Worried about cafcass and section 7
10 June 2020 at 2:41 pm #40820
I don’t know if anyone has already been through this process but I’m quite concerned about the section 7 being completed after talking to the cafcass advisor that’s been appointed.
It was an abusive relationship (injunction and restraining order on place) and we have 3 children. The eldest children (11 and 8) have always been very vocal about not wanting any contact with him. I did in the early days really try and push them to give him a chance for him to just grill them about me and what I’m doing.
I even offered him supervised contact at a contact centre as a last attempt to encourage contact before having to go to court, which he refused.
Throughout court he has only been granted indirect contact by way of a letter, through a third party address for our protection, which the children refuse to respond to to the point where a few times it has caused an arguement when I have tried to encourage them to.
The children have had support workers from DV charities to help them understand what they went through and what they witnessed and told that they do have a say in what happens.
A fact find has taken place and all of my allegations were proven with the extensive amount of evidence I had.
In the conversation with the cafcass officer she stated she has not seen the judgement for the fact find and that the children should be responding regardless of their feelings on the matter and that I should also be keeping him updated on the children’s progress directly. I did point out that this is not possible due to the injunction and restraining order which she completely dismissed.
I did explain also that the children’s and my own support worker said that I cannot force the children to respond of they don’t want to as this would cause them further emotional distress and my support worker is not happy she’s told me to initiate contact with him when he is not to have any contact information for safeguarding reasons.
I’m just now worried she’s going to tell the courts she recommends to have unsupervised access with the children. Supervised would be difficult enough, but I know he will never accept that as he has clearly stated numerous times to cafcass, in court and to my solicitor.
I just feel like I’ve gone through everything to keep the kids safe and prove that everything I’ve put forward and the risk he poses was all for nothing.
I mean can she completely dismiss the history of abuse, criminal conviction and the fact find and just decide whatever she wants to go ahead?
I really just don’t know what to do and what happens if I don’t agree with her report and she has ignored everything?
If anyone can advise anything then I will be really grateful as I’m a bit of an emotional wreck right now.10 June 2020 at 4:21 pm #40822
You sound like your really going through it at the moment.
Are the kids still with you or in foster care whilst this all goes on as it all sounds really stressful.
I went through similar ten years ago. My kids were ALOT younger then.
There now 14, 10 and 9 and have more of a say in the type of contact they want.
Your very lucky to have a CAFCASS worker. I presume they were court appointed.
I’ve struggled to get even that.
If the courts are saying its up to the kids then maybe you should just take a deep breath and leave it at that.
It sounds like his been abusive towards you and the kids??? So why are you holding on??
If the kids don’t want to see him anymore then he has to accept that.
Im a bit confused and apologise if my comments come across wrong.
I was in a volatile relationship for 8 years with my 3 childrens father. I was eventually placed in a womens refuge but there was concerns that the problematic relationship would continue. We’ve now been seperated for ten years. I’ve not seen my childrens father since 2011.
Not continuing our relationship has been the best thing for all of us.
My eldest is now considered Gillick Competent and able at 14 to make decisions for herself regarding her care and treatment.
Its up to the children at the end of the day but not many parents just walk away.
Good luck.15 June 2020 at 4:18 pm #41041
Thank you for your reply.
The children are all with me still and cafcass are court appointed.
We moved to a completely new area to escape my ex and his family and are currently rebuilding our lives again.
My main concern is when I told the cafcass officer that they refuse to respond and they do not want him even being sent drawings from their younger brother (just turned three) she told me that they should sending something regardless of their feelings.
This goes completely against the advice from my solicitor and their support worker from the Domestic Violence charity.
I just feel as though all of the evidence of the abuse that myself and the children went through is being ignored by the cafcass officer completely and she has no interest in what the children are saying.
I am scared that court will decide that even though the abuse is proven, he has a criminal conviction for it, he openly admits his drug addiction and the children are refusing to acknowledge his letters that they will just order contact with him that I know the children will not agree with.
My eldest two are terrified of their father and are especially worried when it comes to their little brother as he is so young and has no memories of what went on and feel like he will do to him what he did to them if he’s given the opportunity or carry out one of the numerous threats to abduct him of of gets the chance.
I just need the court process to be over for the children and my own peace of mind. When he was originally granted indirect contact once a week or only lasted a couple of weeks before he stopped for over a year.
He has been given the opportunity to email once a month now via a separate email address to my own to safeguard my contact details and has sent 1 email since the cafcass officer began writing her report but it’s been 6 weeks since then and we’ve had nothing more.
I just hate all of this uncertainty and want what’s best for my children. Before court social services completely supported me in stopping his contact, as did the domestic violence support worker but I don’t know where I stand with this cafcass officer.