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Parenting Issues This forum is for discussing any of the parenting issues involved in your divorce, including parenting of step-children.

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  #11  
Old 11-27-2012, 09:00 AM
HammerDad HammerDad is offline
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I think I typed out this letter about 100 times on here, but you send your ex the following email and follow it up with a copy sent via registered letter.

Dear Satan's Life Coach,

I disagree with your unilateral decision to alter the parenting time schedule. It is in the child's best interests to maintain frequent and meaninful contact with each parent, and as parents, it is our obligation to facilitate that relationship.

Unless the child was severely ill and requires medical services, I believe I am capable of parenting the child and ensuring their health and emotional needs are met. I don't agree that due to the child being distraught that I should be denied parenting time with our child. Further, [child] is not of an age where they are capable of making such decisions on their own, and as such must abide by the parenting schedule.

As such I respectfully request makeup time at the earliest opportunity to recoup the parenting time denied by you. Failure to either a) provide the child for my parenting time and b) to provide makeup time for the lost parenting time, will cause me to seek the appropriate remedy in court.

Our child has always gone between homes and has never appeared uneasy in my care. I respectfully request you continue with the status quo parenting arrangement and ensure that the child is ready for my parenting time tonight.

Should you have any concerns, I would be happy to entertain them. But I don't agree that either your nor the child have the authority to unilaterally alter the existing parenting time arrangement.

Best regards,

SuperDad

But send the email first, follow it up with a registered letter. Request mediation. Should she continue to deny your parenting time, file a motion in court requesting specified parenting time that followed the previous status quo.

It sucks that you don't have an agreement already. Part of me says go to school and pick up the child. But if she causes a scene, stay calm/reserved/stoic. Don't engage, just say that you are here to pickup your child for your parenting time and that you don't agree that she has the authority to unilaterally alter the parenting time arrangement.
  #12  
Old 11-27-2012, 09:12 AM
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Some access orders are police enforced. Very few. Unless an access order includes the words "police enforced" - do not call the police.
  #13  
Old 11-27-2012, 09:13 AM
SadAndTired SadAndTired is offline
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(Just so I am clear, I did send her to visitation and I did support his position with my kids.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mess View Post
You should have read this many times on this forum, and this has been quoted from a judge's decision, that if a child didn't want to go to school a parent would still send them. If a child of 9 doesn't want to go to their other parent's house, they should still be sent.
I fully understand the principle of the school example but think it is a simplistic view. I have trouble with the results of it. My D11 sometimes wanted to refuse visitation, particularly during a troubling time with her Dad. I spoke with her about relationships, the responsibilities of us all, etc. She is in counselling with a therapist who deals only with divorce and separation and kids. The counsellor spoke with my daughter. D11 also spoke at length with her Dad.

If I send my child to school despite obvious emotional issues at that school, my daughter could begin to hate school and hate the process of going.

The same could be said about visitation. A child could begin to hate visitation and feel angry at the parent with access. My point is that I can send her but it doesn't ensure that visitation is positive and will make her want to go back.

If there was an impactful, emotional difficulty at school, you would try to resolve that issue before sending your child back into it.

But by sending my child into visitation that she absolutely did not want to go to, she was more mad at her Dad for leaving, for disrupting her life, for wanting to see her more than he wanted to respect her wishes, etc..... It certainly set back the process.

The counsellor says that it is very normal for the child to cling to the parent that they live with while they try to begin to re-establish trust in the other parent. I know that this needs time to happen.

I think a better way to put it would be how the counsellor explained it to me....

That, unless there is harm to the child, the only way a child and Dad can ever repair their relationship is to visit together to work it out. They certainly cannot fix anything if they never see each other.

Ultimately it is hard to see your child upset and hear them say they don't want to go and have to send them anyway. I imagine it is even more difficult to have your child say they don't want to visit with you. I know if I only had access and my child said that to me, I would be absolutely heartbroken.

