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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 02-20-2017, 03:51 PM
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Default Thoughts on communication between children and ex

So my ex has been emailing me a lot lately to badger me about how the kids don't text him very much from my house - he feels they don't communicate enough and goes as far as to suggest that I am not "facilitating" this.
I do remind my kids but sometimes they forget (they are 9 and 10).
I have very clearly told my ex he is welcome to text me to communicate with them at any time if he can't get through to them on their devices (I don't let them have devices 24/7 either). My kids have told me that they feel pressure to always remember to text or that daddy will be mad if they don't. It's a stress for them sometimes.
I honestly don't always remember to have them text their dad. If it was up to him he would FaceTime them every night. I feel that sometimes this takes away from my quality time with them. For example, if we have to get through homework, dinner, showers, sometimes there is only 10 minutes left at the end of the day for my own quality time with the kids.
How do other people handle this? Should it be up to me to make sure they are texting every single night so that daddy won't be mad at them? In light of the fact that I am going to court soon, do you think I should be responsible for seeing to it that they text dad daily? Does anyone have a good system in place that works in their house?
Thoughts appreciated.

Ps. I should mention that the kids don't do a very good job of texting me from their dad's house either.


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Old 02-20-2017, 04:23 PM
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You have house rules and expect your children to abide by them. These aren't toddlers/pre-school children. I'm sure if they wanted to talk to their father they would do so.

Sounds like father is trying to control situation at your home. Was/is he a bit of a control freak?

I'd just say "no" to this. Perhaps remind him there is a telephone they can use if they feel the need to call him.
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Old 02-20-2017, 05:18 PM
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We bought my step son a cell phone for texting and calling last year. He turned 11 and dad didn't feel the need to always text moms phone to get a hold of the children.

Some weeks his son texts us a lot, some weeks he doesn't. We still text him and wish him a good day at school or what not even if he doesn't text back. There were a couple times Dad asked Mom if son had his phone because he hadn't heard from him in over a week. Son will check his phone then and respond.

Kids are kids and at their ages they don't always have that device on them. Facetiming every night is a little over the top I feel. But once or twice a week should be doable. Because you are going to court I would maybe try and set up a time or two a week the kids FaceTime Dad. Maybe Tuesday's and Friday's or something. Even a quick 5 min conversation is more than enough. There have been cases where strict times have been ordered. I would try to avoid that and just work out times that work for you.


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Old 02-20-2017, 06:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arabian View Post
You have house rules and expect your children to abide by them. These aren't toddlers/pre-school children. I'm sure if they wanted to talk to their father they would do so.

Sounds like father is trying to control situation at your home. Was/is he a bit of a control freak?

I'd just say "no" to this. Perhaps remind him there is a telephone they can use if they feel the need to call him.


Major control freak. This is the same guy who manipulated a doctor into getting his son taken off of a medication with no consultation with me. I have told him that I won't be pressuring them into anything. If they want to text they will. I don't deny anything. They each have a device and know the timelines with which they can use it. He brings this up a lot which makes me think it will be used against me ie I am not "encouraging" the relationship he has with his kids. Or something like that.


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Old 02-20-2017, 06:47 PM
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Can you incorporate it into the evening routine? Dinner, homework, text your dad, brush teeth, bed. Given their ages, this doesn't need to be a lengthy conversation - say "hi dad" and tell him one thing that happened during your day. If you're going to court, this will look good for you.
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Old 02-20-2017, 08:05 PM
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Originally Posted by stripes View Post
Can you incorporate it into the evening routine? Dinner, homework, text your dad, brush teeth, bed. Given their ages, this doesn't need to be a lengthy conversation - say "hi dad" and tell him one thing that happened during your day. If you're going to court, this will look good for you.


Likely good advice. Thanks.


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Old 02-20-2017, 08:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Berner_Faith View Post
We bought my step son a cell phone for texting and calling last year. He turned 11 and dad didn't feel the need to always text moms phone to get a hold of the children.

Some weeks his son texts us a lot, some weeks he doesn't. We still text him and wish him a good day at school or what not even if he doesn't text back. There were a couple times Dad asked Mom if son had his phone because he hadn't heard from him in over a week. Son will check his phone then and respond.

Kids are kids and at their ages they don't always have that device on them. Facetiming every night is a little over the top I feel. But once or twice a week should be doable. Because you are going to court I would maybe try and set up a time or two a week the kids FaceTime Dad. Maybe Tuesday's and Friday's or something. Even a quick 5 min conversation is more than enough. There have been cases where strict times have been ordered. I would try to avoid that and just work out times that work for you.


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Good suggestion. I agree with you that kids at this age aren't really into texting so much. I don't let them have social media, so it's a bit of an undiscovered world as of yet. There are many long stretches I won't get texts from them either. I just hate that they are made to feel bad about it; however this is out of my control. In the cases where strict times were ordered, is this because the judge felt one parent was denying the other communication with the kids?



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Old 02-20-2017, 08:48 PM
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Personally, I'd completely stay out of it. Its not your job to force the kids to communicate with their dad. As long as you're not hampering their ability to communicate with him...its their business, not yours because they're old enough to manage the relationship with their dad on their own.

If I were you, the next time he sent an email about it, I'd tell him to stop bothering me with nonsense...that you're not his communication liaison and you have a life and don't have time for his problems. I'd tell him to stop emailing you unless its relevant to serious parenting or logistics issues.

Then stop responding unless its relevant.

You need to start establishing this now because its going to take some time for him to catch on. And if you tolerate this nonsense now...trust me on this...its never gonna end.

Let the kids handle their relationship with their dad. Your just worry about spending time with your kids when they're with you.
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Old 02-20-2017, 08:56 PM
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Or you could simply say "Ive encouraged them to respond to you. Feel free to text them during x-x hours."

If he presses, ignore him. Then text the kids when hes with them and if he pulls crap you can point it out.
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Old 02-20-2017, 09:07 PM
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I wouldn't pressure and order your kids to text dad every day. You shouldn't have to live your life day by day making sure they text dad. That sounds awfully ridiculous. Same goes for the other way around.

Why doesn't he just call and speak to them ? Why is he expecting the 9 and 10 year old to text him? Why do you have to make sure they text him, i'm seriously starting to hate this thing called texting. It always created more problems then it resolves and always seems to be used for the wrong thing. It's as if people use it to build evidence for their court case.

If your kids text back, okay, if they don't feel like it, then so be it. If I was ever ordered to make sure my kid texts mom every day. ha . ha ha. If child is by phone and wants to call mom or text back, great, if child doesn't feel like talking to mom, or busy, then so be it. I'm not going to kill myself over or agree in any court order that I will agree to get the child to call or text mom every day. that's not my job. not my problem, and not my monkies or my zoo. if the kids want to text mom, great, if they don't, then so be it. I'm not touching that with a ten foot poll.

There have been cases of children texting the other parent for the duration of the entire access, or even texting to the other parent what their parent is doing. the children are literally being used as a spy mechanism. it's grossening.

I personally don't harass my ex for phone calls, I gave up on requesting phone calls, it was causing more problems and distress than it was solving. Plus my child misses me more and more every time child goes back to mom, and want to see me more and more.

don't beat yourself over it, you're not telling your child to not talk to the other parent or hiding their phones. You're not interfering with anything. just calm down and breathe

Last edited by trinton; 02-20-2017 at 09:12 PM.
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