A few questions for single or seperated parents with joint custody.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Razorblaze, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. Razorblaze

    Razorblaze God of Thunder TFW2005 Supporter

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    Hello all. As the title says, I have some questions for parents with joint custody. Some of these question have to do with visitations, child support, etc. First off, I'll explain the situation.

    My ex and I broke up in July. Immediately following the breakup, we both met with an attorney to file a joint custody and visitation agreement for our Daughter. I even helped her pay for the attorney and insisted on paying child support. The said agreement was made official a month later (September) once the judge signed off on it. My visitation with my Daughter is every other weekend overnight, I'm supposed to pick her up 10am on Saturday and have her home at 6pm on Sunday. I'm also supposed to get her for four hours (3pm to 7pm) every other Monday and Thursday as well. And of course I get her for four hours on her birthday and holidays as well.

    Now to make a long story short, I'll go on to say that the Mother has not been very cooperative in keeping up with her end of the agreement. The first time I started picking up my Daughter, she would cry at first when I took her to the car. After she was in and we were on our way, she would be fine. And of course, she would be fine while staying with me and playing with my friend's kids, etc. I made sure she had her meals, gave her baths, made sure her diapers were changed, had her to bed at 9pm, up at 9am, had her naps, etc.

    I take her home on Sunday and everything seems fine. Did the same thing on my next weekend with her. All the same things happened, and things went the same as before. I took her home and everything once again seemed fine. However, the next day I get a phone call from her Mother. She immediately has an attitude and is very condescending towards me. She says our Daughter's visits with me is messing up her routine, and she says being without for two days is too hard. Then she goes on to say that my visits could traumatize our Daughter because "her Mom isn't around." Of course, I tried to explain that our Daughter does fine when she's with me, but she cut me off saying, "You're just a stupid man. You have no idea what she's feeling, and what's going on in her head! I'm her Mother and I know her a whole lot better than you do!" Then she goes on to say, "You're just going have to do your visit at my house." At her house. With her and her new boyfriend! I ask her why, and she says, "It's fair for our Daughter."
    I asked how is this fair for our Daughter? Her answer was, "It just is." I told her I just honestly couldn't agree to that, and I'm sure all of you can understand why. I even asked her if it would help her and our Daughter if she brought her over to my place, and I would bring her home. She said, "No! It would cost me too much in gas!" We only live 10 to 15 minutes apart!

    So my questions are, is she really considering our Daughter's best interests? Or is the Mother doing all this to be convenient for her? Or is she just doing this to make me miserable? That last one was something I'd never thought she'd do, to be so low as to damage my relationship with my Daughter. But now I'm starting to think she's that low. Does any of this seem fair? I don't think any of you or anybody would do anything like this to your ex spouse would you?

    Next questions. My Child Support in our custody agreement is required to cover our Daughter's needs. Also I'm required to pay the copayments for doctor visits, and medications separately. Well recently she's been talking about putting our Daughter in day care and that I need to help her pay it. I explained to her that's what the child support is for. She says it's not. I believe it is. Am I correct on this? I believe I am.

    Anyway, that it. Right now I'm considering taking this back to court to to put a stop to her behavior once and for all. To do that, I'm going to go through Legal Aid and hope I qualify.
     
  2. MTME

    MTME Well-Known Member

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    my first advice would always be to talk to a lawyer becuase I don't believe there is one on here.

    How old is your daughter?

    I am not in your situation but have thought about it.
    My husband and I have been married for 11 years and have a 7 year old autistic son.
    We agreed that if anything hapened we wouldn't put Tyler in the middle of it, we then also agreed to never break up. We've been through a lot, A LOT!
    But we always go to marriage counseling.
    one of the reasons we did this is because we knew that if we ever broke up or lived separately it would destroy our son and push his therapy back way back and he has come too far for that. Don't get me wrong I love my husband. Just keeping him from his father isn't something I can do. My husband has been working more hours and now our son asks everyimre my husband leaves where he is going where he is going to the store or even going upstairs to go to bed Tyler is tired of my husband going to work because he misses him.

    I don't know why your wife is doing this. it would seem to me that it sounds a bit....selfish and child support is meant to cover things including daycare however since daycare wasn't a factor when the agreement was made she could cite that as an additional growing expense. Then again if the hours work out can you take care of her isntead of her going to dahycare full time?

    But yes talk to a lawyer and yes go to court.
     
  3. JazzHunter83

    JazzHunter83 Mrs FatalT

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    I am a separated parent and I have majority custody of my children, with my ex taking them every second weekend and one day during each week (which he sometimes doesn't due to his work schedule and sometimes we make it up the next week). He also has half of each set of school holidays and we alternate major holidays (christmas/easter etc) and he has them on Father's day *IF* he chooses to (work schedule permitting etc).

