Tagged: Child contact issues
28 October 2018 at 12:12 pm #17270
This is my first time here and first time posting but I need some advice.
My husband left us (me and our 2 children in february). Before he left he was physically violent to me and my daughter and as such he now has to have supervised contact. We have also endured years of emotional abuse. The children have been seen by cafcass etc and there is a court order in place for him to see them supervised, 1 day a week.
I knew he was having an affair (turns out it was for 5 years!) But i can see that my life is so much better now hes gone. We are honestly happy, and due to the abuse, I had fallen out of love with him a little while ago anyway.
He has stopped paying all the bills, cut off our gas and electric, water, phone, broadband, sky, without telling me so i now pay for all of this. And even though child maintenance services are involved he has refused to pay for the children and we are in the process of getting straight from his wages but that won’t happen until December!!
Anyway, what I really need advice on is this:
My daughter is 8, she was lied to for months about him having a girlfriend, after the court told him to stop lying he eventually told the children the truth. Since then he has been pushing for then to meet her. My son is 4, he’s fine with it, but my daughter has said she isn’t ready and gets herself in a state every Sunday. Tears, begging me not to make her go etc. I have explained she has to go as there is a court order in place.
Last week however there was a ‘chance’ meeting with her on the doorstep, my daughter was upset. She got invited to a party which she declined, and came home very cross as she has told her father 3 times that she wasn’t ready.
This week (today) she cried and said she didn’t want to go and asked me to have a word with grandma (who does the supervising) to explain that she wasn’t ready to see this girlfriend for a little while.
Now my mother in law and I have always got along, and although things are strained I felt I could speak to her about it. However, when I brought this up at the door she turned on my daughter and said ‘that isn’t how is happened is it, what have you been telling your mummy?’ To which my child took a step backwards and looked so upset. I sent the children back inside and told her that wasn’t on, she wasn’t to put all that pressure on her and that I thought we were better than this, and she was quite rude, told me I didn’t listen to my children properly and that she had fallen out with me, not because of what my ex husband had been telling her (he is a born liar), but what she had heard from my children. She told me I should question them more!
I don’t want to look like a nutter here but I don’t think She should he allowed to make my children feel like they are doing something wrong for having feelings or talking to me.
I realise that this will be taken as me having a problem with the girlfriend, and I can honestly say I don’t have any issue, it was me that was encouraging honesty in the first place and in all honesty having her there woukd perhaps keep his behaviour in check. I don’t have to like her to see that. But i have to stand up for my daughter don’t I?
I just don’t know who can help me here? It’s not me they need to hear from it’s my child and she is so upset. I have had to send her with them today knowing she is going to get a telling off for daring to tell me her worries. Whatever I do I look like a jealous nutjob I just can’t bear to see my child upset.
The court I have found were swayed towards him but obviously they saw the issues as he has to have supervised contact and attend a domestic abuse perpetrators program but in the meantime my child is a wreck – please help, what can I do?28 October 2018 at 1:23 pm #17275
I completely hear you. I felt I was put under pressure by Cafcass to allow my ex partners mother to supervise his contact with our children but after some consideration I declined this. Cafcass weren’t happy, suggested I was being obstructive which I absolutely wasn’t. The deciding factor was whether his mother (paternal grandmother) would call the police if/when my ex partner was either violent towards the children or failed to return the children by a certain time (previous abduction) and I didn’t feel she would. She would never have reported her own son to anyone. I used to have s great relationship with her. I don’t want/expect a loyalty from her beyond that which she gives her son, but i do expect that whomever is supervising the contact with the children will safeguard their entire wellbeing. It should be a positive experience for everyone. Cafcass then asked if I had family members willing to supervise the contact, again after my ex partners behaviour I couldn’t possibly gift them the responsibility of managing his contact. Equally I feel they need to know dad and deserve a relationship of some kind. Hence the only solution was a contact centre. Not ideal but you know, it enabled contact and I could rest knowing the kids were safe. The fact you now feel intimated going to the mother in laws house isn’t great28 October 2018 at 1:54 pm #17276
Thank you, for replying, what a nightmare for you.
A contact center may be my next thing. We initially discounted it because his parents were willing, however, I don’t feel like they are being objective anymore.
We are due back in court in January for an interim hearing (when he is half way through his domestic abuse course), and I think he is going to push for unsupervised contact, which I won’t be happy about – the cafcass lady said that it should not happen until the course is completed, which will be July, so I am hoping we can stick to that.
I am just unsure what my next step should be to change the contact in the meantime, or at least highlight her behaviour – I have the whole discussion on my doorbell camera so I can prove this happened. Is it something I contact my solicitor about or can I go back to Cafcass? I don’t want to look like a nutter, and I don’t want to be seen as making mountains out of mole hills but my daughter is very upset, and with the grandmother turning on her immediately, I can’t stand for that. Also, if she is willing to treat her like that when she is in front of me, what else could she be doing when I am not there? This is not an acceptable way to behave surely, and as an 8 year old, if you can’t trust your grandmother who is supposed to be there to protect you its no wonder she is in a mess 🙁 It’s definitely not a positive environment for her, and the tears and anxiety that come (sometimes days) before the contact is heartbreaking