New Missouri parenting law may cause more conflict than it resolves

7 months 4 weeks 2 days ago August 25, 2016 Aug 25, 2016 Thursday, August 25 2016 Thursday, August 25, 2016 2:44:00 AM CDT in News
By: Chris Green, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

JEFFERSON CITY - A new Missouri law that promotes shared parenting after divorce or separation will take effect August 28, but it could have some consequences.

According to Gov. Jay Nixon’s office, the law “creates a more equalized approach to child custody and visitation.” Gov. Nixon signed the bill July 1.

Much research, such as from The Journal of the American Psychological Association, suggests that shared parenting after divorce or separation best benefits a child.

“The evidence supports shared residential arrangements for children under 4 years of age whose parents live apart from each other,” the journal says.

According to the U.S Department of Justice, fatherless homes account for 63 percent of teen suicides, 85 percent of children with behavioral disorders and 90 percent of homeless and runaway children.

While much research supports shared parenting, Dr. Lawrence Ganong, Human Development and Family Science and Nursing professor at the University of Missouri who does research on co-parenting, thinks it is not for everyone.

“Shared parenting sounds great on paper. The research indicates that if divorced parents can get along in rearing their children, that’s the best situation for their children,” Dr. Ganong said. “However, mandating that parents have to work together does not always work very well.”

The current custody laws require separated parents to create a parenting plan that works for them. The new law will cause the time parents spend with their children to be split as evenly as possible.

Dr. Ganong called this a “one size fits all solution,” which he said is a problem because all families are different. He is afraid there will be consequences of the law, saying “parents who do not get along will be forced to interact in ways that will take them back to courts more often, may cause more conflict, and kids get caught in the middle.”

Dr. Ganong said supporters of the law include fathers’ rights groups because fathers often do not get sole or primary custody.

He also said there is a contradiction in views of parenting in the U.S.

“The really interesting thing in our country is the legal system does not tell married parents how much time mom and dad should spend with their kids,” he said, “but as soon as you are divorced the State of Missouri tells you ‘oh, here is what you do.’”

Dr. Ganong thinks that shared parenting is in the best interest of the child when the parents get along, but that the research indicates that parents should figure out what works for them on an individual basis, and there are many variations that work. He said he supports parents working cooperatively together and anything they could go through to help them do this because parental conflict is always bad for children. Dr. Ganong will follow this law with interest and looks forward to seeing the outcomes of it.

 

More News

Grid
List
FULTON - Fulton Police are investigating a body found. Fulton Police Chief Steve Myers believes the body could belong to... More >>
8 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 9:19:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri senators have confirmed a former PricewaterhouseCoopers partner to be the state's next revenue director. ... More >>
8 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 8:44:56 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Public School teachers could see a significant increase in salary for the coming school year. The... More >>
10 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 7:22:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A Missouri senator says he's moving out of a room he rents from a lobbyist following... More >>
10 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 7:17:23 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The Missouri House has passed stricter requirements for tracking fetal tissue after abortions. The... More >>
10 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 7:13:00 PM CDT in News
MID-MISSOURI - There were 36 reported cases of salmonella in Mid-Missouri Monday, with the majority of cases reported out of... More >>
10 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 7:04:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Public Works is requesting community members complete a survey on new markings for cyclists at intersections in... More >>
11 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 6:40:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Wind, water and solar power are all elements that usually come to mind when the words 'renewable energy'... More >>
11 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 6:02:00 PM CDT in News
COOPER COUNTY, Mo. - Two people died during a plane crash on Highway 98 near Boonville around 1:40 p.m Monday.... More >>
12 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 5:03:00 PM CDT in News
ARGYLE - For years, the Rock Island rail line carried trains across Missouri, straight through towns like Eldon, Freeburg and... More >>
13 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 3:50:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A teenager who was shot by a Kansas City store clerk who thought the boy was... More >>
14 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 3:39:00 PM CDT in News
BOONVILLE- What began as a joke between two friends inspired an event that raised money and awareness for a... More >>
14 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 2:49:00 PM CDT in Continuous News
BALLWIN, Mo. (AP) — St. Louis County authorities are investigating an apparent murder-suicide involving a couple in their 80s. ... More >>
15 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 2:35:00 PM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Police say a 51-year-old St. Louis-area woman died while she was sleeping when she was struck... More >>
15 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 2:29:00 PM CDT in News
EUREKA, Mo. (AP) — A Mexican wolf born this month at a wildlife center in suburban St. Louis is offering... More >>
15 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 2:17:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The Boone County Community Services Department recently released its 2016 Annual Report and Program Directory, which highlights where... More >>
16 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 1:34:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - President Donald Trump's proposed spending plan for 2018 significantly reduces funding for a range of executive departments, from... More >>
17 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 12:13:00 PM CDT in News
FULTON - Two men are on the run after assaulting a man in his home and stealing cash and other... More >>
18 hours ago April 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017 Monday, April 24 2017 Monday, April 24, 2017 11:23:00 AM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 55°
6am 55°
7am 56°
8am 60°
9am 63°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

5:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
6:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
7:00a
Today
5:30a
Paid Program
6:00a
King of the Hill
6:30a
King of the Hill

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Voice
8:00p
Great News
8:30p
Great News
9:00p
Chicago Fire
7:00p
The Flash
8:00p
iZombie
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld