6 Tips for Dads Considering Divorce – 100% DAD

6 Tips for Dads Considering Divorce

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I was stopped the other day (in September 2020!!) in Kansas City. We were about to head out to Omaha, Nebraska. A lady saw the 100DadMobile. She pulled up in front of us and hopped out asking for some literature. Which I really need to start carrying!! We had a brief conversation. Her son is going thru a messy custody battle. He could use all the support and help he can get and overall, it’s just not a good situation. Even she is getting dragged into court because she watched the kiddos.

 

We didn’t get to talk about it because we were in the middle of a street. But here is the advice I would have said if he had been there.

  • Don’t count the relationship out yet. Still do everything in your power to save it. That going to involve some serious change in your life and 100% going to a marriage counselor. I’m a strong believer in the power and sanctity of marriage and I believe no option should be left unturned. Besides, when kids are involved you still have to have a relationship with this person for the rest of your life. Holidays, birthdays, graduations, vacations, weddings, births, baptisms, Funerals. There is no clean break. Also it’s important to factor in the courts, for a more practical thought. If your making efforts to heal the relationship Judges are going to look favorably on that. In systems that are incredibly mom-friendly, you should take all the help you can.
  • No matter how nasty and ugly this breakup is you make sure you spend as much time, way more than makes sense with your kid. Offer to help watch kids so the mom can go out, go to work, work out, whatever. Track everything. Make sure you never stop offering to spend time with your kids. Push to make it happen. Keep everything in writing. Emails, messages, texts. That way any Judge can see you are making a strong effort to be involved.
  • Never miss a chance to spend time with your kids. The best weapon a mom has is when you don’t show up. Don’t get played. If it’s your weekend take your weekend. If the mom is saying it’s no big deal, kids want to do something else, your boss offers an extra job, buddy invites you on a trip—-it doesn’t matter. Never turn down time with your kids….never. That’s a weapon mom will use against you.
  • Document everything. Guys typically are not as good at recall. Write this stuff down. Every attempt you made. Every offer that was rejected. Every time you spent with them. If this is going to court and you want to win then you need everything you can use.
  • Don’t let mom move away. Don’t you move away? This is a messy situation and your not giving up your rights as a parent. That means you may sacrifice other opportunities. She might have to sacrifice her own opportunities. If she is allowed to and moves with your kids I would move too. I’m not raising my kids 3 weeks a year. I would give up everything to make sure I’m involved in their lives. I can always find another job, another place to live and make new friends. I’m not giving up on my kids.
  • Everyone who loses in court complains about their attorney. Spend a lot of time finding an attorney that wins for dads. Wins a lot. Not just easy cases. Tough ones. Talent is important in the law field. There are a lot of attorneys that lose a lot. And still have a thriving practice. Just because they are an attorney with an office doesn’t mean they are good.

 

I am pretty vocal in my dislike for divorce. Divorce is a huge stressor. There are incredibly few happy stories that involve divorce. I am and will always be a major proponent of doing everything in your power to keep the marriage together. I make exceptions for infidelity and physical abuse, but I genuinely believe most marriages can be saved, should be saved, and are worth saving. The world needs more stories of sticking thru the tough times and how good it turns out. We need to relearn how to take the tougher path because it is the best path. We have too many couples taking the easy path because there was a bump in the road and the grass looks greener over there. It’s usually not. And often there is a lot of regret about taking the easy path.

 

That being said it’s also not the end of the world. I was a product of a divorced household. It does not mean everything falls apart. Sometimes it does. Sometimes people are able to move on really well. The reason I don’t like divorce is partly that the bible is very strongly against it and I like that book. I also get to see how messy things are when divorce happens. Even in good situations you now have to share your child with another family. Your influence is cut in half. Your time is cut in half. Your Christmas mornings are cut in half. You have to walk your daughter down the aisle alongside the stepdad. Can we all step back and agree that it’s a much nicer picture when mom and dad stay together. We get to spend every day together as a family. We get to spend every vacation together. Every Holiday together. Every wedding, birth, a special moment is spent as a family.

 

It’s hard enough raising kids and building a family. Now divide it in too and factor in the values and morals of 2 new step-parents. The influence they bring. The time they get now instead of you. And all this is if it is a happy story. Mom and dad both remarried decent people and stayed in the same area. This is the best-case scenario!!! What if mom or dad remarry someone who isn’t that great? That creates friction and drama. What if one does not remarry and is bitter about the breakup?

In the end, we hope you can keep the family together. If not and divorce is looming…. you have to stay very aware of creating the best possible environment for yourself and the kids.

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