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What is reasonable "contact" for a contact order?

(6 Posts)
UrbanDad Tue 06-Oct-09 18:58:15

A mate of mine (honest it is a friend) has a 6mo DS, but is separated from the child's mother on unhappy terms. No prospect of reconciliation and probably just as well because from what I hear she is as nutty as squirrel shit. She is letting him have a couple of hours a month contact at her house only.

He's a bit unhappy with that arrangement, particularly as it is always on her terms in her house so he cannot take his DS to his parents' house to meet the grandparents or go on outings etc. Is that par for the course at this stage, or should he be asking for more contact and going to court if she won't give it?

DailyMailNameChanger Tue 06-Oct-09 19:08:20

No it isn't, at 6mo I would say overnight contact is a bit much but there is no reason why he could not take ds out for a couple of hours every weekend then change it to a day every other weekend once he is a bit older (and change it to alternate weekends with an overnight once he is older again).

However, should he be going to court/asking for more..... well, I would wonder why you are so concerned about it, it is, after all his decision. Like it or not he will have to deal with this woman for at least the next 16 years - perhaps he does not want to start things out with a fight and would rather try to work things out himslef with her?

UrbanDad Tue 06-Oct-09 19:24:03

Thanks DMNC - fair points all of them - he just asked me what I thought and my view was that a couple of hours a month was short-changing him a bit.

He's not really belligerent. I think he's just a bit jealous of other dads who get to spend QT with their DKs and he just wants his due. You're right - and at 6mo his DS is not going to remember a lot of him at this stage anyway. It's later on in his DS' life when it's really going to count and there's no point having a scrap about it now.

DailyMailNameChanger Tue 06-Oct-09 19:31:11

If it were me i would be wanting to stamp my rights on the situation - not to cause a fight as such but to make sure she understood that I was not going to disappear or leave her to it, whatever her wishes. However there are ways and means of doing that and I would honestly suggest avoiding court if at all possible.

If I were him I would be wanting at least a couple of hours each weekend - ideally I would say an hour or so every other night so ds really has some concept of who he is but that may be asking a bit much if she is hostile.

It is really hard with young children but it is important to keep an eye on the future, the very young stage does not last long and contact should be regularly stepped up so ds gets used to it as he goes IYSWIM.

davidla Fri 09-Oct-09 15:35:34

I would think (not an expert tho) that it would be better to start off how you he means to go on. I just wonder if in future when he wants longer visits his ex can turn around and say, "Well you've always been happy to have just a couple of hours a month at my place, we're not going to change now."

UrbanDad Wed 14-Oct-09 15:16:52

Thanks all - very helpful. He's going to stick with plan A for the time being and review when his DS is 12 months, when he could feasibly take him out for trips and stuff.

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