easy child is now 11 1/2. Her bio dad and I parted ways in her infancy. Twice in the earlier years he took me through court. First time was just the normal post break up custody/access thing. he fought for full custody, lost of course (I'm sure he knew he would) and access was very reasonable as despite his "fight" I want whats best for easy child, and that means having her dad. Second time, she was a few years old. He had moved 2 hours drive away (I don't drive). I got a new job and my hours were weekends. I requested with him to change his weekends to accomodate my work hours, and he would end up with one less trip per month back and forth for pick up and again for drop off, and actually gain an extra 4 days per month access in the process. He not only said no, 2 days later I get served court papers saying I was reneging on our court agreed access (Umm, by improving your access???) so he wanted full custody to him and I would have her every other weekend. No holidays, summers, etc. He honestly spent a good 10K plus in legal fees ( I represented myself, the whole "common sense" defense approach I called it) and dragged it out for 18 months, demanded easy child have her own lawyer etc. In the end? THe access was changed to what worked for him and me, the exact terms I had asked to switch to. He was told off royally by the judge who saw in him the following : 1) He loves easy child and is a terrific one on one dad (I concur) 2) He is rigid, refuses flexibility, sees black and white, resists any change that isn't his decision to change, and gets mentally "Stuck" to a point where he will hurt others and bite his own nose to spite his face to prevent change he doesn't personally initiate (I concur) 3) easy child was going to grow up and as she hit age 10,11, 12 and up she would get her own hobbies, activities, friends, boyfriends, etc and no court order is going to force a kid to a schedule that isn't flexible based on their needs (I concur) 4) easy child would one day resent her dad if he refused to learn to go with the flow provided of course he still had active access to her, and he would jeopardize the chance he's been given to have a fantastic bond with his daughter (I concur) 5) That if he returned to court for such stupid things again, he was in for a wake up call because she wasn't going to have her court used for his ridiculous issues. Come to her ONLY if he fears for his daughter at my home or if he is prevented from a relationship with her (I concur) Anyhow, his access agreement from all those years ago? Meant nothing. i was always content and open about it, that he was welcome to share half and half etc but in doing so, flexibility for BOTH of us is going to come up, so if he wanted complete shared parenting, we just both have to know sometimes "our" days with her would end up spent at the opposite home because , well, life can't be managed years ahead on a paper document just because it has a court seal. He agreed. We've had no problems, but her activities were always same days and we've not really had to face adjusting days all this time. With the exception that he often asks for extra nights to keep her for "special activities". I have always said "Sure, have fun" and end of story. I have never asked in return, I plan things for when she is home. It's easier because I know his previous reactions to a slight change (that benefited him) and I've had zero big issues with him since but still, once bitten twice shy. Sooo, now easy child is a tween and mature and busy. She quit her hockey team for the first time. She has professional art classes and swim nights. So her busy nights changed, so our schedule needed to change. Literally the change I had to ask for, I never feared bringing up. I mean in 8 years I never once asked to change even one night for a holiday or anything and he gets her 50% of the time when court gave him every other weekend and one night a week. All that had to change, was he would need to take her for a sleepover Thursday nights instead of his usual Wednesday nights. It's complicated how we split her time between us but it works well for her mentally, and too much to explain, but basically without this change, she'd have a 7 day period with only one night home with me after school, then a divided week the next, then again a 7 day period with only one night here etc. Obviously that isn't going to work. Personally I can't handle that kind of seperation. Nor would I expect him to handle it in reverse! And the biggest part is easy child. She was devestated, it lasted one week on the schedule as "he" saw it should be, and cried every night after day 3 to come home. He didn't let her even call me once to say hi or goodnight or hear I love you from her mom. So I brought up changing the nights. It was a fair swap, it just works based on what nights she has actual activities vs time at night for family time etc. He lost nothing. He simply had to do it Thursday night and not Wednesday night. And he had seen easy child bawling for 4 days after that 3rd night, until she finally could come home. So what did he do? Wednesday he picked her up after school in violation of the change. ARGH! She arrived home Thursday and this poor girl. She's NEVER been subject to schedule things, adult stuff, etc. She's had a fantastic 11 years with both parents, tons of love, no