Question: I've worried about the mental health of my husband, and I'm worried he might hurt our children. I think my two young kids, a boy and a girl, need to be living with me, not my husband. He's been acting crazy and somewhat violently in our house. I don't think he'd ever purposefully hurt the children but I'm worried that he could do something stupid and then they'd be harmed. Now I'm sure I need a Sandy Springs child custody lawyer.
My husband, who's an executive at a tech company in Sandy Springs and graduated from MIT in Boston, is really into martial arts. I mean it's like he's obsessed. He watches all those old Bruce Lee movies and the old T.V. show “Kung Fu” all the time.
He bought nunchucks and is always swinging them in the house. By mistake he's broken lamps, windows, and even put holes in our walls. He has throwing stars and knives, swords and an axe. He says that he's a real ninja and that no one can stop him from living a true ninja life.
I just think that he's bipolar, like his mother and father were, and that he's having some sort of manic episode or a breakdown. He was never a martial arts guy until about 6 months ago, when I think the mental illness started. Before that he liked to play golf, read Shakespeare, and maybe do some gardening.
But this weekend, when he was running around the house dressed like a ninja and swinging an axe and throwing stars, I knew I had to leave and keep our kids safe.
After the latest ninja episode, we moved in with my parents in Dunwoody.
I know I need to get a divorce and I'm worried about child custody. I don't think he should be around our kids if he's using nunchucks and throwing stars. It's too dangerous. Maybe one day, when he gets the therapy and medication he needs, I can trust him to be around the kids. But until then, I think I need exclusive custody.
Please tell me about custody for our small children.
B.A. in Sandy Springs, GA
Answer: What you describe is certainly a concerning situation. We can see why you think your husband is a danger to the children, you, and himself. Nunchucks, throwing stars, axes, and swords, when wielded in the house around the children, can be quite dangerous.
Custody is determined by a judge or jury based upon “the best interests of the child.” This allows a court to fashion a situation that keeps the kids safe and gives them the best chance of thriving.
In your case, you might consider taking videos or photographs to show your husband acting erratically, dressed in a ninja costume brandishing his weapons and placing the children in harm's way. That could be potent evidence for court. Pictorial evidence is often very helpful in demonstrating a point. Because as they say, "a picture is worth a thousand words."