Staten Island’s family court might very well suck as much as Manhattan family court (it is hard to believe), but recently, several fathers have successfully gotten custody of their children, according to Virginia Sherry, from the Staten Island Advance. For one of them, David, after having experienced separation and the intrusion into his relation with his children of forensic evaluators and social workers.
As good as these news are, they have me point at the crucial mistake I made while I was divorcing: grant sole custody to my ex-wife. Yes, I did not know better and was advised by my lawyer that it was the only option. This does not make the sad truth disappear: like George Costanza in Seinfeld, “I am the king of the idiots.” My ex-wife has never informed or consulted me – as she was explicitly mandated to do so by our divorce agreement- about any decision, important or not, regarding the girls. With sole custody, she could alienate the girls without limits and get rid of me with an unfounded accusation of child abuse. As recently as January 23 2009, Cheryl Solomon, my ex-wife’s lawyer, used the “C word – choice-” in her final statement against my motion to change child support and medical expenses: my ex-wife can choose not to use my health insurance and have me pay, cash, for the girls dental expenses because she has been confered the dignity of sole custodial parent. I granted her this status!
Salud, Staten Island fathers! Let us have sole custody, for any parent, the exception!