As a grandmother I was initially concerned when my son divorced and shared custody was set up. My son and his ex were definitely not on friendly terms, but both loved the children. They opted to establish homes at least near the children’s school district, keep problems between them and try to have consistent homes. That was 8 years ago. They are still not friendly but work together for the children’s sake. The oldest is now at Duke and both are happy, well adjusted and good students who feel they never “ lost” either parent.
It takes parents who value their children more than their arguments to make this work. I think it is less the “shuffling” back and worth that hurts the children but more the attitude of the parents. While this can work, the question remains are the parents going to work at it.
Almost 40 years ago my ex and I set up a “joint custody”...mostly because my EX said he would never pay child support and I was the one with a job...plus I had been thru divorce twice with my mother and her battles and I suffered from lack of father interactions. I was not going to put my son thru THAT! My EX made it difficult but my son gOT lots of time with his grandparents/cousins/aunts&uncles (ex’s)...its a long story. My son is however a great man and father now.
We know what the best outcome for the kids is. Unfortunately the parents can’t provide that any longer. That is the ultimate selfishness IMO.
The system should never have been set up to opt men out of their children’s lives. Two days every two weeks and a couple of weeks in the summer? LOL That was equity?
No, the split living conditions aren’t perfect. Kids still need both their father in their lives. And for a good healthy condition for the fathers, they need to have the children in their lives.
I don’t think there has been any appreciation for how devalued men are once the children are stripped from them.
Folks can make any comments they want about men that don’t stay connected, but it’s virtually impossible for men to remain connected in any meaningful way in light of the time they get with their children.
They become more of an acquaintance than a father in the real sense. Can the father be disciplinarian given so little time to be with the kids? No. He becomes the bi-weekly good humor man or he looses everything.
Imagine how men feel knowing their views about deportment and childhood decisions are stripped from them. Eh who cares?
Well, that’s been the situation up until now. Now things may be on an even footing. The woman will feel the absence of the children just like the man does. She won’t by default own them. He won’t be default become a sort of sugar daddy that puts out quietly and has to keep that frozen smile on his face.
If it sounds like I’m jaded, I am. I’ve seen the underbelly of divorce for men. I didn’t stop loving my kids. I just finally gave up missed visitation, missed parenting, missed input to how the money I provide was spent on them. I observed how my money was spent on her weekend getaways and while the 13 and 14 year old children were essentially abandoned. Next to nothing spent on their clothing or other essentials. Mom had to find herself ya know.
I found out what the caring social system really thought of child protection. No one damned thing...
So I’m ready to watch how this “ruins” children. Can’t be any worse IMO.