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Think Out Loud

Noncustodial Parenting

Pete Springer/OPB

We’re accustomed to hearing about separated parents battling over custody of their children, but some parents voluntarily give up physical or legal custody because they believe it’s in the best interest of their children.

Many moms and dads who do not live with their kids face stigmas and stereotypes — including the assumption that they are unfit or absentee parents. The economic recession has sparked some nontraditional, noncustodial parenting situations. Some moms say they’ve been pushed into the breadwinner role, where they may have an easier time finding a job than their ex.

Whether they are moms or dads, noncustodial parents navigate unique challenges defining their role, both in the eyes of their child and society.

What’s your experience as a parent who does not live with your children? If you were a child of divorce, what was your relationship with your noncustodial parent? Would you consider giving up custody of your children if you thought it was in their best interests?


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