So you had a child with a monster. If this monster happens to be a psychopath you have a challenge on your hands. Now what do you do. Take control. How do you that?

First, and foremost, take control of your self. Every time you react to something they do, they are in control. Over and over I hear stories about these monsters and the story teller is stressed out over the whole thing. Wrong answer. You are playing into their hands.

For the purpose of this writing I will assume you are dealing with a court case. Psychopaths are master manipulators and you will not win without help.

Your role in protecting your child from a negative influence is to be the fact gatherer for your attorney. You can not do a good job if you are mentally strung out. Grab a hold of your self and focus on your mission.

If the other parent of your child is truly a bad influence, not because you are a control freak, then their actions will be evaluated by the court and a determination made for the benefit a child. This is not a game of who can out do the other.

Understanding what the court and attorneys do is important. A judge makes the final decision on what's best for a child. In order to do that they must be provided information about each case.

Additionally, they will consider the parties before them. Behavior in court is crucial. Those individuals on the bench did not get there by accident.

Somewhere along the line they where determined to be reasonable thinkers. Their job is not easy and don't make it harder by being unreasonable.

An attorney provides law and facts to a judge as part of this decision making process. This is the most important step in your battle, finding a good attorney. I have no good answer for how to go about this. I will say this. If your attorney does not convey clearly what they need from you under your particular circumstance take heed.

So generally, you must provide your attorney with concise information. This is your role as the fact gatherer.

What do fact gatherers do? First understand that the court does not deal in broad generalizations, such as "he is always late picking the kids up." Wrong.

This is not a fact. This is an overview.

Using this issue as an example, you need to keep a log. In your log be sure to indicate the time promised for pick-up and the actual time along with any excuses given.

Frankly, if someone is perpetually late my antenna goes up. This tells me a lot about somebody. If a child is involved my stability bell is ringing.

So listen, observe and take notes. Nothing about your role indicates you need to change someone else's behavior. You are the fact gatherer, not a counselor.

Do your job and do it well. Always prepare your information for your attorney in an organized fashion.

One thing about a psychopath is they will do inappropriate things over and over. They have no sense of constraint. If they are using your child, a pattern of behavior will emerge demonstrating to a reasonable person something is not right here. Read some of my other articles to appreciate this.

A reasoned decision maker will take all the facts, supported by law, and see right through the situation. With this in mind, remember your behavior is also being assessed. A major issue that is not specifically talked about, but is considered, is your communication with your child regarding the other parent.

As mad as you are about your circumstance you have no right to damage your child in the process. A child's sense of security involves both parents, like it or not.

If a parent threatens their security, a child knows it. Security is felt when your child is safe and protected. Inappropriate behavior gives a sense of insecurity. Your child will discover it by themselves. They do not need your help. So keep your mouth shut.

Once the court makes a decision do your part as directed. May be frustrating at times, but you must reasonably follow orders. How you got into this mess matters not. You are in it and see it through to the end.

This gives you a great opportunity to mentor your child as a law abiding citizen. Help them understand you are following the directives for them.

Often I hear about preparation for an arranged visit and the other parent is a no show. No sweat. Keep your log and continue raising your child. The less time a negative parent is involved, the less influence they will have. If you made plans for yourself figure that was not meant to be. Move on.

Another thing heard a lot is a parent walks out of a child's life. Abandonment is a rough one. Again, you can not control another person's behavior.

Unfortunately, some people do not have the ability to appreciate how their actions affect others. Your accepting you might be dealing with one of them leaves you only with the challenge of receiving child support. Your child has the right to be supported by two parents. You do not have the right to make this decision for them. Stay on the hunt.

My heart goes out to all the children who's parents are embroiled in "who can hurt the other more" exchange before the bench. Set a good example and the rest will work out just the way it is suppose to.
Do not be fooled by a psychopath. You will not win if you play by their rules.

Play by the court's rules and your child wins.