Placement change success stories

newwife58March 2, 2009

Does anyone have any success stories regarding DH going back for more time? We want to switch from EO Weekend to EO Week, and know we are in for a fight.

No drugs or physical abuse are involved on BM's side; she loves her kids. She just doesn't want to share them, and continues to try and take time away from the little bit DH has. The boys are 5 and 7 and the placement was orignally determined b/c they were so young during the divorce (youngest was still breastfeeding).

They boys are really beginning to struggle with not having enough time with DH, and he is a very active and involved parent, much to BM's dismay, as she really wants them all to herself.

Court date is in April, and I'm looking for any success stories (or failed attempts) from the experience on this forum...

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Most fathers I know have EOW visitation.

My DH did get sole custody during the divorce but his ex was not a good mother (and still is not). My oldest brother has EW with his child. His childs mother wanted to be able to go out and party though so she agreed to it and was happy about it.

As a custodial mom I would have a hard time with my son going to his dads every weekend. The week is a hectic time with school, homework, work, activities, etc. The weekends are the only time we get to unwind and have fun. If my son were to be with his father every weekend I would have all the work and no fun with our son. I would never agree to such a thing. But I am very accommodating when it comes to giving him extra time for special events. If he has family parties, or something special he would like to do on a weekend that is mine I usually let him, unless we already have plans.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 8:29PM
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My husband was on an every other week arrangement with his ex when I met him. It was by agreement but she later tried to get sole custody and lost. The courts ruled in favor of keeping every other week. Depending on what state you are in, some states are leaning in favor of 50/50 arrangements when both parents want to be involved and live close enough to not disrupt the child's day to day life. It does not work well if one home is 'responsible' and the other is 'Disneyland' but when both are willing to do homework and actually parent the child(ren), then I think it works out best. My husband and his ex did a full week on then off. I've also heard of five days/2 days split but in my opinion, it's much easier to have a long stretch of 7 days as the first day or two can be an adjustment period and doing a full 7 days gives you a weekend and all week so both parents get a weekend with the kids to have fun time on each stretch. (DH went Friday to Friday but I think Sunday night to Sunday night or even Monday morning at school might be better) I'll also add that it worked out better when they did the exchange from their daughter's school... mom dropped her off on Friday morning, we picked her up after school. It reduced the 'adjustment' period because there was several hours in between and she was revved up from what happened at school & not just shifting between mom's house and dad's house.

It would probably help if your husband expresses that BM is a good mom and all he wants is more time to spend as 'shared parenting' the kids as well. He might also stress that it would give mom a break and time for herself, etc. Point out all the positives to mom and kids. (ie. dad can tuck them in since he doesn't get to do that now, etc.)

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 9:27PM
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"I've also heard of five days/2 days split but in my opinion, it's much easier to have a long stretch of 7 days as the first day or two can be an adjustment period and doing a full 7 days gives you a weekend and all week so both parents get a weekend with the kids to have fun time on each stretch"

I also think an EO week stretch would be good. Originally, when DH went to court last summer, that is what he pushed for. (He and BM have had 50-50 custody ever since their son was 1 year old but last summer was the first time they'd gone to court.)

The GAL was in favor of an every other week arrangement but BM really did not want to go that long without seeing her son. Honestly, I know DH did have reservations about that length of time, as well. (PERSONALLY---I think they are both putting THEIR wants ahead of what is really best for SS but I digress...)

They do a 5-5-2-2 split now. It works as well as can be, although I really don't think it's ideal. SS is with BM on Mondays and Tuesdays, us on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and then the weekends alternate. So he is with BM for a 5 day stretch (Fri, Sat, Sun, Mon, Tues) and then with us for a 5 day stretch (Wed, Thurs, Fri, Sat, Sun), then Mon, Tues with BM, Wed, Thurs with us and it repeats.

It is still a lot of moving around for a kid, IMO. I think SS would do a lot better if he only moved once a week. He is almost 7 now and openly says that he dislikes changing houses so much, and even his teacher has commented that it seems to affect him a lot.

Anyway, back to your original question--I actually don't know any dads that DO have EOW. Most of the dads I know have joint, or close to joint, custody. My friend has two little boys (5 and 2) with her ex and she had primary custody up until last year. Then dad was granted 50-50 and they also do a 5-5-2-2 split.

