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Can you turn supervised visitation into a benefit?

If you’ve been suddenly slapped with an order for supervised visitation because your spouse alleges that you are neglectful, dangerous or abusive, the feelings you have are probably overwhelming difficult to handle. After all, you’ve just been told that you have to have a babysitter in order to see your own children!

However, this is exactly the wrong time to get emotional. Instead, use your head and use this time to your advantage. If you’re careful, you may end up coming out of this difficult period in a far stronger position to ask for custody — by showing the court that your spouse was throwing around allegations needlessly.

This is what you need to do:

1. Decide on your goals.

You need to look at what your spouse is alleging in order to determine your primary goals. Are you being accused of having a temper that’s out of control? This is a great time to show that you can handle frustration calmly. Are you accused of being neglectful? You can use this time period to show the person supervising you that you’re a capable parent. Aim to be clearly someone other than the person your spouse described in court.

2. Remember that you’re being watched.

Not only are you being watched, but the person watching you is probably going to be called on to testify about your behavior. If you’ve been a model parent during this time, that’s going to discredit your spouse and increase your personal credibility when you tell the court that the allegations against you were fictions.

3. Don’t discuss your spouse.

This is an important rule to remember. Don’t waste any of the precious time you have with your children discussing your spouse with either the kids or the person supervising you. The supervisor has no authority over your divorce or custody situation, but he or she will notice that your focus wasn’t on your children. If your children bring up your spouse, don’t say anything negative and steer the conversation to another subject.

Supervised visitation is the nightmare of many parents, but you can make it into an opportunity for positive change by staying focused on your goals and keeping a couple rules in mind. For more assistance with a difficult custody situation, consider getting advice from a Howard county custody lawyer as soon as possible.

Source: DadsDivorce, “How To Make Supervised Visitation Work To Your Advantage,” Erik Carter – Cordell & Cordell, P.C., accessed May 10, 2017

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