If your xp/xh chose to move a significant distance away whos responsibility to transport dcs for contact?

(26 Posts)

Split with xp 3yrs ago - primarily as a result of his actions (by hid own admission).

Until now he has remained local. Sees dcs most days for a short period. Has them overnight for 3 nights per fortnight.

Next week he is moving away a 90min + journey.
In the short term he will continue to work here and commute so him taking the burden for the travel every other weekend shouldn't be a problem. Long term hasn't been discussed.

If you have been in a similar situation how has the travelling worked logistically?

I obviously don't want to and won't stop them seeing their dad, but given that I was put in a position of being a single parent that I didn't choose; and now through no choice of my own am being put in a position where xp lives a fair distance away I'm not sure that I should be responsible for driving for 3hrs jyst to drop off or collect dc. I don't even particularly want to dtive half way. It's a horrible largely single carriageway hgv route.

As I say there is no conflict at the mo. I'm just trying to get a picture of scenarios that other people make work for them.

NotBrittaPieHonest Thu 06-Feb-14 01:22:39

The one that moves away. When I left XH (because of his behaviour, but that's by the by) we had planned to move a long way and I did the move anyway. Luckily so did he, but if he hadn't then I would have had to ensure he still saw them.

Monetbyhimself Thu 06-Feb-14 07:56:22

Ex chose to move. He does all the travelling.

cathpip Thu 06-Feb-14 08:04:56

My dh moved away from his ex, he does all the driving on visits and now that dss is old enough for the train he pays for that as well. The only time dh's ex drove was the weekend we got married, which was incredibly kind of her. If your ex chooses to live far away either through choice or work, then it is up to them to sort out transport.

teaandthorazine Thu 06-Feb-14 08:18:09

His move, his choice, his responsibility.

Often not that straightforward though <voice of bitter experience>

grumpydwarf Thu 06-Feb-14 08:22:52

My df's ex moved three hours away without telling him (and against a court order) and refused to do the travelling. He went back to court and she now has to do half the travelling.

My exh is moving 1.5 hours away and I'm not doing any of the travelling . I think it should be the person who moves does the travelling but bitter experience also tells me that it doesn't always work out like that!

See I believe it shouldbe him.

And I expect that will be taken on board without question in the short term.

And I hope in the longer term too.

But I was just checking that IANBU in my expectations.

lostdad Thu 06-Feb-14 09:19:31

It is both of your responsibilities.

It is in the best interests of your DC to have a good and meaningful relationship with both parents and as their parents you should work together to ensure this happens.

My personal opinion is that the person doing the moving should do the travelling but if he refuses what are you going to do? Tell your kids `You're not going to see your dad because he moved away and I don't see why I should have to do the travelling?'

It could be argued that he isn't acting in their best interests in moving. If he does and you do this it could be argued that you are not acting in their best interests either. Forget what is fair for you. And fair for your ex. What is fair for your DC?

In my case my ex moved my son 300 miles from his home during the court case. She categorically refused to do any travelling. So I moved 300 miles too and live 20 miles down the road.

If you were still with your ex and he was a selfish idiot you would probably argue with him about it and then come to a decision that meant your DC didn't lose out. Do they have to lose out now?

Frogbyanothername Thu 06-Feb-14 09:38:27

I think his reasons for moving are relevant too - if he's moving because its the only way he'll stay in employment (and therefore the only way he can continue to financially support your DCs), or to take on caring responsibilities for relatives, for instance, then I think it's reasonable to discuss various options with him and be flexible - because if he's moving for those reasons, then that makes him a responsible person and good role model for your DCs. - someone you want them to have in thir life.

If he's moving purely as a lifestyle choice, then (presumably) he has already factored in the implications/cost of his move on contact for the DCs - if he hasn't, then he's not a particularly committed parent.

Lonecatwithkitten Thu 06-Feb-14 09:48:33

My legal advice was I should offer to do 50% to show that I appreciated the relationship was important,

lostdad Thu 06-Feb-14 10:22:01

That's a reasonable compromise - bear in mind however that there is no way of dividing up travel from a legal standpoint. Although this sort of thing does find itself into court orders if people can't make arrangements between themselves.

MaryPoppinsCarpetBag Thu 06-Feb-14 10:27:21

I was told to ask for and expect 50/50.

I totally get that whatever happens the DC shouldn't lose out as a result. And they won't.

