What Are the Father’s Visitation Rights?
As a working dad, it is difficult enough to make time for your children. However, after a divorce, maintaining a relationship with your children is even more difficult. What are the Father’s Visitation Rights? A divorced dad must be intentional, especially as a non-custodial parent. The effect of a divorce or separation can take a heavy toll on all parties involved, including the children. However, this negative effect can be significantly reduced when fathers or non-custodial parents make time to be present and involved.
According to research reports, one in three children in sole residential homes sees the other parent at least once a month. Another one in three children have contact with non-custodial parents less than once a month. In some cases, these contacts can be once a year. The final one-third have no contact with their non-custodial parents. Fathers who had children outside of marriages are more likely to have little to no contact with their children. On the other hand, divorced fathers are more likely to keep in contact.
With the increase in the number of unmarried parents, there is a corresponding increase in the number of children who grew up without at least one parent. Contact between children and non-custodial parents can be negatively impacted by a number of causes. For example, children in their adolescence are more likely to lose contact with their absent parents. Non-custodial parents with low income are also more likely to stop contacting their children.
This failure may be linked to the costs of contact which include clothes, travel costs, food, lodging, and more. As the number of children without access to their fathers grow, the impact of the damage becomes more apparent. Understanding the reasons behind this loss of contact can shed more light on the problem and maybe proffer a solution.
Why Non-Custodial Parents May Have Less Time with their Kids
There are many reasons, non-custodial parents, often fathers, have little or no contact with their children following divorce. This is an unfortunate and avoidable statistic in almost every custody case in Maryland. When fathers or any non-custodial parent avoids the following custody pitfalls, they are almost certain to have a substantial amount of time with their children following a divorce. Basically, fathers can have as much time with their children as they are willing to dedicate to their children in most divorces.
When fathers suffer or cause the following issues, they may have little to no contact with children after a divorce. It is in the best interest of your children for you to avoid the following issues:
- The custodial parent may speak poorly about the non-custodial parent or father. Children, especially young children, are very impressionable. They will likely eventually learn for themselves if a parent lied to them about their other parent; however, the relationship between a child and their parent can suffer until the relationship is repaired.
- The absent parent may consider the weight of re-establishing a bond to be too heavy. This could be inspired by different feelings including a deep feeling of loss. It could also be made worse when the custodial partner is remarried. Some parents also have the fear of being rejected by their children.
- A punitive visitation schedule. This may be in the form of stringent rules that do not allow the non-custodial parent to act in their capacity as a parent or develop a deep bond with their children. It may also be due to the discomforts associated with the visitation agreement.
- The custodial parent has moved far away from the child thus breaking contact with the non-custodial parent.
- The residential parent has blocked all access to visitation and non-custodial parent contact.
Father’s Visitation Rights: Impact of a Lack of Relationship between children and Fathers
The reasons that cause distance between non-custodial parents, often fathers, and their children can vary greatly. However, the impact on fathers and their children when their relationship is strained cannot be overstated. The following impacts can be suffered when non-custodial parents are denied contact with their children or abandon communication and connection with their children:
- Children often deeply miss their fathers. Statistically, children who lose their fathers are less likely to suffer consequences compared to those whose fathers have chosen to cease communication. This often affects the children’s emotional and mental stability.
- Boys often require the presence of their dads or a father figure for gender-role identity. Fathers and sons bond over certain activities just as mothers and daughters do. These activities can shape the behavior and outlook of the child.
- Both boys and girls need a father figure in their lives. Fathers can be great role models, and teachers, and offer loving criticism to guide them right.
- Children with absent fathers are more likely to perform below expectations in their academics. This exposes them to more criticism from their teachers.
Conclusion: Importance of Fathers in their Children’s Lives
Fathers are an important part of social behaviors. Girls who grew up without their fathers are more likely to look for love in all the wrong places. Boys will look at other male leadership and influence if they do not have their fathers. Daughters and sons need both of their parents and if you are a father facing divorce it is important for you and your children that you fight to maintain your relationship with them. Boys and girls who grew up without their fathers often tend to deal more with anxiety and worry. The attorneys at Divorce With a Plan are here to help you navigate the legalities of this process, and ensure your custodial rights. Call us today for a consultation: there’s no better time than the present.