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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 01-11-2012, 08:37 PM
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Default Medical care disagreement and restricting access

Good evening:
My ex and I are undergoing some conflict with regards to the medical care of my son. My son has been following the advise of an alternative care provider (ACP) and is on a very restrictive diet. The ACP has also prescribed some questionable courses of action in the past that I take issue with.

He has been tested by an allergist (a doctor), which has advised us that he is not allergic to anything and should resume a normal diet. I think it's very unfair and unhealthy for him to continue the special diet and I just recently advised my ex that I no longer what him to be in the care of the alternative care provider. She went nuts.

She is telling my son that she will restrict my access if I don't continue to follow the restrictive. Can she do that? What should I do if she won't let me see my son? What happens if she files something with the court?

It's indicated in our separation agreement that we have to both agree on the medical care. My son is eight, we have joint custody and she has primary care. Anyone has some past experiences with medical disagreements?
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Old 01-11-2012, 10:04 PM
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There can be food sensitivies that are not allergies .. e.g. gluten intolerance, celiac, or irritable bowel, crohns, some glucose intolerance, or a susceptability to yeast infections ... these would be good reasons for restricted diet. It's hard to give an opinion without being a doctor or knowing the medical details....

But, I'd think it would have to be a pretty clear cut and serious medical condition in order to justify her restricting access.

Last edited by dinkyface; 01-11-2012 at 10:08 PM.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:24 AM
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No, she has no authority to restrict access. She may feel that the child should continue to see the ACP and remain on a strict diet, but a doctor has advised that he can resume a normal diet. In my opinion, this means that your request isn't unreasonable, and she can't approach this as if it will make the child gravely ill, and then use it as justification for denying child access. As you stated, you have joint custody of the child, which means that she can not unilaterally make these decisions for the child; it's a joint decision.

What do you do if she denies access? Do you have a specified access order that has a peace officer enforcement clause? If not, then police may not do much for you. The alternative is a motion in court to get things settled.
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Old 01-12-2012, 09:40 AM
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You have a right to attend any medical care sessions, alternative or not. Request to attend his next appointment, it will go a long way with your son if there is tension being created by this disagreement. While there, ask questions of the ADP to get a real sense of what you are dealing with so that you don't have to rely on your ex wife for information. Also, even in cases where mom has sole custody, unless it is expressed in a document otherwise, mom must make a resonable effort to make important decisions regarding your son jointly or risk court action originating from you to resolve the issue. However, before reverting to the court a show of good faith with attempts to attend family counselling, then mediation if that fails will be seen as favourable.
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Old 01-12-2012, 11:31 AM
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I can’t tell from what you’ve written whether your ex is high-conflict and paranoid, or if she is otherwise reasonable. If it’s the former, there’s a real risk that she will attempt to use your child’s allergies or sensitivities as a way to destabilize your relationship with him by convincing him that he is not safe with you. It’s very important that if you decide to go against his mother’s advice that you do so in a way that makes it clear to him that you will not do anything that puts him at risk. I think gangedupon has the right idea. If you are present at the doctors’ appointments you can take a more parallel parenting approach, ie. “doctor x says this and doctor y says this so here’s what we’re going to do” rather than “your mom says the doctor says this but I think we should do this instead”

Hope that makes sense …
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Teenwolf View Post
... a doctor has advised that he can resume a normal diet.
An ALLERGIST has made this recommendation. I'm thinking that it would be outside their scope of practise for a Dr specializing in allergies to rule out all other reasons for special diet.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dinkyface View Post
An ALLERGIST has made this recommendation. I'm thinking that it would be outside their scope of practise for a Dr specializing in allergies to rule out all other reasons for special diet.
Allergist = doctor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nationcaps View Post
He has been tested by an allergist (a doctor)...
An allergist went to med school just like every other medical doctor. Can we say the same about all ACPs?

Are you saying that they should ignore the doctor's recommendation?

What carries more weight in court for medical issues? A medical opinion from a doctor or a non-doctor?

Last edited by Teenwolf; 01-12-2012 at 07:42 PM.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Teenwolf View Post
Allergist = doctor



An allergist went to med school just like every other medical doctor. Can we say the same about all ACPs?

Are you saying that they should ignore the doctor's recommendation?

What carries more weight in court for medical issues? A medical opinion from a doctor or a non-doctor?
I think it would be wise not to ignore the ACP's recommendation. I'd be meeting with the ACP in order to determine the concerns and evaluate the recommendation.

And Teenwolf, many of us in professional careers, medical, pharmaceutical, optometry, legal, etc, specialize in our careers. In doing so, we narrow ourselves into our field and do not update on other areas. So yes, quite frankly, a physician who has chosen to specialize as an allergist is not the be all and end all. Would you go to an allergist for heart surgery?
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcdreamy View Post
And Teenwolf, many of us in professional careers, medical, pharmaceutical, optometry, legal, etc, specialize in our careers. In doing so, we narrow ourselves into our field and do not update on other areas. So yes, quite frankly, a physician who has chosen to specialize as an allergist is not the be all and end all. Would you go to an allergist for heart surgery?
I was waiting for that question. You're missing the point.

The Op has a situation whereby he's in a dispute with his ex about his son's medical condition. They supposedly have two conflicting professional opinons. One from a doctor and one from a non-doctor.

Based on this, the ex is threatening to deny access.

The Op is not being unreasonable by wanting to un-restrict the child's diet, based on a medical doctor's opinion. That was the point. I did not say it was the end all-be all; however, you decided to cherry pick the post, for whatever reason.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:41 PM
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Some types of alternative medicines are gaining more credibility (including in court) ... so ruling out the ACP's recommendation MIGHT not be wise.
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