Going to court soon - how to cope?
I'm hoping some of the more experienced SM's and BM's have some advice for me; I'm having trouble with stress heading up to a court hearing. The background: DH has primary custody of SS8 and legally still has custody of SS17, although he has been living with BM for the past 18 months, and is almost 18 so this won't really affect him. Visitation is "as agreed upon". Period. At the time that I entered the picture and for the next couple of years, DH was trying to be very accommodating and was allowing BM to see SS EOW, if she so desired. She did not so desire; she has seen him now a total of 16 times in the past 2 1/2 years, and I can literally count on my fingers the number of times she has called.
Visitation was very erratic; she'd give almost no notice if seeing him and usually none if not. She'd simply call Friday afternoon and announce that she was going to "get" him that weekend. She'd see SS for the weekend, make grandiose promises of things that would happen in two weeks, and then drop off the face of the earth for another couple of months. We went to see an attorney in January who said that DH needed to draw up a set schedule and send it to her; SS's counselor also said that he needed some structure. So, DH did so at that time, and said once per month (remember that that was twice as often as she'd actually seen him in the past two years). And this was on the advice of the attorney.
BM is displeased with this and wants A) DH to be held in contempt of court for violating the custody order for not allowing EOW and B) the custody order to be modified to say EOW. (You may be wondering how he can be in contempt of an order that has not yet been modified - don't ask me!) There are many, many, many other issues that are going to come up in court, and I know that logically, realistically, she's probably not going to get more visitation.
But I'm in terror that somehow she will- and we'll be right back where we were. I have no doubt whatsoever that she'd never actually see him every other weekend; but I don't know what we'd do if the situation went back to what it was. It was unbearable to not be able to make plans for weekends ever, to be waiting around time after time until the last minute (or later), to never know if we'd get to do what we had planned for the weekend, or if SS would have to go up there and then return in tears again.
I'm so worried, I can't concentrate on work, I'm having nightmares, and just want to burst into tears all the time. DH of course is going through his own worry with it, and we're both trying to pretend that everything is fine for the sake of SS.
If anyone has advice on how to make it through the next little bit, I'd really appreciate it. Normally I deal fairly well with stress but I think because it's been almost non-stop for years is finally getting to me. Thanks so much.