• Child Custody,  Coparenting

    Children’s Wishes

    “I just want everyone to be smilin’.” I’m not sure of the backstory relating to this video, but I think it makes a point about children’s wishes, especially when parents are divorced or separated. Besides, the child is intelligent and adorable. 🙂 Going through a rough time with your child’s other parent? Watch this. When I did custody investigations, the number one wish of nearly 100% of the children I spoke to was “for mom and dad not to fight anymore”.   Originally posted on RhondaHopkins.com.

  • Child Custody,  Coparenting

    Co-Parenting and Summer Access

    It’s summer. The glory days of youth. Most kids are out of school at least part of the season and they’ll be ready to spend time with both parents. Have you read your divorce/custody decree about who’s supposed to have your child and when during this time? No? You may want to. In most instances, you’re going to see that the parent who does not have primary custody should have a good chunk of the summer. Read the details carefully. If you’re the non-primary parent, you may be able to choose when you want the child, but you probably have to give notice (usually in writing) in advance. The amount…

  • Child Custody,  Coparenting

    Co-Parenting: Putting the Past Where It Belongs

    It’s healthy to look back over the past and think about what you did that worked for you and what sucked the life you might have done differently. This probably includes putting the past behind you.   When it comes to putting the past behind some of you though, you might need to seek professional help one on one. Some of you have had a more difficult time dealing with the ex and have had some pretty bad experiences. I understand that. There is nothing shameful about seeking help from a counselor/therapist or other professional. If it helps you — it helps your child. And that’s the important thing, right?…

  • Child Custody,  Family Court

    Preparing for Family Court

    I want to give you some helpful information on preparing for Family Court. Let’s say you’ve been served with divorce papers. Or, you get a petition to modify custody or access (anything that might change the parent/child relationship). Or, maybe you’re the one doing the filing. You need to prepare for court as far in advance as possible. Here are some of the things you’ll need to do: Hire an attorney. Make a commitment to keep your child(ren) out of the middle of any arguments the two of you may have and to refrain from speaking to them about court unless absolutely necessary and then in only the most general…

  • Child Custody,  Coparenting

    Co-Parenting When Medical Issues Arise

    When my dad was hospitalized, I reflected on my blessings. Two parents who love me and my sister. I also had time to think about all those cases (not one or two, but MANY) over the years in which parents so hated each other, that the kids were forced to endure revolting behavior from one or both  of their gene donors. And those past cases (which translate to living, breathing kids for me) basically  ticked me off. Now those of you who have learned to put aside your differences and think of your children first, probably can’t imagine not telling the other parent when their child is in the hospital…

  • Coparenting

    Respect: An Integral Element of Co-Parenting

    Basically co-parenting boils down to “cooperative parenting” or parenting together. It is a firmly held belief with professionals that children fare better when parents can minimize any trauma during and after their divorce and can communicate, cooperate, and compromise with consistency. Respect is an integral element of co-parenting effectively. I realize not everyone ends their relationship amicably. It would be great for them and their children if that were possible, but unfortunately, it isn’t always. Co-parenting is even more difficult when a marriage ends with hostility. However, it is extremely important for your children that any animosity be put aside. You have to put your children’s needs and best interests…

  • Child Custody,  Coparenting

    Using Kids to Communicate With Your Ex – Don’t Do It

    A friend reported over-hearing a conversation between a mother and child recently. The mother was telling the child to tell her father things that basically the mother should have been discussing with him. And the child was telling the mom how the father wouldn’t listen to her as “that’s not what’s in the court papers”. I’d like to be able to say this hardly ever happens. But I can’t. During the past 20 years, I’ve often heard similar conversations myself or more tragically — children’s versions of these conversations. This is probably the second “wish” kids have who have parents involved in custody litigation. When I asked kids what they…

  • Child Custody,  Coparenting

    Social Media Is Not Always Your Friend

    Facebook, twitter, instagram, etc. can all be fun and entertaining. They have their uses. They’re great tools for building a business platform. Facebook is an excellent way to stay in touch or even get back in touch with family and friends. Interesting people and topics can be found daily. And, the cat videos! We love those, right? However, you should be careful what you post because it can come back and bite you in the… umm…nether region. Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t want to squash all your fun. But, if you’re a divorced/separated parent and posting pictures of yourself in a drunken stupor or high (although I don’t…

  • Child Custody

    Stalking

    Many times over the years, people brought in copies of emails (or phone records, etc.) from their ex or soon to be ex as part of their interview for their custody evaluation. Their hope was that the information in the emails or other documents would make the other person look bad. They never seemed to think that what they were doing –spying — was wrong. They always had an excuse for what they did. However, it doesn’t matter. The fact that they violated the privacy of the other person was inappropriate. I’m not talking about emails between the two of them. I’m talking about private emails to other people –…

  • Child Custody

    Prescription drug abuse

    When people talk about drug abuse, they typically mean illegal drugs. Heroin, cocaine, marijuana, and methamphetamines usually come to mind. And, yes, if you are using any of these, you need to get help as soon as possible. But, what about those drugs you obtain with a prescription? Pain pills, muscle relaxers, mood modifiers, etc. can be a real problem as well. I’ve seen people who wouldn’t dream of using an illegal substance become so addicted to a prescription drug that they do things I’m sure if they were thinking straight, they’d never consider. Do you go to more than one doctor to get pain pills, etc without letting each…