A report by relationship charity Relate earlier this year showed that almost a third of mothers think their children’s fathers should have no say in their upbringing.
The report said 32 per cent of separated mothers thought that they were the only ones with the right to make decisions about their children’s future. Perhaps somewhat surprisingly this figure was more than double the number of men who believed that one parent from a separated or divorced couples should be able to decide alone how to raise the children.
The survey implies that more than one in 10 of all the families in the country include mothers who do not want the fathers of their children to have a say over the future of their children.
The rights of fathers are constantly at the forefront of public opinion with growing support for the Fathers for Justice campaign which supports equal parenting rights between parents.
Relate said separating parents should find ways to work together and put their children’s best interests first.
Chief executive Ruth Sutherland said: ‘The one thing everyone can be sure of is that it’s the wellbeing of children which is of paramount importance here - so finding ways to work together as parents in the best interests of our children is vital.’
Harry Benson of the Marriage Foundation think tank said: ‘Fathers must have a role in their children’s lives. Teenagers are much more likely to go off the rails if their fathers are not part of their lives. The problem is that it is very, very difficult when parents split up. There is no such thing as a good divorce.’
Read more at www.relate.org.uk
By Aaron Byrne, graduate paralegal in the family law department