Engaging in a custody battle is rarely worth the pain and the price you will pay. It will drain your bank account and devastate your kids. It is arguably the most emotionally destructive war you can wage in divorce court. It is a necessity. Or, maybe you and your spouse live in separate states, and sharing custody and time with your kids is way more complicated.
In that case, you may find yourself fighting over custody because not fighting feels like losing your kids. Whatever your situation and whatever your reason for fighting over custody, understand this: The best thing you can possibly do is avoid engaging in them.
Do everything you can to settle out of court.
Going all the way to trial in a custody battle is exhausting and expensive. Plus, you never know what a judge is going to do. No matter how great you think your case is, you have no guarantee that a judge will agree with you. Before you go to court, try mediation.
If you can, talk to your spouse yourself. Do whatever it takes to settle out of court.
Remember, a mediocre settlement is still better than a bad court judgment. Consult with experts before you start a war. This is not Court TV. The stakes are high and the fight is long and complicated.
Do not try to do this on your own. Talk to a lawyer about your chances of actually winning your case before you start to fight. Better yet, talk to two lawyers. Ask them for their honest opinion about your chances of winning a custody battle in court.
Dial down the drama. When parents fight, children suffer. Try not to fight with their other parent in front of them. Dragging your kids into the court room will not help your cause. It will just make the judge question your judgment, and your motives. Do your best to be objective. Is the custody that you are fighting for whether that is joint custody or sole custody really going to be best for your kids? Is there any way you can compromise without putting your children in the middle of a Hookup a man going through custody battle Be brutally honest with yourself.
Why are Hookup a man going through custody battle fighting? Your kids will be better off being exposed to two different parenting styles than they will be in getting dragged through the court system by parents who hate each other. If you are going to fight, do it for the right reasons. Protecting your kids from an abusive parent is a good reason to engage in a custody battle. Fighting about custody to gain leverage over your spouse in the money issues of your divorce is not.
Fighting for the right reason requires you to take the time to understand what your reason for fighting really is.
Dig deep and, again, be honest. While having an affair might have been an exhibition of questionable personal judgment and morals! Are you trying to keep your kids away from your ex because it is truly best for them, or because you are angry and hurt?
While you are going through a custody battle, you will be living your life under a microscope. Everything you do can potentially make a difference in your case. Tempted to dash off Hookup a man going through custody battle blistering text message to your spouse when you are mad? The last thing you want is for angry texts you sent to your spouse to show up as evidence in your custody trial.
The same is true for email rants, or even bad behavior that others witness. You also need to stay off social media. Even if you have your privacy settings cranked to the sky, anything you post on social media can potentially be seen by everyone — including your spouse.
No matter what is going on in court, you have an obligation to support your children.
The fact that your spouse is acting like a jerk and sabotaging your time with your kids is irrelevant. Your kids have to eat. They need a roof over their head and clothes on their back. That means you need to support them. The bottom line is that, these are your kids. If you want your children to grow up happy and healthy, they need to have a relationship with both of their parents. Again, one of the factors that courts consider in custody battles is whether both parents are encouraging the kids to have a relationship with their other parent.
Facilitating that relationship will not only be good for your kids, but it will be good for you in court, too.
Make every decision with the kids in mind. If you want to have a chance of getting custody of your kids, you have to demonstrate to the court that you are willing to do whatever is best for them — even if it is not best for Hookup a man going through custody battle. Thinking of getting a new job, or a second job, to bring in more money and get you back on your feet?
If working more will require you to travel, or will take away any of the time you spend with your kids, then changing jobs, or getting another job, might not make sense … at least not right now. Accusing your spouse of being abusive might seem to be the perfect way to get your spouse away from the kids.
But, if you exaggerated or, worse, made up! False allegations of abuse will make the judge question your credibility on every other issue. No matter how tempted you might be to trump up allegations against your spouse to get the upper hand in court, the best advice is: If that judge thinks it is morally wrong for you to move in with a new lover while you are still married to your spouse, you are going to be toast in court.
It makes it look like you are more concerned about your own happiness, than the well-being of your children.
It can undermine your ability to work with your spouse as a parent. It can also seriously screw up your custody case. Put your best foot forward with everyone in the court system. All of these people have the ability to affect when and how much you see your kids.
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They can influence whether you will have the right to make parental decisions for your children going forward. Do not get on their bad side!
Alienating any of them can come back and bite you later. Remember, you get more flies with honey than with vinegar.