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Is This Parental Alienation?

  • inspirational
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28 Jun 12 #339770 by inspirational
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I''d appreciate any support or advice regards this matter.

I have recently been made redundant and have had to advise the CSA that I can no longer afford to make any CM payments. They have advised me and my ex that from the end of this month I will be making nil payments.

Today my son wasn''t very happy when I picked him up - I have contact with both every Thursday evening, alternate weekends and half the school holidays, this is in a JRO. He wanted to ask me a question (he''s 7) but his elder sister didn''t want him to ask me (she''s 9).

Eventually I managed to get out of him that he wasn''t happy with me as I have stopped given mummy money and so she can''t afford to send him to after school club and various other activities. I explained I wasn''t working and so don''t have any money to give, I am struggling to even put fuel in the car so I can maintain contact.

My ex has also told the children about my redundancy money, this was used to pay off some marital debt.

I have heard about parental alienation and am concerned that the children are now seeing me in a negative and unfair light.

I can''t discuss this with my ex as she got her solicitor to write to me telling me not to discuss anything with her as I was harassing her!

I''d appreciate any advice, even if it''s just tough, there''s nothing you can do!

  • jonathancj
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29 Jun 12 #339812 by jonathancj
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This may or may not be the start of parental alienation. You need to keep a close watch on things. I have seen cases where it all began because of money issues. However, if you have been separated for some time without any sort of hostility, that would suggest otherwise. Parental alienation is, in my view at least, an obsessive form of behaviour and usually it runs right from the time of separation. It may be that your ex just needs a little, civil reminder that 7 and 9 year olds need to be shielded from financial issues and not involved in them.

  • inspirational
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29 Jun 12 #339836 by inspirational
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We''ve been separated for 3 and a half years, the divorce only came through six months ago though as she simply wont discuss anything. There has been some hostility, I think my ex is a "passive aggressive" though, there''s never been any verbal (or physical) hostility but it''s all been done via solicitors or text messages etc.

We''ve had issues before, she told the kids we were going to court when the JRO was awarded and also that I was trying to force her to sell the house. I have been going down the road of sorting out the finances and she wont discuss anything so I have had to take her to court, she told the kids daddy was trying to make them all homeless!

I suppose I can only document this type of thing and if it gets bad enough then go to Social Services, is that right?

The kids currently still enjoy coming to stay with me and seem to like me well enough still.

I''m getting married to my new partner in August while me ex has just split up with her most recent partner, I think this may be part of the problem.

  • hawaythelads
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29 Jun 12 #339837 by hawaythelads
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Standard procedure blame the non resident parent for not being able to afford things. She is going to be pxssed at you not paying anything.she will be thinking get any job you lazy bxstard.I was made redundant 2 years ago got knocked for my last months money then a month on the dole then took a job for 3 months on minimum wage the harridan knew all that not once did she say pay me less I kept paying £400 month.she hates you this just gives her the opportunity to let the kids know its all your fault.I wouldn''t worry you''ll find out soon enough because she will start saying the kids aren''t available.

