Who Wins in a Custody Fight?

The word “win” is so subjective when it comes to custody battles. If you’re fighting over a tractor, the person who gets to take the tractor home is clearly the “winner.” He gets to own the tractor and the other person gets to use it. Pretty clear cut, isn’t it? Well, in a custody battle, the lines are blurred. The “winner” is not as clear. See, here’s the thing. The former spouses/partners, the child, the families involved—nobody REALLY wins.

I’ve heard so many people say how sorry they were that their ex “won” the custody fight. But really, what did they win actually? Let’s see.

The right to deprive the child of their other parent.
Whether you like it or not, your child loves their other parent. And whether you choose to admit it, that parent does have some redeeming qualities that your child shares. They can’t possibly be Satan reincarnate as you say they are. If they were, then shame on you for being attracted to Satan. But I digress. Like it or not, the more you deprive the child of their other parent, the more they are going to suffer. Maybe Mommy sang this really nice song before bed that they loved. Now, they won’t be able to hear that song every night. Maybe there was this special way that Daddy hugged them that made them feel safe and secure. Now they only get those hugs twice a month. Depriving your child of the other parent may seem like a victory to you, and it may work well for you when the child is young. But when they get older (and by older, I mean as young as 5 or 6—kids are perceptive) they will resent you for it. And that’s doubly as evident if the other parent is a really great parent who truly loves the child.

The right to take the other parent’s money
I’m not saying that people should not financially support their children. However, if the only reason you ask for financial support from the other parent is out of spite, then shame on you. Ok, so you won $300 a month. Congrats, you just hit the jackpot. Does that erase the feelings of inadequacy that lead you to have to be spiteful to the other parent in the first place? Nope. Once again, hollow victory.

The right to spend your child’s college fund on lawyers
Oh wait, I guess someone does win a custody battle. It’s pretty ridiculous when your lawyer drives a Benz and you drive a 15 year old beater.

Everyone loses in a custody battle. Everyone. And your kids will not be happy about it…

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