Should You Fight for Sole Custody?

High conflict divorce creates a challenge for co-parenting through joint custody. For that reason, many courts and legal professionals advise against it. The adverse effects on children caught between their parents’ conflict is well documented. Mental health and legal professional agree on the harmful effects. Yet, the type of parenting arrangement is often subject to dispute.

High Conflict Divorce and Co-parenting Arrangements

According to an article in Psychology Today, the previously fixed view has shifted. The view used to be that shared parenting was impossible for parents who were in conflict.

However, further research revealed that frequently alternating from one parent’s household to the other was the factor that fueled conflict between parents. They found themselves having to interact directly with the other parent too often. This is what predisposed them to disagreements. However, when more time was spent with each parent without transitioning back and forth, the conflict lessened.

Warm Relationships with Both Parents Are Important

Co-parenting is not harmful but is actually beneficial for children. Children who have warm, loving relationships with both parents do better. Later research in 2003 and 2007 concluded that high conflict is not a reason to restrict parental contact with their children. Also, whenever courts placed restrictions on parenting, it was the fathers who suffered the most. They were usually subject to the restrictions.

Ironically, hostility is more likely to occur when a parent feels threatened by the potential loss of his or her children. Men are more prone to becoming hostile toward their ex-wives when a court limits their involvement in their children’s lives. Over time, conflict generally decreases in shared parenting arrangements. In contrast, parental conflict often increases in sole custody arrangements.

Do You Have Concerns About High Conflict Divorce?

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