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Discussion Starter #1
So, I am not going to go into the minutia of why I am considering divorcing my wife as there are many many reasons.

Let's just say we are completly different people now and it's just not working out.

That being said, we have a 2yr old together. This has been the main deterrent in preventing me from leaving. I love my son so much and I am scared of leaving b/c I dont want to miss him growing up.

From what i have heard (this may not be accurate) the mother usually gets custody, or majority custody, in CA. The father gets visitation. This has scared me into trying my best to keep things together.

I did however, read that the 50/50 custody arrangement is gaining popularity.

Does anyone have any insight into this? How likely is this to occur given that I am the father and in CA?

I truly shutter to think that I will not be able to see my son on a daily basis, and it makes me sick to think that it may be possible I would only be able to see him a few times a month (in some cases). I am considering seeing a few local attorneys to evaluate my case, but any feedback from this group would be great. Thanks.
 

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Have you talked to your wife about divorce and what custody arrangement she would consider? My H and I jointly agreed to a 50/50 split. I personally didn't want to deny my kids the relationship with their father just because he and I didn't work out in our marriage. He's a good dad and our split had nothing to do with that.

Unless you have done something terrible to her, I would hope she wouldn't want to take your kids away just to spite you.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
We havent discussed it yet, however, in the heat of the moment during fights she would shout that she'll take our son away and i could be "every other weekend dad".

So, I very much doubt she would agree on a 50/50 split with me.
 

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No matter what anyone tells you, on this forum, in real life, or in consult with an experienced attorney in your state, you can never, ever be sure what the courts will do.

Sure, you can google recent decisions, you can review case law, you can compare your situation to what's out there, but you'll never be sure until the decision is rendered, so how can you proceed based on "having good odds?"

You're not betting on a horse, you're betting on your child.

That much being said, if things are bad now, can you live with this woman for another 14+ years until your son is old enough that custody won't be as big an issue?

You didn't ask, but sometimes there's a better answer to a question you didn't think of.

It's almost ALWAYS better to settle your case rather than fight it out in the courts. What's the possibility of sitting down with wifey and saying "we both know things aren't working out, so let's have an amicable divorce and split custody which is best for our son?"

It eliminates the unknown.

For both of you.

Edited to add

I was writing my post as the last two replies hit the board, I see this matter was addressed.

Sometimes when people are mad they say things they don't really mean.

This is a better topic of discussion when you're not in the midst of an argument.

It sounds like she doesn't want the divorce and you do. That could be a problem as well, considering she's already using your son as a tool against you.
 

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If that's the case, I would consult with a lawyer in your area. The courts look at what is in the best interest of the child, which is open to interpretation. One judge might consider a 50/50 split with the child seeing both parents in their best interest. Another might see one stable home (usually the mother) and visitations by the father to be in the child's best interest. An attorney can help inform you as to what is typical in your area. It may also depend on your work schedules, home situation, etc. But if you both have been good, involved parents and you have a good plan to take care of your son, I don't think a judge would only let you see your son every other weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
No matter what anyone tells you, on this forum, in real life, or in consult with an experienced attorney in your state, you can never, ever be sure what the courts will do.

Sure, you can google recent decisions, you can review case law, you can compare your situation to what's out there, but you'll never be sure until the decision is rendered, so how can you proceed based on "having good odds?"

You're not betting on a horse, you're betting on your child.

That much being said, if things are bad now, can you live with this woman for another 14+ years until your son is old enough that custody won't be as big an issue?

You didn't ask, but sometimes there's a better answer to a question you didn't think of.

It's almost ALWAYS better to settle your case rather than fight it out in the courts. What's the possibility of sitting down with wifey and saying "we both know things aren't working out, so let's have an amicable divorce and split custody which is best for our son?"

It eliminates the unknown.

For both of you.

Edited to add

I was writing my post as the last two replies hit the board, I see this matter was addressed.

Sometimes when people are mad they say things they don't really mean.

This is a better topic of discussion when you're not in the midst of an argument.
I agree with what you are saying, as every case is a bit different and outcomes are unpredictable.

I do not believe i can be with her another 14+ yrs.

As to the custody issue, she firmly believes that the child needs to be with the mother and that a father can be involved, but only to a lesser degree i.e. weekend or every other Thurs
 

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As to the custody issue, she firmly believes that the child needs to be with the mother and that a father can be involved, but only to a lesser degree i.e. weekend or every other Thurs
You are in a very tough spot.

I don't know about the laws in your state but in mine, if the parties will not agree to joint custody then the courts cannot order it, they do not have the jurisdiction, so they must order sole custody to the parent they deem to be best for the child, the other parent gets visitation which is usually according to a standard schedule that doesn't vary much, I think it's every other weekend and one day during the week.

This might be something that could be addressed in mediation, where a skilled arbitrator could present things to your wife in a way that she would be more receptive. But again, if she's of the opinion that the children need their mother primarily, and dad is a sort of "peripheral parent", not only is that a sign that she is an "alienator" (read up on PAL) but that you're probably not going to make much headway in that area.
 

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Is she a SAHM? While it would be best to work it out with her ahead of time, that might not be possible. However, what she wants doesn't necessarily dictate what will happen in court. She may have to prove why you wouldn't be fit to take your child 50% of the time which could be tough.

Also, being faced with the prospect of actually being a single parent is diffenent than threatening your spouse in the heat of an argument. Being a single parent is lonely, exhausting and expensive. She may change her tune a little when she realizes the reality of the situation.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yes I agree with everything you said above.

And I do think about this every day. Weighs very heavily on me.

Thank you for your input.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
stay

at

home

mom
Oh, I see. Sorry, first post, getting to know the acronyms.

No, actually she works. The ironic thing is that she is less patient with our son than me. 90% of the time he is great, but sometimes he'll through a tantrum, or she wont want to feed him and ask me to do it.

Example - She has this week off for PTO. I work at home, so we were both home. This morning, when our son indicated he was hungry she asked if I could feed him. I obliged. As i looked over her shoulder, I noticed she was on her phone posting on Facebook.
 

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Oh, I see. Sorry, first post, getting to know the acronyms.

No, actually she works. The ironic thing is that she is less patient with our son than me. 90% of the time he is great, but sometimes he'll through a tantrum, or she wont want to feed him and ask me to do it.

Example - She has this week off for PTO. I work at home, so we were both home. This morning, when our son indicated he was hungry she asked if I could feed him. I obliged. As i looked over her shoulder, I noticed she was on her phone posting on Facebook.
Sorry you don't get brownie points for feeding your son. It's your job.

If you can't agree with your W on a custody arrangement the judge will provide you with one & yes, it may not be your ideal.

The best time to split up IMHO is when children are very young. Your new "arrangement will become the new normal.

Good luck.
 
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