Should custody be determined by Beauty Pageants?

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GloriaInTX's picture
Joined: 07/29/08
Posts: 4116
Should custody be determined by Beauty Pageants?

Should putting her daughter in beauty pageants be a determining factor in whether this mother gets custody of her daughter?

'Toddlers & Tiaras' mom could lose custody of daughter because she puts her in pageants | Fox News

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

This is a really tough one for me. I think that pageants (when taken to the extreme) can be harmful, and are frankly gross. But objectively speaking, I think she makes a good point that she's not doing anything illegal.

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

In coming to the recommendation, the psychologist writes over 3,000 words condemning Maddy’s participation in child beauty pageants, specifically citing her Dolly Parton number on “Toddlers & Tiaras” and photographs of Maddy dressed as “sexy police officer.”*

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2012/08/17/toddlers-tiaras-mom-could-lose-custody-daughter-because-puts-her-in-pageants/#ixzz23pwVM85e

The judge isn't deciding this based on two parents who disagree. The court-appointed psychologist is an advocate solely for the child and has found the pageants are detramental. This should carry weight in the courts.

Based on the article, I agree that Mom has gone too far in sexualizing her child. It doesn't have to be illegal to be a reason for a change in custody agreement. It's not illegal to get drunk, but the argument can be made that it isn't a healthy environment for the child.

Joined: 12/10/05
Posts: 1681

I agree with the mom. Pageants aren't illegal (unlike the fathers previous drug arrests) and she shouldn't lose custody because of them.

That said, I think pageants are horrible and the child psychologists agree. I think it would be reasonable for the courts to say she can no longer participate in pageants without the fathers consent.

GloriaInTX's picture
Joined: 07/29/08
Posts: 4116

I hate pageants. But I think this would set a very bad precedent. Especially since the dad never objected to it UNTIL he filed for custody. Also, if that is his only objection then why wouldn't she have the option of keeping custody and taking her out of pageants?

“He does not pay child support,” alleged Jackson of her ex-husband. “He’s been ordered to pay $500 a year for school stuff, and he has not paid that. Up until August of this last year, which is when ‘Toddlers & Tiaras’ came out, he never challenged the premise of pageants at all. But when ‘Toddlers & Tiaras’ came out, somebody else gave him the idea to say that I was sexualizing her, and he decided to run with it.”

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

"GloriaInTX" wrote:

I hate pageants. But I think this would set a very bad precedent. Especially since the dad never objected to it UNTIL he filed for custody. Also, if that is his only objection then why wouldn't she have the option of keeping custody and taking her out of pageants?

I'm confused on the $500/year for school supplies. Is that the only CS he's supposed to pay? Kind of makes sense he hasn't paid that yet if school hasn't started in that area.

Anyway, perhaps he didn't disapprove until it because soooo sexualized. I do agree on the option of removing her from pageants completely and having her continue to see a therapist/psychologist to make sure she is doing okay.

mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1535

We only have the moms word that the dad didnt object until he filed for custody.

I think the mom should be given the option to stop doing pageants unless she has the dads permission before they take custody away.

Does the court take his lack of child support into account when they look at custody?

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

"mom3girls" wrote:

We only have the moms word that the dad didnt object until he filed for custody.

I think the mom should be given the option to stop doing pageants unless she has the dads permission before they take custody away.

Does the court take his lack of child support into account when they look at custody?

No, the 2 are dealt with separately. A NCP cannot be denied visitation based on failure to pay. They pursue that your other avenues such as seizing tax returns, garnishing wages, suspending driver licenses, and jail time. In most states they consider the amount of time with the child when calculating the CS. I still can't figure out her comment about the $500 for school supplies. It doesn't sound at all like he is in arrears if there is a CS order.

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

?If (the judge decides) that Maddy needs to live with her dad because she does pageants with me, then that opens the door for any parent to challenge anybody on activity that a kid does, period,? declared Jackson. ?We could really open up Pandora?s Box to set a precedent all over the world. What if years ago Gabby Douglas? father said, ?She?s not going to be a gymnast. She?s not going to move away from home and practice gymnastics because I won?t allow it,? and he and Gabby?s mother got into a fight? We wouldn?t have gold medal winners, we wouldn?t have Miss America, we wouldn?t have Miss USA.?

This is a ridiculous argument. In intact families it's very easy for a parent to veto the decision of the others when it comes to stuff like this. Bringing Gabby Douglas into it? Really? Her father left her mother many years ago. It doesn't sound like Maddy's dad has been uninvolved in Maddy's life.

As for the "precedent" it will set "all over the world": Ummm....no, cases are handled separately in each state. However, many look at the experts' opinions. I sat in the courtroom when my friend was going through a divorce in a different county (150 miles from her home). The father wanted to push the issue that the child could not be enrolled in any activity that would interfere with his visits. If they had soccer games on Saturdays - no soccer. If they would have a Friday night football game - no football. What do you do? Have the kids miss every other game or not commit to a team?

KimPossible's picture
Joined: 05/24/06
Posts: 3312

Do courts take things into account like

How much TV they are allowed to watch
how much junk food they eat
if they take them to R rated movies

or other various things?