tension or fighting etc. She was bawling after school last night. DEX told her it was NOT happening. That in fact he'd be by to pick her up for Thursday nights as well! (Instead of picking her up for swimming lesson and returning her here) And that would be a sleepover at his place night on TOP of the Wednesday. Thus making one week straight no mom, one week shared, one week no mom, one week shared. Basically, her living with him and me getting some access, far less than he's been handed on a platter all of these years. He had phoned and riled up me that day. First cross words exchanged since all those years ago at court. All over switching one night for another night????? He never at all mentioned this new "deal" he'd told easy child was going to begin that night, which obviously isn't happening. Just sent her to school Thurs. am. thinking her dad just took her away from her mom to move in with him and I'd see her "sometimes". WTH????????????????? I can't say here what was going on in my head. He was also recording our call and trying to trap me into saying something absolutely wrong, by trying to have me say to him that I was preventing him from access. He'd obviously seen a lawyer. Then he hung up on me when I wouldn't say that because its a lie. Imagine how much worse it got for me when she arrived home to announce her horror (while sobbing and hyperventilating and hives broke out on her beautiful face) that dad told her basically he's taking her away and that it was starting when he picked her up in an hour from then for swim class. WTH??? Finally I got hte story from her. Without her present I told him at pick up for swim class that if she was NOT back at end of swimming, police inforcement on our court papers would be used to arrest him for kidnapping and how DARE he ANNOUNCE to a CHILD that he was moving her in and giving me "some visits". I refused to speak to him, said go speak to your lawyer you'll need him. easy child was back 30 minutes later. No swim class. They made it 2 blocks away and he had to pull over to speak to her and they turned back here after 30 minutes. He dropped her, didn't get out of his truck (nor did his wife) and they left. easy child was a mess. She told him she knew he could NOT take me away and she won't be part of this. That if he wants to see her, we do as always but add the change of nights. That if he takes me to court, leave her OUT of it except she will attend once to tell the judge "Her dad is being a idiot and has "stuck thinking" and please make him stop" and that she loves BOTH of us and 50-50 is whats healthy and makes her feel safe and she never wants him to do this to her again and wants the judge to tell him to get unstuck about making changes because if he can't she at some point won't be wanting to go anymore cuz she's getting older and busier and things are going to be changing a lot now until she moves out. (Insert proud mom for such a brilliant and smart daughter) A email was sent (at easy child's request) laying that out and offering him the opportunity to ("ake your head out of your rear dad " t(o quote easy child). Enclosing all that I said above and that she doesn't want to hear the word "court" or another word about the schedule change because she is 11 and didn't choose parents who couldn't keep their family together so its OUR jobs to make HER happy, not HER job to make HIM happy. And she made me add that he makes it impossible to be honest because if he doesn't like it, he punishes her with his disapproval. She made me tell him he's been teaching her how to stand up to bullies at school and that he's being one and she's using what he taught her against him. (Insert chuckle in the middle of this madness, imagine this from my 11 year old??) She also told him that he needs to respect her as a HUMAN with her own personality and thoughts and needs. And that he has no right to shame her for not always wanting what he wants. She told him that she loved him and wants things to be as they always were but with the changes she is asking for and she wanted him stop pretending she is a boy or ever wanted to be a tomboy. that HE wanted a tomboy and made her be one or face his disapproval and lack of input from him. But that she's a girl and will not wear those ugly boy clothes anymore to make him happy and he needs to let her be a young woman and not a infant to be controlled anymore. WHEW!!!!!!!!!!! I NEVER knew it was pressure from him about the "boy" thing. I've wept for how severe it got because it affected her socially horridly over the years. I thought she was just a huge tom boy though and wasn't going to make her feel ashamed of who she is. I mean, I even wondered if it was a gender identity thing or a sexuality thing. So obviously wasn't going to tell her there was something wrong with how she dressed etc. She packed up all the boy clothes her dad ever bought (I have let her wear what she wants but I've only purchased girls clothes for her that she picks out, never bought one boys item, that was my personal line). Told me to donate it somewhere because she's done being what her dad wants her to be and its time for her dad to love her for who she actually is if he can actually do that. And if not she'll cope. OMG! She adores her dad. But I'm so proud because I didn't know she was bullied about the clothes and never