In the not-so-distant past, it was very common for women to end up with sole custody of any children following a divorce. Particularly if the children were young, the courts would assume that the mother was a better caretaker.
However, times have changed and the opinion of the court has changed as well. The most common form of child custody after divorce is joint custody, where both parents share legal and physical custody of the children. In fact, according to FindLaw, sole custody is almost impossible to obtain unless one of the parents has a history of violence or addiction.
Why is joint custody so popular?
The family law courtroom does what is in the best interest of the child. Generally, children thrive if both parents involve themselves in raising them, whether this involves marriage or not. Supporting joint custody means supporting what is best for the children.
Joint custody has many positives. One of the biggest positives is showing the children that your love for them is greater than whatever conflicts caused your divorce. Children benefit greatly from both parents taking an active role in their lives.
What if I cannot stand my ex?
Of course, joint custody can be difficult for the parents, particularly if they are not on good terms. However, unless you can prove a history of violence or alcohol addiction, it is unlikely that you will receive sole custody.
It is advisable to come up with a way to communicate respectfully with your ex regarding your children. Many people find that communicating through a written medium, like email, helps make the process more professional and less personal.