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Dp's exw is refusing us access to his kids - realistically when do you think lockdown will be over?

(122 Posts)
WhichWitchOfTheWest Sun 12-Apr-20 07:13:43

I have namechanged for this

Dp's exw decided at the start that she wanted dp's kids with her no matter what. There are no vulnerable people in either side of the family, but she decided only she could look after them and she was convinced we were not as careful as her (which is v unfair).

My employer actually let me work from home a week before lockdown and dp runs his business from home (which he can't work on in lockdown anyway as it's related to retail). One of my dcs is at school so at home and one at university but she came back to stay with me.

First of all she insisted we totally isolate for 14 days before we had them, which we did (the first 2 weeks of lockdown), then when we were due to have them, she announced the eldest had a cough so it would not be safe to swap. We speak every night to dp's dcs and never heard her cough.

It seems clear she is going to keep finding excuses. Dp is utterly devastated. It was his birthday too in lockdown and he was in tears about not seeing his dcs. We usually see them once during the week and on the weekend.

We have spoken to our lawyer but he said because she keeps making up ill health the only way to disprove it is to get a doctor to confirm the kids are ok and no doctor can do that at the moment. He has written her a legal letter and she has totally ignored it.

I am trying to keep dp's spirits up but I think realistically, we are only going to get to see them after lockdown and even then, I can see her still insisting we aren't as careful as her fgs so when do you think lockdown will be over and we will be able to see them again?

OP’s posts: |
Sparticuscaticus Sun 12-Apr-20 07:29:12

Well if one of DC had a cough - 2 weeks into lockdown - and no temperature or new symptoms after 7 days, DP can see them, or 14 days for both DC as sinking will be family self isolating, That's next week.
She can't make it (illnesses) up forever...

Then you send solicitor letter. Hopefully, it will only be a gap of an extra 3- 4 weeks and Maybe DP can have DC longer due to the gap.

Flower1309 Sun 12-Apr-20 07:35:42

No one knows the answer to your lockdown question. Hopefully it will only be a few more weeks. Is she normally a pain when it comes to the kids? There's not really going to be a lot you can do atm with everything in lockdown, except talk to a solicitor by phone and she knows that.

howmuchfood Sun 12-Apr-20 07:48:34

How old are the children? This is really horrible for your dp. Has his ex been like this before or do you think she's suffering from some major anxiety at the moment?

Redwinestillfine Sun 12-Apr-20 07:51:17

Get him to reassure her you will be taking all aspects of lockdown it seriously, and if you don't already facetime them everyday to maintain contact that way

carriebreadshaw Sun 12-Apr-20 07:52:03

Does she work? If you and your Dh are both working from home I can see why it would be better for the kids to stay with her.

I believe the guidelines about children being allowed to move between homes to be in place so that CV can't be used as a tool against the other parent. But if the agreement is usually totally amicable I don't think children should be moving from home to home at the moment. I do t see it as an essential trip.

Shitsgettingcrazy Sun 12-Apr-20 07:56:26

If you and your Dh are both working from home I can see why it would be better for the kids to stay with her.

If you WFH you still get days off.

The mothers objection isnt based on them working, either.

I echo what Sparticuscaticus said

WhichWitchOfTheWest Sun 12-Apr-20 08:42:59

Thanks that's a good idea too of asking them for longer afterwards

Dp's business has stopped completely during lockdown as it's related to an industry that's been shut by the lockdown so there's no excuse about whether he is working (I am working although at home and so is her dp)

Dp is utterly devastated. I don't know why she's doing it - she can be difficult but normally isn't completely unreasonable but I also get the sense that she's loving having an excuse not to let dp see them as she is quite control freakery.

Thanks for your support. We'll continue with the evening FaceTime calls and hang on till lockdown is over

OP’s posts: |
Oxyiz Sun 12-Apr-20 08:59:14

It's not going to last forever. Hopefully just a few more weeks. Lots of families are split apart right now (rightly or wrongly) and all you can do is be patient and keep contact virtually for now.

Maybe have a think about what small gifts can you post to them from amazon? What can your DP do to make those calls more fun - quizzes or games perhaps?

This might sound harsh, but also, try to stop being so critical of her if you can. Maybe she is genuinely scared right now, a lot of people are. It sounds like you don't like her but it is what it is.

BanginChoons Sun 12-Apr-20 09:11:04

This might sound harsh, but also, try to stop being so critical of her if you can. Maybe she is genuinely scared right now, a lot of people are. It sounds like you don't like her but it is what it is.

I was thinking this too. I'm sure it's hard for him but like it or not it is safer for them and for both households for them to stay in one place.

