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to want to emigrate with DH and DD for a better life....but dd's biological father is here.

(52 Posts)
KarisTiasMum Fri 03-Oct-08 13:46:10

I dont want to bring my daughter up in this country any more, like many people i am becoming increasingly worried and dissatisfied with what our future holds here, politics, terrorism, finanical crisis, hige rise in anti-social behaviour etc.. i could go on!..

we have the opportunity to emigrate to Australia. DH's twin sister is already there plus with DH's qualifications and work plus a financial lump sum we are due, we will be in the perfect position to go in the next year or so.

DD's father does see her on a fairly regular basis, although his imput is not exactly enthusiastic.. he just sticks to him times, nothing extra, no taking days off to see her, no holidays, she isnt his priority if he has something else on etc...

Im not naive enough to think Australia is without its problems, but i do know they are nowhere near at the levels which we have here.

I just cannot justify giving up this opportunity of a better life for all of us, because of a half hearted input from her dad.
I would like to hear what people think and how you think i can approach the subject when we need to.

rookiemater Fri 03-Oct-08 13:50:41

It's a hard decision to make. We would love to emigrate to NZ. Some of our friends and relatives are there and as DH is an IT contractor I think work wise it would be fine. However DS is the only grandchild and I am an only child so we couldn't do it to my parents, even if it all goes belly up here as we both work in the financial sector.

What age is your daughter ? Does she enjoy spending time with her father ?

beansmum Fri 03-Oct-08 13:52:30

It's a tricky one. I'm moving to NZ next year with ds, but he has never had any contact with his father, I don't even know where he is.

How old is your dd? would she be able to fly back and stay with her dad for long holidays or would he be able/willing to visit you?

jellybeans Fri 03-Oct-08 13:52:36

I wouldn't do it as I would not take DC away from their dad (and maybe extended family). I also think (and have heard from lots of people who tried) that the grass isn't greener in OZ/anywhere else. I do have sympathy but how would you feel if your ex wanted to take DD on the other side of the world or if your DD wants to live with her dad in the future? Perhaps bring up the subject with your ex and see how he feels, eg is he able to visit or keep in touch somehow with DD. Does he object? Has he any legal rights to stop you? (he may have, I have no idea).

HonoriaGlossop Fri 03-Oct-08 13:54:31

Have you asked your daughter what she thinks?

I think you need to talk to her and your ex and use that to inform your decision really.

It is possible they might be ok with it all. Or equally possible they might not be/might have opposite views but you need to know.

On the principle of it though - I would go really, really carefully with this. His involvement might seem half hearted to you but your dd might feel very differently about it. Husbands can come and go grin but you only get one real dad and it's a profound decision

You know that of course otherwise you would not be posting about this

KarisTiasMum Fri 03-Oct-08 14:06:22

No i am not sure about the legal side either.. i really need to look into this should we decide to go.

DD is 3, i think she does enjoy spending time with her dad but I can honestly say he does not have much to offer her. We were very young when we had her and it seems I have gone one way with parenthood, and he seems to have gone the other. Still living with his parents, absolutely no alone time together etc.

I have never believed in separating children from their parents, and obviously if it was the other way round i would absolutely never allow it. but i do know he will not fight like that. He doesnt really have the motivation or passion or interest to stop us.. which for DD's sake i am sad to say.

so its a toughy really, he might grow up in the next couple of years and start to take his role more seriously which will make this decision even harder. Or he might do once its too late, but i am not sure if i am willing to wait around and put our family life on hold while i wait for that to happen.. and even if it did... it still doesnt change the state of the country..

dd's sis is really enjoying life there, and says is just so different from here.

mumoverseas Fri 03-Oct-08 14:07:56

you will need to talk to DD's father to test the water and see how he feels about you taking her. If he does give his permission you will need to get this in writing from him. If he doesn't agree, then it doesn't automatically mean you cannot take her but you would then need to make an application to your local county court for an application to remove her from the jurisdication (ie England & Wales) This is a very long drawn out (and expensive) process therefore the sooner you find out what his views are, the better. Good luck to you, very big decision for you.

KarisTiasMum Fri 03-Oct-08 14:10:13

DD i just too young to ask... sometimes she says she doesnt want to go to daddys etc and we just cant take that too seriously because she is so young.
He choice is probably made on where her favourite toys are!

