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Swimming Lessons & Recorded phone conversations

(29 Posts)
rubin Sat 02-Nov-13 11:46:22


Just seeking some advice on 2 matters or if anyone else has been in these positions I would welcome any advice!:

1) My children's father has refused to bring them to their swimming lessons when they are staying with him. Both children have swimming lessons with the local council every Saturday morning during term time. The children are 5 yr old & adore the lessons & doing so well! They stay with their father every 3 wks or so & he has suddenly just decided that he wont bring them. These lessons have an 8 mth waiting list & if the children are not attending regularly they will be taken out of the system. I cannot understand why anyone would refuse their child a swimming lesson. I have paid for them & even offered to transport them all to/from the swimming pool so that he doesn't have to pay for anything. It is clear he is doing this simply to spite me but it is also clear how detrimental it is to the children. Not only are they missing out on a great opportunity but it will also psychologically affect them when they start to realise that their father refuses to bring them swimming. Is there anything I can do to enforce this without going the court route? I can't afford to spend any more money on legal fees ... Could I get a letter from my Health Visitor to try & convince him?? Has anyone been in this situation before. I don't want to let it lie as I feel so strongly that it is in the children's best interests. Furthermore, what is he going to do when they start other curricular activities like football, rugby,music, etc...

2) The children's father is always moaning that the children do not hold a proper conversation with him on the phone & naturally it's all my fault! This has been going on for 3 yrs & anytime they don't speak to him for a long time he goes mad & I get a load of abuse. He is now threatening that he records all phone conversations & has evidence that I interfere with their phone contact with him & that this evidence is being presented before the court, etc. I can't imagine a court wanting to get involved in anything like this & I know that I don't 'interfere' with their phone conversations. However he is driving me mad with these constant threats. What is the legal ruling on recording private conversations & giving to a 3rd party?? Is that legal? I'd love to be able to go back to him with some facts to shut him up!

flossieflower Fri 08-Nov-13 22:18:15

Could you change the phonecalls to a Skype or Facetime contact? Then he could see that a) you aren't in the background and b) that if they aren't talking it's because they're wandering off to play, not because you're taking them away? They might be more engaged with it at that age if they can see as well as hear.

starlight1234 Fri 08-Nov-13 22:10:22

Sadly there is nothing you can do about the swimming lessons and would talk to them about the fact you are unable to get them there every week...It is sad your kids are missing out ..

The phencalls...Most kids don't chat well on phone. I would not say a word ..let the kids talk to him..if he starts been abusive tell him it is time to end the conversation...I am sure he isn't going to record himself been abusive...

You can refuse contact except through text or email...then you have it all as evidence

lostdad Tue 05-Nov-13 10:26:08

No he doesn't. Data Protection rules regulate organisations, not individuals. It is legal for a private conversation between two private individuals to be recorded so long as one of them knows it is happening.

If he was calling on behalf of an organisation he would need prior permission however. Clam says it proves nothing either way. I would advise the OP to ignore him. He's simply trying to wind her up.

JustMe1993 Tue 05-Nov-13 10:15:09

The children are 5, the thing is give a young child a phone and soon enough they're going to get bored and find something else to do instead.

Why don't you say you will answer the phone and pass it to DC you will not interfere even if they leave the phone to do something else. That way if they're on the phone for 5 minutes before leaving it on the floor to go play with a toy he's left with either hanging up or listening to background noise.

clam Mon 04-Nov-13 21:01:01

How is recording the dcs on the phone going to prove to anyone that you're behind their lack of chat?

JustMe1993 Mon 04-Nov-13 20:38:52

Yes he can as he has PR, however he can't record the OP without her prior permission

titchy Mon 04-Nov-13 17:50:43

But he can record the conversation with their child without her permission....

JustMe1993 Mon 04-Nov-13 16:42:33

Lost Dad under the data protection act, there is a law to stop him from doing so. He has to have her permission before commencing any recordings .

lostdad Mon 04-Nov-13 13:58:06

You can't make him take them to swimming lessons. Simple as that. It may not be right (I am in a similar situation by the way) but there is nothing you can do.

Let him record if he wants to. There is nothing in law to stop him doing this and while he is extremely unlikely to be able to use them in a court (and I have known judges to tell parents to stop it) he could use a transcript.

It is unlikely to get him anywhere in any case.

JustMe1993 Mon 04-Nov-13 00:02:45

If he sent it to court you would state you hadn't agreed to them being recorded and he also refused to give you a copy and they should just dismiss them.

They're more than likely not even bothered by them

rubin Sun 03-Nov-13 09:34:55

Thanks JustMe1993,

Thats very interesting. I suspect that he would say that having told me that he has been recording all the phone conversations & given that I have not actually said he can't, then that is accepted as agreement on my part. I would argue that I had not been fully informed of my rights.

However, do you know JustMe1993, if the Data Protection Act then infers that he would not be able to sent it to a Court wihtout my consent??


JustMe1993 Sat 02-Nov-13 20:51:47

He has to inform you if he's recording your phone calls and vice versa, hense why more often than not you get then "this call may be recorded for blah blah blah" they've given you the warning don't want to be recorded you then hang up.

My fuckwit of a 'ex' had a whole conversation with me and at then end said "by the way I've recorded this" I simply put in a letter;

"Dear Mr.

