Fathers Have Great Value in Their Children’s Lives
We believe in the great value of fathers. We firmly believe children have an innate need for a father in his or her life. Mothers may provide more of the nurturing, affection, and day-to-day care, but fathers can often provide more of the discipline, guidance and influence. Data shows that children, particularly boys are less likely to end up in prison when they have been raised with a father. Data also shows that boys end up with better jobs when they have benefitted from a father’s influence. A father’s influence plays out in the children’s adult relationships. Boys base their own character on their father’s character and the lack of a father causes self-esteem and relational problems. Girls without fathers struggle in forming relationships.
We Work Hard to Ensure Fathers Obtain as Much Parenting Time as Possible
First, we examine what makes this particular father indispensable to his child. Is he the parent who regularly assures the completion of homework or schedules and attends parent teacher conferences? Is he the child's baseball coach or the parent who takes the child to baseball practice three times per week? Maybe he doesn’t yet do these things because of his work schedule. Can this father rearrange his work schedule to accommodate this child's needs? Often work schedules are one of the biggest struggles. We may work with the father to re-arrange his schedule to enable a 4-day work week or alternating 30-hour with 50-hour work weeks. We look for any method of ensuring a father’s indispensability to his children thereby assisting us in obtaining more parenting time for him.
Second, we may look at the mother’s faults which may be too egregious to ignore. Mothers generally have no difficulty mentioning the father's drinking or drug habits, or failure to use the car seat, but fathers shy away from these arguments. If the mother is drinking to excess, if her children are getting injured during her daily marijuana intakes, or if the children are consistently late to school while in her care, the judge needs to hear these concerns.
We certainly don’t advocate unnecessarily removing children from their mothers, just as we do not advocate removing children from fathers. However, children need to reside primarily with fathers when mothers are unable to provide appropriate care. Generally, in the cases we have experienced, the problems are not so severe that the mother cannot retain 50/50 timesharing with counseling. Alternatively, fathers with addiction or other issues should be granted 50/50 timesharing after having undergone proper treatment.
Lastly, fathers, for whatever reason, occasionally fail to fight for their children, especially in the beginning of a case when it is so important. Perhaps they don’t believe the mother will attempt to limit the father’s timesharing with his children. Perhaps they feel guilty over the end of the relationship. Perhaps they have for so long relinquished parenting duties to the mother that they don't know how to assert some of that control back. We explain to fathers their necessity in that child’s life and assist fathers in obtaining back some of that control. We fight and advocate for fathers until they learn to do it on their own.
Our Long-term Success in Representing Fathers.
In conclusion, almost all of the men we’ve represented who were seeking more time with their children, ended up with more parenting time than when they started. Most were granted 50/50 or near that.
They get the immediate reward of time with their child as well as the long-term reward of an emotionally healthy child.