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Hello There.... 4 months 2 weeks ago #96644

  • bmcn83
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Hi, I’m new to the forum and came across it while doing an internet search looking for help and support and looking through previous posts this looks as good as anything around.
I am the father to a 15 month year old boy who has basically been in my care for the last nine months or so and have in the last few months been given Parental Responsibility for him. I currently work full time so I luckily have my parents to look after him during the day, he was put in to my care by his mother and at the recommendation of SS and it was SS who advised me to go through the court to get the PR for him due to issues that were ongoing with the mother. Contact from the mother is pretty hit and miss and can sometimes go a week or so without her even messaging me to see how he is doing etc.
That was all approved on the second court date and supervised access was granted to the mother at a specific location every fortnight on a Sunday for a few hours as following the first court case access was not allowed. It took a few weeks from the court sign off for the visit access to be arranged as the child’s mother had other things to sort out so it ended up being about 3 weeks before first access was arranged. I was given a time that he was going to be collected to from my house and lets just say from the initial time given it ended up being about 50mins after that time when she arrived.
I then received a message asking if she could see him Boxing day, I was doing it to be difficult but I advised that as the court order was in place we had to stick to that and it was her that requested that day and frequency. I then got a reply back saying that it was fine and when my son was older she would explain all this to him and he would hate me for it etc. I ignored the message as I didn’t want to get in to a slanging match over it.
I then received a message from a family member her side asking if she could see him over Christmas and have him overnight as her kids had not seen my son since around May/June. I advised at the moment I didn’t want him to go out the area as it was still early days, I wasn’t trying to stop anyone seeing and suggested meeting up in my local area (she lives outside the area) and thy could all see him but that wasn’t good enough. I wasn’t doing this to be nasty I just have my doubts that my sons’ mother wouldn’t conveniently turn up there and this family member has never even contact me to ask how he was or checked up on him since June.
The next visit was arranged for a Sunday over Christmas but I had no message arranging a time until the day of the access, again I was told a time to have him ready for which I did. I received one message about 5mins before that time saying they were running late and would be about 20mins later, then another message to say they would be there soon as held up – they arrived again about 50mins after the original time mentioned. Her new partner was there and I’m not sure if she brings him every time she collects him to intimidate me or they just can be separated. The time for access is a few hours so I gave a time I wanted him back to mine and an argument ensued between me and his mother as she wanted him for four hours and what I said(3) was not fair. As the argument escalated I stupidly saw red and tried to grab my son back – he was in his car chair and not yet in the car – I know this was to be kind STUPID of me and I completely regret my actions. Her boyfriend got involved and was grabbing, I think he had been drinking which would not have helped the matter. It was then agreed what time he would be coming back that day and we have arranged specific times going forward as she said she wanted to keep it civil for our sakes and more importantly our sons.
I received a message a few days later from a member of their family basically saying he does have another family not just mine and that they are on about going to court so gran/auntie etc can get access to him – again I have not said he cannot see them, there is just the trust issue that his mother wont conveniently turn up as there is a court order for access in place for a reason.
I got a knock on the door a few days ago(a week after last contact) and it was a policeman as he wanted to talk to me about the incident previously and that it had been raised to them but that the mother did not want to take it further. I had apparently when trying to get my son back grabbed the mother which If I did I was technically in the wrong and shouldn’t have and I appreciate it should come to this for access to a child. The policeman didn’t say this would affect anything and would not go on my record but would have to be noted down.
I’m pretty downbeat about things at the moment because it just feels like I’m trying to be caught out by their side and I don’t want to risk anything for the little man. Sorry for the ramble but I guess its sometimes better to put in front of people you aren’t going to see everyday or are always going to want to talk about it.

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Hello There.... 4 months 2 weeks ago #96649

Hi There,

It sounds as though you have SS on your side which is always a good start, it does sound as though your ex is a little difficult and difficult to tie down to times ect,

you are right trying to take your child back when things got heated wasn't a good move, but that's done, you didn't get charged with anything so hopefully it won't cause issues.

I agree with not allowing your ex's side overnight If they haven't seen him for a long time then in my opinion that would be too much for him, and as you suggested may be a play date with you present would be the better option as you have suggested.

GTTS

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Hello There.... 4 months 2 weeks ago #96653

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Hi there

It's often easier to talk to people that aren't personally connected and other people's experiences can be a valuable insight.

I would be very careful in future, it's quite common for an ex and family to try and cause trouble and create situations that could be used against the other party. Stick to the order and try and make sure you have a third party with you if you have direct contact with them. Keep all written communications civil, but as long as you are acting by the letter of the order, you can't go far wrong.

The reply you got from her about Boxing Day, would be something that you can screenshot and ask to file with the court at some point, as it's shows her poor attitude and the fact that she doesn't have your child's best interests at heart. You were right not to rise to it.

Do they have a solicitor? Do you have a solicitor? As the boyfriend had been drinking, it might be a good idea to ask that he doesn't accompany her on contact anymore, as his presence is intimidating for you, as he got involved and caused an altercation.

I think you've had insight into what can go wrong, which should help you avoid it in the future.

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!

Hello There.... 4 months 2 weeks ago #96658

  • bmcn83
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Thanks you both for your feedback, I do have a solicitor I met with one as soon as SS advised that I should go for PR and then took it from there . I don't think that she has a solicitor or has ever spoken as when we had the final court date she only appeared by herself and SS had told me previously that they had advised her to seek legal advice when the whole thing started.
I do screenshot a lot of the messages that she sends me to cover my back as well, the next visit is this weekend so I'm going to see how that goes although I have had no contact since the previous visit to even check how he is.

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Hello There.... 4 months 2 weeks ago #96666

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You said initially that contact was to be supervised - what is the nature of this supervision? I would be inclined to consider that this should be at a contact centre, and that it might be worth going back to court to get the order varied. That way there are fixed hours, and it's a safe environment, and if either your ex or her partner have been drinking, then contact won't be allowed. It also means that it keeps them away from you, so it keeps you from any intimidation or conflict.

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