It is difficult for everyone.
  #14  
Old 11-27-2012, 10:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SadAndTired View Post
(Just so I am clear, I did send her to visitation and I did support his position with my kids.)



I fully understand the principle of the school example but think it is a simplistic view. I have trouble with the results of it. My D11 sometimes wanted to refuse visitation, particularly during a troubling time with her Dad. I spoke with her about relationships, the responsibilities of us all, etc. She is in counselling with a therapist who deals only with divorce and separation and kids. The counsellor spoke with my daughter. D11 also spoke at length with her Dad.
What would you do if you were still married, and your child did not want to spend time with either of you? Send them off to an orphanage?

It is ridiculous to hold a position that a child does not have be with a parent just because they "don't want to" or "have issues." We have all had issues with our parents, and we have all had to live with them. In some cases we go to therapists as adults or talk to counsellors as teens, but we live with it.

If the other parent has legal access, if there is no abuse involved, if there is no clinical diagnosis that recommends against contact, then the child belongs with that parent at the appointed time.

Again, if this is an extreme case of abuse or neglect, that is a different story, but in such a case a professionally trained, objective, third party should be making that call. It's not up to one parent to ever decide a child should not be with the other.
  #15  
Old 11-27-2012, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tayken View Post
I highly recommend the OP read this thread and the attached case law:

http://www.ottawadivorce.com/forum/f...-mossip-13753/

Read this thread, and your two posts yesterday, along with this case: great find and thanks for sharing! This Justice really spoke in a language that parents can relate and understand. The true victims of their feuding is indeed their children. I recognize that continuous feuding only hurts the children as many have stated: There are no winners, only losers in Family Law.

Hope for the best, be prepared for the worst. I will certainly forward the link. Knowing my ex for 16 yrs. (married 13, cohabitating 2 yrs.), her constitution is wired for win/lose mentality. She has deeper pockets and her actions have continually proven she has no issue drawing our son into an adult disagreement, and furthermore she encourages an adversarial environment and spending more on court costs is seemingly not an issue (although we all know that this money should go to our kids...)

I am not a door mat, and am detailing the event and asking my lawyer to write another letter to her lawyer asking her not to frustrate my parenting time with our children. I will show up at our kids' school in a concerted effort to have my kids jump in the car and drive them home. (Principal will be contacted and prior parenting time letter on file at school will be referenced/copy in hand).

I realize schools, nor necessarily police do not want to enforce SA or court orders. I am attempting to be strategic and use diplomacy to smooth over unnecessary schoolyard drama. It's a marathon, and I strive to do what's reasonable and best for my kids, and confirm and respect boundaries ex and I have set (by status quo).

Our Family Wizard update - my lawyer advanced my request twice (written)for communication to be through OFW. This has not been acknowledged/actioned by OP. Lately, my High Conflict parent has accused me of harrassment via email. It is acceptable for her to text email, call me, and show up at my door multiple times in one week - all to advance her agenda. (I now do not answer the door when it's her, and unless urgent, do not take her calls or text/email quickly). I have clarified, it it's not about the children, it can wait. So, with her refusal to setup a gmail or hotmail account linked to her Smartphone for communication, great rationale to use OFW (accountability for her nonsense)
  #16  
Old 11-27-2012, 11:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mess View Post
You should have read this many times on this forum, and this has been quoted from a judge's decision, that if a child didn't want to go to school a parent would still send them. If a child of 9 doesn't want to go to their other parent's house, they should still be sent. By allowing this you are complicit. You could pick up your son at school tomorrow, or take other immediate steps. You are allowing your ex to exert control.
Always good to read it again...

