Well, who wants to know about winning child custody for dads when a mother is bipolar. Mental illness not only affects the person suffering from it, but it affects those around them as well. The courts generally take any mental disorders extremely seriously when it comes to child custody cases.
However, most states have laws that iterate how important it is for both parents to be involved in a child’s life. Most state laws also say that parents have a right to raise their children without the government interfering.
This article addresses how winning child custody for dads when a mother is bipolar. As a father committed to winning child custody when a mother is bipolar, it’s important that you understand how bipolar functions within the law, what types of custody it involves, and how you can protect your children’s best interest when handling your custody case.
What Does Bipolar Disorder Mean?
Before entering the main topic of the series winning child custody for dads when a mother is bipolar, let’s learn the background information.
Bipolar disorder is a mood disorder characterized by alternating periods of mania and depression. This can cause significant disruption in a person’s life, including their ability to parent. Symptoms of bipolar disorder include changes in energy level, sleeping patterns, appetite, concentration levels, behavior, and mood swings.
When it comes to parenting with bipolar disorder, the primary concern for the court is that a parent will not be able to adequately parent their child due to their disorder. This could lead to a situation where the child is exposed to an unsafe environment or an unstable living situation.
The court may look at factors such as the severity of the bipolar disorder, how well it’s being managed, and if the parent is able to provide a safe and nurturing environment for their child. They may also take into consideration any disruptions in caretaking or negative behaviors exhibited by the parent due to the disorder.
Types of Child Custody Impacted by Bipolar
This is the main content of today’s article, a father can refer to winning child custody for dads when a mother is bipolar.
When determining custody agreements, the court considers two types of custody: physical and legal. Depending on the laws of your state, physical custody refers to which parent the child lives with and includes minor day-to-day decision-making for the child. Legal custody gives a parent the right to make any major decisions regarding their child such as what school they will go to, their religion, medical decisions, etc. Courts normally have the authority to order that either physical and/or legal custody be shared or given to the father or mother of your child.
Mental illness such as bipolar can factor into the court’s decision, depending on your specific circumstances. The goal of the court when determining custody is to work out an arrangement that promotes your child’s best interests and adheres to the laws of your state. If mental illness threatens your child’s wellbeing or standard of care, this could be grounds for modifying a standard custody agreement.
#1 Legal Custody and Mental Illness
Above all else, legal custody decision-making authority is paramount when it comes to parenting. Generally, joint legal custody is awarded by courts to both parents in most cases.
By this, parents both have an equal part to play in making decisions concerning their kid’s education, healthcare and spiritual upbringing.
Yet, under certain conditions, one parent may be granted custody. For example, if a mother suffers from severe mental health issues and cannot even provide care for herself; how can she possibly look after her children?
In this case, the father has grounds to apply for sole legal custody due to his greater stability and ability to make sound decisions that will benefit their children’s upbringing.
The father must provide substantial evidence to prove that the mother is incapable of making decisions concerning their child due to mental health issues. He will need to demonstrate how this illness has impaired her parenting skills.
When making a decision, the court will carefully contemplate the severity of the mother’s illness, her treatment plan and prognosis. If it can be proven that she is not stable, then there is potential for the father to obtain full legal custody.
#2 Physical Custody and Mental Illness
Generally, the court will grant joint physical custody to both parents which results in a child residing with each parent for an equivalent amount of time.
In cases where one parent is neglectful or has issues that make them unsuitable caregivers such as abuse or substance misuse, sole physical custody may be awarded—and this is only done under extreme conditions.
When determining physical custody, a mental illness such as bipolar disorder plays an integral role. The father must provide hard evidence of the mother’s condition and how it has disrupted her parenting abilities in order to sway the court ruling in his favor.
Offering support to mothers suffering from bipolar disorder is no simple task, as many of them refuse to acknowledge the severity of their mental health.
Even if they do accept that something may be wrong with them, it can still be challenging for clinicians and other medical professionals to gain a full understanding due in part to symptoms like memory loss.
