There seems to be a gender bias in the way that people think about parents. When people talk about custodial parents, it is common for them to immediately refer to the mother, rather than the father of the children. This kind of assumption may stem from the fact that many people assume that there is an innate ability in women to serve as caregivers.
While many women do enjoy the role of raising children, that doesn’t mean that mothers play a more important role in the lives of children when compared with fathers. Fathers can also be nurturing parents. Both parents may interact with their children differently, and that’s a positive thing.
Differences in parenting style can actually benefit the children, as they may learn different perspectives and skills for each parent, which can give them a broader view of the world and their role in society. As a father facing a divorce, it’s important to understand that your gender has nothing to do with your parenting ability or your right to seek custody.
The Missouri family courts should focus on the kids, not the gender of the parents
It has become standard for the best interests of the children to be the primary guiding consideration in major custody determinations. As previously mentioned, kids benefit from having relationships with both of their parents, which should definitely influence how the family courts rule during a custody dispute.
Enshrining the rights of parents in a parenting plan by giving both of them adequate parenting time and a share of legal custody or decision-making authority is important for protecting their role in the lives of the children.
When parents share custody and authority, both parents can influence the life their child has as they grow. Your gender shouldn’t have any role in the ultimate determination that the courts make.
Make it obvious early on in the process that you want your full rights
Too many fathers find themselves in an unfavorable custody scenario in part because they don’t advocate enough for themselves during the divorce. Your role as a father is an important one, and standing up for your parental rights and demanding parenting time will benefit you and the kids during and after the divorce.
When you clearly communicate to your ex and the courts that you expect a fair and reasonable custody outcome, you set yourself up for success, especially when compared with those who become passive during court proceedings.