A well respected, award winning social enterprise
Volunteer run - Government and charity funded
We help 50,000 people a year through divorce

01202 805020

Lines open: Monday to Friday 9am-5pm
Call for FREE expert advice & service info

No contact with kids - can I do anything?

  • shadowheart
  • shadowheart's Avatar Posted by
  • Senior Member
  • Senior Member
More
29 Aug 12 #352662 by shadowheart
Topic started by shadowheart
Im after some advice.

12 months ago ex was awarded indirect contact with our 2 sons.

This was after a long protracted court battle for contact lasting 2 years, and eventually indirect contact was ordered due to the affect the hostility between myself and the ex was having on the kids - the eldest in particular.

The order says ex can write as often as he likes but not exceeding once per week.

So far he hasnt written at all. He has missed both the kids birthdays and Xmas.

The idea of him writing was that hopefully it would allow eldest (aged 8) time to "settle down" and "get some respite from the conflict", however the lack of any correspondence, presents etc from his father is making him view his father even more negatively.

I understand that writing to them may be difficult for him, as he is obviously not happy with the outcome, but his feedback to CAFCASS and the judge at the final hearing was that he wanted to and would write, and when initially he didnt I thought it might be too raw, but its now been a year.

Is there anyway that I can encourage or even force him to write to the kids? If there are any NRPs in a similar situation is there anything I can do to make him see the importance of the communications?

Is the court order enforceable or will they just do nothing or take away the requirement to write alltogether?

Thanks
The topic has been locked.
  • rugby333
  • rugby333's Avatar
  • Elite Member
  • Elite Member
More
29 Aug 12 #352663 by rugby333
Reply from rugby333
I have some considerable personal experience of this.

Can I just ask, what contact did he originally want and why did that contact not work out?
The topic has been locked.
  • rubytuesday
  • rubytuesday's Avatar
  • Moderator
  • Moderator
More
29 Aug 12 #352666 by rubytuesday
Reply from rubytuesday
Welcome to Wikivorce.

Im sorry to hear of your situation, its very difficult seeing your children suffer like that.

You can''t enforce the letter-writing, either via the courts or yourself. Have you tried writing to him yourself, with an update on the children and saying how much they would love to hear from him?

Problem is, that the longer there is no contact of any kind, the harder it becomes to try to re-establish it.

He may feel that its now too late to start writing, he may be very depressed over only being given indirect contact and be struggling with life in general. Not contacting his children may be the only way in which he is able to cope with not seeing them.

What was the reason for such a long and acrimonious court battle?
The topic has been locked.
  • shadowheart
  • shadowheart's Avatar Posted by
  • Senior Member
  • Senior Member
More
29 Aug 12 #352669 by shadowheart
Reply from shadowheart
Hi Rugby & Ruby

He originally wanted either Monday to Saturday lunchtime every week, after being bollocked by a judge he asked for Friday after school to Saturday teatime every week.

The nitty gritty of why that didnt work out depends on whos viewpoint you listen to :)

However we would both agree that it didnt work out because when we tried to progress contact (he was having 1 - 2 hours a week at my house by his choice) eldest son was very reluctant and struggled - we disagreed on how to handle this, which resulted in some confrontation which son found very difficult making him more reluctant resulting in a counselling referral from school - we tried a contact centre for handover - they were concerned about sons distress, CAFCASS report ordered - they recommended a family support worker - for reasons only known to CAFCASS it never materialised, contact deteriorated further after ex assaulted my father. Further CAFCASS report recommended supervised contact. That was tried, son very distressed, they recommended letter writing (i.e ex in adjoining room, posting letters to each other under door etc), ex refused saying he felt actual contact required to resolve problem. Social worker not agree. Ex pull out of using centre. Further CAFCASS report recommened final order with indirect contact due to withdrawal from father of the children due to poor relationship between the parents. Talks with CAFCASS ex indicates that he will now do letter writing, but CAFCASS now wont pay for supervised contact to do the letter stuff because it not taken up previously. Recommend indirect contact. Ex agrees - very upset.

Ruby

The children dont want to hear from him as cuh (according to their counsellor) but view the fact that he wont even send a present as selfish - counsellor was concerned that they were expanding their negative view of him.

I write after every school term letter him know how they are and sending photos.

I did think about saying please write, but due to the urm .. friction between us, I worry if I say something he will not do it on principal. Also as I cant guarantee they will write back I am hesitant to say they want him to if you see what I mean as if he doesnt get a response he might kick off again.

I always tell them when im writing, and ask them if they want me to say anything, or would like to pop a note into him themselves. They have written a note to his mother (their nan) but will not write to him.
The topic has been locked.
  • shadowheart
  • shadowheart's Avatar Posted by
  • Senior Member
  • Senior Member
More
29 Aug 12 #352670 by shadowheart
Reply from shadowheart
Ruby,

I appreciate that he may be struggling with it both because he misses them and also because he thinks ive won.

What he fails to see is that weve both lost. Weve both let the kids down as weve not been able to resolve our difficulties.

I suppose I just wondered if there was a way to make him see that despite how hard it is for him he needs to do it. I find writing to him hard, I find handing out the olive branch to him and his family hard, but I do it.

I dont see why he should just be able to ignore a court order, which is supposed to be in the kids best interests, yet there are no consequences for him - whilst there will be for the kids.

However, I alsp appreciate that not being in that situation myself I might be being simplistic!

Its difficult
The topic has been locked.
  • rugby333
  • rugby333's Avatar
  • Elite Member
  • Elite Member
More
29 Aug 12 #352672 by rugby333
Reply from rugby333
You are absolutely correct that you have both lost. However that is insignificant compared to the cost your children will ultimately bear if this isn''t sorted out.

Could you just clarify what you meant by ''we disagreed on how to handle this'' with reference to your elder son and contact i.e. how did you want to handle the situation and how did he want to handle it?

Also, who left who?
The topic has been locked.
  • BoysMum
  • BoysMum's Avatar
  • Platinum Member
  • Platinum Member
More
29 Aug 12 #352673 by BoysMum
Reply from BoysMum
Hi Shadowheart,

I can understand where your coming from.

My ex left 18 months ago, and withdrew himself from the children. I offered contact and he refused to see them. I offered telephone calls, he started them but soon dwindled off. I invited him to write to the children, he has never done so.

My children are now 4 & 7 yrs old and I completely know how you feel. At the end of the day, the kids do suffer. I have tried to get to get involved in the past, encouraged him to write to them, but it falls on deaf ears. Its just such an awful situation but in my experience, as hard as you push, the more he pulls away.
The topic has been locked.
Moderators: wikivorce teamrubytuesdaydukeyhadenoughnowTetsSheziLinda SheridanForsetiMitchumWhiteRoseLostboy67WYSPECIALBubblegum11