Child custody issues are complicated enough in any divorce case. But when the children identify as LGBTQ, some matters may become even more complicated.
In the ideal parent-child relationship, acceptance, tolerance and understanding come to the forefront. But, sometimes, parents may not subscribe to these tenets when a child identifies as LGBTQ. In some cases, differences in parenting style may surface. This is why when it comes to child custody in such scenarios, judges and attorneys must think more broadly as to just what the LGBTQ child’s best interests are.
Pondering questions on best interest
There are many questions that come into play when reviewing child custody matters involving LGBTQ children. The focus of these questions is determining the child’s best interests. They include:
- What if the parent and child are estranged?: The same goes for if a parent is non-supportive of the child or in denial that he or she has an LGBTQ child.
- How much of a positive impact does the parent have with the child during their time spent together?: If the child shines and can be true to himself, herself or themselves, then this represents an uplifting atmosphere.
- What if the child is forced to live two separate lives in two different homes?: In one scenario, a parent accepts the child’s LGBTQ identity, while the other parent does not. Inconsistency may lead to torment and confusion. While the child has acceptance in one home, in the other, the child is forced to conceal his, her or them’s identity.
- Is therapy a helpful option?: Yes, it is a good option, and parents should be on board with this if it is in the child’s best interest.
- Who will be the medical provider if a child considers gender reassignment or seeks hormone therapy?: If parents are not in agreement on this issue, it can only hurt the child.
The best interest of the child always is critical in determining child custody. This may have greater significance with LGBTQ children.
Support and reassurance
Critical questions arise regarding child custody issues involving LGBTQ children. Addressing the questions and taking positive and supportive actions may help your child better adjust. Doing so also provides the child with reassurance that they can be themselves in two separate homes.