Let’s face it everyone dreams of the day their child will come into the world but no one ever contemplates having to fight a battle in court to keep that same child. The day to day stress that this battle can bring into your life is one of the most intense challenges you may ever face. Trying to embrace the fact that you now have to fight to keep your own child takes some getting used to and in many cases it is a long drawn out process.
So how do you get through this process? One day at a time, one court date at a time, one document at a time. Try not to get overwhelmed; not only for your sake but also for the sake of your children. Custody battles are stressful, there is no getting around that but don’t get discouraged. Many dads have hung in there and received the ultimate prize, their very own children. If you truly believe that it is in the best interest of your children to be with you, then do all you can to make sure that the judge knows that as well.
Dealing with a custody dispute, earning a living, ‘being there’ for your kids and having some time for yourself can be daunting. Here are some tips to get through the day to day stress that you will inevitably experience:
- Don’t be afraid to receive support from family and friends. Let them be there for you in whatever way they are able. Don’t isolate yourself.
- Exercise. As crazy as that sounds, with all that is on your plate, this will help to balance out your life and alleviate some of the stress.
- Find a support group or connect with other dads that have been through this kind of situation. Try and find someone who will understand what you are going through.
- Keep your routine as normal as possible. Eat properly and get an appropriate amount of sleep.
- Most importantly, spend time with your children; this will remind you that it is all worth it!
Remind yourself that your children are depending on you and if it’s stressful for you it is more so for them, hang in there for their sake!
If you have not yet started working towards obtaining custody of your children, please contact one of our Parent Advocates to see how we can assist you. aboutthechildren.org
You can also contact us by phone at 800 787 4981.