child should never feel like they are caught in the middle of a dispute or have to pick sides. 

Mothers are always granted primary custody 

At one point in time, there was a widely held view that mothers were always the best choice for primary custody. However, this view is no longer widely held by the courts. The key factor in all custody cases is the best interests of the child. Either parent can be granted primary custody if that is in the best interests of the child. The factors the family court will consider include: 

  • Which parent has already been the child’s primary caregiver
  • The physical and mental health of each parent
  • The routines of the child 
  • Whether or not there are any safety concerns for the child 

Gender should not come into the court’s decision making in child custody cases. 

Whether you are in the midst of divorce or are seeking a custody modification, it will benefit you to have legal guidance on your side.