    I have to do some stuff around the house first, then i will be back to respond better to your OP.
     
  4. llamatron

    llamatron OFFICIAL MMC REP TFW2005 Supporter

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    She's being a huuuge bitch. Go see your lawyer!
     
  5. tikgnat

    tikgnat Baweepgranaweepninnybong.

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    'See you in court.'
     
  6. JazzHunter83

    JazzHunter83 Mrs FatalT

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    Ok, I remembered this thread. I agree with the other posters, she is definitely being bitchy here! She doesn't have the right to dictate that your visitation with your child is to take place at her house. When you have visitation the child is in your legal custody and you make the decisions for the day to day stuff (except what is specifically stipulated in the court order). Unless she has a piece of paper stamped by a family court stating that visitation is only to occur in her house - then she has no leg to stand on
    presumably, you have joint legal custody? Which essentially means that decisions regarding your child is to be made jointly - she has no authority to make any decision final without your agreeing to it. Her having majority physical custody does not negate your rights to 50% legal custody.

    Child support is monies you pay in support of your child - because children have the right to be supported by both parents. She cannot make decisions without your say and expect you to pay for them. If you were together, then those decisions would need to be signed off by you - no different now. If she wants more money, then she needs to get a court order and she will need to prove that childcare expenses are necessary for her to provide for her child and not just something to make her life easier. For information purposes: I get just under $1,200 per month in child support....when I got the assessment, all factors such as essential childcare (so I could work) and food, clothing and the childrens current standard of living was taken into account. That $1,200 will not change if I decide to increase our standard of living or want better things, more childcare for respite etc. If I want more, I pay for it....or I ask my ex and sometimes he will buy or pay for something above the child support - I have no legal right to it though, and he sometimes says no and I have to accept his answer.

    Let her take you to court. At visitation, pick up your child and take them wherever you want. Mothers do NOT have more rights to their children because they carried them. Parenting is a joint thing and barring abuse, children do better with frequent access to and support by both parents. Don't let your ex rob your child of a loving father who she needs xxxx

    ETA: the bit about your ex saying that basically your daughter wasn't coping with visitation. So many mothers say this - and a lot truly believe it - bit, crying when separated from the majority parent is normal and in fact the best way to deal with that kind of separation anxiety is to NOT validate the child's fear of separation. That means that instead of getting upset and fretful when your child cries when separated from you, you work to let them know that their fears are unfounded and that majority parent will still be there when the child comes back. Your daughter is fine when she is with you, just like my daughter is absolutely fine with my ex even though she has cried until her hair and face and clothes is covered in snot. She hates leaving me, but, she does that with everyone, including my dad who is her fave person ever as long as I am in the room. She is two, it's a phase. She adored her daddy, I know she does and I know that the best thing I can do for her is to facilitate a good, positive relationship between her and her daddy! My ex and I are not really friends, we hurt each other a lot, but we are good parents and the worst thing I can do to my kids is cut down their daddy - who they adore and who is very important and special to them. It doesn't feel good when people are nasty to the people you love, so why do people think it's ok to be nasty to the people their children love?
     
  7. Satomiblood

    Satomiblood Rosso Corsa

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    It upsets me how a father that actually wants to play an active role in his child's life - unlike countless deadbeats - still manages to get shit on.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2012
  8. KnightSaberAmi

    KnightSaberAmi Nyan Nyan

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    Time to make a call to your lawyer and let your lawyer know she's playing hardball.

    Sounds like its time for you to go to Wally World and buy you a snitch pad and start writing down everything....make an entry for everyday, if she doesn't call you write down no contact on the days you do have contact the what, the where, when, why, date, and time esp. Make sure to print out any e-mails and attach that, Keep a call log and make sure to keep the statements from the phone company mine will print out date, time, and length of call and add what was discussed for that particular call. Ex. She yelled at me for the first 2 minutes I asked how my daughter was?, she said fine, I said well I talk to you later and hang up the phone. Make sure that you write down everything you buy for your daughter, diapers, formula, toys, Doctors Co-pays, all of it. Keep the receipts. Do NOT argue with her, all that shit is, is ammunition, you're not there to deal with her dumb ass anymore, you're there to take care of your daughter.

    Sounds like she's been talking to her catty friends, thankfully for you, you have even cattier friends that worked in Law Enforcement.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2012
  9. MTME

    MTME Well-Known Member

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    Knight's got good advice DOCUMENT EVERYTHING
     
  10. Mutt12

    Mutt12 Starroid Raider

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    Same sentiment everyone else is expressing. Lawyer, lawyer, LAWYER! And like Knightsaber said, document EVERYTHING!
     
