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Judi's avatar

Should a mother lose custody of her children because she has cancer?

Asked by Judi (37641 points ) May 12th, 2011

Just saw this news report about a woman with stage 4 breast cancer who is losing custody because a judge has determined that the children need to spend more time with their non sick parent several states away. What do you think?

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17 Answers

Blackberry's avatar

That sucks that the parents live so far apart. My obvious answer would be for them to share custody, but they can’t just fly back and forth.

iamthemob's avatar

There are several issues:

(1) This is about the best interests of the child. The judge took into account the mental adjustment of the children as part of determining custody as reports showed that time spent with the healthy parents in these situations showed the benefits of custody for the non-sick parents.

(2) The main factor should be the ability to care for the children. Cancer at this stage will impair that – even if it is not doing so at this point.

(3) As much as this is devastating for the mother, custody is not about her – it’s about her children. Therefore, all things being equal, her feelings are a distant second.

kitkat25's avatar

I don’t think that is right. The poor kids are going to lose their mother all to soon as it is. It is just wrong that they are being taken from her even sooner than they need to be.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

I saw that story yesterday and I’m still torn about it. I don’t know that I believe taking children away from a mother during a time that may actually be the last time they get to spend with her is really in their best interest.

Judi's avatar

I think the children will end up resenting their dad for taking them away from mom durring her final days.

Hibernate's avatar

It’s not right but it’s better for the kids to be away from her.

At a point she’ll want them not to be around so they won’t see her suffer.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I get what @iamthemob but I want to know what the children want. And I bet they don’t want to leave their dying mother. I don’t care what studies show, these are actual lives.

blueiiznh's avatar

Cancer Sucks!
The concern is the best interest of the children. Each case is unique, but how would a person with stage 4 cancer be able to provide better than a parent who is healthy. Daily radiation or chemo and other meds, emotional drain, etc are a huge in being able to provide day to day needs of a child.
Sad, but again:
CANCER SUCKS!

blueiiznh's avatar

I agree @Judi The Father needs to be completely supportive of their childrens needs to spend time with their Mother or they will be resentful.

aprilsimnel's avatar

Why couldn’t the judge have appointed a nearby, trusted relative or very good friend to be guardian once the poor woman’s doctor gives the court the prognosis that she needs more intensive or palliative care? Meanwhile the father can make arrangements for their subsequent care by him and visit the children as often as he can. It’s a sacrifice he could at least try to make for their sakes.

My fear is that to take the children away from their mother when they may not yet fathom the seriousness of her condition is asking for trouble.

marinelife's avatar

This is a horrible decision.

chyna's avatar

But as in this thread it’s okay for a mother to keep her eight year old child and giver her botox for wrinkles, shave her legs and wax her pubic area all for the sake of winning a child beauty contest. Life sucks along with cancer.

Rarebear's avatar

@iamthemob hit the nail on the head, as usual.

bkcunningham's avatar

Here’s a good read from a different source on the case. Very sad. Very sad indeed.

http://parenting.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/12/losing-custody-because-she-has-cancer/?partner=rss&emc=rss

Inspired_2write's avatar

Did anyone ask the children what they want?

bkcunningham's avatar

She died with her children at her side. RIP Alaina Giordano.

Inspired_2write's avatar

I am so sorry to hear that she passed on, but comforted in the fact that her children were
close by.
RIP
And strength for her surviving children.

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