Nice Wins Custody CaseYesterday’s hearing on temporary orders in Tarrant County divorce court reinforced a point I always stress to my clients. That is, find something positive to say about the person with whom you conceived a child. With such an emphasis being placed on family concepts such as joint conservatorship and co-parenting agreements, our family law courts are looking for parents who can effectively raise children even after divorce.

Parents who cling to anger and frustration in divorce and child custody cases will find themselves at a disadvantage if they don’t grasp the fact that a marital separation creates a new reality. Think about it. No matter how bad things were during the marriage, both you and your spouse lived in the same home and that is a comforting thing to a child. Upon marital separation, both parents will be given the opportunity to demonstrate they can effectively parent during times of possession.

In our case yesterday, the mother alleged the father “had not been there for 8 years” and did not deserve the opportunity to parent the child upon divorce. As I would have predicted, this strategy failed. Where the father had been the sole financial provider and the mother had stayed at home,the court is going to expect the mother to become more productive financially upon divorce and the father to adjust his schedule to participate more fully with the children upon divorce.