Many northern Kentucky residents may still believe that fathers should be responsible for financially supporting the family while the mothers stay home and raise the children. In part due to these traditional views, divorce courts still overwhelmingly award sole or primary physical custody to mothers.
While this can feel like a victory for some mothers, it can make it difficult for them to be able to go back to work, especially if the kids are younger. This potentially keeps them trapped in the role of the homemaker. If they cannot work to support themselves, they could find themselves relying on child support and alimony to pay for the education, medical care and anything else the children may need. However, child support does not last forever and getting back into the workplace after years of staying at home can be difficult for some women.
Awarding physical custody to mothers can also negatively affect fathers. By failing to give fathers significant parenting time with their children, they are often relegated to being the "fun" parent the kids only see once every other week. Further, fathers do not get the opportunity to actually parent the children and form a strong relationship with them as they grow.
Parents going through child custody disputes may find it difficult to co-parent effectively, especially if the divorce was not amicable. Unless one of the parents is harmful to the children or is otherwise unable to properly care for the children on his or her own, a family law attorney could assist with negotiating a parenting plan and a visitation schedule that is beneficial for the children. If the parenting plan needs to change in the future due to the children growing up, the attorney could request a modification to the child custody order.