If you and your spouse have had children in the last few years, especially if you have had multiple children close together, you may have had to make the difficult decision to stay home and eschew career advancement and income in favor of providing necessary care for your children.
If your relationship hits a rough patch and you decide that you need to divorce, not having worked will put you at a disadvantage in several ways. Rather than giving up and letting your ex control every aspect of the divorce, you need to be ready to ask for help when you need it.
Get legal advice and someone to advocate for you
The first step toward securing a positive outcome in a pending divorce will involve getting the right advice and carefully looking at your circumstances through the lens of Tennessee family law. An attorney will have a better understanding of how the Tennessee family courts address custody, which involves focusing on the best interests of the children.
You might assume that your ex won’t have an interest in custody because they’ve never been an active parent. However, given that less parenting time often means more child support obligations, your ex could very well try to seek shared or even primary custody. They will almost certainly retain legal help to do so, which means you will need a lawyer to be on even footing.
Don’t be ashamed to ask for financial help when you need it the most
One of the hardest things about a divorce for a dependent spouse can be acknowledging how limited your resources currently are. Hiring an attorney and paying for a custody battle could cost you $30,000 or even more. There is nothing wrong with asking your parents for help with the cost of your divorce, especially because you may already have had to turn to them for help in other areas, like housing.
Your parents love you and undoubtedly love their grandchildren as well. If you can explain to them how critical getting good representation is to ensure regular access to your kids and a fair custody outcome, the chances are good that your parents will help you in that area as well.
Your parents are probably invested in seeing their grandkids after your divorce, so helping you secure a positive outcome during the custody proceedings will benefit them as well as you.