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Almost 50/50 shared care

  • anonagogo
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02 Jul 18 #502570 by anonagogo
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Hi There

After several years in Family Court, we had our last final hearing in August 2017 at which we have a two week contact plan, which is just one day in the Mother's favour.

Very simply the calendar is like this;

Holidays are 50/50
School time is on a 2 week pattern whereby my ex gets my child one day more than me, equating monthly to about 54% - 46% in my exe's favour.

All days are the same, ie: we each have her the same days consistently except for an alternating Monday.

Every Monday I do a club after school which my child is a part of, and naturally every 2nd Monday she comes home with me, however every alternate Monday my ex asks me to have my child as she works late every single Monday.

FYI, she does not want to ammend the order to reflect the actual scenario which has gone on (my child with me every single Monday) for over 11 months now.

Clearly this is so that she can still claim child maintenance, which is unjust as we are effectively, and in real terms 50-50. In fact (as we use the 2 Houses app) the history for the past year almost shows that my child has spent more time with me.

More background info is that Cafcass stayed on for a Contact Monitoring Order for a full six months. In her report after the CMO she acknowledge that my child has been with me every Monday but said that Mum did not want to change the order. She went on to say that it was apparent that my wanting the Monday was wholly child centred, as I worked at the school and still do every Monday and mum works late.

Here's my question : Is it advisable for me to try further mediation with the mum and if we cannot come to an agreement then file a request to modify a child arrangements order in court?

I would appreciate any experienced advice.

Many thanks!

  • .Sylvia
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03 Jul 18 #502574 by .Sylvia
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The problem with returning to court is that you may not be successful in securing those additional Mondays in your favour. You ahve already spent "several years" in the arena, why would you want to return?

If the current arrangements are amicable and working, and your child is happy and settled, then why would you want to risk upsetting the applecart?

It seems to me the sticking point for you is the additional CM you think you shouldn't be paying. How much extra are we talking about, and would not paying that amount make a significant difference to your disposable income each month? How much do you earn, and your ex earn?

Not all matters need to be resolved via court - often a more pragmatic approach is required. If your only reason to request an amend to the existing order is to pay less CM to your wife, then that isn't a child-focused reason to apply.

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03 Jul 18 #502589 by anonagogo
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Sylvia thanks for your reply but I am confused that you regard my motion as a means of avoiding CM. Is it not clear from what I have written that the mum herself wants me to do the Monday but WILL NOT ammend the order - how does that not strike you as financial motivation on her part?

Is it not possible that your objectivity may be obscured by your gender?

I earn less than the mum as I am struggling to get back into a good work routine as the past years have not only had it's financial implications on me, but I am working through some depression and no doubt PTSD.

It still appears that the Family Court maintains it's gross inequality in it's view of parents and penalises the man based pursely on outmoded traditional, Victorian attitudes. These old judges must just die off so we can be seen as equal.

In terms of emotional closeness and support, facilitating my child's very expensive extra murals like horse riding and being the only parent who provides clothing, hobbies, travel etc. and I provide the best home I can, I am also being robbed via CM, which only puts money in the mum's pocket.

So there you have it, the additional expense of CM which goes to the mum's pocket and does nothing towards my child's life, is added to all that I provide directly, and is secondary to wanting the order to reflect the reality.

People must wake the F up and dispense of the old notion that fathers are bad and mothers are good.

Rant over! Good father's being skrood say amen!

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04 Jul 18 #502590 by .Sylvia
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My comments in bold italics:

anonagogo wrote:

Sylvia thanks for your reply but I am confused that you regard my motion as a means of avoiding CM. Is it not clear from what I have written that the mum herself wants me to do the Monday but WILL NOT ammend the order - how does that not strike you as financial motivation on her part? your motivation is financial too.

Is it not possible that your objectivity may be obscured by your gender? that's a sexist comment, and I take offence at that. How dare you you accuse me of being sexist then do exactly the same to me? I note you have dismissed my advice (based on years of working with separated parents) simply because I'm a woman. Nice....

