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My OH''s daughter doesn''t want overnight contact...

  • lissylou68
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08 Sep 12 #354664 by lissylou68
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soulruler wrote:

Hi Mumtoboys

From what I have read from your posts I believe that you and your significant other are doing a marvellous job.

It is, in my view, a case of taking each case on its merits; I have read what a hidious time you have had with your ex and what a hideous time you are experiencing with your current complex situation - by which I mean trying to balance the emotional and financial needs of your own children along with the complex and difficult needs (most importantly rights and responsibilites) of your new partner, your partners parents and of course your partners stbx spouses needs and responsibilities.


If that''s directed at me, I''m guessing it might be with my threads asking for advice a few months ago - thank you.

With reards to trying to find my ex husand and go for a REMO, as soon as my fiance proposed we decided just to let things go and not pursue him.

It irks me to know that my fiance and I are left to foot the bill financially with my 3 children and that my ex husband gets away with not paying a penny, but in the long term I had to accept that even if a REMO was to go through he''d probably move again to shake me off his tail. Plus on a purely personal level sometimes it really is best to let sleeping dogs lie. Obviously I would love it for him to play a part in our children''s lives but I can''t force that, so it is his loss.

This is why I aggrieves me to see the games that have been played over the last few years. Kids should NEVER be used as pawns or used to point score - it''s not fair and only people who are left emotionally destroyed are the kids.

People who continually live in a world of blame will never be truly happy, bitterness, hatred and spite is soul destroying and eventually you have to let it go, accept things are what they are and try to be the best parents you can.

Maybe we''ll get there eventually, fingers crossed. :)

Good luck to everyone having to go through divorce, believe me there is light at the end of the tunnel and it does get easier.

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08 Sep 12 #354665 by lissylou68
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soulruler wrote:

Hi I would suggest that you get any idea (however well intentioned) out of your head about becoming the Waltons simply becuase both your and your partner but more importantly his and your kids are the result of disingaged families.

Actually, and I know it is well intentioned but children see through bribes in the end (by which I mean making fun out of trips to grandparents with pizzas - pizzas are not love they are just something you buy - think on and remember that).

Love lasts a lifetime, it cannot be bought with extravident pressents and it cannot be lost through poverty; that is an enormously hard lesson to be leart as I am sure you well know bearing in mind your personal experience with your ex.


Very well aware of that one and my comment about becoming The Waltons was really meant tongue in cheek. :)

It will probably be like this for the forseeable future and that''s something that we all just have to learn to accept, however hard it is.

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08 Sep 12 #354671 by Elphie
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This might be a bit of an off the wall guess but....she''s 10. He has her regularly once a month.....is there any chance she has started her period? And she''s worried she might leak over night, coz she really doesn''t want that conversation with dad or grandma?
Just a thought

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08 Sep 12 #354677 by soulruler
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Yes I was getting confused Lissylou it was you I was referring to which does just go to prove that it is very difficult for UK Judges - I have been in court on various occasions where they have in their language interleved three cases in the course of one day, all very significant and important to the individuals concerned (and in High Court in Family).

Hard job being a judge and hard job being a parent who ever you are.

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08 Sep 12 #354688 by lissylou68
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Oh well, it was D-Day tonight and she didn''t come.

Mum and his son were waiting at the gate with his daughter nowhere to be seen. It''s always a sign of trouble ahead if the mum is out...

He''s down about it to be honest, he feels that if Mum was just a little more positive towards him this wouldn''t happen.

But I''ve just text him and said he has to accept this otherwise it''ll really destroy and affect his time with the kids. I think it''s the fact that mum allows the kids to dictate the contact rather than encourage it and the fact that he''s terrified that if she''s allowed to do this, then she may start with not wanting to come in the day and/or it''ll give the wrong signals to his little boy.

  • Chained
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08 Sep 12 #354693 by Chained
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I am sorry, but is it only me that sees that the contact arrangements made by the father (although with good intent), might be one of the reasons that the child does not want to stay overnight?

