You and your ex are not on good terms. You worry that he or she is going to make false allegations of child abuse, perhaps out of spite or perhaps to keep you from seeing the kids.

Child abuse is a very serious criminal issue. It can lead to an arrest, jail time, and the loss of your rights as a parent. It can change your life. You must take this seriously.

Can you avoid these types of false allegations? Not always, but there are some steps you can take.

For instance, if you are ever going to spend time with the children without your ex, try to have another adult present at the time. This way, if your ex accuses you of harming or threatening the kids, you have a witness who can say that it never happened.

You also want to keep an eye on any behaviors that may appear questionable, though not illegal. An example is telling off-color jokes. You may also want to limit physically-aggressive games, like wrestling, even if the kids enjoy it.

Finally, you may want to consider talking to your ex. Find out what the root of the issue is. Sometimes, if the adults in the situation are able to resolve their differences, it can keep the issues from moving to the next level.

Of course, you may not be able to avoid the allegations entirely. If your ex is set on accusing you, it can happen despite your best efforts. That’s when you need to know all of your defense options and your rights.