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Study results suggest shared child custody is best for kids

Colorado families who are preparing for a divorce may be struggling to determine how their children will fare best. While it used to be the norm to grant sole child custody to the mother, that norm no longer seems to apply across the board. Instead, states across the country are stating to take a hard look at shared parenting.

No matter the status of the relationship between the parents, studies seem to point to the fact that children do best when they have regular time with both parents. While that may not always be possible in some circumstances, for the most part, the majority of kids thrive when they have equal access to both mother and father. Even when a divorce is less than amicable, children appear to be more adaptable to these situations than previously believed.

One researcher recently reviewed her own research along with research conducted by others on the topic. She wanted to know if parental conflict was truly detrimental to the emotional and physical well-being of their children. The research seems to indicate that as long as the children are not pulled directly into the quarrels, they are able to handle a certain level of discord without displaying negative reactions. In fact, when children spend as close to equal time with each parent as possible, they tend to excel in school and display healthy self-esteem.

While it is not healthy for children to be exposed to constant battles and discord between parents, in the majority of the cases studied, children do best when they are encouraged to develop strong relationships with both parents. In many situations, judges still tend to award child custody to mothers, though the trend appears more toward awarding parents shared parenting the majority of the time. Nevertheless, every Colorado family is unique and there is no one solution for every situation. An experienced and understanding family law attorney can provide assistance to develop a parenting plan that is based upon the best interests of any children involved.

Source:, "Shared parenting improves divorce outcome for kids", Gail Rosenblum, Sept. 10, 2017

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