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communicating with ex re our DC

(40 Posts)
hopefulthingswillchange Fri 01-Mar-13 21:55:00

how do you manage communication with your ex? I am finding communicating with my ex re contact almost impossible and want some tips on how to stop her constant texts re contact (when she doesn't get her own way) intruding into my personal life. I do try to keep texts as impersonal and brief and factual as possible but she doesn't. I feel like I'm being harassed. I have a court order but am mindful of putting DCs best interests first which i do by agreeing to swap days (never reciprocated) and taking them home early when they have an event to attend (contact which is never made up). The trouble is I don't always agree to what my ex wants and when i don't she just won't let up on texting me. Any help welcomed!

cestlavielife Fri 01-Mar-13 22:16:06

Keep a separate payg phone for her to text you on. Or get anew number for yourself and keep the old just for her.

perfectstorm Fri 01-Mar-13 22:19:55

I agree. A new phone number for the main account if poss., and then a separate phone for her. And only check it once a day unless it's a contact day.

You could also politely suggest all arrangements are made via email from now on as you don't always want to have your phone on midweek. That way you also have a better record.

I'm admiring that you are so focused on what's best for the kids. It must be tough, so remembering the people caught up in this through no fault of their own is really admirable.

TisILeclerc Sat 02-Mar-13 07:08:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

VBisme Sat 02-Mar-13 07:34:23

I second the comments about having a separate phone. DH changed his number twice when his ex was being particularly nasty.
Then she only had the option of e-mails and that worked fine for 18 months. She had DHs parents number and my number in case of emergencies, but wouldn't send the same nastiness to any of us.
Good luck, it's been 7 years since DHs ex left him for a younger bloke, and she's still being difficult with contact when things aren't going well in her life. We just keep maintaining contact for the kids sake and doing what we can when they're with us.

hopefulthingswillchange Sat 02-Mar-13 08:30:33

thanks for the comments and tips. Seems a second phone is the way forward. Ex refuses to email anymore as previous emails have been used in court as evidence . I shall have to learn to back my phone too!
Its been a really rough ride and from what I read on here seems I've got a long way to go. Friends who have been through it and now have older children than I tell me that it will in the end work out, the DC will know I was there for them and they will appreciate the effort and hard work i had to put in to maintain contact but its so hard at times.

Walkacrossthesand Sat 02-Mar-13 08:41:27

Practical question - when DCs have an event to attend, why do you have to take them home early? Why not just take them yourself? That's the way it worked with my ex & I - we would both attend shows, performances etc, but the parent they were with that evening/weekend was the one who took them.

hopefulthingswillchange Sat 02-Mar-13 17:09:31

its due to when my contact time ends (no over nights yet) , and often they are family events on my ex's side- so i'm not welcome . I am still going through the court process though and hope to have longer contact within next few months so what you do sounds like a good idea.

MadameOvary Sat 02-Mar-13 20:42:41

It's always good to be flexible about family events as that shows you are putting the DCs first and I guess that the same applies to family things on your side.
If she has blocked your emails is it because of anything that you may have done? It sounds as though you may have caused some hurt?
Also if you are the NRP parent, it is worth thinking about whether she is having to juggle lots of priorities to do with kids/work/family events.
A contact book is often a solution the courts come up with as it means something is written down and there is less opportunity for texting back and forth.
How about mediation to set some ground rules that you both work out and then it's something you can b"It's always good to be flexible about family events as that shows you are putting the DCs first and I guess that the same applies to family things on your side.
If she has blocked your emails is it because of anything that you may have done? It sounds as though you may have caused some hurt?
Also if you are the NRP parent, it is worth thinking about whether she is having to juggle lots of priorities to do with kids/work/family events.
A contact book is often a solution the courts come up with as it means something is written down and there is less opportunity for texting back and forth.
How about mediation to set some ground rules that you both work out and then it's something you can both make work for you?

MadameOvary Sat 02-Mar-13 20:47:41

Apologies for the multiple posts. Posting on phone.

hopefulthingswillchange Sat 02-Mar-13 21:11:10

Ex refuses to email anymore as previous emails have been used in court as evidence . Ideally she wants no written evidence at all . I am flexible, sadly whenever I ask for any change to contact it is turned down- without fail .I will follow posters advice and get another phone. Mediation failed.

