Mark Ashton, a partner in our Exton, Pennsylvania office, and the editor of the firm’s Pennsylvania Family Law blog, wrote an interesting post on that blog entitled "A Test of Character And A Savings In Cost." To read the post, click here.
Unfortunately, the scenario Mark wrote about is all too common in divorce cases. Parents often put their children in the middle of financial issues. How many times to do we hear, as I did as the child of divorce, to "ask your father for it." Or "I have no money", "I can’t afford it, ask your father" or worse yet "your father doesn’t give me enough money for this." I am sure that there are other variations or permutations. What about when a parent expects to exercise their parenting time (visitation) on the regular days, but there are parties, outings, events, etc. planned for that time. Does that parent become the bad guy when the child can’t go? Can the other parent do something to make it "alright" for the child to miss an event or do they inflame things by saying "it’s your father’s fault you cannot go."
Sadly, these things are typical in divorces. The people who do it (divorce) right, try to limit this. The ones that don’t risk doing damage to their kids and running up their legal fees. At the worst end of the spectrum, the conduct can result in parental alienation.