From another tread … a father states that he’s been the primary caretaker, STBX the breadwinner and when they are facing a divorce, at first the mother seemed to agree to the status quo of father having more time with the 3 kids, but after advised by her lawyer, she expressed a new wish for 50/50 parenting time. That father then sought advice here.
The following post from a prominent member caught my attention:
What is missing in your viewpoint, and that of others who disagreed with me, is your child's inalienable right to both parents. This isn't about the mother's rights, nor the father's rights, it's about the child's rights and the need to defend those rights against one or both parents who seek to diminish such rights.
“….the child's inalienable right to both parents”
- What is that right exactly?
- Who gave it and who can say that such right can be diminished, enforced or even applied?
The Courts? Lawyers? God? The parent who’s world turned upside-down in a matter of days? Some internet forum?
Here’s my answer: The parent who spent more time with their kids: she/he is the one who knows the kids best, who knows the other parent best and who can certainly make more damage by “abandoning” his responsibility. If I see a father here who’s been the primary caretaker and suddenly agrees with being EOW parent, I’d be on his a55 like a horsefly on sh1t. But a parent who’s dedicated his life to his kids AND wants to continue his dedication deserves not only all the help he can get, but a praise!
What exact rights does a 7,8, or 10 year old have? The right to choose whether to go to school? Or do his homework? Watch PG/R Rated movies? Consume alcohol and make decisions? Being “drunk” on mother’s physical touch, or feeling loved because his dad came to his baseball game… is exactly that!
My point is, that I don’t see the argument that the child has the right to both parents hold; I see it merely theoretical. The child, as a child, can not possibly exercise his/her right collectedly and soberly.
All I’m trying to say is that I strongly believe that the parent who’s been the primary care taker should really have the highest say-so. And isn’t it what the courts take into consideration? The “Status Quo”? The GALs/Custody evaluator? How is that NOT diminishing the child’s inalienable right to both parents?
This is where I’m lost – on one hand we talk about the importance of the Status Quo but then on the other we are ready to dismiss it by waving our hand with “the child has right to both parents” and if the father happened to be the one pushing for the status quo, he’s suddenly “controlling” and what’s really being diminished here is his chance of finding the help he sought on this forum.
The whole notion of the child having rights is more hurtful than helpful, IMHO.
Did you know that there are cases in the 70s where if one child said “I want to live with mom” and the other “I want to live with dad”, they’d be separated and see each other EOW only. THAT was the result of the child having “rights”. That’s gone now because it’s wrong, immoral and above all unjust. Unjust to who? To the parents. This forum (with exceptions) seems so pigeonholed in the notion of “the best for the kids” and often flushes the parent's rights down the toilet. Aren’t we all human beings? Don’t we all deserve the same love, happiness and positive outcome? Guess what – the kids will be fine, they will survive and only in a matter of (on average few) years they will choose who to spend more time with, and they WILL have the opportunity to do so for the rest of their lives.
What we see statistically is kids making bad decisions and not living up to their full potential, being the kids of a single parent – mostly the mother. Here we’re merely trying to do the exact opposite – make sure that the father is there! And if he was “there” more than the mother, let it continue that way. Don’t call him controlling and malicious gatekeeper, call him a hero (like all the Disney movies), commend him, respect him, and don’t send him home with his tail between his legs because he “bashed” his ex.
/How’s that for a cornball?/