  11. MTME

    MTME Well-Known Member

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    when you are documenting things include time, (date and time), and place it happen, what was said and who was present. Always be as sepcific as possible (this served me well not with a custody battle but with another problem I had documentation and the specificness of it saved me).
     
  12. LegendAntihero

    LegendAntihero Banned

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    Sorry to hear you guys broke up. This sounds like a bigger mess than when my father went up and flew back to Taiwan.
     
  13. Easterling Capt

    Easterling Capt I am Vern Schillinger

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    Now I just need to say WTF..1200 in child support...is it gold diapers ? I would never in my life pay that sum. But then again I live in a diffrent country. But Child support in Sweden is no way near that sum, according to insuranceagency the avrage ammount is around 1/8 of what your getting in Sweden.
     
  14. Big Dawg

    Big Dawg Well-Known Member

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    I'll put my 2 cents in here because I'm a step dad to 2 kids who share time between us and their father and we also have two together. WHATEVER IS IN YOUR AGREEMENT IS WHAT HAS TO HAPPEN. I can tell you there were times when we didn't like what their dad was doing or how he was raising them (leaving them with his parents all the time etc), and we checked with our lawyer because we didn't feel it was right. What did our lawyer tell us? Whatever is in the agreement is what has to happen. It doesn't matter if they spent 90% of their dad time out at their grandparents, as long as he lives up to his end of the agreement we have no say. He also said unless there were serious, proven issues with the current agreement there was essentially no way to change it without the consensus of both parties (hence the importance of the initial draft agreement).

    basically if she is breaking her end of the agreement, make sure you document it (if she doesn't let you have your daughter on the weekend send her an email during the time you would normally have her indicating that you are upset you didn't get the time with your daughter, that way you have time stamped evidence that you don't have her as per agreement). If that happens the agreement can be voided and you can petition court to have another agreement (and trust me, if she violates the first agreement the court will be much more favorable to you when you get it redrafted).

    My advice though- try and work through it amicably. Tension between you and your ex will only make for a crappy environment for your daughter, and this is all really about her best interest. Oh and as much as it is in bad taste for her to bring her new boyfriend around your daughter there's not much you can do about it. I also wonder about single mothers that do that though- I've seen many that introduce their boyfriends to their kid far too early and the kid is left wondering "who are all these strange guys, where's my dad" (I honestly don't think your ex put any consideration into that when she tries to guilt you about your daughter missing her mommy)
     
  15. doomboy536

    doomboy536 Universe Onslaught fanboy

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    My best friend separated from his wife a few months ago. She gave him a lot of shit but he tells me the best thing he did was lawyer up and do what the lawyer said.
     
  16. starbasetoys

    starbasetoys Cybertronian Trader

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    Break down and pay for a lawyer....it's the ONLY way you'll get this worked out so that it's fair for you and your daughter. I've been through this...


    GET THE LAWYER!
     
  17. JazzHunter83

    JazzHunter83 Mrs FatalT

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    well, you would be even more shocked/outraged to know that as part of our custody agreement - he also pays for my car which is $380 a month, although I pay my own car insurance. He also contributes $500 per year, per child to a long term CD for each child. I live in Australia so not of the difference between the two countries. Yes, I get a lot of child support, however my ex earns very decent money and prior to our separation my kids benefitted from that very decent income, therefore they have the right to continue to recieve the benefits of that income after separation. Why should my kids live in poverty when their father earns enough to give them a good quality of life? If we weren't separated my kids would benefit, and they should continue to benefit after separation.

    I should also note that I work hard, I do provide for my own kids and my ex lives very well ;)  no one feel sorry for him please....;)  I also asked for NO spousal maintanence since I worked myself and can pay my own bills. I didn't rape my ex in family court, I get no more than he can easily pay. I am also ultra flexible when it comes to visitation.

    I don't live a decadent lifestyle - my house is a 4 bed, 1 bath house with a decent sized yard and in a nice suburban area....it's also a very old house and has no dishwasher (well, I am the dishwasher, I guess). I use a rotary clothesline to line dry my clothes and I only just got new floorboards laid in one room since the old ones were so old the polish wore away and my son got a huge splinter. I am not some welfare queen living large on my exs paycheck while he struggles to pay bills. He doesn't seem to have any problems buying himself everything that he wants.....
     
  18. TheIncredibleHulk

    TheIncredibleHulk Bad Luck Incarnate

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    Talk to your lawyer and don't pay for hers this time :thumb 
     
  19. KnightSaberAmi

    KnightSaberAmi Nyan Nyan

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    Girlfriend, you don't have to justify yourself to anyone....if it wasn't fair the Judge more than likely would not have signed off on it. :thumb 
     
  20. KA

    KA Well-Known Member

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    Good advice from big dawg

    Also, what a bitch

    Sorry just venting