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Tina, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33167
Experience:  JD, 17 years legal experience including family law
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Im going to court in January. Im trying to get custody of

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I'm going to court in January. I'm trying to get custody of my 4.5 year old son. I have a very had time co-parenting with my ex becasue she feels everything should be done her was and if not I can count on a major confertation that include fits of anger etc...that also existed while we were married.

I have concerns about her mental health and plan to make in know in court. What I have a problem with is how to express that to the judge without shounding too harsh. He will want to know in my opinion what is her mental condition, considering the best interest of our son? Can you help me with this. We currently have shared custody.
Hello and welcome,

Do you know whether your ex has been diagnosed with any mental disorder? What type of behavior does she engage in that you believe may not be in your child's best interests?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

She has not been diagnosed. I suggested her seeing a doctor before we were divorced and she would have no parts of it. Her father has mental issues and takes meds.


Her deal is one minute she's fine as can be and than she can get a attitude about something the next minute FLY off the wall. Example...If the dog got her shoe her way of expressing maddness over it would be...VERY LOUD...THE DOG GOT MY SHOE, DID YOU HEAR ME , THE DOG GOT MY SHOE...CUSS WORDS...THAT STUPID DOG GOT MY SHOE and go on and on saying the samething. And this resulted in her beating the dog with the shoe one time. In fact the dog has bitten her several times because he was threatened by her.

Hello again, Thomas, and thank you for the additional information.

Prior to the hearing, I would typically file a motion with the court requesting that the court order her to sit for a psychiatric examination, based on your personal knowledge of her behavior. It would be best if you had sworn statements from others who have witnessed her erratic and unstable behavior as well, in order to convince the court that such an evaluation is warranted under the circumstances.

If she is mentally ill, the evaluation should uncover that and would provide you with strong evidence to seek primary custody of your child and limit her visitation, perhaps even having supervised visitation only, depending on the finding of the professional.

Another option is to file a motion requesting that the court appoint a guardian ad litem (GAL) to assess the situation and make a recommendation to the court with regard to custody. This typically involves interviewing the parents and the child, and possibly others who may have contact with the child to determine which parent should have primary or sole custody of the child. The GAL's report is often adopted by the court, so it can also constitute powerful evidence if it goes in your favor.

Here is a link that provides information on the role of a GAL:

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