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Are kids really always better off having contact?

  • jslgb
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25 Aug 12 #351914 by jslgb
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Jenna, I totally sympathize with you.

My daughter has just turned 6 and her relationship with her dad is strained to say the least. Like you, i feel he is just going through the motions for appearances sake as the OW has 2 children and he has an elder daughter with his first wife. My daughter does want to see her dad, but recently we discovered this was because she was worried he''d shout at her if she said she didnt want to. He''s such a good dad he took OW, her 2 children and his eldest away in holiday this week, with no mention whatsoever about taking our daughter!

However, i do agree that some contact is better than no contact and for all intents and purposes i''d rather leave him to screw it up on his own!! He recently said to me in an argument that he will wait for her to grow a bit older and make up her own mind. My reply was that he''ll be very very surprised when that day comes! I tried to explain to him that he will only get an edited version of her now, where she tells him what she thinks he wants to hear to avoid any kind of confrontation. I suspect this will be the case with your daughter too and i would suggest that by maintaining contact she will have the opportunity to suss him out herself.

IMO, its better for them to have experienced contact and made their own mind up than perhaps judge you at a later stage for denying them the opportunity.

As for the ipad, she may see or use it a handful of times before it ''disappears''. My daughter as given an innotab for christmas last year, used it once and its been ''lost'' ever since!! Coincidentally it was blue and my daughter is a very very girly ''pink'' girl!!

Persevere for now, see how things progress and give your daughter the chance to build on her opinions and make up her own mind when she is a bit older and her opinion ''counts''!!

  • stepper
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25 Aug 12 #351916 by stepper
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There will always be fathers who dont or wont do their fair share. Any changes in the law would no doubt have very little effect on them, especially when their ex. wives are more than willing to co-operate with contact arrangements. Contact is theirs for the asking. They don''t realise how lucky they are.

The dads who lose out are the ones who are more than willing to share the responsibility of their children, both emotionally and financially. If they have the misfortunate to have an ex. who thwarts or discourages contact they could have an uphill battle through the Courts to remain in the lives of their children.

Some exes when they have a new partner are quite happy to move on with their lives and to marginalise dad from the lives of the children. Because they are no longer interested in the displaced dad, they summise that the children are of the same opinion. It is far preferable to be with someone who is kind and caring to the children, but they cannot and should not replace the children''s natural father.

  • robinson25
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25 Aug 12 #351919 by robinson25
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Well jenna you wont get shot down from me.This is a tricky one and i think it has a lot to do with the age of the child. My daughter is now 18 and her dad left 3 years ago. She has never spoken to him apart from once on the phone, he accused me of encouraging her to have nothing to do with him. She phoned him to tell him this was not the case. I worry about the effect this has on her but she says she is adamant she wants nothing to do with him, she feels betrayed by him as he went off with ow.

My son has just turned 21 and does see his father not often maybe for two hours every three weeks. He told me the other day that he wouldnt be bothered if he never saw him again as when he does see him he is trying to organize his life for him!

They both saw the heartbreak i went through and for what? he is still not living with ow.

If i had very young children i dont know how i would deal with it, it must be hard for your daughter and you esp when she doesnt want to see him. But your initial question is it essential that contact is kept in my opinion no.

  • Chained
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25 Aug 12 #351920 by Chained
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I am stunned sometimes when I read here about children having difficult relationship with their NRP, 6 year old, 3 year olds, 18 year olds and it is always the NRP parents fault.

Parents that are replaced by partners and these children are expected to see them as such. And it is the NRP''s fault that this happens, of course!

RPs that tell the NRPs how negative their children feel about them and how they will lose them in the long run and then they expect these people to be amicable and nice!!

What about a reality check?

  • zonked
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25 Aug 12 #351922 by zonked
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I think the sad truth is some RP''s see it as an achievment that their kids are estranged from their dads. Very sad.

  • jslgb
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25 Aug 12 #351923 by jslgb
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Chained,

The reality is that forum posts are just a snapshot of what is really going on in each individuals lives. Judge me all you want but you dont know my story, how my ex treats my daughter and how contact is played out. You may think its wrong for me to tell my stbxh his relationship with his daughter is damaged, but its taken a lot of incidents, including police and child welfare issues caused by him to get to that point. The same way that Jenna has had her reasons to reach the point she is at herself.

Perhaps less judgement and more helpful direction is whats needed.

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25 Aug 12 #351924 by leanng
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Jenna
like robinson25, you will not get shot down by me either.
my children were 13, 15 and 19 when my ex was asked to leave. he refuses to speak to me about anything including contact with the kids. he says it''s his business, nothing to do with me and will sort contact with kids directly. fortunately they are at an age to be able to decide for themselves. my eldest is now 21 and refuses to have anything to do with him, my two youngest have offered him an olive branch time and time again and all he does is let them down. Contact is very limited ... meaning approx 2 hours every two months... he doesn''t have time!! he is doing all the damage to his relationship with his children .. not me. i encourage them, i tell them he is their dad but i can''t make him see them. i so wish i had an ex that wanted the time with his kids but then again if he had been like that, he probably wouldn''t be divorced now.

if mine were younger, i would almost certainly feel like you do. all you are trying to do is protect your child....

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