I really don't know absolutely anything about this type of thing. I mean if things like the above get to be factored in on a regular basis, then i guess this can be too. If things like the above don't get to be factored in, then this shouldn't be either.

I really don't know.

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

"KimPossible" wrote:

Do courts take things into account like

How much TV they are allowed to watch
how much junk food they eat
if they take them to R rated movies

or other various things?

I really don't know absolutely anything about this type of thing. I mean if things like the above get to be factored in on a regular basis, then i guess this can be too. If things like the above don't get to be factored in, then this shouldn't be either.

I really don't know.

It's really up to the parent to raise these issues. If one parent is allowing rated-R movies to the point of nightmares, then the other parent can raise that in court. Even the pettiest of things can become a "concern."

Joined: 08/17/04
Posts: 2226

I absolutely think things like this should be able to be used in custody judgements. It's not so much the pageants(which I'll admit I can't stand) but I would absolutely question her judgement in the care of her daughter due the the costumes she puts her in and the dances she allows her to do. They are disgusting for a little girl and put her short term safety and long term mental health in question.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6560

How sad.

I think the courts take all information into account when desiding custody. If a parent will not stop the pageants even if it is clear they are not what is best for the child, that the judge will that into count.

I do think that custody battles are very difficult. Both parents should have a say in what their child does unless one of them is deemed unfit for some reason. I pray I am never in that situation. DH would never give up his girls.

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
Posts: 1796

That's ridiculous. Did the psychologist ask the Dad what activities he was going to enroll her in? This woman isn't very smart, but to imply that a child should be taken out of the home because a psychologist doesn't like pageants is freaking ridiculous and a waste of time.

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

"wlillie" wrote:

That's ridiculous. Did the psychologist ask the Dad what activities he was going to enroll her in? This woman isn't very smart, but to imply that a child should be taken out of the home because a psychologist doesn't like pageants is freaking ridiculous and a waste of time.

IME, yes. The psychologist is appointed FOR the child. If you hired an attorney, that person would take your side. If your spouse hired one, they would take his side. The GAL solely represents the child's interest.

I just can't see it as a waste of time to have experts who represent the child talk to them and present their expert opinions to the judge. IME, they want to see the entire picture and truly decide what is in the child's best interest.

Now, if he hasn't expressed any intentions of enrolling in her in activities, it's not an issue. If he later decides he wants to enroll her in something, the mom can raise an objection to it. (See my previous post about enrolling kids in soccer.)

Maybe the child has reached a point where she just doesn't want to do this anymore. Maybe she said she would rather be with her dad. Should her feelings be disregarded? While kids don't get to "decide" until a certain age, they should be listened to.

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
Posts: 1796

The last paragraph is kind of pointless don't you think? We don't know if this little girl loves pageants or if she just does them to please her mother. It is a waste of time to pull a kid out of the home that is the best for them just because of a hobby that many people hate despite not having an understanding of it. I'm sick of reading how horrible they are and how everyone thinks the kids parents are terrible despite not having an open mind or asking the ACTUAL people involved how they feel. ONE person shouldn't be able to pull a child out of a home that is otherwise better than the other one just because he doesn't like an activity the home chosen by a previous judge for I"m guessing good reasons.

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

"wlillie" wrote:

The last paragraph is kind of pointless don't you think? We don't know if this little girl loves pageants or if she just does them to please her mother. It is a waste of time to pull a kid out of the home that is the best for them just because of a hobby that many people hate despite not having an understanding of it. I'm sick of reading how horrible they are and how everyone thinks the kids parents are terrible despite not having an open mind or asking the ACTUAL people involved how they feel. ONE person shouldn't be able to pull a child out of a home that is otherwise better than the other one just because he doesn't like an activity the home chosen by a previous judge for I"m guessing good reasons.

I got the impression from the pyschologist's recommendation in the OP that that is not the case in this custody hearing. It's not just a hobby if it causing psychological concerns for the child.

I'm not judging pageants or any other activity on its face. There are many people who love them and gain self-confidence from them.

This issue is not the pageant per se; it's whether the child is in the best environment.

Minx_Kristi's picture
Joined: 01/02/09
Posts: 1261

I don't think she should lose custody of her child.

I do however detest those beauty pageants!

xx

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4100

"ethanwinfield" wrote:

I sat in the courtroom when my friend was going through a divorce in a different county (150 miles from her home). The father wanted to push the issue that the child could not be enrolled in any activity that would interfere with his visits. If they had soccer games on Saturdays - no soccer. If they would have a Friday night football game - no football. What do you do? Have the kids miss every other game or not commit to a team?

This was many, many years ago, but when my parents divorced the court said that my dad *had* to bring us to any scheduled school or educational event during his time with us -- but it was limited to six events per year. He still had about 21 uninterrupted weekends (assuming he got us every other weekend plus two full weeks in the summer) with us but we were still able to do some of those things. That seems like a pretty good compromise. My sister played soccer for a while, and I took weekend enrichment classes at the community college, we just couldn't do both at the same time.