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Family Meals

Of all of the professions in which a child custody or parenting time fight can seem like an insurmountable climb, few seem as daunting as the modern day Chef. In a time where attitudes on co-parenting, joint custody and single parenting are changing daily, the expectations placed upon a Chef by both the employer and the Chef themselves are unchanging. The demands upon these individuals often times causes chaos in a marriage.  These demands can also be used as ammunition against a parent attempting to stay active in the lives of their children in the case of a divorce.  This can make custody and parenting time cases seem impossible for Chefs.

I grew up working in kitchens throughout the Detroit Metropolitan area.  As an attorney I have an appreciation for the unreasonable demands often placed upon Chefs:

  • The hours are too long.
  • The pressure to achieve often times impossible numbers is suffocating.
  • Managing a labor pool that all too often are working just long enough to show income for rent purposes or to purchase beer.
  • Then there is the holiday schedule.
  • The long hours.
  • The late nights, and the early mornings.
  • The one day off when the Chef needs to find time to sleep and do a week’s worth of chores around the house.

All of the aforementioned occupational hazards are oftentimes used to dissuade this parent from insisting on being active in the lives of their child upon the end of a relationship. The good news is that there are several ways to attack this situation that can put both parents on equal footing for a divorce or custody fight. It is important to remember that for each of the alleged weaknesses that a Chef’s life may present to obtaining custody or parenting time with your children, there is a corresponding strength:

  1. The hours are too long – This was the schedule in place prior to the onset of the break-up, just as a stay at home parent will now alter their lifestyle and need to enter the workforce, a chef may need to alter their schedule a bit, oftentimes maximizing the hours worked during times when the children are with the other parent.
  2. Chef’s work on most major holidays – This gives the Chef an opportunity to celebrate the holidays with their children either before or after the holiday which truly opens up a lot of options such as being the first house to celebrate the holiday or better yet catching the after Christmas sales and maximizing the gifts your children receive.
  3. Chefs often work late nights – This schedule will typically allow the Chef some freedom in the morning to have breakfast with the children and personally get them off to school and avoiding the early morning latchkey that many traditional jobs require.
    This is simply a small list of the benefits that a Chef’s lifestyle can impart to the lives of children. Any article regarding the benefits of a Chef as a parent would be remiss without mention of the fact that a Chef’s children will always eat better meals at that parent’s home and learn about the world through the foods prepared. Do not let someone scare you into losing custody or parenting time with your children.

If you find yourself in a situation where a divorce or break-up may define your rights to parent your children call The Law Office of Michael E. Thomas PLLC.  I am the attorney for you and can help you establish and maintain custody and parenting time with your children. I can be reached at (248) 855-6477 or on my cell phone at (734) 612-7121.