Divorce is an emotion-laden process that can trigger bad decisions, including
retaliation against an ex-spouse. Because many divorced parents want to
be a part of their children's lives, custody disputes can ensue, causing
stress for the children who are caught in the middle of the conflict.
In Georgia, Georgia, as in most states, children often live exclusively
with one parent, while the other parent has limited access to them. One
way to ensure that both parents have equal access and to reduce the stress
caused by divorce is to arrange for shared custody. In such an agreement,
each parent has roughly the same amount of time with the child. Many advocates
across the United States believe that shared custody is beneficial for
children unless there is a history of violence or abuse.
Child custody can work for divorcing and divorced parents for several reasons.
For instance, more men are assuming the role of caretakers. Gender roles
have converged, and gender no longer indicates whether parents are capable
of looking after their children. Second, most Americans support shared
custody, and that fact may affect custody laws across the nation. Finally,
many noncustodial parents feel that custodial parents have the upper hand
after their divorce and feel disenfranchised.
The decision to seek divorce is difficult for parents, but it can be even
more challenging for children. Although the court decides on child custody
and visitation rights on the basis of the best interests of the child,
divorced parents may request a modification. Unless one of the parents
poses a danger to the child's well-being, shared custody is a viable
option that is best explored with the guidance of a family law attorney.