Me and my husband are divorcing and i have taken our three children to live in a different area hoping to make a fresh start. My oldest is 14 and after giving it only three months in the new area he has decided that he misses his friends and his old school and he wants to go back and live with his dad. If his Dad was a decent one i would have no issues with it but he is not. He only has the three children every other weekend and he goes out leaving them alone thinking that our 14 year old son is capable of babysitting his 11 yr old brother and his 7 year old sister. My 11 yr old son has commented on many occasions "I dont know why we bother going mom, he is either asleep or he goes out". He also lets them play out until ridiculous times once allowing the two younger children to play by a well known dangerous park till well after 9 o clock. He also has very lax rules on schooling and discipline and the people who he mixes with are awful. He also works very long hours and i know my son would be alone, bringing himself up the majority of the time. When i collect my children from him they always look like a bag of rags, having not washed nor brushed teeth nor had hair brushed for the entire 3 days they have stayed. I simply hate taking them, i know the house they stay in is also a dump. I have discussed this in length with my son and it seems that it is mainly his friends he is missing with only a small part being his dad. I am not sure on how i stand on this one, not sure if he can legally just go back without my say so?. I am torn in two. I am 100% sure my son will have a far better and more stable upbringing with me but try telling that to a 14 year old who simply misses his friends!. What can i do?. I feel like if i take it all the way and refuse my son going back he will simply resent me but i also know that he is far safer with me. Any help will be greatly appreciated off the forum. Cheers Tammy
You can probably stop him legally but in practice there is no point in trying - as you say he is a fourteen year old who misses his friends and you don't want the resentment you would cause by stopping him going. I know you are settled somewhere new now, but is there any possibility that you could all move back to your old area, or nearer to it, so that he can stay with you and see his mates?
As above, legally children's views have to be taken into account depending on their age and maturity and a 14 year old is normally deemed capable of making up their own mind about where they live.
Chopping and changing residency isn't desirable but I think you are right to refuse would cause resentment. Your son might find his relationships with friends different than 3 months ago and he might even miss his siblings and decide he wants to move back again. This isn't uncommon and happened with our D who at 16 wanted to live with her Dad, but when it came to the crunch stayed just two nights and came back. Seems having a pesky younger brother had some attraction after all.