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St. Louis Fathers' Rights & Divorce Law Blog

How divorced parents can help get kids back to school: Part II

15202342_S.jpgEarlier this week, we began a discussion about the difficulties associated with back-to-school time when your family has recently experienced a divorce or child custody dispute. In today's post, we'll continue our list of back-to-school tips to make this transition easier for divorced families. As with other things in life, communication and cooperation are essential.

If both parents plan to play an active role in their child's education, it is important to communicate early and often with teachers and school administrators. For instance, it may make things much easier to start the school year off with an email to your child's teacher(s), explaining the divorce and custody agreement.

How divorced parents can help get kids back to school: Part I

3551231_S.jpgNow that September is here, kids across the United States are heading back to school (if they haven't done so already). This can be a stressful transition even under the best circumstances. But in families that have recently experienced a divorce and/or child custody dispute, back-to-school time is likely to be especially fraught.

If you've recently been through a family law dispute, you are probably worried about the coming school year. Thankfully, many parents have already stood where you are standing and there is no shortage of good advice to make back-to-school time as smooth as it can be. And this advice can be easily tailored to reflect your unique custody situation.

Interstate custody can be complex, but it's not impossible

21618005_S.jpgChild custody will always be a complex and difficult matter when it comes to divorce. There are a lot of emotional elements and logistical factors that need to get sorted out so that the child's best interests are fulfilled. Even when both parents are on the same page for custody, there is still plenty to work out.

Some parents may think that once they are out of court, the complications inherent to the child custody process are gone -- but that isn't necessarily true. You have to be prepared for the post-custody arrangement scenarios that could arise, and you need to be ready for the responsibility of fulfilling those obligations.

Learning to fight fair in marriage and divorce

12896599_S.jpgIt is commonly thought that the sign of a healthy relationship is one that is free from conflict. But most mental health professionals would disagree with that assertion. If a couple experiences no conflict whatsoever, it could be a sign that neither partner is invested in the relationship.

Instead, therapists say, couples should work on "fighting fair" rather than avoiding conflict altogether. The skills needed to have healthy fights are not easily learned. But they are valuable throughout the relationship, even if a couple ends up getting divorced.

Children may wish to maintain relationship with ex-stepparents

21503145_S (1).jpgAs in other states, when it comes to Missouri child custody matters, the children's best interests are supposed to be the most important factor. We usually think of this in terms of maintaining relationships with the child's biological or adoptive parents. But what about stepparents?

Relatively little research has examined the affect losing a stepparent to divorce can have on children. In many cases, the stepparent had a stronger and more vital relationship with the child than his or her noncustodial parent ever did. It is natural to assume, therefore, that losing contact with a stepfather who helped raise a child for many years could be at least as traumatic as when the child's biological father is denied custody rights.

Why do women initiate divorce more often than men?

12927129_S.jpgThere was a time when married men were generally the breadwinners of the household, while their wives stayed home and handled domestic duties. That is not the case in today's society, as many married women have full-time jobs, and there are perhaps more stay-at-home dads today than ever before.

According to a study recently presented at the annual gathering of the American Sociological Association, these relatively recent social developments have led to heightened expectations among married women, and these heightened expectations likely contribute to the fact that women initiate divorce in most cases.

Do a child's best interests and father's rights go hand in hand?

6998153_S.jpgAs frequent visitors to our blog know, we often like to talk about Missouri law and how it affects residents here in St. Louis County and across Missouri. In a post back in February last year, we talked about the push across the nation for joint custody arrangements, which oftentimes provide a middle ground between fathers' rights advocates and a child's best interests. In the post, we left it up to our readers to decide whether they thought the same way.

In today's post though, we'd like to continue our February 2014 discussion by asking an important question: do a child's best interests and father's rights go hand in hand? We ask this question because of a sentiment felt by many fathers across the nation, including here in Missouri, regarding a judge's acknowledgement of a father's parental rights.

Respecting the privacy rights of parents who pay child support

18985415_S.jpgWe have previously written that child support is among the more "loaded" topics in family law. Regardless of whether they pay or receive child support, nearly everyone involved has an opinion. And for the parents on the paying end - often fathers but not always - reminders to pay child support can feel like a moral judgment. No one wants to be thought of as a "deadbeat."

Missouri has a Division of Child Support Enforcement to ensure that non-custodial parents are making court-ordered payments. Most other states also have enforcement mechanisms in place. But as a recent news article shows, the methods used by states are not always tactful or respectful of a person's privacy.