There are many instances that I could cite here where physically and sexually abusive fathers have gained custody of the children in custody battles, but instead I will list only a few of the more heinous crimes done to these children legally in divorce court. Sure fathers have rights to the children too but what about in these cases where the children are harmed? Does that not effectively prove to the court that they are unfit? Do these fathers still deserve visitation with these innocent, traumatized children? If you had been raped repeatedly as a child, can you imagine a judge forcing you to visit with the person who hurt you?
Father X was furious when Mother X filed for divorce. The judge forced the mother to take the kids for visitation anyway. Father X had made threats in court but the judge would not relent. Mother X came back to get the children and found them hanging by a home-made noose. The children survived barely. The judge in the case placed the mother in jail for refusing to allow any more visitation. The father eventually did go to jail for attempted murder but only after a year fighting for custody of the children.
Father X was recorded threatening to kidnap the children when he was allowed visitation. The mother would never see her children again. This was played for the judge in divorce court. The judge told the mother that if she did not allow visitation, she would go to jail. An arrest warrant was placed for the mother but she went through criminal court to have the father arrested for threats made against her children.
Father X raped his young teen daughter. Mother X refused to allow more visitation. The father cited parental alienation as the reason for the claims against him. He won custody and the mother is still fighting for her daughter.
There are websites that tell how fathers win custody of their children through citing parental alienation although they have physically and sexually harmed their children. Manuals are sold online to help fathers win custody or visitation of these children. Yanking even breastfed infants away from their mothers. Step by step directions on how to win in custody battles for fathers who have never been involved with the children. Children who never even saw their father before are being sent to a stranger's house basically. Can you imagine how horrifying and traumatizing this would be for a small child? Typically mothers do not fight in court for no visitation unless there is a good reason. Mothers who trust fathers to take good care of the children will not resist a visitation schedule. Mothers who have any qualms about it should be listened to by the courts. Mothers' instincts come into play here as well.
Small children need stability. Why judges do not take this into consideration is a puzzle to me. How they allow fathers who have never cared for a child before to take over full custody is beyond my comprehension. If a parent has been the full time caregiver, why would a judge change this? Parental alienation. A made-up term supposedly meaning that the mother has turned the children against their father. Strangely most mothers would never even speak to their children about grown-up issues such as an unfit father. They don't need to do that, these children know that their father is a stranger to them. They know when they have been abused. If a child is refusing to go on visitation, the judge should take a closer look as to why. Of course the father's rights advocates blame the mother, hence "parental alienation" claims.
If a child is alienated from their father, it could be for good reason and have nothing to do with the mother at all. This is centered more around mothers as it is rare that a father will be a full time caregiver. Usually it is the mother doing all of the caregiving while the father works. There are many reasons for this happening...for fathers to get custody and liberal visitation although there are health and safety concerns for the children. Most judges are men and side with the fathers. The woman's attorney is a cheap one as the mother can't afford a better attorney. The men's attorneys are highly paid attorneys, fathers are the breadwinners in most all cases. So mothers start out lower on the totem pole. The judge is already against her and the father has the better attorney. The deck is stacked against her. This isn't only about mothers though. It is about protecting our children from harm.
Divorce is not painful in and of itself. The pain for children comes from being torn away from their homes, away from their mothers. The children stop trusting adults when they are forced to go with an abusive parent. The judge ordered it after all, the mother didn't stop it, and the father wasn't placed in jail where he belongs. The harrassment of mothers needs to stop in family court. The traumatizing of children needs to stop in family courts around the United States. It is never in a child's best interests to be sent with an abusive father or a total stranger whichever the case may be. Judges need to look up and pay attention during custody disputes. Children of divorce depend on them to make the right decisions.
Published by Carolyn Foster