absent parent advice...

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by joders, Aug 3, 2013.

  1. joders

    joders New Member

    I was wondering if anybody that may have been through the same situation may have some advice for us...

    My husband was granted primary care of his kids March 8, 2012, since then the mother has told the kids she would never see them again, they were escorted out of the house by police (God knows what they went through while we made the hour drive to go get them), she didn't have contact with the kids for a year (since this time my husband was granted sole custody, and she was given supervised visits only should she ever show up again), in the last couple of months we have found out that she is pregnant again and has moved to a different province, she had been bugging us for phone contact, and since she followed our instructions with starting slow and starting with written we agreed that she could start phone contact, I gave her that permission on June 24, my reasoning for that was that the kids were out of school and would have the time and counselling to get through whatever reaction they might have to her contact. It is now Aug 3 (school starts in a month) and she is finally contacting me via text asking to call them. She is very in and out of the situation, doesn't pay child support (obviously), and to ME if it were MY kids I would have called them as soon as I was given the okay and not taken a month and half to try to call.

    We're struggling with whether to allow the contact, legally we are in our right to withhold contact until she decides to come back and take us to court over it, as we are doing what we feel is in the best interest of the children. But I guess that's my concern is ARE we doing what is in the best interest of the children by denying contact with their birth mom? We have facilitated the written contact, we don't have an address but I take the time to scan their letters vs typing them so she can see what their writing looks like now, I send her pictures etc, I feel I've put in more effort trying to maintain healthy contact than she has. I am so concerned that her contact is going to have a negative effect on the kids stability and that she is going to make false promises of seeing them and break their hearts. But I fear they will resent us later on for denying the contact.....sigh any advice? I just wish years ago during the divorce she would have been more reasonable and sane and none of this would have happened, we didn't even want sole custody, we were happy with weekends, this just turned out to be the safest spot for the kids.
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    This is a forum for kids with disorders or troubles. You aren't mentioning any behavior problems in the kids. I think a therapist should help you decide what to do. We really know very little about this situation and nothing about the kids. You'd have to tell us a lot more and I still think it's better to go to a professional. It could be very hurtful not having contact with mother and there must be issues with why dad didn't get them before it became a crisis...stuff for professionals in my opinion.

    Good luck :)
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2013
  3. joders

    joders New Member

    I posted earlier about all the behavioral problems with my stepson, mostly due to the emotional trauma he went through with his mother. We see many therapists psychiatrist, play therapist, family counsellor, psychologist, ALL of them have different opinions. I was hoping somebody may have been through the same situation and could advise how their child may have responded with all the issues, ecspecially right before school, I was not looking for a definite answer, just an opinion because all of our professionals have had different opinions and have told us it's ultimately up to us, and I'm sorry but they don't make books for this ****.

    and I find your comment about my husband not getting sole custody until it was a "crisis" pretty offensive, unless you have been through a divorce as a male in Alberta you won't understand, it is VERY rare for the man to get custody, and we had to fight and fight, and call social services and pay ALOT of money to the lawyer to prove she was unfit, and even then (even after the 3 year old had broken her arm and given us a completely different story than her mother and the lawyer gave us) it took her stopping mortgage payments and letting the house go into foreclosure until the court would finally make the decision. So please don't make my husband out to be a bad dad, I'm very touchy about that because of how slanted the legal system is towards the female, my husband ALWAYS paid child support, in fact he overpaid to the point where she owed him money that he walked away from, and he ALWAYS took his time with the kids.
  4. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Joders, welcome. I havent read your other posts because I dont always come over to this forum. My kids are all adults. However I wanted to answer you even though I dont have the exact answers to your questions.

    I have seen good divorces and bad ones. I really dont think this question absolutely would have to be contact with the mom or contact with the dad...depending on who has custody.

    My oldest son was given to me with sole custody and his father really didnt have visitation set in our divorce because he never came to court nor asked for any. He only saw his father and that side of his family twice in his life as a child. His father would also make contact very infrequently but when he did, he always made these promises that he never kept. I didnt keep my son away but Im not sure what I would have done if his father acted the way you say the mother is acting. Though I guess I really did deal with it sense his father would call him about once every two to three years and swear he was going to be in contact more but he never followed through.

    I think...and its just my opinion...I would continue with the letters and pictures. If mom does send something to the children and its appropriate, I would give it to them. The hard questions are always about why the other parent isnt there or doesnt call or write. I always told my son that I really didnt know but it wasnt his fault. His father was the one missing out because he was such a great kid. That seemed to be okay with him until he was an adult. His father really messed up when my son was in his early 20's and asked my son to come stay with him. He promised the moon and when my son got there it was awful. We had to bring him home again and he has very little to say about him now. He knows who and what he is.

    I guess my answer would be that if mom hasnt really shown that much interest in this long, I would leave it as it is for now. I cant remember the kids ages but when they get older they may want to attempt contact and then you may want to reconsider. As long as you make sure to give them anything she sends them they cant think you kept her away. And they will figure her out for themselves one day.
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Sorry. Didn't know that about Alberta Canada. My son is going through a custody battle in the US and it's not as biased as long as the man is willing to fight hard. I do understand the stress and monetary loss. We don't know each other so I guess it is bad to make assumptions. I did not mean to upset you.

    I did go back and read your first post about this child. Seems he has had a complicated life where people have come and gone constantly. in my opinion only, it won't hurt to let mom talk to him. I doubt if it will help him much either. He has a lot of issues ahead of him to face. What does he say about it? Anything?

    This poor little guy has sure been through the ringer and so have you. This is a very difficult sitluation. I wish I could give better advice, but the situation is very unqiue.
  6. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    This is SO tough. Not that lots of us haven't been caught between different rock-and-hard-place squeezes.

    You are having to make decisions about what to allow or not allow... but you're not to the point yet of knowing what kinds of issues you are dealing with. For example, attachment disorders require a very different approach than developmental disorders, and a kid can have both. So you have no way to know the impact of any one decision. OUCH!

    Are you tied in with child mental health services? They "should" have resources that can help you figure this all out... (partly depending on whether you're in a major center with a teaching university... or "elsewhere", as services tend to thin out rather fast)
  7. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Considering how slanted the legal system is and you don't know what the affects of her contact will be I think your children's therapist should be involved in this decision. That way it is not you withholding the kids from her it is a team decision. And the therapist can help the kids through what ever emotional mess that comes from it. And the therapist can be a witness of the emotional mess that comes from it if this ever gets back to court.
  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Great advice, Lia!
  9. joders

    joders New Member

    thank you guys, I appreciate all the advice. We decided to take a chance over the weekend and allow her phone call. my husband was very clear with her that it was NOT to be a negative call otherwise it would be ended, the call was also on speaker phone so we could make sure everything was okay. She was fine with it, I'm not sure she will call again as she has another baby on the way and the kids didn't show the emotion I think she was hoping for. the 5 year old is a very chatty little girl now but with her mom it was "yup, yup, yup, is my time up yet?". the little boy was chatty, but the same kind of chatty he is with everyone, there was no "I miss you"'s, or "I love you"'s unless the mother said them first, and there were no "when will I see you again"'s which was good because I was worried she would make false promises. we are being warned to watch for delayed reaction in my stepson, but most therapists believe the 5 year old has pretty much cut that bond because when she talks about "mom and dad" now she refers to me and my husband.