Four year old doesn't want to see his Daddy...(13 Posts)
Myself and ex have been separated for two and a half years. He has a porn addiction and was emotionally abusive towards me throughout our relationship. When we split up he decided to move over 2 hours away, which he now uses as an excuse to only see our four year old son once a month. He pays the minimum in maintenance only because I have threatened to take him to the CMS. He changed jobs recently and refuses to give me up-to-date financial information. He used to pay for half of his after school activities but unless I nag and whinge he won't do it.
When he does see him he does not have him over night. He will have him for Saturday 9am-5pm and the same on Sunday. Sometimes he will plan fun weekends, other times he will not and he will call me wanting to drop him off early. Frequently he has sat outside my house with our little boy in the car, giving him a dinner of sandwiches, waiting for me to return because there's 'nothing to do.' He never contacts our son in the periods between seeing him. He never asks how he is, how his nursery is going, literally nothing until the weekend he is due to see him.
He is meant to have him for a week every school holiday but isn't during the Easter as he has 'no annual leave' (he uses it to go out with friends and on holidays with his girlfriend). In a recent telephone conversation he said to me that he 'never wanted this financial responsibility, never wanted the responsibility of having a child, we were too young (mid-20's!)' Whenever I bring up my legitimate concerns he always says he has well-being concerns of his own (only saying this to be spiteful). I am honestly sick of him, his attitude but I am concerned about my four year olds behaviour. I always make an effort to compliment his dad and say how great he is, as that is what I believe to be in the best interest of my son.
Now: my son rarely mentions his name. Maybe once a week at best. Recently, when its brought up that he is seeing his daddy he expresses that he 'does not want to, he does not love his daddy.' When I probe him on why this is the case he says 'he wants to spent more time with mummy.' This is not the case of him being clingy to me. He never says this about his nanny, grandad, cousins, my partner. Only ever about his daddy. He also has said on numerous occasions that he doesn't want to go to his daddy's house, to the point of sobbing and throwing tantrums. I have had to bribe or coax him into going for the past few months. When I told him he was not going at Easter he was happy about it and seemed relieved.
His attitude is horrendous, and I cannot believe that four years on he is still intimating that our son is a financial and responsibility burden. I have no idea what to do in my son's best interest. I don't want to force him to see his daddy if he doesn't want to, but he is four so far too young to make such a decision. I have tried having so many conversations with his dad but it just falls on deaf ears. It is utterly shit and utterly pointless.
Does he have court ordered contact or is it just an agreement between the two of you? Because if he doesn't want to spend time with your son and your son doesn't want to spend time with him, my feeling is you're better off cutting contact altogether.
bridgetreilly It is just an agreement between us two. When I have asked him in the past if he wants to see our little boy, it comes across very much that he is seeing him out of an obligation. I don't see how you can have so little contact (one weekend a month, no telephone/skype/texting contact in between) and actually want to have a relationship. When I have mentioned cutting contact his response is 'you'd love that wouldn't you.' Everything revolves around his hatred and bitterness towards me.
I don't want my son to grow up resenting or blaming me for him not having a relationship with his dad, which is why I have let it continue for as long as I have.
Your poor son, with a sorry excuse for a father.
It doesn't sound like he adds any value to your son's life whatsoever.
Try to see if you can just let it peter out. Don't contact him to arrange anything, he sounds like he'd be happy to be absolved of the responsibility, but avoiding the pride and confrontation of the "you'd love me to stop seeing him wouldn't you" comments. Can you do without the maintenance? Maybe go through cms for that.
In your shoes I'd contact CMS, let them deal with the money side, and then let him organise the contact. Don't chase him.
Also when he does take him make sure he knows you won't be around for an early pick up or drop off. When my ex knew he couldn't bail early then mostly he just didn't bother at all. I think my bending to his whims kept him round longer and actually that didn't benefit my girls in the long run.
Poor little guy. It can’t be pleasant to be forced to see someone who treats you like a burden. I’d just avoid pushing for contact and let it fizzle out. Even if that means he stops paying maintenance too. He’s better off out of your son’s life.
Definitely go through CMS.
And don't organise anything or contact him first.
He will either disappear or use threats, perhaps mention SS and court orders etc, but the likelihood is, from the sound of it, that he would let it go eventually, if not straight away.
Why would your DS resent you for him not having a relationship with his father unless you actively block it? Also I don’t think you should lie & say his dad is great when he clearly isn’t. Admittedly your DS is very young but he’s only going to get older & I would be concerned that it’s not giving him a realistic expectation of what his father is actually like. And maybe even the subconscious message that if his dad abandons him (as seems more than likely) then it must be DS’s fault as his dad is a ‘great dad’.
I agree with PP who said go through CMS for maintenance & don’t chase contact.
Do you have any contact with the father’s family? If they are decent people you may want to keep that connection for your son.
Agree with above. Telling your son how great his dad is when he obviously doesnt think that is just going to confuse him, and might stop him opening up to you. He'll think he's "wrong" for feeling the way he does and won't want to hurt you if you seem to like him so much.
Don't ask for his work details, let Child Maintenance sort it through HMRC. Whatever your issues are with him are and should be separate to your DC seeing his dad.
I am going to go through CMS for the maintenance. It is his scheduled weekend coming up, I will tell him I am going to contact CMS and go through them as it's fairer for everyone.
I am not going to actively pursue contact anymore. I am fed up of texting and getting no response for days/weeks. He has now suggested he has our son for the Easter weekend but I've already made plans which he is now questioning and arguing with me over.
I am also concerned that this wishy-washy contact is damaging, it's a difficult situation to know what to do. I know that only seeing him once a month and never hearing from him in-between those times is not good for my son. When my son says he doesn't love his daddy, I will counter it with things like 'oh that's not very nice, poor daddy.' And when he says he doesn't want to see him I will say, 'but I thought you had lots of fun with daddy.' I try my upmost not to let my own feelings towards the situation effect him.
Shelby2010 His father's family as as bad as him, if not worse. They have said some awful, vile things to me and about my son. Despite this I still facilitate a relationship with them and I have told them my concerns in the past. They defend their son's actions and also blame me for giving their son a 'responsibility' he never wanted. That is a pointless route for me to pursue too.
ScarletBitch My issues are separate, hence why I have never stopped or prevented him from seeing his dad. I also go out of my way to compliment his dad so if anything I am going above and beyond what most people on this thread think.
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