Runyon & Runyon
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For divorced parents, doing what's best for a child requires compromise

Today in the U.S., the Department of Labor reports that roughly 57 percent of women age 16 and older work outside the home. With the U.S. divorce rate hovering around 50 percent, working is a necessity for most divorced moms. As the roles played by men and women in the U.S. continue to shift and evolve, many argue that so too must views and laws related to child custody.

Earlier this month, dads around the country were honored on father's day. For many divorced dads, the day was likely bitter sweet as they may or may not have been able to see and spend the day with their children.

Child custody laws throughout the U.S. and in states like Tennessee still largely favor mothers who, according to the U.S. Census, are granted primary custody in roughly 83 percent of cases. These figures, however, are likely to change as a wealth of research suggests what many divorced parents likely already know—that a child benefits most when both parents are involved in his or her life and upbringing.

In fact, research indicates that not only are children who regularly see and spend time with both parents less stressed, but they are also more likely to graduate high school and less likely to abuse drugs and alcohol and experience mental health issues like depression.

For Tennessee parents who are planning, going through or already divorced; issues related to custody and visitation are ongoing until a child reaches age 18 and sometimes even beyond. It's important, therefore, to find effective solutions to child custody issues that benefit a child and help provide for his or her social, emotional and physical wellbeing.

Source: Deseret News, "Child custody reforms push for shared parenting after separation or divorce," Mandy Morgan, June 23, 2015

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