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Protocol - using lawyers during mediation(3 Posts)
Just had yet another arsey conversation with my STBXH and am now left wondering whether he is right or wrong. We are about to start mediation (in about 10 days time, having only just agreed it), and have been separated since January.
This morning we had a face-to-face conversation, during which he once again claimed that I am preventing him from having a relationship with his children. This is not true - I am offering him frequent and flexible access, but because he wants to get 50-50 residency of the children post-divorce, he is refusing to see them AT ALL, claiming that what I am offering him is prejudicial to his case. I have pleaded with him to see them, to make arrangements, and he consistently refuses. Ostensibly he is still living here, although I suspect is shacking up with OW and is rarely at home.
I spoke to my lawyer about this and she has suggested that we write him a letter early next week stating my position - which is that I really do want him to see them but want to remain the primary carer of the children, as I have always been.
Stupidly this afternoon I told him that we would be writing to him next week and he has now said this is completely counter to the "rules" of mediation, and that no legal action should be taken during it. I didn't consider this to be legal action - it's just a letter setting out my position regarding this childcare issue before we start mediation. This morning he said he would front the money for my part of the mediation and has now withdrawn that offer. I have no income and even finding the money for mediation is going to be very tough - he is paying £5 per week maintenance towards his 2 children "because that's all I have to because I'm unemployed" - despite earning a high six figure salary prior to that.
Bah. I hate him.
If you are on a low income & claiming cretain benefits you should be entitled to help with mediation, but it might be through a Mediation Service rather than a solicitor.
if you put in writing what you are prepared to offer re access then if it later comes to court you will be shown to be reasonable. Access is deemed by the court to be for the childrens benefit and to encourage a positive relationship with the NRP (as I understand it)
I would keep offering access, make a note of when it is and when refused, but avoid face to face meetings at present, until you get to mediation. Access is one thing that is discussed.
Keep any communications to emails for evidence & take a step bak for your own peace of mind, it is a stressful time.
Thanks for your response. Sadly I can't avoid face-to-face contact because he hasn't moved out and refuses to let me know when he is coming back to the house so turns up out of the blue. He's all but moved in with somebody else (refuses to tell me where or who with) but won't move out entirely.
I'm keeping a diary of his movements in the house although should probably start marrying that up with my offers of access by text or email so it's all strung together.
It's just so impossible dealing with him, the stress of it all plus having to face questions from the DC daily about where he is and when he's coming back. Then each time I see him he adopts this bloody annoying voice and starts talking about Resolution's advice for what to tell the kids about separation, as though I'm causing the problem by refusing to let him see them - when as I tell him I'm having to think about what to say to them every bloody day of the week.
It's going to be a long battle ahead...
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