perilousknits (perilousknits) wrote,


Once upon a time, in the state of Texas, the only way a father could gain custody of his children was if the mother beat the children with tire chains while simultaneously snorting coke and robbing a bank at gunpoint, in front of one hundred witnesses, one of whom had to be a Baptist minister.

I know, because I was there.  My father tried, for ten years, to get custody of me and he was denied because "Little Girls need Mothers."

Lately, I've noticed that fathers are getting more of a fair shake in the courts and I am thrilled, thrilled, to see this happening.  Some of my friends probably think it's weird that the first thing I ask about their children is not, "Oh, how old are they?" but, "Do you have custody?"  In my head, you see, I am secretly keeping score (Dads vs. The Establishment). 

When my friend Thugette told me that her three step-sons' mother was abusive, I really felt for those kids and wanted their father to get custody.  Thugette's husband is a kind man who really cares about his and Thugette's kids.  And those kids deserve to have a Dad like that, every single day.  Fortunately, he was doing everything possible to make that happen. 

While some of my friends may follow their favorite team's scores or the career of their favorite American Idol contestant, I followed Thugette's Family's custody battle.  I held my breath through the mediations.  I nervously reminded Thugette to save every single receipt for every single item of clothing or school supplies she bought those kids.  I nagged her to keep records of all the abuse.  I waited for the hearing date to be announced.

But, there will be no hearing because suddenly, with no warning, the mother just signed custody over to Thugette's husband.  Just like that.  "Okay, I guess you can have the boys.  Come get them tonight."  She did this in front of the mediator, and signed documents, so there is no backing out now (not without another legal battle).

When Thugette told me, I almost tackled her with my enthusiastic hug.  I was almost as thrilled as they were.  I wish things like this had happened when I was a kid. I wish they had happened for me.  Even so, I'm grateful for my Dad, and I am celebrating this victory with Thugette's whole family. 

Tags: family

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