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Unfair contact?

(156 Posts)
bubblybottom Mon 14-Oct-13 23:19:17

I am very unhappy with the arrangements for contact with my boys(7&8) with their dad.
He works away from home(London, home is northwest)
He picks them up every Friday night and drops off on Sunday evening.
Why am I unhappy?? Because I hear about all the fantastic things they have done, been on a steam train, buried each other in sand on the beach, camped out in the garden etc etc. I never get to do any of that with them.
I cook, clean, sort out uniform, take to school, do homework, drop off and pick up from rugby, BB and karate and put to bed. And I love doing all that. It's my job.
I don't think its unreasonable tho to ask my ex for every other weekend. Or is it?
The boys I have to say are more than happy with the arrangement, however, it's been all that they have been used to for the last 2 yrs..
It's not my fault he works in london(he manages to get time off to to his house up as and when it suits)
I am nervous to ask him
A. He has the money for solicitors, I don't
B. He has no communication skills with me
What do I do?

DismemberedDwerf Mon 14-Oct-13 23:23:58

Could you suggest that you have at least one weekend a month with them? He would get a break and chance to go out and have fun on a non-work night and you would get a weekend for fun with your boys? I don't think it's an unreasonable request.

ScaryFucker Mon 14-Oct-13 23:24:06

Has this contact been officially sanctioned by someone other than him?

I doubt that as every weekend with him simply means he gets the fun stuff and you get the humdrum stuff

Not fair, on you and not fair on the kids

Unidentifiedflyingobject Mon 14-Oct-13 23:25:28

Agree with the one weekend a month being a reasonable request.

MulliganandOHare Mon 14-Oct-13 23:25:42

Could you suggest you take them away once a month? Ask the boys what they'd like to do with you, maybe with friends/ family? I don't think it sounds fair that you don't get that leisure time with them- for their sake as well as yours

MulliganandOHare Mon 14-Oct-13 23:26:10

X post!

ScaryFucker Mon 14-Oct-13 23:29:10

I don't agree. I think the weekends should be split down the middle

Op, how did it happen that you and boys live in NW and he works in London ?

YoureBeingADick Mon 14-Oct-13 23:31:31

I think he could cut down his work to four days a week every other week and collect them on Thursday evenings EOW and you have them the alternate weekends. that would be fairer than you having one weekend a month IMO.

Who on earth agreed this arrangement?

Of course you should have them every other weekend if not more.

Otherwise - just as you say - you miss out on the down'time with your sons at the weekend after doing all the tough stuff in the week. How on earth is that fair??

In fact I wonder if your boys will just grow up thinking that you dumped them at weekends and weren't interested in seeing them? You don't need to do all the fun fun fun blah blah stuff to give them a happy time! Watching a DVD together, letting them go off and meet their buddies from school, a bike ride together, bag of popcorn shared at the cinema, tickles,..

How old are they?

It sounds a soul-destroying arrangement for you the way it is.

sorry just saw that they are 7 and 8 - they'll want to hang out with their friends locally to where they live soon.

I wonder also, if they feel that they have to perform like monkeys when their dad is around forcing all that bloody annoying fun-time on them.

I trust he does their homework with them too.

perfectstorm Mon 14-Oct-13 23:43:44

It's not fair at all, precisely because you do all the work and he has all the quality time. That's why separated parents usually get every other weekend plus one weeknight. I don't think even one weekend a month is remotely fair. You're a joint parent, not a nanny.

You don't need to ask him. Just say that is the new arrangement because you never see them - you can offer an overnight midweek and he can see if he can arrange things to facilitate that. You say he gets time off quite flexibly so no reason why not.

A solicitor can't make you do anything, only a court can, and what you are asking for isn't unreasonable in the least. I would offer a midweek night every week, though, plus suggest he has them until Monday am and drops them off at school when he has them, if he can fix that with work, so he gets a longer weekend on his two. If work is flexible enough he can probably make up the time by working early/lates?

