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contact with my 10 yr old, help please !

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06 Aug 12 #347540 by bikemad650
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hi, advice needed, i left the marital home 6 mths ago now. I am in another relationship which has hurt my wife and my children, Both kids were happy to come and stay over until my ex told them about her, my 15 yr old still isnt speaking to me and my 10 yr old, (both girls) i;ve been having contact with but sometimes she wants to see me and sometimes she doesn''t. I''m pretty sure she''s getting influenced by the others and is the odd one out in the family home so feels presured.my question is '' can i force contact via a court order or something?? we were really close before i left and where like best friends. since i left and hardly see her i feel were like strangers. i work shifts so it can''t be the same time every week or same day. my ex says i can see her whenever i like and said i need to arrange it with my 10 yr old but then she doesnt want to see me sometimes,i feel like i''m stuck between a rock and a hard place. HELP !!!! i want my closeness back with my daughter. My wife is in a new relationship with a previous friend of mine and kids are ok with that as i''m the BAD GUY it seems.

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06 Aug 12 #347547 by Enuff Already
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At the end of the day mate you left the family and you hurt them. This new guy came on the scene after you left so no link to the hurt you caused. Your 15 year old is going to be very loyal to mum as she has seen the tears and the aftermath and the 10 year old sees this loyalty and thinks she has to show this too. Most girls will favour mum and if mum is portraying a negative picture of you kids will absorb it to a degree.

Your 10 year old is too young to manage arranging contact and this is a burden she shouldn''t have as it essentially allows her to ''pick a parent'' and if she chooses to see you she may feel disloyal (or get a hard time from big sis and possibly mum) so it''s easier not to pick you. Suggest family mediation, apologise and grovel for your indescetions but separate acctions as a husband from responsibility as a father, don''t involve this other lady in access and negotiate a more regular access pattern where you daughter doesn''t have to choose.

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06 Aug 12 #347550 by Fiona
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YOu can certainly apply for a contact order in the hope that formal arrangements help to establish regular contact. If you work shifts conditions can be attached so that you have contact some many days a week/fortnight/month to be arranged x number of days in advance when you are informed the times of your shifts.

Sometimes if children just don''t feel like contact or put it off insisting on contact works. However, there are other times when forcing a child can seriously backfire and cause resentment and further resistance so you need to be sensitive to your daughter''s needs.

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06 Aug 12 #347552 by bikemad650
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when u say family mediation do you mean for all 4 of us ? or just stbx and youngest and me? worried that if the stbx is there as well it will rake up the upset for her and kids will see her upset again and me getting the blame and it ending up worse,

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06 Aug 12 #347557 by bikemad650
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i know every shift im working in advance until the end of the yr so i can give her a list of dates to chose. im happy to arange it with the ex but she asks my daughter if she wants to see me, daughter says no then she seems to get pleasure in telling me she doesnt want to see me. shes certainly not helping and putting all the pressure on the daughter which i think is unfair

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06 Aug 12 #347569 by Enuff Already
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Have you highlighted to the ex how she is making your daughter feel and believe me your daughter won''t thank her for it in the future. The pressure your ex is putting on your 10 year old is unacceptable and you need to help her see this in order to move forward. If you leave it too long you will lose out completely in another year or two feelings and wishes come into it a lot and by then parent alienation will have kicked in big time.

Family mediation can be you and your two daughters, possibly the ex too and mediator will keep things in check (or should do) this isn''t an opportunity to slate you its an opportunity to work out whats best for the kids and to build bridges.

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