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Proposals for contact

(11 Posts)
PinkCarBlueCar Wed 24-Aug-11 23:02:29

Next hearing date is approaching, and I could do with MN thoughts regarding contact proposals, please.

Background:
Since last November ex's court ordered contact has been every Sunday 10 till 6 (with occasional Saturdays and half of all Bank Hols), hand overs at my house. DD is 4 and one month, and has a speech delay which is happily becoming no delay.

This was working quite well, then around March she wanted me to do hand overs at her place. No biggie, she's 5 min away by car, and it suited me to know that me and DD weren't having to wait for her.

There was some further deterioration in as much as whenever I dropped DD off, her mother looked like she'd just got up, and I know she takes around 2 hours to get ready. I wish I was exaggerating that bit.

So from late May I got a four texts (one per contact) each along lines of her wanting to stop contact because she couldn't be bothered with / deal with DD. Doubtless DD was bored waiting for her Mum to get ready each time.

About a month ago DD was almost hysterical about being dropped off - crying and clingy - her Mum wouldn't take her from me, and even walked away from us saying she didn't want to see her. So I took her away, she calmed down and all was well.

Just over a week later, I get a letter from SS stating that they have had a referral from the Police and they advise I use my parental responsibility due to "on going domestic violence" between my ex and her (then) current partner. I should mention that there was DV from her to me when we were together - nothing physical, but certainly other forms of DV.

I phone SS the same day, as suddenly it all makes sense. And there was me blaming DD's reaction to her mother on PAS or her picking up on my reaction to my ex...

SS said that any future contact would need to be supervised. I told them that for various reasons that would mean a contact centre, and if she asked for contact, then I would give her the NACCC website and tell her to get on with it herself.

Meanwhile, I set about gently coaxing whatever had happened from DD. She became clearly happier and more stable as a result of talking about seeing Mummy fighting with her boyfriend, them taking no notice of her shouting "Stop!", and her seeing the Police come. If I seem angry or bitter in this post, finding out that DD had gone through that and not knowing until the SS letter would be why.

A couple of weeks ago on a Saturday I got a text from her saying that she'd like contact to re-start from the next day as it used to be. No apology, no how's DD, just a chatty "I'll see her again from tomorrow" type text. I replied to say that wouldn't happen due to the letter from SS, and that if she wanted she could set up contact in the contact centre.

Her reply was mainly variations of "fuck you", which rather proved SS's point...

The next weekend (at least four weeks after she last had contact) she came to my house anyway to try and see DD - at a time when she knows I will not be at home - and tried to get past my girlfriend. That didn't work, as she already knew what my ex had been offered and why.

So.

The hearing's in a few weeks time. It was to be about whether or not the ex would get over nights. I'm currently feeling that she shouldn't get any contact at all.

Can I even ask for that?

I really don't feel like contact between DD and her mother has any positive impact to DD's life. The above is somewhat extreme in some ways, but equally (and sadly) it's representative of the past few years, and I've seen her behave in a similar way to her first born.

I'm tempted to say that if the court deem it appropriate for the ex to have contact, then there should be some form of psychiatric evaluation done on her. I've long thought she has female NPD.

Sorry for the long post. Thanks for reading. It's pretty late, so as much as I hate to post and run, I won't get back to this till tomorrow.

GypsyMoth Wed 24-Aug-11 23:09:41

having been through this i found cafcass reluctant to put my dc back into a dv situation

i would ask for a full welfare report.....offer supervised contact in meantime. have something in mind to offer,even if indirect contact

do you have ss letter. give it to cafcass when they become involved. this will take time as they are extremely busy. will be months,so really,once all reports are done,dd will need contact to resume (if recommended) at a very slow rate.

cant see overnights happening anytime soon

PinkCarBlueCar Wed 24-Aug-11 23:29:33

Thanks, Ilove.

Would a welfare report include a psychiatric evaluation?

I really am extremely loathe to go through supervised contact of whatever kinds again for the ex to prat about with unsupervised contact once she gets it, or worse, have this sort of thing happen yet again.

So sick of her treating DD like some accessory she can have at her convenience, treat her like crap and act as if nothing happened.

Sorry. Thinking about it brings it all back and makes me pretty pissed off.

Right, really need to go to bed. Night all.

niceguy2 Wed 24-Aug-11 23:34:36

Have CAFCASS been involved yet? Are SS helping you with your case?

I would definitely push for a full report and make sure CAFCASS speak to Social services. I mean it's not everyday SS would ask you to remove DD from her primary carer and it's not something I bet they'd do lightly.

I feel so angry just hearing at what her mother put her through.

If I were in your shoes I'd probably go into court offering indirect contact only. Make her work for even supervised contact.

GypsyMoth Wed 24-Aug-11 23:37:45

by supervised i meant a contact centre.

i got a forensic psychiatric evaluation done on my ex.....recommended by cafcass too. but your ex would have to agree to it. was shocked at what it threw up tbh,and my ex ended up with zero contact by way of a section 91(14) i had to push and push for it,and judge agonised for ages. but got it,he doesnt see them at all now,zero

GypsyMoth Wed 24-Aug-11 23:38:47

not sure how this would work with your ex on your doorstep an still having PR

cestlavielife Wed 24-Aug-11 23:53:57

Well overnights are out until there has been a few months of supervised contact centre.
Given SS involvement just make clear that on table at the moment is supervised at contact centre only and that to be reviewed in three months.
If goes well can move to supervised by third party day time outside contact centre.
Overnights are way down the line.
Psych evaluation diff to get is she already under MH team?
Difficult because costly so if legal aid or court going to pay you need good reason
The court and SS may just prefer to go down supervised contact route and review In few months
Need to base on concrete welfare issues inconsistency and exposure to dv also though she is young your dd wishes and need for consistency
Does your ex have pr for her?