I honestly think if you hubby has been active, and wants MORE time, he will most likely get it. The courts like active and involved dads.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 9:52PM
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We went back to court last year to try and get 50-50 organised but we did not get it. (I'm an SM). FDH did however get Wednesday to Sunday in new order, so that is another possibility. To take smaller steps in extending visitation by starting with a couple of days extra.

My skids are 10 and 12 and they got to have a say. Their BM has always pressured them into doing what she wants so we already knew the outcome of the interview before they had it. In your case the kids seem a bit young for that so I don't know how they would go about assessing the kids wishes, or if that is taken into consideration.

I'm in Australia and they are all talking about 50-50 here and how good it is and how they are pushing it...but only for people who are getting divorced now. If there's an old court order in place already they are not so keen to change it. Bummer, but very true.

I would like to think that you would get it, so stay positive and if it is going to be difficult maybe go for the compromise of extending EOW with a couple of days.

Good luck and let us know, I'd love to hear some more stories with a positive outcome!!

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 2:42AM
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Most men do get EOW.
BUt i have many friends who have changed it to 50 50 custody.
provided that.:
1. No drugs involved on any side.
2. both sides have stable job conditions
3. Both sides prove they have stable home environment . board and rooms for kids.
4. A plan set to schedual time for the daycare must between both house, school must be convenient to both sides and not detrimental to the kids programs..etc..
I honestly see no reason why a father not doing drugs, has a home with rooms and is close to the school etc..etc..cannot have a 50 50 custody.
Most ex bm refuse because of the cash they wont recieve and the fact that both parties hate one another.
But i think 50 50 under certain circumstances is healthy for the kids. Especially when father is so involved ..more so than most dads...
I hope you do win the case ....If not..enjoy what time you have and in naother few years they will leave mother for their dad. My friends son did 11 years old he refused to come home and wanted his father...boys want their dads at that age...
unless your husbands ex...really poisons them....if she is like that tell you hubby to keep close to his kids no matter waht and to keep asking for more tiem.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 8:56AM
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Thanks so much for the great feedback. We are hopeful. Our home is only about two miles from BM, and in the same middle school/high school district, although not the same elementary school. No big deal though, DH and I can both drop kids at school and pick up.

We discussed the protocol with our lawyer today, and she told us that when we see the judge next month, mediation will likely be ordered. DH and I know it will go nowhere because BM is impossible to negotiate even an extra hour of time with. Although DH is an active loving dad, she prefers to have the children to herself (there is a considerable level of "poisoning" going on, but no need to get into that), and will likely not budge. SO, then we would be on to a GAL situation, and a trial. Lawyer said if we are lucky we will know by the new school year.

It's going to be emotional and expensive, but completely worth it if DH is allowed to be a father to his kids, instead of treated like the fun uncle they get to see EO Weekend.

We'll keep our fingers crossed!

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 11:43PM
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I didn't have the money to fund a court battle, and the youngest's mind was pretty much poisoned against me. I could have insisted on her visiting, but it wasn't going to help things. Unfortunately that means she hasn't had any moderating influence (me) in her life for some time except for the stepdad who was kept secret from me for several years - nice. Oldest daughter who for some reason - mum's orders or her own distorted sense of what was right, didn't tell me about him until he only had weeks to live (he was terminally ill)

Moral of the story, sounds like OP's situation, it would be good for more access, BUT only if it can be done without messing up the kids further. In my case I decided it would do more harm than good.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 3:45PM
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My ex tried to change his schedule from EOW to 50/50 time. Judge saw it as him trying to get out of paying child support. He did not win. The schedule remained the same.

It depends where you live and the judge. Where I live, judges don't like to do 50/50 unless both parties agree to it. Personally, I wouldn't want to live one place one week and another place another week. I couldn't do it and my son couldn't either.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 4:55PM
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"Personally, I wouldn't want to live one place one week and another place another week. I couldn't do it and my son couldn't either"

I tend to agree with that overall, but I do think it depends on the individual situation. Some ex-spouses are able to get along really well and co-parent 50-50 effectively with minimal negative affects on the children. I do think it helps tremendously if the parents live close to each other.

Personally--and I have had some heated discussions with my DH about this--I do not think 50-50 has been best for SS. I think he is a more sensitive child, and the moving around really bothers him--he has vocalized this many times. :( I also think the drama that has ensued with his BM and dad has been difficult, as well.

It really does depend. I think 50-50 can work for some kids and parents, and for others, it's not the best arrangement.

It does seem, at least where I live, to be becoming quite "trendy."

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 5:13PM
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