Thursday, February 05, 2004

Virtual Visitation

I find the idea that you can maintain meaningful contact with you children through the computer completely abhorrent. Besides potential technical difficulties and scheduling problems, just the idea of forcing kids to spend an hour on the computer twice a week to pacify dad, seems to me a clear route to children loathing this time. Kids don't really have extended attention spans, inevitably friends will stop by or call during this time, a special tv program will be on, school events, athletics or various other extra curriculars with conflict... I cannot even imagine the implications. Any judge who makes this type of order should be relegated to "virtual visitation" with their own children, save one or two weekends a month. Various articles on the topic:
Glenn Sacks
NCSOnline (This is a PDF, you will need Adobe reader)
People's Law
Stark & Stark
Salt Lake Tribune
Washington Post
The more I read about this, the more disturbed I become. The natural question I have is if mother's (generally) are so insistent that "virtual visitation" is a suitable substitute for regular contact, why don't they offer to be the "virtual" parent!? It seems such a transparent request, they would obviously not want that scenario for themselves so why is it acceptable for the other parent? Parents trying to move are simply looking for any reason they can provide that will allay the moral nagging the judge may feel about letting one parent effectively take away another parent's child. What in God's name is going on here? I can't believe this is the "best court system in the world." What a joke, I have never seen such flagrant and obvious discrimination against both non-custodial parents and children all over the country. The children may not understand the effect these decisions will have on them when they occur, but as noted in countless studies, children rarely forget or cease feeling emotional pain about their parent's divorce. The only way to alleviate most of their concerns is for the two parents to stay close, not only geographically, but in their parenting styles and goals as well. Even then children will likely always feel disappointed that their parents divorced, but at least they feel overwhelming love from each parent. I feel that parents give up their rights to their children and their children have every right and desperately need to remain close to both parents. This whole thing just makes me want to scream and then drive to Washington DC and shake sense into each and every member of Congress. If only if we that simple...

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