My personal view is that children should never be put in the middle of their parent’s disputes. They also should not have to suffer because the parents have issues with one another. I have seen too many kids I know go through these things and it’s a horrible thing to put your children through.
It doesn’t matter if the other parent cheated on you, doesn’t want to be with you anymore, wasn’t the greatest boyfriend/girlfriend or wife/husband, etc. Your mistakes made against one another should not be taken out on the kids. If there’s violence or neglect, real reasons to worry about your kid’s safety and well being, that’s one thing. But, to simply to deny one parent time with their kids, to talk down about the other parent to the kids, etc is not okay. If both parents love their children and are doing all they can to be there for them, then they should both be a part of their lives. Put your differences aside, it’s not about you and how you were wronged. It’s about the kids, period.
Also, I have an issue with people who assume it’s either always the women who are keeping the fathers from their kids. It’s not always the men who are struggling to see their kids. Sometimes, it’s the women who are fighting the fathers and it’s happening more and more now. Personally, I am against blaming just men or women for the bad things that happen. Both are quite capable of causing pain and are equally guilty. Point blank, no parent should keep their children from the other parent without good cause. And again, proper cause means that your children are being harmed or neglected in their care, not just because they pissed you off, left you, etc. Being a good partner and parent do not always go hand in hand. Someone can be lousy at dating or being a good partner, but be a great parent. And sometimes, it was just the relationship between the two of you. Sometimes people are just toxic to one another, but when they find the right person, things change. That is neither here nor there when it comes to this post though.
I will also add more to the thought, do not talk badly about the other parent in front of the kids. If there is reason for them to think poorly of them, the kids will see it for themselves. Our opinions should not be forced upon the kids, ever. Kids are not as clueless as we think sometimes. They see and hear more than we realize and will be able to decide for themselves how to feel. Concentrate on your own relationship with them, the rest will figure itself out. It’s hard enough being a part of a split home, don’t make things harder on them. Do not put them in the middle, let them be number one to both of you.
(My 13 year old son has been in the middle between his dad and I for most of his life and seeing what’s it done to him is a huge reason I made this post. I speak from experience.)