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TOPIC: Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q

Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 2 weeks ago #95424

Hi all,

Need some advice on a sensitive subject. Just some background, this is regarding myself, my ex wife and our 8 year old son - of which we have a court order in place, where I have him every other weekend for 2 nights.

The sensitive issue is this. My uncle recently was arrested for looking at underage porn. The police and social services spoke to me (because I have kids, I have 2 other boys also with current partner), they wanted me to be aware and asked how I felt about my boys being around him. I trust my uncle 100%, we are close, so I have no concerns of that type there. To be honest, my uncle came clean and told me himself before the police called to confirm I knew. Anyway, social services asked me if my ex wife knew and advised I had a duty to tell her. Now a bit about my ex wife. She's a nasty, spiteful piece of work. Anyway she can screw me over, she will grab that opportunity.

I told my ex about this. She's contemplated this over a couple of weeks and has just text me saying she doesn't want our son being around my uncle and will send me a letter to confirm and will copy in the courts. Can she do this? Is my opinion completely irrelevant? There's never ever been a scenario where my uncle and my kids are ever alone, as we only ever see him in a family scenario, where there's always a dozen people or so around. I just feel a bit powerless. What do I respond back to her saying?

Also, the separate legal question. When the court order was made, the agreement was as follows:

a) For the first 3 months (of the order), overnight Saturday with father collecting (my son) from swimming and mother returning child on Sunday evening on alternate weekends with alternate Saturday in between then, after 3 months
b) Overnight from swimming on Saturday morning with father taking child to school on Monday morning

So we did 1 journey each for 3 months whilst I had him for 1 night, then after 3 months, when I had him for 2 nights, we agreed in the courtroom that she will drop him to me after swimming and i'll take him to school on Monday, so effectively doing 1 drop each still. Anyway, as you've figured out the kind of person she is now. She's said because it doesn't explicitly specify she has to drop him to me after swimming (after 3 months), she's not doing it. Therefore I have to collect AND drop him to school. Each journey is a 2 hour round trip nearly. The order doesn't specify her dropping him to me but also doesn't specify I collect. It's very vague. Though we both know what was agreed in the room, she's trying to pull a fast one. I've asked for a copy of the transcript. However, even when the transcript comes back and proves i'm right, she will still say it doesn't specify in the court order.

I did message her last night to see if she would be willing to drop him to me this weekend. But she just replied stating no, as it wasn't in the court order. Don't get me wrong, if I need to collect him, of course I will, and on the plus side, that's an additional hour I get with him. But that's not the point here...

I just always feel like she's always got one up over on me and it's always me getting screwed over one way or another :(

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Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 2 weeks ago #95431

Hi there,

I think that with your uncle, as this has been confirmed to you by him, what ever the circumstances, I can understand her reaction, I don't know how I would react but I guess a mother would feel threatened whether that is a false threat or not.

I understand that you know your uncle well and trust him, and your ex may just be using this as an excuse, but honestly if you were to try and fight it and it went to court, I think it would fall in her favour on this one.

Where the travel is concerned, I'd say pick your battle, you know you are in the right, but if you feel she will not back down, and it means extra time, then just go with it and bank that for a later issue, where you can come back with "I accepted the travel"

GTTS

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Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 2 weeks ago #95432

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Hi there

I think you’re on the back foot, as far as the situation with your uncle is concerned. She is doing what I think the majority of mothers would do in her position. You have a personal relationship with your uncle, and can afford him some leeway, she has no such relationship with him, and to her he is a paedophile that poses a serious risk to children.

It isn’t a matter of your opinion being irrelevant, but he does pose a safeguarding risk, and she wouldn’t be fulfilling her duty as a parent if she didn’t take it on board. If you pursued it through the court, I’m not sure you would be successful.

As far as the drop off situation, you could apply for a Specific Issue Order, but you would need to try mediation first.

All the best

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DadTalk Moderator...

I'm not a lawyer or barrister and my responses are based on my own opinions or experiences of the family court.

I may not be legally trained... but I have plenty of experience and common sense!

Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 2 weeks ago #95443

Thanks for your responses guys. With regards my uncle, it was never confirmed to me what material was viewed. All I know was that it was like a honeytrap set by the police, that he clicked on, which is how he was caught. I've not been told the age or sex of the material viewed, so it'd only be speculation as to what was seen.

I guess it's only going to make my uncle feel alienated, which is a shame as he's extremely remorseful. What happens at say Christmas time, when all the family are there.. do I not go because he will be there? Does he not go because I'll be there with the kids? I can certainly see depression forming from his side as a result. This also means i'll rarely get to see him myself either, its madness... Though on the flip side, I get where she is coming from. But now she has the tiny bit of control again which she's been craving.

As for the collection... I have no issue doing it. I guess it just bothers me that things always go her way...

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Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 2 weeks ago #95447

Hi There,

I guess at the moment it is all very fresh, I would imagine that your uncle will go on the sex offenders list, though I don't know whether that is a life long thing or for a set time as I really don't know too much on this.

I would say it's safe to say that you should keep your distance while you have your children at the moment, you could broach the subject with her again further down the line, though I suspect I know how she will react.