I would like to talk to my ex about it, bt dont really want to stir things up until we know what we really want.
Its a vicous circle really, because we should inform him first i guess but dont want to fire anything up too early?

he isnt the most approachable!

KarisTiasMum Fri 03-Oct-08 14:11:16

thank you mumoverseas.. are you talking from experience?

we really dont know where to start!

JuneBugJen Fri 03-Oct-08 14:14:30

Check out what he wants as if the tables were turned you would really want to know about these plans.

I was brought to the UK from Canada age 8 when my mum married a Brit. I think probably the least of it was leaving dad as he was a bit like your DH, it was more upsetting leaving friends and grandma and cousins etc who we were so close to. It HAS affected me and sisters, we went from being secure to fairly insecure people. There can be a feeling that you are always a bit of a square peg.

I dont think I actively missed dad as mum really made sure we visited him yearly (and he came here yearly) for at least a month at a time. Would you be prepared to do that? Would he want them for extended periods?

Don't discount it, your dd is young so it is an ideal time to go before school begins but really think about how it will affect your exDH

lynniep Fri 03-Oct-08 14:16:44

I agree with above postings. You need to talk to DD and EP and prepare for responses you don't want to hear.

I have a friend (well two friends, long separated from each other) who have a DS together, so I've heard both sides of the story.

From her side of the fence, he's not on the face of it a great dad - sticks to times allocated to him only, often takes DS to grannies for looking after, sometimes late pickup. However I've spoken to him and he freely admits he's a cr*p timekeeper and lazy with it - but he adores DS - however casual he seems on the face of it. I know he's turned down several opportunities to work abroad because he would only be able to see DS a couple of times a year and he couldn't bear not seeing him grow up. Had his ex suggested she do exactly that, he would be devastated, particularly now he has a 'new' family and is not free to up and follow DS like he was previously.

I lived in Oz for 15months. There were a lot of downsides to the up, and when I found myself pregnant I felt I needed to come back home. Its certainly not a bed of roses - when I lived there there were race riots locally - pretty nasty stuff. However that said, I'd probably still prefer living in Sydney if it were not so very far away from my family and friends. (the food - how I miss the food!!)

You just need to remember that a) unless you live up north its NOT sunny all year round!b) you get less holidays (obviously thats a generalisation) so if your DD wanted to visit daddy that would pretty much be IT for her all year and you'd be frantic with worry for her the whole time she was away c) its really really flipping expensive to fly to Oz - most family and friends cannot afford the trip (and presumably if EP could even afford to visit he couldnt stay with you!) Realistically she would never get to see her dad. For years on end.

Its such a hard thing to decide. I don't envy your position. Good luck

mumoverseas Fri 03-Oct-08 14:19:57

KarisTiasMum, yes, guess I am talking from experience both personally and professionally. Am a family lawyer (although currently on career break/extended maternity leave and therefore not practiced for a couple of years). I am currently living in saudi with my 'new' DH and had to get permission from my ex (not D) H to take my eldest two kids. Luckily he was happy for me to take them and wrote the letter I needed (mainly because I said I'd let him off the school fees that he had been ordered to pay!) A good friend of mine moved to the Middle East a few years ago and her ex DH wasn't as co-operative and she therefore had to go to Court to get an order allowing her to remove the children from the jurisdication and she had to agree to fly them back to the UK at least 3 times a year. I know you probably don't want to talk to him, but unless you ask you won't know. Good luck

beansmum Fri 03-Oct-08 14:20:15

I am soooooo gald that ds's dad is rubbish. This must be such a hard decision to make. I do think you need to talk to your dd's dad though, you can't really decide anything without knowing how he feels about it, he could fight you all the way, or agree quite happily. And you need to work out exactly how and when your dd would get to see her dad.

KarisTiasMum Fri 03-Oct-08 14:24:50

visiting would be the biggest problem i know as it is just so expensive for the flights etc...

Thanks again mumoverseas... very helpful to hear from someone in the know!

Its such early days that i dont know who to speak to about it first..

we will definitely be holiday there next year to visit SIL, so i think maybe when we get back would be the best time to approach the subject..

or before so he can have a think while we are away? arrghh? i dont know!

