How could mental health impact a military divorce?

For many Florida military families, mental health concerns abound. When a servicemember returns home, he or she often has a challenging time readjusting to normal family life. For some, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) makes it nearly impossible to seamlessly re-enter society. For others, lingering sleep disorders, generalized anxiety and other mental health issues can lead to damaged relationships. Military divorce could follow, leaving both spouses unsure about how mental health may come into play.

There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to mental health and divorce. That said, courts that handle child custody matters always place the best interests of the child ahead of all other concerns. If a parent with mental health issues poses a safety risk to his or her child, custody rights could be impacted.

At the same time, courts also have an interest in preserving the bond between parent and child. If a servicemember is struggling in the aftermath of a deployment, he or she can certainly seek treatment in an effort to regain stability. If that process is successful, the parent can ask for a modification of custody to allow for more visitation.

Mental health and divorce is a difficult topic. For those in Florida who are considering ending a marriage and would like to know more about how their particular circumstances could impact the outcome of a divorce, sitting down with a family law attorney can provide answers. Understanding what to expect is half the battle and can make the process of a military divorce far less stressful.

Source:, "Mental Illness, Addiction, and Divorce: Know Your Rights", Stephen Bitsoli, Nov. 8, 2017

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