Those most affected in Georgia and elsewhere by child custody disputes are often the children themselves. In many cases, the child is at the heart of a dispute between two parents. Unfortunately, in some cases, children may end up neglected or even abandoned. That was the case for New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham, who was once abandoned because of a child support dispute.
Growing up, Graham's family life was anything but ideal. He bounced from home to home as his mother left him with various people. For about a year, Graham stayed with an ex-stepfather. At the same time, his mother was receiving $98 per month in child support from his biological father. His ex-stepfather requested the child support be paid to him and when his mother refused, Graham was dropped off at social services.
Graham's mother continued to be in and out of his life, but never offered him any stability. At one point, Graham began attending a local church. After hearing his plight, a church volunteer decided to welcome Graham into her own home.
Today, Graham is a successful player in the National Football League. This season alone he has scored five touchdowns. Despite his troubled childhood, it appears that Graham is thriving.
It is unclear how much the child support payments helped Graham. It appears they may not have gone toward his benefit, but it would be false to believe that child support payments are of no use. Child support payments go to cover expenses for the child and are meant to assist the child in achieving their full potential.
Source: Larry Brown Sports, "Jimmy Graham Was Abandoned Over $98/Month in Child Support," Larry Brown, Oct. 24, 2011