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ex moving- impact on us(24 Posts)
I'm not a lone parent , but what I'm asking is a situation many of you may face and I'm hoping someone can help me work out what to do .
So DS is 15. His Dad and I separated when he was a few months old. He's had overnight contact since he was 2.5 ( we spent 2 years at court prior to this).
The arrangement has always been that Ex collects DS on a Saturday and I collect DS Sunday afternoon. It's always worked well as my now husbands family lives very near my Ex so we've timed picking DS with visiting the in laws. I don't drive so DH has always been in charge of that - and happily took it on from very early days.
That location is 50 miles away.
Now Ex has moved. Totally the other direction. 80 miles away. I told Ex that I understood he wanted to move but that I felt we couldn't be expected to do a 160 mile round trip EOW. That was fine, he has other children with his EW so he'd have to bring them home so he'd do that. He separated from his wife 2 years ago. She has never played a part in either taking or collecting the children.
Now his Ex has offered that one weekend a month she will travel to pick her children up. Great, however now Ex is expecting us to do the same, and as he knows we had been clear that we wouldn't be doing the travel he's saying contact with be reduced to once a month as he apparently has no way of bringing DS home that weekend .
I'm not overly happy. I feel pushed in a corner about this and don't want the feeling that DS is seeing less of his Dad because of us.
I don't have the best relationship with his Dad. He's crap at time keeping, crap at paying maintenance and generally hasn't been the best dad. So I'm struggling to see his side. I do however see that DS has an entitlement to see his Dad. Ex knows I think of things like that so I think he's trying to manipulate it as he knows I only want what's best for him. However I don't feel that it's fair we're being pushed into agreeing to something that he said he would solve.
Getting a train isn't an option as it'll cost a fortune and we can't afford it- Ex pays very minimal maintenance which won't cover it either.
Does anyone know where we stand? Years ago I was advised that it's ex's contact, he should deal with it. Is that still what's advised?
What does DS have to say about it? Have you discussed with him how he'd feel if visits were reduced? But yes, it's up to ExH to organise transport. He's the one who moved away so it's down to him.
Thanks @Singlenotsingle ,
Realise I missed off a huge part of my OP!
I spoke to DS Saturday as his Dad had called to cancel contact ( as he was moving) and during that conversation he brought up reducing to once a month as DS is getting older, wanting more time out with friends etc. So I said I'd ask DS. Which I did, and his opinion was he would be happy to stay EOW or reduce to once a month.
I then text his Dad, saying don't worry he's happy with the current arrangement. However his Dad has now said oh, well I don't know how I'm going to get him home that weekend- you're going to have to collect him.
So, one of my gripes is that he tried to make it sound like he was doing this out of the kindness of his heart for DS when actually it's that he can't ( or won't!) drive DS home every time.
Making out he's doing things for DS when actually it's for himself is a common trait of his - another reason I'm annoyed
BUT I do know I need to try and keep my feelings about his Dad out of this
Any chance DS could use public transport himself, for most of the journey?
We have looked into that @HirplesWithHaggis - but even if we picked him up from a station it would still cost a lot of money. Money that neither of us can afford unfortunately
I'm sorry, ExH is a lazy, selfish, thoughtless CF! I'm sure he can move his sorry arse to get the kid home EOW or even just once a month. Maybe it's got to the stage where formal contact should be cancelled anyway, and ExH can speak to DS direct if he wants to see him.
This is of your ex doing. I’d leave him to sort it with ds.
Maybe you could stick to the fifty miles and exh could travel the thirty?
OMG now he's changed his tune again!
So current arrangements are that he has DS sat late morning to Sunday late afternoon. He used to have him Friday night too but we changed this ( mutually) a couple of years ago to give DS time to do homework on the Friday night and in recent months, go out with friends Friday evening. It's been working well and DS is very pleased with the new arrangement.
Ex now wants that Friday night back as picking him up Saturday doesn't work for him now. It feels like that'll mean going backwards! I know DS will agree to it though because that's the way he is, always wants to make others happy.
I don't know what to say to him now? He's making it clear it's Friday again or we go to once a month.
Any thoughts on my last post would be much appreciated! Don't know what to say or do
I’d say you will stick to driving the original set of miles and he can make up the rest. He is changing the order or agreement.
What his ex wife does has no concquence on your life. He is letting your son down - not you.
Ds Can take his homework with him.
Maybe going on a Friday night should be the new norm, but only once a month. That way your DS doesn't lose too many of his Friday nights, and he seems happy enough with once a month.
I would be inclined to agree with previous poster, do Friday to Sunday on the weekends his dad can do the transport and just make it a monthly thing rather than eow.
Your son is 15 now and like you've mentioned he has his own things to do with his friends locally now so maybe a full weekend once a month is better.
I was the one who moved away from my ex (130 miles) and we meet half way Friday and Sunday eow, I offered this to soften the blow of me moving but as my dc are getting older i would rather things changed slightly but I can't see it going down very well.
If it's dad's responsibility to get him home, could he pay and put him on a train?
Def up to him to pay I think.
@woolduvet - he couldn't afford to pay for the train . Even if he could, he wouldn't, he begrudgingly pays maintenance and that isn't much!
I'd leave it alone tbh. I'd text him something along the lines of "you know you're always able to see DS as it suits you both - please text him to arrange when you two can see one another" and let them figure it out. At 15, it's not your XH's or your choice really how often DS should get to see his dad. It should be DS's choice. Then if his dad doesn't make the effort above one weekend a month, it'll be on him and not you.
I think we're going to try once a month, going on a Friday. DS will have to take homework with him, which isn't ideal as there's no where for him to do it quietly but I think he'll manage. If we start to see a problem with it then I'll have to talk to Ex about how we manage it. It's not impossible for him to pick him up on the Saturday, it just isn't what he wants.
It may be that we can come to an arrangement to meet somewhere, his time keeping is shocking ( even DS comments about it!) so it would have to be somewhere slightly closer to us so I can track DS's phone to see when they've left!
I'm just not comfortable with going along with the EOW fri-mon. DS has been so much happier recently with the current arrangement and I'm reluctant to go back to the way it was if I'm honest.
Thanks @Rtmhwales - I'm a bit frustrated with the move if I'm honest. We were just starting to get to the point when Ex was starting to acknowledge that DS's needs are different now than they were years ago, and his last home made it easy to make it flexible for DS - able to get the train, my in laws living nearby etc.
Now it feels like to keep the relationship working there's going to have to be a lot more structure again.
It is what it is though
I don't think it's for you to keep it going at this age. It's dads responsibility.
I'd say that I'm happy to travel x miles to meet you at x place at x time.
If he can't manage that then I really don't think it's up to you.
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