As much as a positive influence grandparents may be, the stability and security of a parental home cannot be replaced.

Your finace has a home, his home is with you and your children. By taking his children to his parents for the overnight stays he sends a signal that either there is something "wrong" with his home situation, or they are not really a part of it. The 6 yo is not old enough to understand but still he is asked whether or not he wants to stay over at his father''s house. The question in itself creates an issue. Not the fact that he has to choose but the fact that by giving him the option it creates in his mind the possibility that it might not be suitable, so he says no. Do we ask our 6yo whether or not they want to go to school? It is not the obligation that we are addressing by not giving them the choice but our knowledge and conviction that school is something positive that will greatly benefit them in life. Why is staying over night at their father not been seen as such?

And why has a two (or is it three) year old Court Order not been re-evaluated to suit the needs of children that have grown up?

I am totally with Fiona on this one (surprisingly enough ;-)) and although it might be terrifying to your partner the possibility of going through this again, it might give an explanation as to why the daughter is refusing overnight stays and what can be done about it.

Best of luck to all of you.

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09 Sep 12 #354703 by lissylou68
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Chained wrote:

I am sorry, but is it only me that sees that the contact arrangements made by the father (although with good intent), might be one of the reasons that the child does not want to stay overnight?

As much as a positive influence grandparents may be, the stability and security of a parental home cannot be replaced.

Your finace has a home, his home is with you and your children. By taking his children to his parents for the overnight stays he sends a signal that either there is something "wrong" with his home situation, or they are not really a part of it. The 6 yo is not old enough to understand but still he is asked whether or not he wants to stay over at his father''s house. The question in itself creates an issue. Not the fact that he has to choose but the fact that by giving him the option it creates in his mind the possibility that it might not be suitable, so he says no. Do we ask our 6yo whether or not they want to go to school? It is not the obligation that we are addressing by not giving them the choice but our knowledge and conviction that school is something positive that will greatly benefit them in life. Why is staying over night at their father not been seen as such?

And why has a two (or is it three) year old Court Order not been re-evaluated to suit the needs of children that have grown up?

I am totally with Fiona on this one (surprisingly enough ;-)) and although it might be terrifying to your partner the possibility of going through this again, it might give an explanation as to why the daughter is refusing overnight stays and what can be done about it.

Best of luck to all of you.


You know I totally agree with your sentiments but it''s easy for us to say, go down the court route, make the kids have contact but on the other hand if they end up resenting him or being fed lies from the resident parent and he ends up with less than he gets at present - which quite frankly is pretty measly - 8 hours per week with 10 days per year to take them away on holiday, he''s honestly terrified of fighting this. He was advised mediation by his solicitor because contact was being frustrated and his ex was being difficult and controlling BUT even his solicitor said it was a gamble and that he couldn''t say 100% things would improve. What is said in court and what happens in reality are two different things. We''ve had her taunting him saying, if you don''t like it - take me back to court.

I think it''s wrong that mediation is only supported as a way of getting legal aid especially in light that she''s not eligable for legal aid, so therefore she can just refuse mediation. It should be a pre-requisite of any court action regardless of financial status.

I also wish that courts/CAFCASS were able to have follow up meetings, it''s a shame everything has to be done through court as that ends up making things much worse.

We had plans this year to just start the children staying over at our home, we were going to have a bedroom for his daughter and my kids were going to double up, but this was put on hold when she decided to stop the overnights with him at the grandparents. So we just thought, well if she won''t sleep there, then there''s absolutely no way she''ll sleep at ours with a house full of my teenage boys.

To be honest, it may end up back in court next year as my fiance has now been put on continental shifts as opposed to his normal 3 shift pattern (which is why he can''t have the standard weekend access most dad''s get). So at the moment he''s having to take the Saturday''s and Sundays he has with his kids as annual leave from work, which obviously can''t continue long term. He''s waiting to see if these shifts are brought in for good, then he''ll have to approach her to change the contact so that it works around his shift pattern, we''re not expecting any support or flexibility and I think that will be the push he needs to take it back to court and address all the outstanding issues.

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