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Family dysfunction may present need to sole child custody

On Behalf of | Aug 10, 2021 | Child Custody

Many Arkansas children feel as if they come from families that are less than ideal. In some cases, that feeling can be chalked up to teenage insecurity and feeling like the families of everyone else are better off or more loving. However, some children may grow up in a truly dysfunctional family, and if their parents decide to divorce, there may be reason for one parent to pursue sole child custody.

Sole custody may be worth considering if one parent in particular bears most of the responsibility for the family dysfunction. Often, children suffer in dysfunctional families because one parent or both parents put their needs and wants above those of the children. The level of dysfunction can vary from family to family, but there are cases in which the dysfunction may make it unhealthy or even dangerous for a child to be in the care of the dysfunctional parent.

Some ways that a parent could show dysfunctional tendencies include the following:

  • Being emotionally unavailable and unaffectionate or cold toward the children
  • Being abusive — whether physically, verbally or emotionally — toward the children, the other parent or both
  • Having addiction issues and refusing to work on them, making it nearly impossible to care for the children
  • Enabling the parent with the addiction by constantly making excuses, covering up messes or even supplying the addict with more substances

These problems could give reason for any parent to move forward with a divorce, but it can certainly be difficult to see the need to get out of such a dysfunctional situation. If Arkansas parents do believe that divorce and sole child custody could be best for their children, they may want to explore their legal options for working toward this outcome. It will likely be up to the parent seeking sole custody to prove why the other parent is unfit, so preparation is key.