wanted to be a tom boy and craved girly stuff and it was down to her dads wants. For years!!!! I told her that IF he files for court even knowing how she feels, she and I will NOT take it personal or let anger set it. We will accept that he loves her and that it isn't personal to her or to me even. It is just that he's got flaws like everyone, he gets stuck in thinking and about change, and that he can go to court and we won't think twice about it because he wont' win and maybe the judge saying this all to him too will help him get unstuck. But regardless, nothing is going to change. I promised her to never fear that I'd withhold her from her dad or take away their time together even if I do feel angry at him for something he does. Unbelievably she fell asleep after watching a comedy with me last night. Woke up this morning happy and when she hugged me on her way to school she said thanks for last night mom, I didn't tell you that other stuff about dad and the boy clothes and stuff because I didn't want him to hate me. But he has to love ME mom. And keeping secrets from you when it hurts me isn't how we do it right? So I'm glad you listened. And I'm ok if dad takes you to court, I just won't let him talk to me about it and i'll just visit with him like always and let him do his temper tantrum until the judge tells him to grow up. Amazing kid I have. Both of them actually. I've worked very hard to instill fairness in them and adult crud is just that, ADULT. Not their problem, and they come first always. It seems it has given her the confidence to still love and see her dad but stand up for herself when push comes to shove. As for how I'm feeling about DEX today? I loathe him. I want to slap him and then shake him until he can comprehend how darn lucky he is. No barriers to a full life with his daughter. I never fight. I take no money. I speak well of him, I even protect him because otherwise last night easy child would have stopped going to him at all at this point. But she's ok now after I explained things the way I did, and sees she can just love him in spite of his craziness at the moment and just tell him to keep her out of it without losing him. She'd have been devestated if she decided she couldn't go there anymore. She needed to hear things from me to make her okay with going back. How can someone be so phenomenal for her for so many years, and than pull this kind of koi????? I expect court papers in the next few days. Nothing changes him when he's unstuck. And when dropped her off last night he told her was going to take me to court. So I doubt the email she asked me to send him last night with budge him. So he's going to drag me through court for ages, spend another 10K plus on the lawyer to request full custody, lose anyhow, devestate the daughter who idiolized him and thought he would always put her first. All because of taking her thursdays instead of Wednesday. And he told her he'd ensure she has her own lawyer again. Before he said all this she had NEVER been told he'd put me through this before. She didn't need to know> I never would have told her. Last night, at minimum , he lost his daughters respect and disillusioned her about how she sees him as a man, a father, a person. Me? I'm horrified easy child is going through this. I'm proud of her though. I'm hating him and want to claw his eyes out. Of course I'll just refuse dialogue about it and let hte court process do its thing. I don't feel threatened, I know the judge is going to blast him at the end of it all and what I want is what will be the result of court. I don't think it, I know it. But I'm livid and disgusted and stressed at being put through the ringer again. And this time with a child old enough to understand it all. I'm tired of being treated like dirt on his shoe unless I give him everything he wants, when he wants it, how he wants it. I have also determined to request the court charted amount of support based on his income instead of the 11 years I pursued none. Feels like the only way I can make him man up and do something to compensate for the 3rd time doing this to me. I'd never use easy child in any fashion or their visits or relationship with each other as a way to make him feel the effect of his actions. So I guess the only way to make him feel he lost big time this time around is to go after his pocketbook. Not one penny more than the court guide allows. But not a penny less. And I will have it enforced. He can't fight it, law is law. I feel sick still and didn't sleep last night. I cried three times today. I feel like being the bigger person all this time just enabled him to build easy child up for this kind of devestation now. I regret it yet at the same time wouldn't change it. Know what I mean?? Sometimes putting a child first is tough. Instinct? First time ever I had a moment in my head of "To hades with HIM, he does this I'll counter for severed rights". I'm glad that feeling passed, but the associated upset is just growing since yesterday. Soooooo sorry this was so long. I have no idea who to vent it out to. S/O is fantastic and always has my back. But he's gone all day and I'm over tired and over stressed and alone. I just needed ears ( or eyes here) of those who might understand my need to "let it all out". Rant over. Heart broken. Mama bear instincts raging. Mournful almost.