mom2_1sm2_1May 15, 2009

SD4 told her mom that she did not want to come to our house on Thursday (the day we always pick her up) because her dad was not going to be there for a couple hours on Friday. The visit before SD told her mom that she did not want to come at all. BM called and talked to me to see what was going on and said that she does not want to tell her that she don't have to go, but maybe we could wait a day longer.

We get SD EOWE starting Thurday because she lives so far away that Wednesdays is impossable to do. Well it is our weekend and guess what SD is not here yet. BM let her stay home because she didn't want to come. BM says we can get her after 5p on Friday, then we have to be back there at 9a Saturday for her Soccor game and then drop her back off 2p Sunday. That is 7 hours of driving...errrr.

Anyway, I just don't know what to do. SD is 4 and already has the ability to manipulate her mother into staying home an extra day. What happens next...not coming at all? DBF does not have parenting time established, and EOWE is just the Christmas time we dont get SD until BM is done with her plans.

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Your DH needs to get his parenting time established in court.

My DH spent 5 long years *trying* to get along with his ex without going to court. They split up when SS was about 10 months old and did not go to court until he was 6.

BM did let DH have 50-50 custody RIGHT off the bat but honestly--that was more because SHE wanted those nights off to get her drink on! I am really serious in that I think THAT was most of her reasoning for not fighting him.
One of the reasons (THE reason, really) that they broke up was b/c BM wanted to go out and drink all the time. DH would come home from work, BM would leave the second he got home, and not get home until 2 AM several nights a week. On the weekends, DH would want to go to a movie or dinner, and BM would want to hit the bar and a club. Then they would argue over what to do, and BM would end up going out alone most nights.

Not much has changed.

But anyway--my point is--DH and BM did not go to court for 5 years and while it worked *pretty* well, DH would tiptoe on eggshells around her. EVERYTIME she got angry at him after they split up, she would threaten him with not seeing his son. She'd be mad at him about whatever and she'd say "I'm not letting you have him this weekend or tonight" or whatever.

There were actually a few (maybe 2-3 times) that BM DID keep SS from him for a night or two. DH would go to daycare to pick him up and he'd have already been picked up by his mom. This was back when SS was around 2-3 years old.

The bottom line is--until your DH goes to court or mediation and establishes his rights, he really has nothing.

I know one thing that always held my own DH back from going to court was the fear of winding up with LESS time. But since he had always had 50-50 custody, and could PROVE that, when they finally did get into a courtroom, the courts were VERY willing to keep things status quo. The beauty of the court stuff too was that DH and BM both actually ended up getting longer stretches of time. They used to switch SS pretty much every other day (do NOT recommend this, as it is hard on the child!)and now they do a 5-5-2-2 split.

I would encourage your DH to get something court ordered ASAP.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2009 at 7:30AM
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lovehadley is right. My DH also went 8 years with no court order. To the court, it appeared that their 'agreed' 50/50 arrangement worked well and that they got along well enough for 8 years... but the reality is that my DH also walked on eggshells and BM would get upset if he didn't do what she wanted, she'd threaten to cut him off from their daughter.

A 4 year old does not have the capacity to make the decision about parent/child relationship. My son at 4 would lie on the floor, kicking & screaming he did not want to go visit his father. Once in his father's care (and away from me) he was fine. When it's court ordered, there is no question about it. At this point, one parent is no more in charge of the other's time with the child... they just THINK they are. In the eyes of the law, they are equal (or at least the court SHOULD consider them equal) and if the court decides one parent is better than the other, it won't be the parent that is withholding a child from his/her other parent, just because they are angry at them for something that has nothing to do with the child.

and sheltering the child from the other parent's new partner is not acceptable either, unless it would be detrimental to the child... and it's not detrimental to the child, just because mom doesn't like dad's new wife and doesn't want 'her' kids around 'that woman'. When BM in our case complained in court that I do too many 'mom' things for her child... the court told her how lucky she is that her child has a stepparent like me. (which only infuriated her more) but the point is... just because BM wants or doesn't want things a certain way, does not mean that's the way it should be or that she is right. (and I am only referring to BM in this thread because more often, the BM thinks she is more of a parent because she is the primary caregiver and gave birth.... but until a court says so, both parents are equal... even if your labor lasted 46 hours! I don't necessarily agree but at least that's the law in MY state.) That doesn't mean that men don't ever try to control the situation or feel threatened by another man in their child's life, because I'm sure that happens too.

(and of course, this does not apply to ALL BM's or ALL BD's)

    Bookmark   May 15, 2009 at 9:21AM
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I agree with everyone else. Go to court to get his visitation in writing. He will then get holiday time too that will not revolve around her plans. I think alternating holidays is pretty standard.....not "you can pick up the child at 5pm when bm is done with her family" LOL.

But as far as sports and activities bm could probably sign the kid up for lots and then make you drive back daily on the weekends!

    Bookmark   May 15, 2009 at 3:23PM
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