KarisTiasMum Fri 03-Oct-08 14:26:39

beans mum... what do you mean by your ds's father being 'rubbish'?... sorry sidetracked slightly from thread.. just interested lol

beansmum Fri 03-Oct-08 15:33:44

I mean that I know moving back to NZ is the best thing for me and ds, and in a way it's lucky for me that ds's dad has never shown an interest in ds. I can go and do what I know is best without worrying about him!

mumoverseas Fri 03-Oct-08 15:57:53

KarisTiasMum, would you still have family in the UK that you would hopefully visit sometimes? If so, you could maybe use this as a softener to DD's father to illustrate that he will still see her sometimes. I know its difficult though when it is so far and the flights are so expensive.

KarisTiasMum Fri 03-Oct-08 16:32:20

yes, all of my family would still be here.. the only person from my side who is already in oz is my cousin..

so we will definitely return home for visits, but i am not sure i could commit to 3 times a year, like you mentioned earlier or even to come back for 1 month out of each year. I dont suppose i will know the answer to those questions until we got there and new our position with working and finances etc..

i understand now beansmum... i wish it was the same for us, although its not far off which is why we are thinking about it in the first place!

so, if worst case scenario... he completely objects and we still wanted to go through with it? what then!?

Tinkerbel6 Fri 03-Oct-08 17:22:18

Karis if your ex objects then as mum overseas says you will have to take it to court, you will need to show that emigrating is in the best interested of your family as a whole, on the british Expats site a few people have had to do this and they were allowed to take their children out of the country but had to pay for their ex's airfare to visit the children, or pay for the children to return to the UK for a visit.

BrownSuga Fri 03-Oct-08 17:34:44

From the opposite side, we have moved abroad and DH's DD has stayed in UK with her mother. We setup webcam her end so that once or twice a week she can have face to face chat with her father. He also calls every week. He will see her every 6 mths for 2 weeks at a time, either here or in the uk. If your ex won't have the physical contact very often, it's important if you can arrange weekly webcalls/phone calls to keep that contact.

AbbeyA Fri 03-Oct-08 17:38:11

I would test the waters by asking him, but you may well get an answer that you don't want to hear. As soon as you have a DC you are never completely free. I know a lot of people who are stuck in a country that they don't want to live in because of their DC.

hatwoman Fri 03-Oct-08 18:00:44

my honest opinion is that you need to think very hard about the "push" factors you describe and whether or not they really do have a negative impact on your life and that of your families - ask yourself honestly whether you have perhaps fallen prey to the scare mongering that goes on in certain parts of the press. and then ask yourself seriously whether those things would be better in oz.

politics? firstly what impact do they have on your actual life? second do you think Australian politics will be any better? read some Australian newspapers to help your thinking.

terrorism? do you know what the chances of being directly affected by terrorism are? I very much doubt they are any bigger here than in Oz. And if its the race relation aspect of this that bothers you then, as someone else has pointed out, Oz has got a packet of race issues all of its own.

financial crisis? food and oil prices have gone up the world over. have you worked out the impact on you of the credit change? are you at risk of negative equity? or in a position where you'll never get a mortgage? what are the real effects for you? what would the difference be in Oz? (take into account cost of flights which will set you back hundreds and hundreds)

rise in anti-social behaviour? have you compared crime stats? from now and 10 years ago in the UK? And compared here and Oz? I see lovely teenagers here every day. maybe a bit loud sometimes but they're just kids trying to grow up. unless you really live in a drug-riddled sink estate, unless you have reason to be scared every day to walk down the street, unless you've been a repeated victim of crime I'd think really hard about this one.

and then there's all the wonderful things about this country: gorgeous countryside, history, castles, London, Edinburgh, yorkshire puddings, wimbledon, diversity, the arts - I don;t know what rings your bell but the UK has got an awful lot going for it - not least the presence of your friends and family.

I think to take your daughter half way across the world and effectively cut her off from her father is a huge thing to do. And I think anyone contemplating it needs to do an awful lot of research and an awful lot of soul-searching and needs to look at alternative ways of addressing the things they don;t like about their life.

you did ask grin

hatwoman Fri 03-Oct-08 18:03:28

sorry I'm a pedant. Must correct errors...

family
credit crunch

SmugColditz Fri 03-Oct-08 18:11:57

I really don't think you have the right to take your daughter away from her father. It's morally wrong. He has stayed involved, and you don't know how motivated he is - most men, when not interested, absent themselves completely. He hasn't done that

AbbeyA Fri 03-Oct-08 19:21:33

Unless you would be happy for him to take your DD to another country then you shouldn't do it to him. You should treat other people the way that you would like to be treated. You can ask him but I would be surprised if he was happy about it.

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