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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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  #11  
Old 05-31-2018, 07:11 PM
CatsandDogs CatsandDogs is offline
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Hi Kate, the OCL appointed a social worker (overworked and morally disengaged, and a man-hater) to do the assessment and recommendations. First report came last May, and then a final report this May (which was 5 months late). The only reason the mother accepted the 4/14 was because I agreed to continue payments (child and spousal) at the full amount.

The OCL involvement originally stemmed from the judge who realized that the situation between mom and son had reached a critical point that needed attention and fixing. So besides the custody change to dad, it also ordered counselling for mom, son, and dad. At one point last year, kid's psychologist shared that she was ready to give up hope on the mother realizing or making any progress towards trying to fix her relationship with our son. She also pointed out that mom could not get past her hatred and blaming of dad and projected that onto our son regularly.

I have to admit I was surprised at getting the 10/14, but so relieved to finally have stability and the empowerment to make decisions, make life go easy, and not have so much conflict and exposure to her controlling and combative approach.

Overall though, we are left with the impression that the OCL just wanted to please both sides (not including the child).

And yes, the last thing I want is more fighting, court prep, lawyers, storytelling, etc. So I am aware that there is soon coming a point where our son will be able to be more vocal and expressive about his preferences and the reasons why. But nowhere is it clear at what age this can happen and what steps have to be taken or how it can be endorsed or officially acknowledged. I want to avoid putting my son at the front of that fight.
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  #12  
Old 05-31-2018, 07:37 PM
CatsandDogs CatsandDogs is offline
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Hi Rockscan, I think I understand your situation and experiences with your mom and I'm sure given the chance you would do things differently.

All I want with my ex is to mediate and negotiate and communicate about my son and his needs and his interests.

And yes, the OCL certainly observed that the situation is counter-productive and harmful. And counselling for me is part of the plan.

I do appreciate your tough love, and you have pointed out what I don't want to have happen (hate til the bitter end).

Right now though, I just want to get on record my dissatisfaction with the OCL social worker, and express how non-sensical it is to try and force in recommendations that don't fit the scenario and ignore the current reality. The reality is mom and son need help, and until and unless it happens, there should not be an agreement to revert to 50/50. The past year was also for counselling and improvement, and the OCL acknowledged that it did not happen between son and mom, despite counselling and efforts for all to be on their best behaviour. My son held up his part of the deal, but mom collapsed around xmas time and seemed to have given up trying.

So, now we try and make the recommendation into a second interim agreement, but it's honestly discouraging. I just want to be done with the OCL and work on making things real and good for my son.

I do still want to hear about any advice or similar experiences, especially with 12-13-14 year olds expressing or achieving their preference about who they wish to live with full-time (with access to other parent on their terms).

Thanks again for chiming in, I appreciate it.
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  #13  
Old 06-01-2018, 08:33 AM
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Janus Janus is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CatsandDogs View Post
The reality is mom and son need help, and until and unless it happens, there should not be an agreement to revert to 50/50.

What terrible thing will happen if the schedule reverts to 50/50?

Quote:
I just want to be done with the OCL and work on making things real and good for my son.
I'm still confused. My understanding is that the OCL said some bad things about you, but still recommended that you get 10/14. You want to reject the part of the OCL report where they said bad things about you, but you are ok with their final conclusion.


Is my interpretation correct?

Quote:
I do still want to hear about any advice or similar experiences, especially with 12-13-14 year olds expressing or achieving their preference about who they wish to live with full-time (with access to other parent on their terms).
You want your kid to choose you. Don't make your kid choose. Don't give your kid the opportunity to reject his mother. Your kid should not be making decisions, especially of the "rejecting a parent" variety.
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  #14  
Old 06-01-2018, 08:06 PM
CatsandDogs CatsandDogs is offline
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Hi Janus,

Initial interim recommendation was to change to dad for 10/14 for a 6 month period. After the reassessment, OCL found little to no improvement with relationship of kid and mom. OCL also failed to acknowledge academic and behavioural improvements in son. The rest of the report was non-factual and presumptive.

The issue is that the OCL decided to include a recommendation to gradually reinstate days for mom over the next year. Yes, there is counselling and family work, etc. - but it didn't show much improvement over the past 12 months, so who is to say it will have better results in the next year? So yes, the interim was an opportune change, and encouraging - but the last recommendation does not make sense and ignores the current and possible future reality.

The issue is the mom-son relationship and the impact and damage it is having on son, because it's been breaking down for 4-5 years now... and the reasons for the intervention were described above (and no, it was not just the highway incident obviously).

As stated previously, I want my son to have a loving mother, someone he can love - not someone who cannot forgive and move forward and stop emotionally and psychologically abusing him (confirmed by CAS, OCL, and psych). Open your mind and consider whether you would be ok with your child being depressed, self-harming and exposed to some of the things mentioned earlier. In the absence of a loving relationship and care and nurturing, would you force your child into torture and imprisonment because the guards got paid to do that as their job? Not likely.

This forum didn't seem like it was about story-telling and sensational incidents for shock, and sympathy and entertainment - I thought it was about sharing and seeking advice and input.

The question remains, how do I address the concerns with the quality and content of the OCL report - what are the ramifications, etc.

Thanks all...happy Friday btw.
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  #15  
Old 06-01-2018, 09:38 PM
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Usually these things boil down to money. You have to pay CS and SS to your ex and you resent it.

Your son will soon be old enough to drive, vote and yes, if convicted of a crime, not be shielded by juvenile justice system. Is your parenting plan focused on these issues or is it mired with the shit and crap from a failed marriage? Time to move on and refocus buddy. It's not like you are a recent divorced parent. You've had years to adjust.

