What happens when your custody ends?

During a child custody dispute, you should remember the "long game." When your child custody ends and your children are adults, you want a good relationship.

Divorce can bring many challenges. It has been said that judges in criminal court see bad people at their best, and family court judges see good people at their worst. The American judicial system is known as being adversarial and with some people, when they are involved in a divorce, they do not need much help becoming adversarial.

Within in the Texas family courts, there are likely to be many examples of good people at their worst. Whatever you think of the situation involving former Dallas Cowboy football player Deion Sanders and his ex-wife Pilar, it is unlikely that anyone touched by the proceeding is finding it easy.

Contentious Custody Process

The couple has three children and they have been involved with contentious child custody issues since their 2103 divorce was finalized. The important fact to remember when you divorce with children is that while you may end your marriage relationship with your spouse, you never end your relationship with your child, and that means necessarily, your relationship with your other parent may persist for many years.

Sander's children, now ages 11, 13 and 15, are all minors. With minor children, their development as healthy individuals usually benefits from having both parents involved with their upbringing. This means the parents will be required to interact until all the children reach age 18, at a minimum.

Is this in the children's best interests?

Unfortunately, it appears much of the interaction in the Sander's case has been tumultuous. The behavior of Pilar became so erratic that last December a judge ended her visitation rights with the children after she was held in contempt by the Texas family court. She has since been permitted to contact the children via electronic means and allowed visits at school and during extracurricular activities.

Both parties argued in court last month for further modifications to the custody agreement. They have each claimed they have been subject to defamation and other caustic allegations.

At the end of the day, such inflammatory allegations will do little to promote the best interests of the child. This is the standard by which decisions are to be made concerning child custody matters, but it can be a very demanding standard to live up to during a divorce.

The stress and tension created in a situation like that of the Sanders is difficult for the parties and their children. Developing a custody arrangement that will truly be beneficial to your children can be difficult. Living with that agreement can also be difficult, but you owe it to your children to make their lives as stress-free as possible.

Because when they turn 18, your legal custody ends, and they become adults. You want them to want to spend time with you, because, at that point, they will no longer have a legal obligation.