It sounds as though there are some major problems with your ex - have her previous emails been unreasonable/threatening or something? She doesn't get to choose that there is 'no written evidence', because it's not remotely unreasonable to ask for contact between you to be email only, and if she won't co-operate, the court will percieve her as the unreasonable one and she will be penalised. SHe can also be banned from harassing you with continuous texting. I suggest talking to a solicitor.

hopefulthingswillchange Sat 02-Mar-13 21:35:09

i don't want to out myself so can't say much but thanks solidgoldbrass .

betterthanever Sat 02-Mar-13 21:47:19

It's really difficult when someone will not communicate reasonably and from my experience they enjoy the disruption and are totally aware of what they are doing.
You say you have a court order and whilst you are trying to meet your children's needs by being flexible the other side is not and to keep things stable for the children that flexibility may have to end from your side if it is one sided.
The communication needs to kept to a minimum - is there anything in the court order about that? It seems as if your flexibility is enabling her to contact you more frequently and harass and control you?
It's difficult to think of solutions without knowing the circumstances before the split i.e. who took who to what but if they are always her `family events' then I am sorry but your family time counts too whatever it is that you are doing - I am sure we could al think up `family events' we wanted our children to be at but if the care is shared no matter in what ratio they will miss some from both sides. The frequency of the flexibility could be looked at and whilst you may be ok to change arrangements a few (three/four?) times a year if it is once a month or more then you need to not. Sorry that is probably not much advice.

Also - I have no idea of your backstory and it's none of my business - even if you had an affair this does not mean she has the right to behave like a twat and punish you indefinitely.
And before everyone piles in: if it were to be the case that she hates the OP because the OP was abusive, then surely she would prefer communication to be via email, as that would provide a clear record of her own reasonableness and the OP's abusiveness. Someone who is trying to avoid anything being recorded or put in writing is usually someone who is up to no good.

garlicbrain Sun 03-Mar-13 00:58:15

Welcome smile Perhaps I'm being thick, but your posts make the situation extremely unclear to me. There seem to be many issues in a few short statements confused

how to stop her constant texts re contact (when she doesn't get her own way) intruding into my personal life?

What do you mean by "intruding into your personal life"? Is she swamping you with texts while you're engaging with a new relationship? Do you think she's trying to stop you building a new love life? It's hard to see how anyone could text constantly about DC contact but perhaps you will clarify.

I appreciate that you feel your ex harasses you by text when she doesn't get her own way over contact - and I'd appreciate an idea of what 'constantly' represents - but it's not really uncommon for divorcing parents to argue about the details of contact. Does "when she doesn't get her own way" mean "when I don't get my own way"? That would, I'm afraid, be perfectly normal. How unreasonable is she being? What are your negotiation skills like; which of you is unwilling to compromise?

I am most confused by your statements about emails being used as evidence! Who exactly is scared of emails being used as evidence, and of what?? Please can you clarify?

I'm sorry there are so many questions here. You seem to be saying remarkably little in a very biased fashion ... I realise this happens when people are feeling threatened as well as when they're trying to avoid being straight, so hope you'll be able to explain a bit more. Hope your weekend's turning out okay.

.. it can be frustrating can't it, when you feel you're getting a raw deal. I'm setting a caveat here that I'm the PWR and have an incredible difficult relationship with my abusive exh.

I have lots of communication problems with my exh...he doesn't like to do it. I personally feel he should be involved in discussions about our DS because otherwise, he stands in court and claims parental alienation. Having said that I'm not prepared to just accept whatever random suggestions he makes - at which point I'm blocking him from having an opinion...so I can't win either. My ex is incredibly unreasonable though and has demonstrated his lack of willingness to change time and time again in the court and by refusing to participate in mediation.

To be fair I have to keep evidence because when he does change his mind and proves inconsistent we have to back to court and time and time again and he has lied and lied and lied (his legal team actually stood down halfway through one hearing because they discovered he was lying and lying and lying...)

