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3 myths about child abuse and child custody

Most Winston Salem parents love their children dearly and want what is best for them, even if the parents do not live together. Sadly though, child abuse remains a serious problem in North Carolina. Parents dealing with an abusive spouse or co-parent must take action to protect their kids from physical, emotional and sexual abuse.

Thankfully, domestic violence is no longer tolerated by the law or society at large. But there are still misconceptions about how abuse affects children. Here are three common myths about child abuse and child custody, as shared in a news article:

Myth #1: Getting separated from the abusive spouse means your children are safe.

Fact #1: Studies by the American Bar Association suggest that abusive parents tend to use child custody disputes to manipulate their co-parents.

Myth #2: As long as a child does not seem afraid of a parent, the parent must not be abusing the child and it is safe to grant him or her visitation or custody rights.

Fact #2: In many cases, victims of child abuse bond closely with their abuser as a survival technique. This is known as “traumatic bonding” or Stockholm syndrome.

Myth #3: Non-abusive parents always have an easy time getting sole custody.

Fact #3: Such parents have often been abused themselves, and it is common to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder and depression after escaping an abusive household. If they lack effective legal representation, they may give the judge a poor impression. In some cases, they lose custody entirely to the abuser.

Child custody matters are supposed to be decided with the child’s best interests at heart. This is critical to ensure the child’s physical and emotional well-being. The best way you can protect your child’s best interests is to hire an experienced family law attorney.

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