When Texas parents decide to split up, finding the best custody arrangement for their children can be a difficult and emotionally fraught situation. However, new studies have found that when shared custody is possible, it is the best situation for the child.
As the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports, a new study found that even when parents did a poor job of co-parenting or had significant conflict, children who were able to split their time between parents had the best outcomes. The researchers from Wake Forest University reviewed 44 previous studies on the role of conflict on children in divorce found that excepting abuse or violence, a child who has a strong relationship with both parents was the single-largest factor in a child’s well-being. Since mothers are given custody 80 percent of the time, the researchers believe it may be time to change the way policies around divorce are written so joint custody is not the exception, but rather the rule.
A study out of Sweden supports these findings. According to Science Daily, more than 3,000 preschool-aged children participated in research that found children in shared custody arrangements have fewer behavioral or psychological issues. The parents and teachers of children in the study completed questionnaires to determine if there were any problems a child was experiencing. Children who lived primarily or only with one parent had the most issues reported by both teachers and parents. Students whose parents were together or who split their time between both parents had no real difference in reporting by parents. Teachers found fewer overall issues for children whose parents remained together.