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Contact for baby and toddler(16 Posts)
Left husband of 12 years very recently due to aggression in drink, had to move 30 miles away with 2 dc ( 2.5 yrs and 11 month old) to stay with family as husband wouldn’t leave family home
Husband never been hands on with dc Never bathed dc, never got up in night, very much fun Dad for an hour every evening but never done much real parenting
Husband now wants EOW plus 1 overnight midweek plus 4 weeks holidays. He wants to start this ASAP with toddler and will wait a few weeks until I have weaned my breasted baby then baby to go too.
My objections to this are:
I have tried to wean baby but they will not take a bottle, will take a few sips from a cup but still wakes in night for a feed. I don’t know how to wean in a few weeks and not sure if this is in best interests of baby
Toddler has only stayed away from me once since baby was born. He stayed with mil and fil and fil told me the next day he had been very distressed asking for me and baby
I think if he takes them both out for day then baby comes home to me and toddler stays overnight the toddler will somehow feel abandoned or be upset
The split is so fresh and hard for all but toddler has moved away from family home and friends and I think needs a few months stability before overnights are considered.
I just want to do what’s best for my babies but I am not sure what that is. I don’t want to stop them having a good relationship with their dad. He loves them to pieces and they love him
Advice please? What arrangements would people suggest?
Sorry it’s super long..please respond if you have any ideas what I should do
How much drinking is going on?
I think it's not unreasonable not to agree overnights straight off. You certainly shouldn't be stopping breast feeding to his timetable.
He has driven you out of you and your childrens home and is now requiring that you cater to his demands for access which means prematurely weaning your baby.
I think you need some legal advice. This will get nasty.
If he loved them to pieces he would either control his alcohol intake or allow them to live in the place they know as home. He has done neither.
Email or text (or have a solicitor send a letter if you have the funds) stating that DAYTIME contact at a neutral venue is welcome between the hours of x&y on days abc, this is solely for the emotional, physical wellbeing of the children who are extremely young and too young to be separated from their resident parent and bf mama for a lengthy period such as overnight. Also safeguarding concerns as being drunk in charge of a child is an offence.
Stick to your guns - you really do sound like you have nothing but your childrens best interests at heart - so don't allow him to intimidate and bully you into acting against them. Good luck.
Thank you all
I did take legal advice, solicitor said in a letter he could have daytime contact at his mums which is what he has had but is saying it’s not enough and that solicitors letter means nothing as he has “rights”
Re alcohol - he can go weeks or months without but then binge drinks when he has the opportunity. This time he started throwing and kicking stuff, pushed me over, hid my keys, locked all the doors. The kids were in the room. I was frightened so called the police. Enough is Enough
The thing is of course all of our finances are tied together. I cannot move on without him giving me maintenance but he will not talk money until have has overnight contact with the toddler
Nope, your children and their safety is not for sale to this drunken bully.
He does not have any rights at all - it's called parental responsibility and it's equal. You have responsibility for the children's safety, as he is not safeguarding them, then you have too - from him and his actions.
Start a case with the CMS ASAP, so that he is not controlling you with money. If CMS say "family based arrangements " repeat endlessly that he is using the current arrangements to attempt to control you.
Next time he attempts to email / text bully you into overnights "or no money " save that text (proof) and seek assistance.
Thanks again everyone... when would be a reasonable time to start overnights do you think? Do you think I am right not to want to split them up?
When is a reasonable age to be left in the sole care of an emotionally and physically abusive violent alcoholic overnight? ... After that person had addressed their alcohol issues and attended an anger management course and a parenting course and probably counselling would be beneficial... Seriously - this person has to provide evidence conclusive proof that they are safe and able to care for these vulnerable children physically and emotionally. I am being serious about this, I think you really NEED to take a hardline stance about this NOW because your children cannot and are depending on you to protect them.
I say this as this person has proven to you by his violent, abusive and drunken actions that he cannot be trusted. So, now the opposite must apply - he now has to, through action, prove that he is capable and willing to do the best for them.
You don't need to come up with a timetable. You genuinely don't know. Do what you believe to be best for your children, (not for him).
If he wants to go to court, let him. A CAFCASS officer will advise. That's what you need : advice from an experienced professional.
So what should I do? Contact cafcass? I am just so uncertain what the next step is. He has contact today with his mum but what if they don’t let me have them back? Would the police help me? My solicitor wrote to him saying supervised day contact only but I don’t think that means anything really without a contact order?
If I withhold contact and let him take me to court and then he wins overnights the baby won’t even remember him if it takes months and the idea of handing her to an almost stranger fills me with dread. Plus he gets legal assistance via work and I would have to pay. I cannot afford to pay solicitor fees plus nursery plus rent...I earn slightly too much to get aid or benefits but I don’t want to stop working.
Sorry I know I must come across as pathetic I just don’t know what to do
You NEED to get professional advice - but what I will say (again) is that you should not be coerced or bullied or harassed into doing what you have genuine reasons to believe is not in the children's best interests / is harmful for the children (abusive behaviour, aggressive threats and demands certainly apply as genuine reasons!! ) you have tried the unofficial non court route but your ex has behaved in a way that makes this untenable. At this stage solicitors letters as cafcass are only involved by the court once proceedings are started. But you need professional advice and help regarding the welfare of your children in this situation regarding the actions of your ex.
I think you need professional advice here. Can you contact SS regarding the safeguarding concerns?
You carry on as you are. If he takes it to court, then it goes to court. To be honest that sounds like a sensible outcome.
If he doesn't stick to what you are saying, you stop contact, and it goes to court. If he refuses to return the children, it's not strictly speaking a police matter although sometimes they help. You apply urgently to court for return.
Social services are involved as referred by police after call out. they have been to visit us to ensure dc are safe and have already spoke to gp/ nursery etc. They are happy that the dc are safe with me but could offer no advice re contact just said it’s my responsibility to keep them safe now. They also said they had no interest in speaking with him but he has called them requesting to speak so he can give his version of events. Social worker said she is speaking to him Monday.
You are all correct of course I need proper advice and I will get on it next week!
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