The best thing a parent can do is raise a child to be able to succeed in the world... know how to deal effectively with difficult decisions... be able to support oneself... make well-thought-out decisions.

So your continued litigation with your ex is not addressing any of these issues. At first read of your posts I thought "kid is manipulating" but then I re-read and thought "father and kid are manipulating." Your not-so-clever use words such as "self-harm" merely seeks reaction from readers. The thing is, your son has been seeing a psychologist for past 4 years. Someone else pointed out that the psychologist has a legal mandate to report.

I note that you made no mention of your own counselling?

High-conflict and high-drama. Try to create a peaceful atmosphere and for goodness sake DO NOT engage your son in negative conversations about his mother. If she is a nut-job he knows it and certainly doesn't need to be reminded about it by you. This is something he will have to deal with for as long as his mother is still alive.

If your son wants to move in with you some day then he will do that with or without your assistance. He can simply petition the court, through his psychologist. Kid is likely telling you (and his mother) what the two of you want to hear. What a terrible balancing act this kid has to look forward to.

Its not too late to take some basic parenting courses. Nurture and encourage your son. Encourage him have discussions about his mother with his counselor, not you.

Going on a rampage about OCL report is a total negative waste of time and resources.
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  #16  
Old 06-04-2018, 11:39 PM
Aghast Aghast is offline
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Wow. A lot of reading.


So, I was in a similar situation with son (and then daughter) but my OCL was great. So I can't help you there but I can empathize with you. (Oh, and I am a male)



Rule #1- don't call CAS on your ex spouse.



Rule #2- if you feel that the "abuse" is significant and CAS should be called. See Rule #1.



Rule #3- if the abuse results in an injury that needs medical attention. See Rule #1 and then take your child to the emergency department. If you feel silly going to the emergency department for this medical attention, then so will CAS.


CAS doesn't seem to take ex spouses concerns seriously. If the abuse is significant, a teacher or a doctor will notice it and be compelled to report it. Not out of the kindness of their heart; it is a legal requirement and there are stiff penalties for not reporting suspected abuse. In your case the psychologist.



Can you get a recommendation from the psychologist? That is the expert.


The OCL is suppose to give your child a voice in court. I don't recall ever seeing a "report", just an affidavit from the counselor assigned to the case. If the child's views are not expressed to the court, I imagine you could argue that the OCL's report is only an opinion and the child's view was not expressed. Maybe someone with more knowledge on this could chime in. Like I said, my OCL was great and our child's views were expressed through the counselor assigned.


One thing our children's OCL did say and the Judge reiterated, is that children vote with their feet.


Some Food for Thought:



I was told early in the separation, by our marriage counselor, not to bad mouth the other parent because it often backfires; and it did in my ex's case. Think about it, your child just wants to feel comfortable. They won't feel comfortable if you are badmouthing a person they love.



Lead by example. I take our children out to by my ex a nice gift on Mother's Day and her Birthday. I do it so the children have a gift to give their mother and they can bask in her appreciation. My new spouse used to get angry with me when I "did things for my ex" until I explained to her that I don't do ANYTHING for my ex. Everything I do is for our children, it just happens that sometimes my ex benefits from it.



Embrace your ex's new spouse, pray that he/she loves your children and pray that your children love him/her. They will not replace you, you will always have that unconditional love. Let the children tell you stories of their time with your ex and his/her spouse. Even if it is killing you inside, smile and listen. If you accept that things have changed and this is the new normal for you and your children, it won't kill you inside.
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  #17  
Old 06-05-2018, 08:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CatsandDogs View Post
The issue is that the OCL decided to include a recommendation to gradually reinstate days for mom over the next year. Yes, there is counselling and family work, etc. - but it didn't show much improvement over the past 12 months, so who is to say it will have better results in the next year?

Who is to say it won't have better results? Contact with parents is so important that it is often worth the risk.


If it starts to go badly, then you can say "this is going badly, it has got to change". However, presumptively assuming that it will go badly guarantees that it will go badly.



Quote:
As stated previously, I want my son to have a loving mother, someone he can love - not someone who cannot forgive and move forward and stop emotionally and psychologically abusing him (confirmed by CAS, OCL, and psych).
If they are recommending an increase in parenting time for mom, then clearly they don't think she is abusive, and it is nothing close to "confirmed".


Quote:
Open your mind and consider whether you would be ok with your child being depressed, self-harming and exposed to some of the things mentioned earlier. In the absence of a loving relationship and care and nurturing, would you force your child into torture and imprisonment because the guards got paid to do that as their job? Not likely.
I believe that you believe that your child will suffer with the mother. I also believe that third parties do not share your belief. I know why you do not want to send your kid to the mother, I'm trying to say that you might be wrong. In the event that you are not wrong, I'm not sure if there is much you can do... yet.



Quote:
This forum didn't seem like it was about story-telling and sensational incidents for shock, and sympathy and entertainment - I thought it was about sharing and seeking advice and input.
Jeff pays me about $14/hour less than minimum wage. At that salary level, I'm more interested in entertainment.

Quote:
The question remains, how do I address the concerns with the quality and content of the OCL report - what are the ramifications, etc.
Provide hard evidence that OCL is wrong. Future predictions are mostly worthless, until time travel is invented you have no hard evidence of the future. Past incidents can be used, but they have to be in the very recent past.


Challenging an OCL report is incredibly time consuming or expensive. The main risk here is going from 10/14 to 7/14, or about 6 days a month. Mom can do just as much damage with 4/14 as she can with 7/14. I don't think the fight is worth it.
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custody schedule, emotional abuse, high-conflict, ocl


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