Am I right to be worried?
20 May 2021 at 4:05 pm #54398
So my ex and I have a 9 year old daughter and we have an informal agreement re our daughter so there have been no courts involved. Whilst not on the friendliest of terms (him not me) we have kind of always agreed that our daughter lived with me for the majority and her dad has her Thursday and Saturday nights and some holidays. We live only a a 10 minute walk from each other so access has always been easily changed for both sides when needed. Here the issue, my ex owns a house in Wales and he was supposed to be going down there beginning of June for about 6 months to do it up and sell it as his tenant was leaving and he has also given notice on his rented house near me. He’s been very uncommunicative about all of this and his been passing messages through our daughter which I really don’t like. I rang him today to try to get some info from him direct and found out that he’s not going to Cardiff. He’s basically going to be sofa surfing at a friends house. This friend is married, has 2 teenage children and has no spare bedroom. It’s also about a 30 minute car drive from my house. I was “told” that he will still be having our daughter overnight at this other house and that they will be sharing a blowup bed in the living room. My main issues with this is that I do think it’s inappropriate for a 9 year old to be sharing a bed with her father, let alone a blowup bed, especially since she has recently started her periods and privacy is very important to her. She goes to bed 8pm school nights and 9pm weekends so how’s that going to work as I can’t see the other 2 adults and 2 teenagers going up to bed at this time so she can sleep. I’m just at my wits end with it all. I was told by the ex that this WILL happen and that there’s nothing I can do to stop it. Am I right in thinking that this is all completely inappropriate?20 May 2021 at 10:17 pm #54415
hi, is his sofa surfing just temporary? I don’t think its worth arguing over. I have heard many awful incidents, of parents running off with children and living in awful refuges/temporary accomodation in disgraceful conditions. maybe you could let him know to stick to child’s bed time routine.21 May 2021 at 8:56 am #54421
I would be very uncomfortable with the arrangement too… I personally don’t it’s appropriate… But I would imagine, given how things are set up, that is not unfortunately for you to state that and might require some formal action. If you’re on universal credit maybe you could discuss it in a mediation, that while he’s sofa surfing it would be more appropriate to have her more often for dinners, or more days at the weekend/holidays etc?21 May 2021 at 9:35 am #54423
I think it’s for the whole of the next school term so we are talking 7 weeks. It’s not just as simple as what you say though. He’s choosing to do this as he wants to spend time with his best mate and his best mates family before he temporarily moves to Cardiff. Our daughter didn’t even come into his considerations. He could extend his tenancy were he is but he is choosing not to. He is choosing to sleep on an air bed in his best mates living room. Like I mentioned daughter has very recently started her periods and her privacy is very important to her. She will get no privacy staying at this house. Bedtime but be adhered to as there’s not a chance that 2 other adults and their teenage children are going to go to their rooms at 8pm midweek and 9pm Saturday night 🤷♀️21 May 2021 at 9:48 am #54428
Laoretta you are right, the whole thing is just not right. Unfortunately I’ve been down the mediation route before with the ex and it just didn’t work. He’s very controlling, which is why I left, and point blank refuses to compromise on anything as in his head he is right and completely justified and I’m not worthy of an opinion. Since posting, my sister suggested contacting Children’s Services, just for advice, and they said that taking everything into account they would deem this to be inappropriate and I was advised that they can’t get involved until he actually moves into his friends house, (my daughter has told me 7th June since her dad refuses to tell me anything as apparently it’s nothing to do with me), and intends to do as I have mentioned. I was advised to not let my daughter go with him and to call them immediately so that they can start a referral and if he starts to be verbally aggressive (which will happen) to call the police. They suggested I try to speak to him to come to other arrangements which I am more than happy to do but he just refuses to talk to me. I really don’t want to get child services involved as he can be a good dad but I know when he gets like this there’s just no reasoning with him. I’ve sent him a message letting him know everything I was told and I’m hoping he’ll calm down enough during these next few weeks to see reason. There’s a first time for everything!21 May 2021 at 12:33 pm #54457
You are absolutely right to be concerned.
Your daughters health and safety are your main concern and should be his too. That is not a safe environment to bring her into, go with your gut feeling and try to stop this from happening. X21 May 2021 at 7:28 pm #54525
The fact he communicates to you via your daughter tells me all I need to know about him before reading the rest.
I completely agree with you. It is not fair on your daughter, or you, being left feeling powerless to protect her. I don’t know how it would pan out legally but the suggestion ref contacting some formal agency such as children’s services and getting this logged in detail before doing anything sounds very sensible. It needs to be reported and recorded somewhere basically.
Then, if you decide that you wish to tell him you aren’t comfortable with this arrangement and want instead to discuss him seeing her for dinner or trips out, without staying over, until he is in his own appropriate accomodation, you may have some back up if he tries take it further.
I’d feel exactly the same and would try what I could to prevent the stay over for now. But, alot depends on the sort of person he is and whether he’d get fight you over this just for the sake of it. It often isn’t about the welfare of the child but rather winning.