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to say DD should be able to attend parties/activities during fathers contact time?

(137 Posts)
alisunshine29 Thu 07-Mar-13 21:25:50

DD is 5.5 years old, her father and I have been separated for over 3.5 years and he sees her once per fortnight only through his own choice. Up until now, if DD had a party to attend or dance show/gymnastics competition etc to take part in which fell on her dads contact weekend then I'd swap contact weekends so DD could attend/take part - he refuses to take her to any parties or activities but she also doesn't want him to. However, now DD is getting older I no longer attend parties with her like I used to so am missing out on time with her there. She's good at/enjoys dance, gymnastics and swimming and now she's older has competitions and shows to take part in. I have no problem in ferrying her to/from these if her dad won't but AIBU to say I will not replace contact missed due to parties/activities?
For example, next month it's her dance schools annual shows. One weekend there is a dress rehearsal (dads weekend so he'll expect me to replace the day though I won't see her all day) the next weekend (mine) there are 5 shows which I'll take her to/from but will barely see her. The following week there are 3 shows so he'll expect another day to be replaced thereby not leaving DD any weekend time with her sister and I for an entire month.

alwayslate, I totally and utterly agree.

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 10-Mar-13 22:59:37

Actually a child being carried kicking and screaming into a car would be considered to be abusive and a valid sign of distress.

alisunshine29 Sun 10-Mar-13 23:13:34

I can't repair the relationship - it's for him to make an effort. I encourage and facilitate contact, never badmouth him and remain positive and optimistic. It isn't considered abuse. The general consensus by Judges is that contact is as necessary as school. Would it be abuse if I sent her to school kicking and screaming? No, we'd both have no choice as we have no choice in this situation.

Enfyshedd Sun 10-Mar-13 23:38:42

ali, I think you should try to speak to someone from CAFCASS or possibly SS? Your DD having to be carried kicking & screaming to have contact with her father is concerning.

Viviennemary Sun 10-Mar-13 23:48:26

I thinhk you are being unreasonable. Surely it's not for you to decide what activities your DD does during contact times with your ex. I think any contact time lost should be replaced. If she doesn't want to go to the parties and activities I can't see how he can be blamed for not taking her. It's a pity you can't both work this out amicably.

alisunshine29 Mon 11-Mar-13 00:05:16

She does want to go to parties etc.
I have had plenty of legal advice - I wouldn't be letting it. Continue if I didn't have to. So Longas DD is 'surviving satisfactorily' then contact will continue for many years yet.

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 11-Mar-13 00:15:13

Alis when one of my children was doing that every time going to contact cafcass wrote a report describing forcing him as abusive and the contact order was lifted he was almost 6 at the time,So yes it is considered abusive.

Also if it was happening on arrival at school regularly there are several steps that should be undertaken by the parents and school together to reduce anxiety for the child. Its not something that's normal it's not something that should be ignored.

Child contact it about the rights of the child not the adults and should only happen when it is not damaging to the child.

What does her dad do when she's screaming like that? I know when it happened with us my ex was distraught.

alwayslateforwork Mon 11-Mar-13 01:03:33

Right, but if she was kicking and screaming and fighting about going to school, my bet is that you would be working with school wholeheartedly as a team so that you could remove the stress and unpleasantness, and get her to go willingly.

Not saying 'bollocks, it's up to school to fix it, not me. My only job is to get her there.'

You'd be having meetings with the teacher, the HT, the senco, the paediatrician, and if necessary, CAMHS.

You wouldn't be folding your arms and saying 'well, I've done my bit.' Particularly as, well, school would have to continue for many years yet, eh? You'd be wanting to remove the unpleasantness by making dd want to go to school. Easier all round, for you, for dd, and for the school.

However much she didn't want to go. (And sure, taking this to the logical conclusion, you could choose to home ed. but you'd still have to make sure you toed the legal line. Which would mean giving up work to be with her etc.)

Shoesme Mon 11-Mar-13 13:59:53

So now because people are disagreeing with you, you drop in the fact that he sometimes has to carry her kicking and screaming to the car, sheesh.

longtallgirl Mon 11-Mar-13 14:49:39

YANBU. It seems that thhis 'father' is concerned only with his rights not his responsibilities. She is not a toy to pick up and play with at his convenience.

Once again I think Alwayslate is right.

Is there a contact centre or something or a third party that can do the hand over so it is less distressing to your daughter?

sherazade Mon 11-Mar-13 20:02:00

is she upset about being with him, or about being away from you?
Two very different things.

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