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Joint Custody a Death Sentence for Super Dads

Going into a child custody case, you always want to do, “what’s in best for my child.” But does that mean that you go into battle with the white flag halfway up the pole?

Too often, great dads enter child custody cases wanting to avoid a protracted (and expensive) trial. They want to come across as a ‘good guy’ and not make waves or worsen a bad situation. Maybe they are trying to salve some wounds. Perhaps they are just trying to get this over with so they can get on with their lives. Many super dads fear looking like a bad guy in taking Susie away from her mother, or create the mental image of Johnny crying because he’s denied daily access to his mother.

Susie is your daughter; if she isn’t worth fighting for, then what is?

Extraordinary Dads Should Ask for Sole Custody

If you are an extraordinary parent, asking for sole custody doesn’t make you a bad guy. Would Susie’s life be better off with her spending the majority of time with you? Are you capable of being the primary parent?

If you answer those questions honestly and are not the better parent, then I think joint custody is absolutely fine to walk into.

If however, you are the better parent, then you aren’t depriving Johnny of a rich and happy childhood by asking the court for sole custody. You aren’t cheating Susie. You are just as capable or raising your kids as is their mother. And if you believe that, and that you can provide for the physical and emotional well-being of Johnny, you should go for sole custody.

In Most Case, Joint Custody, is NOT Shared Custody

But wait Fred, isn’t “joint custody” more fair? Read my post… “What is Joint Custody? Reality or Misnomer?” At the moment, I have “joint custody” with my Ex. However, my Ex has zero, nada, zippo visitation with our daughter. Most joint custody in Texas has one parent visiting on 1st, 3rd, and 5th weekends. Both of these examples are probably not your idea of joint custody? Joint custody is a great label that doesn’t necessarily reflect who is doing most of the parenting.

For a super dad who files for ‘joint custody’, the dad has damaged himself in the eyes of the court, not to mention the other cases where dads are fighting for sole custody, because the father has never said that he could raise the child by himself, and never publicly makes that case, then he is damaging a claim that he is, a “fit and proper parent.”

Well, you are. You should ask for sole custody. If you don’t ask for it, you’ll never receive it. Otherwise make sure you clearly understand what “sentence” you’re signing up for.

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What has been your experience with sole custody? Joint custody? Your thoughts on joint custody?

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Fred Campos, Top Geek, blogs about everything from House of Cards to Subway. In addition to blogging, he is a public speaker and humorist in child custody, social media, web development and parenting. He is married to one @SuperParentMom, and raising three world changers. For more details on his custody course visit, www.DaddyGotCustody.com/course. Like this post? Make sure you subscribe to this blog.

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  • Sensei March 30, 2017, 12:10 am

    Joint custody can also be undermined by “who provides work-related daycare” arrangements. I have a 50/50 joint custody arrangement that I naively thought would give me equal rights as a parent in major decisions like moving, changing schools, etc. etc.

    But unfortunately for me, I had agreed to a clause in our parenting plan that states my ex provides daycare for my kids on my days when I’m at work (vs. me hiring a nanny). I reasoned at the time that it was an acceptable option because the kids would be better off with their mom than with a nanny on my days.

    Big mistake. Less than a month after our divorce had finalized and that parenting plan was official – my ex served me with notice that she was moving out of the school district, and in with her boyfriend in another town. And she was taking my kids with her – out of their current school (which is a mile away from both my home and my work) and into a school near her boyfriend’s house. And despite my lawyering up and objecting, I lost completely. Because the court decided the mom had more time with the kids than the dad – due to the daycare being provided. So much for 50/50 joint custody.

    Reply
    • FullCustodyDad March 30, 2017, 7:00 am

      I tend to agree. The problem is exactly how you stated it. Custody agreements don’t take into consideration future changes. And those changes almost always move away from a 50/50 agreement. Hang in there.

      Reply