If you have filed for divorce or legal separation, you know first-hand how difficult the process can be, especially if there are children involved. Children are often the unwilling participants of a divorce and are forced to adapt to a new lifestyle. During the divorce, the judge presiding over the case determines whether one parent is granted sole-custody of the children or the child is put in a joint-custody situation. It is critical to make a decision based on what is in the best interest of the children involved. Yet, studies show joint-custody has a myriad of benefits that could be advantageous for children as they grow.

The study looked at joint-custody, sole custody and traditional family situations. Researchers determined that when children are able to spend a significant amount of time with both parents, they experience certain benefits, including the following:

  • Better grades in school
  • Fewer behavioral problems
  • Stronger family relationships
  • Fewer emotional problems
  • Higher self-esteem

Long-term, kids who spend time with both parents have more successful careers, stronger social circles, longer-lasting marriages and achieve higher levels of schooling when compared to kids who are raised in sole-custody situations.

Kids need both their mothers and fathers to develop a well-rounded sense of self. While mothers provide a sense of security and nurturing, fathers challenge children to explore their surroundings and take risks.

There are, however, some situations where it may be dangerous for children to be in an abusive situation ith their parents. In this case, it is often best for the child to be in the sole-custody of one parent.

This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.