The DCs are already losing out by not being able to see him daily.

He is moving in with his new girlfriend. So purely choice IMO. Can't see any other motivating factors, although he will be closer to other family members in the process.

overthemill Thu 06-Feb-14 12:54:38

This happened to us and we took legal advice. We're told that if you have joint custody then it's joint responsibility and court could force you to literally hand over child in layby half way. We moved to be near where DH ex p moved to. Until we did move, kids handed over at house on weekends but church car park half way on school days (at 7.30 am). It was total crap.

Monetbyhimself Thu 06-Feb-14 14:22:00

I have a residency order and Ex was told that as he had no significant reasons for moving the distance that he did (other than the vair posh postcode) then the travelling was his issue to resolve.

summermovedon Thu 06-Feb-14 15:04:53

My ex upped and moved 1.5 hours away from us and left us without support, because he decided he didn't like the monotony of family life. I had no choice but to move nearer my family (further from him again) so I could work and feed my children with their support for emergency childcare and frankly company. I was in a rented expensive house after having been moved regularly round the south/east and abroad with young children, with no way to pay for it and few friends or connection to the area, and he was no where near either.

So I don't do the travelling. He has tried to blackmail me into it, but I won't and was strongly advised by my lawyer not to.

But, I do 99.9% of the hard work. I am the only one financially responsible for the children (he does pay CSA when he works but it has not been reliable). I am responsible for everything as he chose to opt out so he can sleep late and go on holidays and not have to raise children.

I work full time and look after young children at all other times. I get tops 10 days 'off' a year, but he will not commit to these until the absolute last minute (literally, I don't know if he is dropping the children back on a particularly day until he gets into the car and tells me he is now leaving) so I can't even make plans. I pay 100% of childcare, food, clothes everything. And I do not feel bad about making him get in a car and drive to see his children. In fact I think if a court made me, I would have a breakdown on the spot, I am tired enough because I am a single parent (not by choice) with little children that wake up at night with bad dreams, who become ill and have earache/vomit all over their beds with noro, who need attention and love and someone to sit down and do maths homework with them. Their dad has never ever done one bit of homework with them, even when he lived with us.

p.s. he took the family car too, enormous shiny motorway-easy one.

Also, he knew we were moving and told me he would look for work nearer us, and decided not to, as a relationship with his children was not his priority in life. When he left he announced I was now responsible for bringing them up, so he could do important things like write and read and go to the pub.

I agree with you, summer.

I am about to move 2.5 hrs drive away from my STBX with my 3 dcs as I need the family support that the move will provide.

I am not expecting STBX to actually care enough to make any effort to see the dcs once we move, because like you he never did anything when he lived with us. But if he did suddenly want to play happy families I would expect him to travel. Because like you since he left I have done 99.9% of the child raising. If he offered to do more parenting, I would (once I had picked myself off the floor) offer to share the travelling. But it ain't gonna happen.

summermovedon Thu 06-Feb-14 19:42:32

Freaky- do you know I agree with you, if over the past 2 years my xh had actually shown any interest or put effort in seeing his children I would have offered some of the travel too to help build their relationship. I am just so angry that he can nearly completely opt out, his family support that and so do most of his friends.

My favourite is how he tells me it is too expensive to visit/too tiring for him to drive for a couple of hours along a motorway to see his children, and then he jets off abroad that same weekend, paying business class for a mini break. Priorities.

mrsravelstein Thu 06-Feb-14 19:46:24

exh and i both moved 50 mins away (in opposite directions) from our joint home. he did most of the travelling. then i remarried and had more children and so did he, so now we meet in the middle and exchange in a car park. it's a pita but the only fair solution really, and in our case it's only every other weekend at most.

Fairylea Thu 06-Feb-14 19:54:31

I moved away (200 miles away). Dh was an utter arse who hardly had any contact with dd anyway. I was the one who left him when she was 7 months old. I did however move near his mum and dad who I knew would want to see dd and I knew he could have contact there with her. So I didn't just randomly move 200 miles away.

When he started regular contact he had dd at his mum and dads every other weekend,for which they did half the journey and I did the other - ie they'd pick her up and I'd bring her back (ex dh didn't drive and no trains as rural).

Ex dp then moved another 100 miles away in the other direction and then two years ago he moved to the USA !! So now he has dd now aged 11 for half the summer and he flys here to get her and flys her back.

