Should I stop contact? Please help.

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  • #12714 Report

    Bellabubs
    Participant

    Hello everyone,

    I’m sorry my first post is asking for help.   But I am in a predicament and need to decide what to do.

    History:  divorced mum of 3, children are 19,  13 and 10.  We divorced 4 years ago.  Ex-husband is a controlling, emotionally abusive person.  Children are a product of that.  The eldest has both self-harmed and attempted suicide. The youngest has major emotional-behaviour issues.  The middle one (13) is now having suicidal thoughts and says she feels sad, lonely and worthless like she can’t make anything better unless she is dead.

    There is a child arrangements order in place which says the children live with me and stay with their dad alternate weekends and half of all school holidays.   Their dad lives 140 miles away and I meet him half way on a Friday and Sunday.

    My 13 year old is saying that the visits are pointless as when they go there they literally do nothing for the entire weekend, they hate his girlfriend because she manipulates everything, and then they come home.  She says she hates all the journeys and her dad ignores her and her brother so what’s the point?

    She says she misses out on seeing her friends at weekends then feels isolated when she goes into school on the Monday and she isn’t included.  Her friends have stopped inviting her places as she has to say no most of the time.    She is also sad to be missing out on musical theatre group that she used to do but can’t as her dad lives so far away, she can’t commit to any weekend activities.

    I got a phone call from her school last week saying they had safeguarding concerns and that she had shared the above feelings but felt like she couldn’t make it better that there is no point talking to her dad as Nothing ever changes and that she wanted to kill herself.  Obviously I’m completely panicking.

    I’ve been to see a solicitor today.  He has said I should stop the contact with her father because it is having a hugely negative impact and that despite the court order in place, that safeguarding comes first.  That we should go back to court having had a section 7 wishes and feelings report done.

    I don’t know what I should do?  Am I desensitised to the fact my 13 year old says she wants to kill herself?  my ex will go mad and fight this to the max.  I can’t afford to go to court again but I need to protect my children.   Please help!

     

    #12719 Report

    AJ
    Participant

    Hi,

    There’s not a lot I can say to this other than listen to the solicitor, the school and your child. What have the school said they will do? As far as I understand, if a child expresses such feelings at school they have a duty to do more than just tell you. I think that your child is at an age when she should have a say in how much she sees her father. It’s about her interests and welfare and not her dad’s. If she doesn’t want to see him and the school / solicitor etc agree that it’s having negative affect on her then she doesn’t see him. From what you’ve said, I think your daughter has made some valid points to be fair. If she can’t see her friends, explore her own interests etc and is feeling isolated because she’s at her dad’s so much then the contact with her dad needs to be changed.

    If her father fights it, let him. I’m not saying that all contact should be cut, but something needs to change and you need to advocate for your child and her interests.

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