I'm not sure I've been very helpful to you there, but you have a long way to go in this relationship because God Willing your DC will be around for a very long life. If you could clarify what is exactly is you want from you ex and communicate it clearly you might stand a better chance of making that relationship work, because like it or not you are stuck in a relationship with the mother of your DC and it doesn't at the moment sound like you know what you want...You can't blame her for not complying with how you want to do things if you're not communicating effectively. Maybe you could be the bigger person and be responsible for actually getting this sorted. Imagine how much of a role model you could be to your DC by doing that.

hopefulthingswillchange Sun 03-Mar-13 09:42:49

i appreciate everyone's thoughts and comments but cannot say too much and this will be my last post on this thread. I am happy to get a second phone and will try that first. Ex's previous emails were used to expose her lies and inconsistency to the court- they were part of the reason I have any sort of contact at the moment as ex wanted me to have none . I have no wish to bad mouth my ex, simply want to get on with my life and communicate more effectively for both our sakes , and for sakes of DC. I am seeing a solicitor again though.

Fleecyslippers Sun 03-Mar-13 11:12:26

Why don't you have overnight contact with your children ?

NettleTea Sun 03-Mar-13 14:41:25

You dont seem very willing to answer any of the questions put to you which doesnt really speak well of being good at communication and as soon as people have suggested that there may be two sides to the story you are withdrawing from the thread........

I would also be interested to hear about 'not getting her own way' constitutes? - I had a friend who's ex used to suddenly change details about returning the children once he had them and he would suggest she was trying to be controlling whereas actually it was him who was refusing to bring the children home at the previously agreed time. Or refused to contemplate taking the child to school friend's birthday parties if they fell on 'his' day - thereby not really putting the child's needs or wants above his own.

I obviously cant comment on your situation but things dont sound so great if it has got to the point where all contact is needing to be court ordered (although I am confused as to why you need to keep going back if you are already having regular contact - some people may think this suggests you are using the child/court to harrass) and for her to refuse email as texts I am sure could be used just as much as emails.

hopefulthingswillchange Sun 03-Mar-13 17:55:45

some of you are inferring things that simply aren't there. I have no need to defend myself and won't. I do not keep going back to court. The court process involves a series of interim orders until the final hearing- which we haven't reached. We tried mediation, it failed. Thank you but really last word from me. Thanks very much for those who gave a solid practical solution for me to try.

Fleecyslippers Sun 03-Mar-13 18:12:56

Awww Op 'Tilts head to one side' You are obviously one of those poor, innocent blameless dads who is just trying to move on with your life and be Mr Reasonable.
'eyes fill with tears' Your Ex is obviously a vindictive psycho who has told awful lies about you which had made the nasty judge stop overnight contact with your children.
'Pats Op reassuringly' And your nasty Ex is refusing to use emails as communication - I mean - anyone would think that maybe she doesn't want you to have her email address. For some bizarre reason.
'Shakes head sadly' And it must be SO hard for you when she insists on getting her own way when your way is clearly SO much better.

That more the sort of thing you were looking for OP ? hmm

trustissues75 Sun 03-Mar-13 18:16:38

I'm sorry you're dealing with this...I have the same with my exH except that he refuses to communicate and then uses this to try to make me look like I'm preventing him from seeing his child and from knowing thing about his child or by trying to force me to return to court for even the slightest thing such as needing to change call days because DC wants to do an activity that falls on that afternoon, which he knows is completely unreasonable. When you're dealing with a control freak like this who enjoys causing you as much upset as possible there's not a lot you can do really except ignore it as much as possible and just do your best with your child's best interest's in mind.

I had the suggestion of emails instead so you don't have your phone going off left right and centre but it's already been suggested. I do hope things improve for you...maybe with some time she'll calm down?

trustissues75 Sun 03-Mar-13 18:18:43

Why are some people the thinking automatically that because he's a man he must be the one who actually doing all the controlling and making the crazy behaviour? I understand there are plenty of men out there that do that, I have one for an ex..but there are plenty of women out there who are just as vindictive and nasty too...why not give him the benefit of the doubt?

TisILeclerc Sun 03-Mar-13 18:21:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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