More Men Living Alone Today Child Custody Trends To Blame


The image of the "man cave" is popular in the media today. Some Georgia men may have a basement or other room of the house, or perhaps a garage, where they can isolate themselves to engage in hobbies, watch television or work on projects. Yet the notion of the solitary modern man in his "cave" may actually stem in part from decades-long trends in divorce and child custodydeterminations.

Recent Census data has found an increase in single male households since 1970 of over 10 percent. Today more than a third of men aged 15-64 live alone. A report suggests that the rising divorce rate since the 1970s could have affected that statistic, although interestingly, there has not been a corresponding rise in the rate of single female households. The report further speculates that the likelihood of mothers retaining full custody of the children after a divorce could account for this disproportionality.

Of course, every family situation is different and will have unique factors influencing a custody arrangement after a divorce. Courts will typically want to examine what a child's living conditions will be like in one home or the other, how much time a parent will have to devote to the child's care, and any factors like drugs or abuse that could threaten the stability or safety of the child in the home. Divorcing parents concerned that a judge may award full custody to the other partner may also wish to consider working together towards an out-of-court child custody agreement.

It is important for Georgia parents considering a divorce to know their legal rights, and not expect that certain trends or stereotypes regarding "who gets the kids" will prevail in their situation. Fathers have legal rights to their children, and mothers who want full custody should not expect that a court will rule in their favor without some scrutiny. In either case, a legal professional can help divorcing parents understand their legal options and advocate for a custody or visitation arrangement that takes these into consideration - as well, of course, as the best interests of the child.

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