Keep good records and emails from her, transcribe text messages as a record and with the SS view then it should be clear it should be supervised contact only at a contact centre.

Yes this may go on a while and will depend on her domestic situation whether it goes back to unsupervised .if she asks for overnights that can't happen in contact centre anyway and there needs to be some time of day time consistent contct happening first.

You could also emphasise the language delay and need for consistency

PinkCarBlueCar Thu 25-Aug-11 21:27:09

Ah - niceguy - you've got the wrong end of the stick, fella. I'm PWC. Pretty much always have been. The ex is NRP.

CAFCASS were briefly involved at the start, then due to ex's (needless to say false) allegations against me, SS were involved for a while.

SS even did a grand total of four supervised contact sessions of their own. From the reports, imo she showed very clearly that it was all going to be on her terms as far as she could push for it to be so, but as many on these boards know, how SS and courts view things is different to what anyone else sees.

TBF, at the time I wasn't pushing for her to have a psych evaluation - but I had enough on my plate as it was.

I've always said to SS that I would support contact so long as that was in DD's interest. As you can see from the OP, I feel that it's no longer in DD's best interest.

I guess ex has PR, as surely it's automatic for mothers to have PR? I certainly don't recall anything about it being removed by court order. I have full residency if that's significant, but I thought that was just to clarify where DD's home is?

Ilove - I was hoping you'd answer on this thread, as I knew you had experience of this. In what way did you have to push for the psych eval? How would you recommend going about that? PM me if you prefer to rather than going through it all here.

cestla - another MNer I was hoping I'd see on here, thank you. The ex is presently eligible for legal aid, although at the last hearing she was also eligible but did not have representation. I have my Mum who is funding my legal costs, but that's far from being a blank cheque.

Are you saying that potentially I would have to fund the psych report? I take it that the ex would have to be willing to undergo it?

She's not already under MH.

At the start of the year I had thought that her domestic situation had sufficiently stabilised that overnights could be possible before the hearing...

cestlavielife Thu 25-Aug-11 22:34:21

The info I got was a psych report could cost 750 upwards.
Not sure if you have enough evidence to persuade court or cafcass she needs one - my ex has had involvement with MH services and series of depressive (and aggressive) episodes and has used his MH on occasions to try and avoiid court hearings etc .
So if he were to suddenly be in his I-am-fine mode I will try and get psych report - though in fact he has sent text saying "I saw psych today she says she will see you if you like" . I have not pursued.... Not clear his agenda - other than that he still thinks we can "all be back together again"

The turning up asking for contact as though nothing has happened fits his mode of operation too -it is like they can just ignore whatever has happened and oh well that is past it does not matter any more. ...

But to get to the point -unless she wiling to undergo psych evaluation it might be tricky to get one ordered - tho not impossible given ss involvement.
Maybe seek their support in asking for this?

Maybe keep in mind and see what happens if /when she pursues contact ?

cestlavielife Thu 25-Aug-11 22:40:08

Oh I think you need to make sure copies of the ss letter are sent to court make copies and send them don't assume carcass or SS will have done so and take copies with you on the day . and any other info. Get SS involved as much as possible in any recommendations. Make sure cafcass and SS are talking to each other.

If SS have said in writing no contact except supervised then clearly that can be the only outcome for now from the hearing.

Can you sound out SS view on her psych status? Whether they consider an evaluation would be appropriate?they might not say anything of course if deemed coNfidential

PinkCarBlueCar Sun 28-Aug-11 12:12:31

Hmmm. Lots to consider, as I expected.

I'm not sure if SS will help wrt her psych status - they're pretty well aware of what she's like, but were very much of the "must have contact at all costs" mindset.

The SS letter itself didn't say contact to be supervised - ime SS very rarely make as bold a statement - iirc it was along the lines of "use your PR to protect DD". It was when I spoke to them that they said supervised contact. Knowing what they're like, I emailed them a scan of the letter along with a "here's what you said the letter means, this is what I said I'd do" type message. As expected, there's been no response to that, but that's fine - I just wanted to record what was said and give them the opportunity to say otherwise if they wished.

I'm currently thinking that if the ex requests contact at court, then I don't want to do the whole "supervised contact for six months, no-one says anything except arrival and departure times, it becomes unsupervised until such time as there's another extreme / traumatic incident" merry-go-round thing. Especially as meanwhile, DD is getting sub-standard to outright damaging parenting from the ex during contact, and her development and progress slips back.

The tricky thing is the difference between knowing something and being able to prove it. As is so often the case. She's not the "obvious" end of MH as such. TBH I rather feel that if the court order any form of contact then I'll just ignore it as I honestly believe it's not in DD's best interest.

I think I need to push for CAFCASS to do a full report welfare report and push for that to include a psych evaluation on the ex. I can't see SS wanting to get involved with something they've closed the file on, and tbh I'd rather stay away from them.

Thanks, all smile

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