It's such a sensitive area that she is bound to have a reaction and view. Whether she is using it for control or not I wouldn't like to say, but If I heard that a relative of my partners had done the same I wouldn't want my children to have any contact.

GTTS

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Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 2 weeks ago #95449

I think the honeytrap argument is a bit weak. There are countless porn sites on the internet (ahem) - adult porn that is. Some may agree with it, some may disagree but it's there.

For somebody to fall into a "honeytrap" and end up looking at child porn is a little suspicious to be fair. Something led him to that link and I doubt it was innocent.

You love you uncle - as has been said - you can cut him some slack BUT he's been caught doing something that gives most of us with young children nightmares.

You need to see things from that perspective. What he's done can't be ignored.

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Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 2 weeks ago #95453

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FrankCastle2.1 wrote:
I guess it's only going to make my uncle feel alienated, which is a shame as he's extremely remorseful. What happens at say Christmas time, when all the family are there.. do I not go because he will be there? Does he not go because I'll be there with the kids? I can certainly see depression forming from his side as a result. This also means i'll rarely get to see him myself either, its madness... Though on the flip side, I get where she is coming from. But now she has the tiny bit of control again which she's been craving.


How you deal with your uncle as a family will be up to you, at the very least, I hope everyone would be very careful not to leave the children alone with him, but he's the adult here and if he's truly remorseful, he should take it upon himself not to put his family in such an awkward position and stay away during family get togethers, when there are children present.

He did a terrible thing, for which there are consequences. Watching child porn is not victimless, the children are the victims here, not your uncle. I'm sorry if that sounds harsh.

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DadTalk Moderator...

I'm not a lawyer or barrister and my responses are based on my own opinions or experiences of the family court.

I may not be legally trained... but I have plenty of experience and common sense!

Last Edit: by Mojo.

Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 2 weeks ago #95454

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I agree with the above. I don't think you can ever really 'know' someone and I wouldn't want my kids in contact with someone who has looked at that type of material.

As mojo says, you can apply for a Specific Issue Order (after attempting mediation) regarding the travel, but I would do as suggested, pick your battles and bank it for another time.

Best of luck

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I have several years experience supporting parents in family proceedings as a McKenzie Friend. I am, however, not a lawyer or barrister and my responses are based on my own opinions or experiences of the family court.

Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 1 week ago #95494

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Whether it was a honeytrap, or whatever, the fact is your ex is going to use this in court, and a court is always going to consider a child's safety, so your priority has to be your own contact with your child. At a pinch, you could see if the court would accept an undertaking that you will always be present if your uncle is there, but it is pushing what a court is likely to allow.

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Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 1 week ago #95540

Guys, appreciate all your responses. I'm not blinkered by the fact that he's my uncle, therefore he can do no wrong. I know what he's done is very wrong. He knows this also. Re the honeytrap, whatever it was that caught him, there's no denying he was looking at things he shouldn't, god only knows what. I'm not for 1 second defending him.

However, my issue is this. If I feel my kids can be around him, whilst being around me and my family (therefore my uncle and kids are never ever alone), surely this should be a decision I should be able to make, as a father, whilst my eldest son is in my care (i.e. my weekend). I don't want to simply disregard my ex's thoughts and feelings, but conversely, that then to some extent, undermines my "power" as a father, that i can't make a big call on my own. Does that make sense to anyone else?

Just for a bit of context, the kids see my uncle maybe 4 or 5 times a year, so it's not like it's ever a regular occurrence. Also, on a side note... for xmas, I do believe he'll take himself out of the equation to avoid any issues. But I was thinking... I could see how something like that could really trigger depression in someone. Imagine, you royally screwed up big time, you know it, you've been caught. Next thing, you're almost an outcast to the family, spending xmas alone...It's certainly a tricky one. It's a learning curve for me too, as I've never known anyone to do what he's done, so not sure the best way of handling things either...

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Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 1 week ago #95541

Hi There,

Ultimately this is your decision, if your decide to see your uncle and allow your children to also see him, no one can stop you, however as your ex has said she doesn't want them having contact with him (and I have to say I would have the same opinion as hers) if you did there is a very strong chance that contact would stop.

I also think that if your ex did stop contact most judges and probably even SS would support her in that decision, whether she wanted to get the upper hand or just has the parental instinct to protect her children from someone who has admitted he had viewed what he did, doesn't matter end of the day she would be acting the way that most parents would.

I would also say that if they only see your uncle maybe 4 times a year they can't be that close to him, nor him to them and therefore not seeing him wouldn't really cause too much distress to them.

I agree that there is a chance that your uncle could become depressed with the situation, but he has put himself in this situation, and if he feels he is going that way he should seek some help from his GP and his family that don't have children,

Also just does your uncle not have conditions around being near children? I'm not 100% sure how it works but would have thought that there would be something in place,


GTTS

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Sensitive Family Issue & Seperate Legal Q 5 months 1 week ago #95569

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I don't know if this is feasible, but perhaps you could suggest that on the odd occasion that your uncle wants contact, that this is done in a contact centre - that way it's supervised professionally and might satisfy everyone.

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