We have had our fair share of arguments about the travel. I think it depends on the how's and whys of What happened when you split up.

I've asked a solicitor about it and basically there is no suggested right way of doing it and if it went to a court they would keep to whatever the existing arrangements had been prior to the court date.

It so is about priories, summer. My STBX first moved 10 miles away and by the third weekend came out with "it's not worth me driving all that way to see the dcs." He's since moved again, about 30 mins drive, but hasn't come to see them for over 2 weeks now. Why? He had annual leave and needed a "proper break" (diddums) so went to Scotland on holiday. Which, without wishing to reveal my exact location, is a damn sight further than 30 mins drive.

That's why I know any complaints he makes about me moving with the dcs 2.5 hrs away is all blather. If he won't come when we're relatively close by he isn't going to bother when we're far away. We are just a nuisance to him and get in the way of his Very Important Job and Very Important Quiet Time To Himself. Well, he can have time to himself in spades, as far as I am concerned. Because when I am old I will have family who know I worked my damndest for them. And he won't.

ItsRainingOutside Mon 10-Feb-14 10:48:58

My exP moved overseas through choice then took me to court as part of a contact issue asking for me to pay the total cost of sending DD to him in the summer. Needless to say it didn't get him anywhere. He now wants DD to travel unaccompanied on a flight to visit him meaning I have to make all the arrangements, get her to the airport - 5 hour round trip, buy anything she needs to take with her, give her some pocket money etc. When she looked forward to seeing him, I did all that for her as thought it was in her best interests but now her feelings have changed, I'm not going to put myself out for him. However, unless your other life commitments mean it is impossible for you to make a 90 minute car journey every week, then how about compromising and doing the trip for example in the school holidays or once a month? Your DC will make their own mind up about contact when they're older.

STIDW Mon 10-Feb-14 16:17:21

As far as courts are concerned each case depends on the particular facts - which parent moved a distance away, motivations, finances, obligations and above all practicalities are considered.

Sharing responsibility is good but it's unlikely though that a parent with the majority of care would be expected to do half of the travelling if the non resident parent claimed a reduction in child maintenance through the CSA/CMS to assist with the expenses of travelling, the costs of travelling would leave the parent with the majority of care struggling financially so as the children suffered undue hardship and the other parent had a reasonable income, or a parent with the majority of care had the main responsibility for very young children from a second family and it was impractical for them to drive distances with the children in tow etc.

cecilykeirawhit Sat 08-Mar-14 06:47:25

For quite number of months now I'd been responsible for getting DC to see the other parent
he was so "kind" to agree meet a half way
I'm the one who had to move due to his "lovely behavior"

Unfortunately because of circumstances I wasn't really able to continue meeting agreement

So there you go again
I've been accused of blackmailing him just because I've ask for some my money back he had " borrow from me"
being vicious jealous think who can not stand seeing his child being happy with daddy even though I'd offer that he can pick up child from different place I'm able to get!

But no he is the poor one perfect wonderful person and obviously I'm the baddy one
He'd taken me for a "ride" in big style for so many years
He threats me like mug esspecialy now
but oh I'm the vicious one
Poor daddy now it will be propobly I'm denying him contact while obviously I'm not
yesterday I'd finally understand how calculated he is, acting like real victim it truelly make sick

Russianfudge Sat 08-Mar-14 09:14:53

Hmm... Tricky one. I can see why you'd be loath to be the one doing the driving when it was his choice but if you are keen to put the children first you don't want to give them the "if your dad wants to see you it's his job to get here" message.

We had this with my DHs ex (although we only moved about a 20 minute drive away) it was a massive factor to the alienation he experienced as a father to his dd and even though she now comes for contact again she is hugely entitled and unreasonable when it comes to getting here. She is a much older teen now and could quite easily walk/ bus/ train the journey sometimes which he is happy to pay for but she spouts the exact same thing - if you want me, you get me.

It's horrible. Not to say that would happen in your case and it is part of a much bigger picture but I do think it's healthy if mum and dad both take responsibility for contact.

I don't see the dual carriageway as an issue. If it was somewhere you wanted to go presumably you wouldn't mind the journey?

A lot depends on costs, working arrangements etc too.

I've been quite fortunate in that my dd goes to school near my house and handover is always either before or after school so by chance, my ex does all the driving. Could you arrange say, 3 in 4 contacts to be from school, and you drive the other one?

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