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Child arrangement order

(23 Posts)
DLM1983 Tue 19-Jan-21 08:52:32

When a child arrangement order is in place for your ex to spend time with the children, what do you do when one child (age 12) is saying they don't feel well enough to go so doesn't want to and then the other (8 years old) says they don't want to because their sibling isn't?
Just wondering if anyone has experience of this and how it would be looked at by the courts. Thank you

OP’s posts: |
frustrationcentral Tue 19-Jan-21 09:17:59

I'm unsure but I think you'd have to try and convince the youngest to go. Your eldest is of an age that I believe they have a say? This used to be the case, not so sure whether it's still relevant though

Starlightstarbright1 Tue 19-Jan-21 13:00:57

What us relationship like with ex.. could you explai 12 tear okd isn't well and so 8 year old feels, maybe offer to send following weekend - assuming it is as you say - not feeling well and not other issues

DLM1983 Tue 19-Jan-21 13:18:20

The time that Dad and children missed out on was asked for back on another day however ex ignored the request and only offered a phone call.

OP’s posts: |
Wishitsnows Tue 19-Jan-21 13:25:54

If the 12yo doesn't feel up to going and the 8yo doesn't want to go alone would it not be in the best interests of the children to let them drop one contact time as its for them not the parent.

DLM1983 Tue 19-Jan-21 14:21:10

What about the plans that Dad has arranged? Both children enjoy time alone with Dad so is it right that this time should just be lost, especially if an order had to be made because of increasing missed access days? Unfortunately the children (and Mum)have lied to Dad previously about things during Dad's time so Dad is understandably worried about control and manipulation and has concerns that these aren't the childrens true wishes at all. Dad has also not seen any sign of encouragement or reassurance from Mum either.

OP’s posts: |
marshmallowfluffy Tue 19-Jan-21 17:29:30

If the 12yo is not feeling well it is unreasonable to expect her to go. She is at an age where her feelings would be taken into account by a judge.

The mum isn't required to encourage contact if the child doesn't want to go. Not encouraging contact is not the same as obstructing contact. Mum understandably doesn't have to be the bad guy and force dc1 to go against their will.

Is there a compromise that dad can negotiate with the kids- eg local or shorter contact? My kids have gone through periods of being unenthusiastic about contact even though they love their Dad so I'm not suggesting there's something wrong with Dad btw

DLM1983 Tue 19-Jan-21 17:50:42

Dad only found this out after driving 30 mins to pick them up. He was only due to have them for 4 hours as it was an after school access day. Unfortunately, there is no room to negotiate anything with their Mum. The 12 year old said she had a headache which Dad is more than capable of handling. It was New Year's Day so his plans were ruined. They were also up after midnight the night before so no doubt over tired too.

OP’s posts: |
Thisonemaybe Tue 19-Jan-21 18:03:30


The time that Dad and children missed out on was asked for back on another day however ex ignored the request and only offered a phone call.

Sounds like the dad is being very inflexible.

Thisonemaybe Tue 19-Jan-21 18:05:17

Just reread. So the dad asked for the time and the mum said no but offered a phone call?

What is your relationship to the children?

SeasonFinale Tue 19-Jan-21 18:10:17

Pretty clear that OP is Dad's girlfriend I would say

DLM1983 Tue 19-Jan-21 19:06:06

Yes, I am Dad's partner.

OP’s posts: |
carly2803 Tue 19-Jan-21 20:34:57

i wouldo say that the mother is being reasonable not being the bad guy and forcing the children to go when they dont want to!

if you are thinking of dragging mum back to court i think you would be very foolish

DLM1983 Tue 19-Jan-21 20:51:27

There's already 5 breaches and an outstanding application for enforcement. It really wouldn't be that unreasonable given the ongoing recent behaviour.

OP’s posts: |
carly2803 Tue 19-Jan-21 21:12:28


There's already 5 breaches and an outstanding application for enforcement. It really wouldn't be that unreasonable given the ongoing recent behaviour.

bit of a drip feed there!

this current case isnt unreasonable of the mother - at 12 they would certainly have their feelings taken into consideration - possible the 8 yea rold too

SeasonFinale Wed 20-Jan-21 14:06:09

It does sound very much like to me like mum could easily just have said have a paracetamol and your headache will clear up at Dad's or indeed to 8 hear old go by yourself you will have fun having Dad all to yourself.

DLM1983 Wed 20-Jan-21 16:32:53

He agrees. He has looked after them when they've been on antibiotics, Mum has happily sent them. It seems very much as and when it suits unfortunately.

OP’s posts: |
Pinkyxx Sat 23-Jan-21 10:35:03

A 12 year is old enough to have a voice. Children who feel unwell often want to be a ''home'' and it's not a slight on the father - ^ ''she had a headache which Dad is more than capable of handling''^. Plans have to change / get cancelled when children are unwell, it's just the way it is (or when adults are unwell for that matter). If the children are used to going together, I can understand the younger one doesn't want to go - although ideally they would. That said, making a big deal about ''my time'' when a child isn't feeling well, as well as implying the Mum is hindering contact as does the enforcement. Perhaps this accounts for some of the resistance to contact? Children are very sensitive to this kind of conflict & entitlement dynamic between parents.

It's not clear what the reasons were on the last 5 times or over how long this was or what the lies were but Dad does need to remember that the contact is the child's time not his. Mum is required to encourage, not force.

singlemum43 Sat 23-Jan-21 11:26:57

Not to be harsh but personally I think the partner should stay out of it!! I’m on the receiving end of a controlling ex’s partner and it’s not pleasant. I also think the children especially the 12 year old can make their own choices. I’m afraid as they get older they do get reluctant to leave the resident parent and it’s the children’s well-being that is priority.

Light11 Fri 05-Feb-21 17:41:41

If this happens all the time I think you would be asking for trouble if the dad is reactive and chooses to enforce.

If it’s a one off and you have good communication could you flex the time until they are better and willing to see their dad in person and videocall in the meantime?

refusetobeasheep Fri 05-Feb-21 17:52:56

It's a difficult one. I think dad should be more assertive in expecting an alternative 4 hours to be offered to make up for this. Frame it as it not being fair that the children miss out on their time, so what date shall we agree for this to be made up? Whenever something happens that means my DD cannot spend expected time with her dad, we agree an alternative time. Rinse and repeat on the alternative time until it is agreed.

DLM1983 Fri 05-Feb-21 18:10:47

He has now been questioned about whether my children will be here on Sunday when he has his children. She doesn't want them mixing unnecessarily for health reasons.

OP’s posts: |
Circemstances Sat 13-Feb-21 22:16:54

That sounds like a fair question to ask. You do seem to be getting over involved.

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