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To tell him to do one?

(44 Posts)
nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 15:36:19

My sons dad hasn't really been around for the last few years. Well 4 to be exact. He has in that time had another 2 kids from 2 other failed relationships and doesn't see those kids either. Almost 2 years ago (shortly after his 3rd child was born), he left the country to go travelling and hasn't stayed in contact with my son at all. No phone calls, no birthday cards, no nothing. Well now he's back in the UK and I think he wants to try and start contact with my son again. There was a few emails to me a few months ago about seeing my son when he came back but he was shady about if or when he was actually coming back. My question is, should I give him a chance to get to know our son again or tell him to do one? I kind of feel like he lost his right to be a parent when he swanned off to go travelling without even telling any of his kids. I had to find out from his mum who even he didn't tell until a week after he left! My son is...indifferent towards him.

ProudBadMum Sun 15-Jan-17 15:38:07

Let your son decide.

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 15:45:06

My son is only 8. He's interested to hear what he's been up to while travelling but no real interest in spending any time with him. But then he's basically a stranger to him. Their relationship might improve if they saw each other more but I don't know.

Sheilasfeels Sun 15-Jan-17 16:40:12

At 8 he is old enough to decide. As you say he's interested to hear about the travels, so perhaps just all meet up for lunch and a chat. You don't have to schedule regular visitation or anything, and it doesn't sound like your ex could keep to it. Leave it on a casual basis of as and when and prepare you son for his dad's flakiness.

Huppopapa Sun 15-Jan-17 17:11:42

You need to know more from the dad what he proposes. Stepping in and out of a child's life is a recipe for disaster. If he means to be part of the lad's furture he needs to a lot more than suggest 'hanging out' from time to time.
How frequently, for how long each time, until when, to do what, with a view to what, with what assistance - financial and otherwise - to you? These are all legItimate questions. If he's not prepared to answer any of them then he's not ready to meet his son again. And if he does answer, the answers may not be enough. A child needs commitment over time.
Good luck.

vj32 Sun 15-Jan-17 17:15:48

Only if he is prepared to commit to regular contact. If your son isn't bothered, then its far better to not know him at all than to have him regularly appear and then disappear without warning.

WhereYouLeftIt Sun 15-Jan-17 17:59:20

"Well now he's back in the UK and I think he wants to try and start contact with my son again. There was a few emails to me a few months ago about seeing my son when he came back but he was shady about if or when he was actually coming back."
Has he contacted you since those emails a few months ago? When he wouldn't say if/when he'd be back? Has he made contact now that he actually is back?

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 18:06:19

He hasn't made contact with me since he returned but this afternoon he video called my son really out of the blue. It's the first I knew he was even back in the country. Kind of weird given that they haven't spoken in several years. He didn't say much either apparently, just hello, wouldn't answer any questions about what he had been doing while travelling and didn't ask a single thing about how my son was doing. I wasn't present for the video chat though, just recalling what my son says.

00Salix00 Sun 15-Jan-17 19:04:05

Maybe travelling has given him some introspective epiphany and he wants to make a fresh start with his kids. Do you know if he's trying to see his other kids more too?
I'd see what your son wants to do, and perhaps cautiously allow a last chance.

VimFuego101 Sun 15-Jan-17 19:09:52

I wouldn't be allowing him to video call your son without you present - initially contact should go through you. If he's serious he will start paying child maintenance and agree to a regular contact schedule, starting small - phone calls or lunch with you present - and building up from there.

HermioneJeanGranger Sun 15-Jan-17 19:12:38

Has he been paying regular maintenance?

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 19:15:45

I have no idea if he's trying to see his other kids. But I doubt it, he's on very bad terms with his other 2 exes. He left his wife for her best friend, then left the best friend with a newborn to go travelling. So uh, probably avoiding them both for time being. Nah he's never paid any maintenance. He was self employed and fiddled his accounts. He's never paid for any of his kids. And I've given up trying. I think part of the reason he left the country was so his csa arrears would disappear. I wasn't too happy about the video call but can't do much about that now.

Pettywoman Sun 15-Jan-17 19:17:09

I'd be tempted to say no contact without regular maintenance. He should be paying towards his child and it will test his commitment to him. You shouldn't have to buy time with your children but then again you shouldn't flake off round the world whenever you fancy and ignore them either.

Having said that, if your lad really wants to see him fair enough, but it doesn't sound like he does.

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 19:18:03

And he wouldn't agree to any form of contact where I am present. He's always kept it separate. When he used to see our son, it was always his ex wife who picked up and dropped him off. I never saw him. Then when he left her, his mum did it all.

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 19:22:40

If I turned round to him and said no contact until he pays up, he would just use that as an excuse to blame me him not seeing our son. Regardless of the fact he abandoned him to go travelling, it would be my fault for stopping contact. So I can't do that. I've accepted he will never financially support him

mum2Bomg Sun 15-Jan-17 19:58:58

Difficult one but I'll add my view in the hope it will help. My Dad moved to Spain when I was four and then I saw him intermittently until I was 16 (probably about 8 times in all those years). When I was 16 I visited him in Spain. He was difficult and hard work but I'm glad I had the chance to get to know him. I think your son may feel the same so it's not true (for me at least) that him being flakey meant I was 'better off' not having any kind of contact.

mum2Bomg Sun 15-Jan-17 20:00:00

Oh and he never paid a penny in maintenance and moved his money to Jersey so the CSA couldn't make him pay.

WhereYouLeftIt Sun 15-Jan-17 20:40:32

"And he wouldn't agree to any form of contact where I am present."
Then he can go swivel. He's essentially a stranger, having fucked off when your boy was 4. If he wants to get to know his son then it takes place under supervision, until you can be sure your son is comfortable with him.

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 20:55:59

He goes to stay with his bio grandmother during half terms (we have stayed in touch, can't punish her for her sons shortcomings!). So I expect he will drop round when our son stays there. He did do that once, a few months before he left the country (didn't bother with regular contact or anything) and my son was a bit weirded out by it, he said he just wanted him to go away so he could play with his cousins. I have asked him tonight if he wants to see his dad now that he's back and he said yes, but he doesn't want to stay with him or anything. I think he's curious to find out more about him which is fair enough. I think I would too, lots of unanswered questions and he's a smart cookie for an 8 year old!

WhereYouLeftIt Sun 15-Jan-17 20:57:31

How much do you trust her?

Ethylred Sun 15-Jan-17 20:59:31

He's a complete loser. Why did you ever have anything to do with him? E.g., have a child together?

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 21:09:46

How much do I trust his bio nan?

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 21:12:04

Lol yes he is a complete loser! But I was young and stupid when I met him. First ever bf and unplanned pregnancy.

Ethylred Sun 15-Jan-17 21:16:58

Lol? How old are you? Six? My question was serious. And "it was unplanned" is not an answer to be proud of.

nicetoseeyoutoseeyounice Sun 15-Jan-17 21:30:24

Ok. Thanks for your input. Most helpful hmm

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