Oct 08, 2007

Britney & K-Fed: The Lesser of Two Evils is Still....

Isn't it required that anyone who blogs on family law issues must write something about the recent court order that shifted physical custody (that is, day-to-day care) of Britney Spears' and Kevin Federline's two children from mother to father? But what is there to say, really?

The significance of the decision to real people is limited. Not many of us behave quite as badly, quite as publicly, as Spears has. And judges love the status quo, so a complete change in custody is somewhat unusual and reserved for cases where, like Spears, a parent has behaved completely outrageously, abused substances, or refused to comply with court orders.

Father's rights advocates are happy with the decision, hoping that it will help to mitigate what they perceive as the system's unfair presumption that women are better caretakers than men, especially for young children. Maybe they're right that the system is slanted, but K-Fed is hardly the poster boy for responsible parenting.

As Seymour Reisman commented last week on Newsday.com, fathers "must make sure they are factors in their children's lives" by actively parenting them--in order to have their custody rights respected even when their ex-wives aren't pulling a Britney. For more information on how you can actively parent your child or children during and after a divorce, read Always Dad: Being a Great Father During & After Divorce, by Paul Mandelstein (Nolo).