As Justice Quinn stated in Gerenia v. Harb:

Quote:
Originally Posted by The VERY Honourable Mr. Justice Quinn

Undoubtedly, there are many tasks that a child, when asked may find unpleasant to perform. But ask we must and perform they must. A child who refused to go on an access visit should be treated by the custodial parent the same as a child who refused to go to school or otherwise misbehaves. The job of a parent is to parent.
Many highly conflicted parents just don't understand this... They send letters saying that the children don't want to go to the other parent (amazingly lawyers send them often), they write affidavits trying to project the wishes of children, have their "friends" write affidavits, all while trying to undermine the other parent attempting to project the "wishes" of a minor child. Very sad to see happening so often in Family Law.

Good Luck!
Tayken

Last edited by Tayken; 11-27-2012 at 11:25 AM.
  #17  
Old 11-27-2012, 11:57 PM
kidsRworthit kidsRworthit is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HammerDad View Post
I think I typed out this letter about 100 times on here, but you send your ex the following email and follow it up with a copy sent via registered letter.

Dear Satan's Life Coach,

I disagree with your unilateral decision to alter the parenting time schedule. It is in the child's best interests to maintain frequent and meaninful contact with each parent, and as parents, it is our obligation to facilitate that relationship.

Unless the child was severely ill and requires medical services, I believe I am capable of parenting the child and ensuring their health and emotional needs are met. I don't agree that due to the child being distraught that I should be denied parenting time with our child. Further, [child] is not of an age where they are capable of making such decisions on their own, and as such must abide by the parenting schedule.

As such I respectfully request makeup time at the earliest opportunity to recoup the parenting time denied by you. Failure to either a) provide the child for my parenting time and b) to provide makeup time for the lost parenting time, will cause me to seek the appropriate remedy in court.

Our child has always gone between homes and has never appeared uneasy in my care. I respectfully request you continue with the status quo parenting arrangement and ensure that the child is ready for my parenting time tonight.

Should you have any concerns, I would be happy to entertain them. But I don't agree that either your nor the child have the authority to unilaterally alter the existing parenting time arrangement.

Best regards,

SuperDad

But send the email first, follow it up with a registered letter. Request mediation. Should she continue to deny your parenting time, file a motion in court requesting specified parenting time that followed the previous status quo.

It sucks that you don't have an agreement already. Part of me says go to school and pick up the child. But if she causes a scene, stay calm/reserved/stoic. Don't engage, just say that you are here to pickup your child for your parenting time and that you don't agree that she has the authority to unilaterally alter the parenting time arrangement.
Terrific letter. Thanks very much. Tweaked and used it via email and gave it in person to my ex, as well as a copy to the school Vice Principal. Mediation has been requested. My lawyer has been sent an email outlining the incidents and I've asked for a motion to be filed requesting EOW status quo.

I sent the Principal an email, asking him to call me about my situation. I phoned and learned he was off today. I discussed my situation with the secretary (who is familiar with it and has the parenting schedule of which parents week it is) I met with the VP, and lo and behold, my ex walked into the entrance. My ex, myself and the VP met in her office as my kids settled in the entrance. The VP heard our stories, acknowledged my week, and asked if it was fair to put the kids on the bus. I said ok, in order to prevent more drama.

Upon our kids being dropped off, my ex and her bf were there and we had a discussion about my parenting week with the kids and her disrespect of my bonding time and frustrating my efforts. She spun everything to ask your son what he wants. Our 9 yr. old son has been manipulated by his mother for 11 weeks, and he said he wanted to go home with her.
I clarified it was my parenting time and our son didn't make the decision and my ex has an obligation to make him go to his dad's. My ex didn't understand or get this at all. Despite me asking her to review the letter I gave her (combo of your's ^^^ and Justice Quinn's quote) I also summarized the quote, however she still failed to grasp her responsibility.

In the end, my son went in her vehicle, and the bf, my ex, and my son returned and reunited my son to me at 8:30pm, after some texts, and phone calls. Mediation is being pursued. The school knows where things lie, and history could repeat itself. Boundaries have been reinforced. Time will tell how things play out.
  #18  
Old 11-28-2012, 12:04 AM
kidsRworthit kidsRworthit is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tayken View Post
Always good to read it again...