PanicAtTheDiscLo Sun 12-Apr-20 09:13:56

This might sound harsh, but also, try to stop being so critical of her if you can. Maybe she is genuinely scared right now, a lot of people are. It sounds like you don't like her but it is what it is.

This with bells on.
All I want right now is all my family in one place as safe as possible, I would lay off the legal stuff at this point. She’s probably just trying to keep things safe.

Hannah021 Sun 12-Apr-20 09:18:29

I'm sorry OP, some ppl are too selfish to realise the children have rights to see their father, and should be granted that right
being scared for one's self shouldnt extend over someone else's right. If you are scared for urself hand over the children fully to the other person... Both person have equal rights and so do children who should be allowed to see both.

Lockdown isnt going to stop ppl getting the virus, it is just controlling the spread

Hannah021 Sun 12-Apr-20 09:19:29

**both parents, sorry

LadyLaSnack Sun 12-Apr-20 09:20:59

This might sound harsh, but also, try to stop being so critical of her if you can. Maybe she is genuinely scared right now, a lot of people are. It sounds like you don't like her but it is what it is.

Also agree with this. People are going through a period of grieving, realisation of what our future might hold and the relative readjustment.

It might be that her instinct right now is to hunker down and protect her kids, and to her that means minimising their movement. It's understandable (after all this is the safest possible course of action). It would be unreasonable of her to expect a ban on contact for months, for a few weeks though while she gets her head around things I would cut her some slack and organise daily zoom chat activites/phonecalls/whatever.

carriebreadshaw Sun 12-Apr-20 09:27:22

See, in response to the poster who mentions children's rights... I think in this unique situation we find ourselves in we need to think about whether the children's right to have their parents keep them as safe as possible are more important that their right to see both parents.

Mintjulia Sun 12-Apr-20 09:38:59

“I don’t know why she’s doing it”

I’m not saying she’s right but I’d imagine she is scared for the safety of her children, and she can only be absolutely sure to keep them safe by keeping them with her. It’s not so hard to understand.

Definitely negotiate for extra weeks of contact in the summer holidays. It will give your dp something to look forward to.

Hannah021 Sun 12-Apr-20 09:39:37

@carriebreadshaw the gov has already decided what their rights are.. And in case like this if you fear for them traveling between two homes, hand them over... Dont imagine for a moment that it is ok for you to take away from other ppl. Just give up your rights and end the selfishness. It is not for one parent to decide what is safer... It is for BOTH

recycledbottle Sun 12-Apr-20 09:43:24

I think some posters here are doing the same as your dp exwife so it can be a bit biased here. The guidelines say your DP should have access.Other countries are starting to open back up soon so that might indicate when this will end. I think you should wait the 14 days from cough and push again. I wouldnt allow her exclusively to decide what is safe, she is not the only parent.

carriebreadshaw Sun 12-Apr-20 09:45:08

In common sense terms, the government had to make the allowance for children of separated parents because many parents would use CV as a tool to bash their ex with. That doesn't mean that two parents can't be sensible and realise that the children (and everyone) are safer if they stay in one house. Just like everyone else is being told.

It's not forever.

AnxiousElephant77 Sun 12-Apr-20 09:46:39

I haven't let my 2 children go to their dads. We have no vulnerable people in our immediate family, but their dad has 3 stepchildren, who are going to see their dad, he also lives with his wife. So we'd be mixing 3 households, and 11 people. It's not worth it in my opinion. This is nothing to do with me not wanting them to see their dad, it would be great for him to deal with them for a while, given they are a couple of bored kids, but my instinct is to keep them safe at home with me.

He has threatened legal action, and if that's what happens, then so be it. I don't want to expose any of us to any risk at the moment. But I accept that this is a controversial decision, and I also understand how he feels too. Everyone is just trying to do the best they can. I'm not saying my way is the right way, and I fully expect everyone to disagree with me.

AnxiousElephant77 Sun 12-Apr-20 09:47:49

I've also said that once the lockdown eases they can go for as long as he likes!

carriebreadshaw Sun 12-Apr-20 09:49:42

Fortunately my ex agrees the kids are safer in one place for now. It's not ideal as I'd like a break and also it's SO expensive having them full time. Also he misses her and she him but it's not about that now.

81Byerley Sun 12-Apr-20 09:53:52

What bit of "No mixing households " do you not understand? These are extraordinary times, and it's a sad situation, but the fact is, he should not be seeing his kids in person. It's a shame that the children's mother didn't just say "Sorry, I'm following the guidelines, and that's why you can't see the children".

81Byerley Sun 12-Apr-20 09:55:29

@AnxiousElephant77 you are doing exactly the right thing.

HollyGoLoudly1 Sun 12-Apr-20 09:59:52


Moving children under 18 between parents' houses is specifically permitted.

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