You never know, he might even want the odd weekend to himself. If he has a new partner she very probably will! But I would offer more midweek time to compensate.

nopanicandverylittleanxiety Mon 14-Oct-13 23:44:39

Alternate weekends sounds much fairer.

bubblybottom Mon 14-Oct-13 23:47:43

It was agreed through our solicitors when we split. It was just that, an agreement. He wanted them for half the school holidays(which doesn't happen). He was going to pay half of the extra curricular activities(which doesn't happen) and every weekend. I agreed to it because I thought they needed to see that I wasn't unreasonable. He isn't a bad man, but he did NOTHING with them when we were together
I am living very happily with my new partner and his 2 sons(one of whom is my youngests best mate at school, which is how we met) and also my daughter from a previous relationship
Me an ex are both from northwest. He just works in London.
Friday night comes and we all sit down to watch a movie, and my boys are picked up it's just awful. I dread weekends nowhmm

bubblybottom Mon 14-Oct-13 23:51:02

He doesn't do their homework with them as he is always too busy doing the good stuff.they get it on a Friday night and it has to be in on the following Wednesday.

BillyBanter Mon 14-Oct-13 23:52:14

If he can't do weekdays then relegating him to one weekend a fortnight doesn't sound at all fair. confused

I think one weekend a month is a reasonable request. Or every other weekend you get them back Sunday morning, maybe?

And that he uses some holiday to take them midweek, term time too?

bubblybottom Mon 14-Oct-13 23:53:17

He wouldn't be able to do an overnight midweek as it would be un feasible to travel from London to northwest I suppose. He even moans if the kids are invited to birthday parties etc at the weekend

BillyBanter Mon 14-Oct-13 23:53:50

xpost. sounds like you need a proper chat about a few things.

bubblybottom Tue 15-Oct-13 00:00:31

Unfortunately he is impossible to talk to. Everything would have to be by email. He doesn't reply to texts(in fact is such a miser that he turns his phone off at night to preserve the battery!)
My youngest sons consultant(possible ADHD) thinks that by my very fair and truly accurate description of his tendencies and actions, mannerisms etc, that he is very possibly aspergers
I don't know a great deal about it, only what I have read, but I think that she is right.
I have no idea what to email him that wouldn't be aggravating to him, and wouldnt make him then say stuff to the boys. He would believe that I am doing it to wind him up, and wonder why it had taken so long.
In actual fact, when we first split, it was nice for me and my daughter to have so much quality time together, but now that I have extended my family, I realise just how much I miss them.

redundantandbitter Tue 15-Oct-13 00:02:24

We went to mediation coz stupid DH didn't want to have his kids every Saturday while I worked coz he couldn't spend time with new fiancé. So several hundred pounds later.. my boss changed my shifts for me after seeing me in tears with frustration. I remember the mediator saying they often get dads saying they want every weekend but they see that as unfair to the remaining parent who has done all the running around in the week (wAshing /cooking etc) and that person doesn't reap the benefits at all. Surely one weekend at home in 3 would be reasonable?

bubblybottom Tue 15-Oct-13 00:05:51

Anything would be better than this!

perfectstorm Tue 15-Oct-13 00:32:10

Standard time with separated parents is every other week and one midweek. If he's moved away then he needs to work with that arrangement. If he isn't taking them in holidays, when he has his own time off, then he really is just taking them when it suits.

I'd ask for every other weekend. Be blunt about missing them terribly and suggest he starts taking his holiday entitlement with them to compensate?

One weekend a month is painfully little quality time with your own kids. If the OP works then she barely sees them - they're at school all day, and she's at work.

perfectstorm Tue 15-Oct-13 00:32:47

*every other weekend, sorry.

Lweji Tue 15-Oct-13 01:18:50

Who moved? Him or you?

And why did you agree to every weekend?
Why can't he have them just one day over every other weekend and a full every other weekend?

Personally, I'd consider changing the agreement. It's just an agreement, it's not enforceable unless it goes through a judge and he's not fulfilling his obligations under that agreement.

ScaryFucker Tue 15-Oct-13 06:21:57

Just change the arrangements

Let him threaten to take you to court (he won't, and if he did he wouldn't get this unfair situation enforced)

Stop being so passive. Does your partner back you up ?

Chubfuddler Tue 15-Oct-13 06:30:23

He needs to be doing some grunt work as well as sharing the weekends. As someone else said, you aren't a nanny.

We split the weekends - one week ex has them Friday and Saturday night, the following weekend he has them t during the day on Sunday. He washes their clothes, he supervises homework.

The arrangement you have it nuts. I'm amazed your solicitor recommended you agree to it. Or didn't they?

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