I earn less than the mum as I am struggling to get back into a good work routine as the past years have not only had it's financial implications on me, but I am working through some depression and no doubt PTSD. as you earn less, then that imbalance needs to be addressed - as a result of the additional Moday night (which is included in your CM to your ex), you are paying twice as you are also providing for your daughter on the Monday night. If you are going via the CMS, then ask for a review - you have the evidence that your child stays that extra night with you

It still appears that the Family Court maintains it's gross inequality in it's view of parents and penalises the man based purely on outmoded traditional, Victorian attitudes. These old judges must just die off so we can be seen as equal. yawn - there's no inequality here, you are much better off than most fathers and some mothers. You are in danger of upsetting a good, working arrangement that your daughter is clearly benefiting from if you peruse this via the Court

In terms of emotional closeness and support, facilitating my child's very expensive extra murals like horse riding and being the only parent who provides clothing, hobbies, travel etc. and I provide the best home I can, I am also being robbed via CM, which only puts money in the mum's pocket. if the activities are too expensive to maintain then you may need to consider alternatives, if you are paying for these voluntarily, then that is your choice - you do not have to fund additional expenses as Cm is a contribution to all a child's day to day living expenses. perhaps Mum could contribute half?

So there you have it, the additional expense of CM which goes to the mum's pocket and does nothing towards my child's life, is added to all that I provide directly, and is secondary to wanting the order to reflect the reality. CM will help pay for housing, heating, food, utilities, clothes, school uniform, shoes, toiletries, hair cuts etc etc - how is that not benefiting your child?

People must wake the F up and dispense of the old notion that fathers are bad and mothers are good. I have never said this - on the contrary, I have long campaigned for equal parenting

Rant over! Good father's being skrood say amen! as are good mothers who have their children taken away, or who are prevented from seeing them by the father

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04 Jul 18 #502591 by anonagogo
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Hi Sylvia

I deeply appereciate your comments and thank you very much for taking the time and elaborating!

I'm afraid I have been through a lot, and clearly my response to you reflects the shockwave of emotions and frustrations I have experienced over the years in this horrible, needlessly combative Famil Court arena.

Firstly, what I should have added to the offending sentence was 'gender bias'. Perhaps had I done so, it would not have come across as a sexist comment, but I see now that it does and I apologise.

What I found really interesting about your reply was the CM info. CMS tell me that although I can prove that I have my child more than 50% of the time (using print outs of the 2 Houses calendar), they are only prepared to do their calculations off of the latest Child Arrangements order. I will look into this.

The way it works with us is that I pretty much pay for everything - hair cuts, clothing, school uniforms, additional school expenses like days out, school trips etc. I have found in the past that any goodwill on my part, eg: paying for everything neither helps me with CMS nor does it improve mum's attitude towards co-operation etc.

I had felt that to have the order reflect the status quo would be best, but I hear you, and agree that to go back to court would likely incense myself, my ex and the court itself, so I will pursue the option of putting my case to CMS.

I am however grateful that this past year (post litigation) has been incredibly successful, and my child is doing very well in all areas and contact security for once is good - I can truly sleep at night and I'm grateful for that.

Again, many thanks for your reply, and please accepy my apology for my terse assumptions.

Regards

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04 Jul 18 #502592 by .Sylvia
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No worries, anonagogo - no apology required, but I appreciate it all the same :)(and no gender bias here btw)

The way it works with us is that I pretty much pay for everything - hair cuts, clothing, school uniforms, additional school expenses like days out, school trips etc. I have found in the past that any goodwill on my part, eg: paying for everything neither helps me with CMS nor does it improve mum's attitude towards co-operation etc.


This ^^^ you are being more than generous, and while I appreciate that you only want to do the best by your little one, you are starting to make a rod for you own back by paying CM, then paying for clothes, haircuts etc etc - and if it's not being appreciated, then it's time to reconsider those additional, voluntary payments and purchases.

Some battles aren't worth fighting, even when the battle feels morally right.

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04 Jul 18 #502595 by anonagogo
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Thanks again, much appreciated!

Best Regards

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