It can be a difficult feat to gain child custody if your child’s mother is bipolar, yet it isn’t out of reach when you have compelling evidence in your corner.
Even if you assert primary physical custody of your children, the mother may still have visitation rights. The court will determine whether this type of visitation should be supervised or unsupervised according to the circumstances surrounding your case.
Even if you are not married to the mother, a father still has full parental rights of his child. In addition, it is illegal for one parent to deny access or withhold the child from another parent; doing so could have negative repercussions in the future.
How to Winning Child Custody For Dads When a Mother is Bipolar
Here is the next topic of the series winning child custody for dads when a mother is bipolar. In any custody battle where bipolar disorder or another mental illness comes into play, the fact that a mother has bipolar disorder is not usually enough for the court to deny her custody. The mental illness must be shown to have a negative impact or potential negative impact on your children. That burden of proof falls upon you and your team.
In order to win custody, a father must prove in a divorce trial that the mother of the child has bipolar disorder, and also experiences mood swings that may put the child in emotional and/or physical danger. For example, if the mother of your child has a history of extreme behavior due to manic episodes, or has many suicide attempts, this may be enough for a judge to award you sole custody of your child.
The court may also bring in its own professional and order a custody evaluation. A custody evaluation is generally done by a licensed psychologist who investigates your family and the mom’s history of being bipolar. They will then give their professional opinion to the court about how likely it is that the mother’s bipolar disorder will affect the child.
A Mother’s Bipolar Treatment Affects Custody
Mental illness is a factor in determining child custody, but its impact on your child could be offset by other factors such as the relationship you and your wife have with your child, what the preference of the child is, and the closeness of each of you to your child’s school and other activities. Another aspect that could factor into a mother’s case is seeking treatment for her bipolar disorder.
If the mother of your child is receiving treatment for bipolar disorder and is following the recommendations of her doctor, she could receive custody of her child. The court may also take into consideration the following:
- How long the mother has been in treatment
- Whether the mother’s episodes have been minimized or eliminated
- If the mother has displayed any behavior that could put your child at risk
- The mother’s mental history, including suicide attempts or violent episodes
- The mother’s medication history, such as if she has stopped taking medication in the past against the advice of her doctor
If the mother of your child is not willing to seek treatment and is not following her doctor’s treatment plan, or shows signs of being unstable, the judge could consider all those factors when deciding who should have custody of your child.
Modifications and Proof
If the court in your state gives custody to the mentally-ill mother of your child and you learn that your child is at risk, it may be possible to have the court modify the custody order at your request.
It will be up to you, as the father of your child, to prove that your child may be harmed if the court doesn’t act. For a judge to consider your ex-wife’s bipolar disorder, you will have to provide proof of the diagnosis and follow the process described above.
That’s all there is to know about winning child custody for dads when a mother is bipolar; let’s finish with a quick FAQs section.
What is the behavior of a bipolar mother?
People that are depressed may be unhappy and cry a lot. They may also become more impatient and irritable than usual. A depressed parent may not want to do things with the family such as play, talk, or drive them around. They may become weary more quickly and spend more time in bed.
Can people with bipolar disorder have custody of their children?
If a bipolar parent is able to control their mental health through medication or support groups, they should have no problems providing safe parenting for their children. However, there may be times when bipolar parents require more assistance in caring for their children.
Is bipolar disorder a maternal or paternal disorder?
The scientists came to the conclusion that older paternal (35 to 44 and 45) and mother (40) ages were associated with an increased risk of bipolar disorder in offspring, with evidence for a J-shaped dose-response curve (which has also been observed for schizophrenia).
Here is all the information about winning child custody for dads when a mother is bipolar. Some courts think of mental illness as a severe handicap to being an effective parent. Another view is that most mental illnesses can be successfully managed with drugs and therapy. But most courts tend to err on the side of caution and normally rule against the parent suffering from a mental illness.
It’s important to remember that child custody laws vary from state to state, and your family law attorney should be able to best advise you on the steps you need to take to win custody of your child if their mother suffers from bipolar disorder.