As Justice Quinn stated in Gerenia v. Harb:



Many highly conflicted parents just don't understand this... They send letters saying that the children don't want to go to the other parent (amazingly lawyers send them often), they write affidavits trying to project the wishes of children, have their "friends" write affidavits, all while trying to undermine the other parent attempting to project the "wishes" of a minor child. Very sad to see happening so often in Family Law.

Good Luck!
Tayken
So true. My ex, and the school principle both received a custom letter of which the Honourable Justice Quinn is quoted. You are bang on...my highly conflicted ex didn't grasp this in print and upon me explaining it to her. This situation doesn't apply to me and my child...I can find equal legal info to counter your statement...
Sounds more like a desperate/I overstepped my boundaries response than a genuine counter.

It truly is sad - because our son continues to be manipulated by my ex, and she is using his (9 yr. old) wishes to validate where he should go.
Heard her manipulating him on the phone while he was speaking to me. Very pathetic situation...
  #19  
Old 11-28-2012, 08:51 AM
HammerDad HammerDad is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bthom View Post
She spun everything to ask your son what he wants.
So she was willing to drag the boy into the middle of an adult issue.....nice.

If she asked me to ask the boy what he wants, I'd have replied with "No. I am a) not willing to drag our son into the middle of this. It isn't in his best interests to force him to pick favourites. We are both his parents and he both of us equally. And b) he is 9. He doesn't to choose where he lives. If he were 13 or 14, I'd consider it. But not at 9."
  #20  
Old 11-28-2012, 09:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bthom View Post
So true. My ex, and the school principle both received a custom letter of which the Honourable Justice Quinn is quoted. You are bang on...my highly conflicted ex didn't grasp this in print and upon me explaining it to her. This situation doesn't apply to me and my child...I can find equal legal info to counter your statement...
Really not the best idea to serve anything on the principal of the school and here is why:

Your Social Worker - Gary Direnfeld, MSW, RSW

Quote:
Separated parents in high conflict have a way of dragging others into their child custody and/or access dispute. Not just family friends, and neighbours, but every professional associated with the children. The parents seek to bolster their claims to support their custody and access position and believe letters of support from their professional service providers will do the trick.

They ask doctors and dentists for letters stating which parent more often brought the children to appointments. They ask daycare providers and teachers how the child behaves depending on which parent drops off the child. In the process, the parent also informs the professional of his or her version of events, thus going beyond asking for a letter of support, by actively recruiting the professional to his or her side of the dispute.

If a professional service provider offers a letter of support, the precedent is set for that professional service provider to then become a target from the other parent. The other parent is seeking to discredit the letter provider. In reality, the nature of the dispute requires the other parent to discredit the letter provider. The aim is to restore balance and hopefully tip the scale in favour of his or her own claim in the custody/access dispute.

As the dispute intensifies and the competence or bias of the professional service provider(s) becomes the battleground, the services provided to the children may become tainted. The physician and/or dentist may seek to remove him or herself from providing the child’s care to escape parental harassment. The daycare or school setting, once perceived as a place of neutrality and safety for the child, is a source of anxiety as the child fears parental intrusion and has to cope with the service providers’ consternation with the parents. Collateral damage then includes a loss of service to the child as well as an increase in distress for the child.


Quote:
Originally Posted by bthom View Post
Sounds more like a desperate/I overstepped my boundaries response than a genuine counter.
Actually, the counter is to cite back common sense that you shouldn't be dragging the child's service provider into the argument. Bad idea...

Quote:
Originally Posted by bthom View Post
It truly is sad - because our son continues to be manipulated by my ex, and she is using his (9 yr. old) wishes to validate where he should go.

Heard her manipulating him on the phone while he was speaking to me. Very pathetic situation...
What is sad that you are creating unnecessary conflict, dragging in neutral third parties (principal) and exposing the conflict to these people.

You are your own worst enemy.

Good Luck!
Tayken
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