All the best

  • Tallulah9
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29 Jun 12 #339874 by Tallulah9
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Hi, just thought I might try to show the other side.
I''m starting divorce, have been separtated 9 mos, ex put himself in prison so as not to deal with finance issues. (!) (he has mental health issues, but denies them when they don''t suit him)
I''ve been looking after our boy on my own, am looking for a stable job, but is difficult to find something with good hours and hard to afford childcare on minimum wage.
Since ex has been out of prison, he has been demanding to see his son, which I have arranged through the council, keeping the solicitors out of it, because I think it''s important for my son to see his dad, but I don''t trust my ex.
I am well angry with him because he refuses to get a job, never offers to do anything with our son, just demands to see him. And has never offered any money or goods to help with the cost of child maintenance.
As I am well broke, I know lots of things to do that don''t cost money, but I am not willing to share that information with my ex because he makes no effort to educate himself. That may seem childish, but would you leave your child with a babysitter or childminder that was completely unqualified and unwilling to learn about nutrition, places to go, fun things to do, learn about potty training and responsible discipline?
I don''t want to stop my son from seeing his dad, I just want to make sure he will be safe, have fun, and that his dad doesn''t disappear on him again.
And I really do need help with maintenance. A child is expensive even when you cut all possible corners. If I can''t afford anything apart the BARE necessities for my son, not even myself, I don''t see why my ex has a tenner to spend on himself and I can''t afford go to playgroup with my son.
Well, that was my rant, it was about my circumstances, not yours. But your ex is probably dealing with all the day to day "we can''t do this cuz we can''t afford it" and if you told your son you would pay for the trip, or mummy said you would pay for it, it''s up to you to explain to your son why you can''t afford it and to provide an alternate solution. If you can''t give money, give time if your ex is agreeable, or try to work something out.
And it is quite hard for mummy to be the "bad guy" all the time. saying no, you can''t jump on the table, we don''t hit people, say you''re sorry, sit nice... and then see the wee one go off and be spoilt, when you wish you had the time to play and have lots of silly fun.
Keep strong, be try to understand the woman who looks after your kids every day and night, and love your kids, it''s up to you to make it work ;)
hope this helps

  • inspirational
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29 Jun 12 #339880 by inspirational
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Thanks, I can understand her situation but to be fair I know how much her income is and her expenses and she should have around £800 a month minimum to feed and clothe herself and the kids after all bills and mortgage is paid.

I have £300 a month to live on and that is it, I have to run a car to maintain contact due to the distance involved so I don''t have much sympathy for her behaviour right now.

I was made redundant at the end of last year and got a 3 month temporary job within a couple of weeks and so was able to maintain the CM, paying more than I actually should have done but I was happy enough to do that as I want to support my kids.

I have struggled since April to get another job, there is just nothing around that I am qualified to do, I maintained the CM despite my income reducing by around 50% (I was doing some casual work that ended in May) but I have now got to the stage where I simply don''t have the money left to give. I usually pay CM at the end of the month and June will be the first month I haven''t paid.

I hope to get a job before the end of July so I can resume payments then, even if July is only a token payment, I have applied for 2 jobs so far today so wish me luck!

  • jslgb
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29 Jun 12 #339882 by jslgb
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Its nice to see someone offering an alternative view to something. I too am the RP and have had many an argument over money. Shortly after the separation my daughter (4 at the time) began to question why her daddy didnt buy her anything. My reply was to say that daddy gives mummy money every week to help me pay for things. She was happy with this. However, there are times when you have to tell them no when they want something, and one particular night we were shopping in asda and she wanted a dvd. The standard reply must have been ''i havent got enough pennies'' although i dont remember saying this, but when she spoke to her dad later that night she asked why he didnt give mummy enough pennies. Ex was furious that i had discussed money issues with our daughter and that she had passed this on to him. I tried to explain that i had only mentioned the money side of things by way of explanation to her questions over why he didnt buy things, and was trying to reinforce to her that he does. I had never mentioned that he didnt give me enough pennies, she just jumped to this conclusion herself which had shocked me.

Having to say no to your child when they ask for something inconsequential that they thoroughly deserve is soul destroying. My daughter will see something in a shop and spend ages stood in front of it playing with it and looking at it and when i tell her its time to go she will just say goodbye to it with a sad smile and walk away. It breaks my heart and it does make me angry that my stbxh has taken away his wages from our home and only provides £30 towards the upkeep of our child. I cant honestly hold my hands up and say i havent blamed him out loud before now. I dont condone it in any way and its not the right way to approach things but as Tallulah says, being the bad guy totally sucks!!

What your ex has done is wrong, no questions asked. But it can be hard to deal with when your children are asking for things you simply cant provide. Still very wrong of her though. Your children are at an age where if needs be they would understand an explanation that involves a bit more detail than you should have to provide in order for them to see both sides of the argument. You shouldnt have to do this, but sometimes its necessary for damage limitation. And if you have a good relationship with your children they wont let something like this affect that relationship. They may be hurt to begin with, but a bit of explanation and time they will get over it.

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