Regarding our telephone conversation under the Data Protection Act Schedule 2 Section 1:
"SCHEDULE 2 Conditions relevant for purpose of the first principle. Processing of any personal data
1 The data subject has given his/her consent to the processing
2. The processing is necessary -
(a) For the performance of a contract to which the data subject is a party, or
(b) For taking of steps at the request of the data subject with a view to entering into a contract
3 The processing is necessary for compliance with any legal obligation to which the data controller is subject, other than an obligation imposed by contract.
4 The processing is necessary in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject
5 The processing is necessary -
(a) For the administration of justice,
(aa) for the exercise of any functions of either House of Parliament
(b) For the exercise of any functions conferred on any person by or under any enactment,
(c) For the exercise of any functions of the crown, a minster of the crown or a government department, or
(d) For the exercise of any functions of a public nature exercised in the public interest by any person"
As I had not given my consent prior to the telephone conversation and you failed to advise me of the recording or take the correct legal steps to inform me that you wish to record the telephone conversation, you have acted illegally and I formally request that the illegal recording be forwarded to me to enable to forward it to my solicitor.
I will hand deliver a copy of this letter to my solicitor to enable the smooth transition to this agreement in an amicable manner (obviously I will ask my solicitor to convey these actions to your solicitor).
The contents of this letter in no way voids our prior verbal and written contract regarding visitation and financial arrangements

Yours Sincerely"

Safe to say those conversations where conveniently deleted however I strongly suspect they never existed

DollyTwat Sat 02-Nov-13 19:01:04

Rubin, I remember the row about me moving the swimming times to 'mess him around' when ds2 had actually moved up a class, like it was yesterday unfortunately grin

rubin Sat 02-Nov-13 18:32:37

Thanks DollyTwat. You speak a lot of sense, obviously from experience.

DollyTwat Sat 02-Nov-13 18:16:45

Rubin, it's soul destroying, I've had 9 years of it. Once you get over this, there'll be something else. Not enough clothes put in for the dc, wrong clothes, too big/small.

You'll accommodate a small change to contact and then it's every time but your changes won't be accommodated. The dc will tell you stuff you want to check, all he'll will let loose. Your parenting called into question at every opportunity

If this doesn't sound familiar, it will if you're not careful
(Sorry to project, but I bet I'm not far wrong)

Disengage, hold your head up and don't give him the satisfaction of the row he's after

rubin Sat 02-Nov-13 18:01:30

Thanks DollyTwat,

That's exactly what's happening re phone calls. If Im honest, it's got to the point that I've started questioning myself - ie am I controlling the children properly when he calls, could I do more, etc...
But I don't think I can & hearing your experience leads me to believe it's not a rare occurance - ie non-resident parent moaning, etc...

Thanks for your advice.

DollyTwat Sat 02-Nov-13 17:54:32

Hi Rubin, I had this from my ex years ago too. Sadly I don't think there's a law that's going to work on your side, except if it got to court they may put it in the order if you insist, you still can't make him take them though.

He sounds as though he's getting a lot of pleasure in controlling you still, and whilst you give him the reactions he wants, the games won't stop. My advice (which took me years to actually be able to do) ignore his texts or just reply 'ok'
Don't be drawn into these petty arguments

My ex complained about phone calls too, he'd call twice a day. Dc had nothing to say to him. He brought it up in court and their attitude was that the dc are small, don't like the phone much, you can't force them to talk.

Let them answer the phone, don't get involved, they'll leave the phone on the floor or show him things etc. you'll then be criticised for not managing them etc.

You won't ever win against this type of fuckwit. So stop trying.

rubin Sat 02-Nov-13 17:44:22

Hi RandomMess,

Appreciate what you're saying but just would like to know about the legalities.
This is posted in Legal.

The issue with the swimming lessons is that the children are missing out on their lessons which shouldn't happen. They need consistency in order to progress.

Thanks for your advice though.


RandomMess Sat 02-Nov-13 17:33:49

It honestly just sounds like he is trying to bully you, just take a huge step back and IGNORE him. You are giving him to much power and room in your head and lives.

Tell the swimming classes person why they can't come everyweek and create as much distance as possible.

If you really want to know about the legalities of recording conversations I'd post in legal asking that in op title.

rubin Sat 02-Nov-13 17:30:40

Hi RandomMess,

I'm aware that I shouldn't respond to his texts, which normally I don't. I'm just keen to find out if there is a law/ruling to say he can't threaten me with recordings of phone conversations,etc.

RandomMess Sat 02-Nov-13 17:02:37

If you have fixed contact then he doesn't need to text you apart from last minute emergency stuff. Do you respond to his texts?

rubin Sat 02-Nov-13 16:55:08

I appreciate that RandomMess but it would also be great to be able to present to him issues re him recording mine & the children's phone conversations. His moaning is by text normally.

RandomMess Sat 02-Nov-13 15:16:25

How/when is he moaning to you? You do not have to speak to him!! That is what you need to crack down on.

rubin Sat 02-Nov-13 13:23:29


Unfortunately I can't change the day as they only take place at the weekend & I work full time during the week anyway.

Re the phone calls, it is in a Court Order that they take place & to be honest I believe it is important that the children have regular phone conversations with him. It's his incessant moaning about them that's frustrating.

RandomMess Sat 02-Nov-13 12:15:08

Is the telephone contact court ordered?

If not I'd just stop it. Let him take you to court whilst you self represent. I would reduce all contact with him to emails only so you have written proof of any abuse towards you.

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