Child custody is always contentious during a divorce. Parents often disagree on what is best for the child. Many divorced couples find split parenting is the best answer for them individually and for their children. However, even in these cases, one parent may disappear for months on end.
Non-custodial parents have been known to go to extreme lengths to be with their children regardless of child custody orders. In some instances, children are removed from the home during a scheduled visitation. In other extremely rare cases, the non-custodial parent will actually kidnap the child. Such was the case in a recent case that made international news. That case began in Colorado where the father assaulted the mother, kidnapped their child and fled to Canada.
Luckily, for all involved, the boy at the center of the dispute was unharmed; his mother said later that he didn't really understand what was going on. The boy had to fly back to Colorado with authorities; his mother couldn't fly to Canada because she didn't have a passport.
In this case, the custodial parent, the mother, had a restraining order because of previous a previous violent incident. In addition to the kidnapping and assault charges, the father also violated that restraining order, but it did not stop him as the non-custodial parent from kidnapping the boy.
Fortunately, this type of case is extremely rare. Generally, a child custody agreement can be reached that will have a mutually agreeable plan for daily custody as well as a regular visitation schedule.
Source: CBS News, "Luke Turner Case: Colo. boy, 3, found safe after alleged kidnapping to Canada by father, police say," May 27, 2013