Thanks for your response!
Until and unless there's a court order, one parent has no way to force another to turn children over. This, of course, cuts both ways, regardless of the gender of the parents. Mother
, father, each have it the same in this regard.
Basically, without a court order, neither parent can force a change to the status quo.
I would highly recommend that you retain an attorney right now.
Doing so early ensures that you can retain your attorney of choice (as it prevents a conflict of interest from arising if your spouse starts consulting attorneys and happens to consult the one you would otherwise like to retain).
Further, retaining an attorney early will ensure that you have the guidance to make the right decisions as issues arise.
While it's not possible for me to provide direct referrals in this forum, I can provide you with some great resources that you can use to locate an attorney. Lawyers.com and Martindale are great resources. Both of these sites permit you to search for an attorney based on the attorney's field(s) of practice and geographic region. Further, the sites often provide additional information, including links to participating attorneys' websites and, in some cases, reviews of the attorneys. This information can help you to evaluate your potential selections.
Local Legal Clinics are often available for individuals who cannot afford to retain counsel on their own. These clinics provide free/discount services to those in need. Local Lawyer Referral Services are also helpful, as they can direct you to attorneys in your region based on practice area.
Local Legal Clinics: http://www.abanet.org/legalservices/probono/directory.html
Local Lawyer Referral Services: http://www.abanet.org/legalservices/lris/directory
I know that this probably isn't entirely what you wanted to hear. However, it's the honest truth and I know you want a truthful answer above all. I hope that you will click accept so that I am paid for my time and effort spent providing this information.