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what are reasons for not ahving daily contact?

(9 Posts)
cestlavielife Tue 11-Aug-09 14:59:17

is there any research or evidence showing that the alternate weekends/one day in week is good for the children?

the alternate weekend plus one evening in week is what is on table here - but currently supervised by a person we both agree too. as just moved out of contact centre.

however, exP not happy - and is pushing pushing for daily contact - which i think would be impractical for one thing and confusing for kids on the other? (espec in this situation - they still elanring to trust him...)

when i first moved out of family home with dcs in april 2008 he was coming round daily to see dcs it became stressful and untenable as he would use the time to have a go at me etc; til one day he exploded.
a year later he is pushing pushing even tho we going thru court process.

he says:

" It is certainly possible for me to meet with my daughters and son
every day
I do not see valid arguments why they can not see me and have some
time together everyday.
i expect no less of shared parenting
you have no more rights over our children and have taken everything
to unacceptable extremes and abuse
your arguments are unsustainable"

as usual he resorts to accusations - tho he was the one to smash my house up etc.

(CAFCASS report more or less says he is putting his own needs and wishes for unfettered access above the needs and wishes of the children)

in a different situation - say totally amicable split and all agreed then you could maybe envisage exes totally sharing - but even then surely it better for dcs to have set days with each parent? stick to their routines daily but know that on this weekend or on a wednesday they go to tea with dad?

why do courts go for the alternate weekends on day in week? what about the NRP who says it isnt enough?

surely the max would be 50/50 anyway?

notevenamousie Tue 11-Aug-09 17:12:06

I don't know of any research. Someone else may be much more knowledgeable than me. But it is the best thing that is realistic, I think, for many family set ups. Most fathers don't seem to want more. I think it is better for children to have a main 'home' - though that may be controversial. If it's a truly amicable split I guess there's a lot more give and take than you and I can ever imagine coming to bear in our situations.

Listen to your inner voice, and CAFCASS, and your children. You are truly doing the best for them. Try and let his unreasonable untrue demands roll off you. It's hard to feel confident but you do have every reason to, you know.

Snorbs Tue 11-Aug-09 23:27:43

I've not heard of any serious research into this. "Every other weekend plus a weeknight" is what's ordered more often than not as a first pass but it's by no means set in stone and is often altered.

For a school-age child then weekends are their biggest chunks of free time. So (if there are no serious reasons otherwise) it makes sense for the child to alternate that free time with one parent then the other. The mid-week contact is so that the child sees the non-resident parent more often than just once a fortnight.

In your situation and given the history I think it would be absolutely unacceptable for your ex to be coming round to your house every day. You have every reason to insist that he not step foot inside your home. Does he have anywhere he can take DCs? If I were in your shoes I'd go with saying that you'd like to see how the CAFCASS proposed contact schedule goes before considering any changes.

I also agree that the children benefit hugely from knowing when they will be seeing whom. Once they get to teenage years then you need some more flexibility as their own social lives tend to take precedence but prior to that I think a fixed routine is best.

Spero Tue 11-Aug-09 23:37:41

There is a lot of research about what is best for children after parents separate - the Australian system had a recent shakeup, and they've gone for a presumption of equal care.

the English courts have slipped into the every other weekend scenario as it gives the resident parent a weekend to have 'fun' with.

But obviously, there is no one solution that will work best for all children. Every situation is fact dependent.

What the Australian research very clearly showed is that trying to split it 50/50 was bad for children's emotional wellbeing when the parents lived far away, could not deal with each other amicably etc.

Research shows that small children need routine and the comfort of transistional objects when they go from their primary carer to another.

I think your ex sounds as if he is being unreasonable. Unless you live next door to each other, or at least on the same street, it is very difficult to see how 'shared' parenting can work in a way that is comfortable for the children.

One American psychologist has seriously suggested that parents should spend one week in/one week out of the former marital home and leave the children undisturbed. Unsurprisingly, not many are going for this option.

cestlavielife Wed 12-Aug-09 14:54:11

Tks. that is useful. the kids routines etc argument is the one to go for i think.

he will never be happy anyway!

we do live nearby, few minutes walk.

ironically, before, we bought the flat nx door to the "former marital home" where he still lives. EXP has been doing i t up for the new tenants (it is rented out) but has been telling the dcs "which room do you want". i suspect he imagines i will move in nx door?

in an ideal world maybe - i once imagined we would separate amicably and live close by with dcs going between two houses equally - but the reality is i cannot live in close vicinity. and i just cant trust him with dcs - this is backed up by cafcass who recommend continuing with supervised contact for now.

so is just not feasible...am going to court to force a sale so i can buy elsewhere...

Spero Wed 12-Aug-09 21:31:16

The research is all pretty unanimous that it is not the separation that screws children up but how their parents deal with it. You don't have to be his friend but try to just keep it light and friendly in front of the children, I know it can be hard but the impact on children of their parents being bitter/angry with one another can be quite traumatic.

Good luck.

cestlavielife Thu 13-Aug-09 09:59:02

i do indeed "try to just keep it light and friendly in front of the children".

unfortunately he is unable to !

eg my email jsut talking dates, time - i get back "you are inhumane" etc..

sigh

hard to do it one sided

Spero Thu 13-Aug-09 11:48:16

I'm not having a go - I'm in exactly the same boat and I know it is so hard; everytime I get an arsey email I want to send one back... but it is so destructive.

I always try to remember the saying 'you can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into' - or something like that.

but it is really, really hard. However, the implications for our children's emotional health as they become adults and parents themselves are so potentially damaging, I think we just have to keep trying to maintain the moral highground and not get sucked into a battle that no one can ever win.

cestlavielife Thu 13-Aug-09 12:32:01

oh no i didnt think you were having a go - it is hard to show that one is being civil and the other isnt. generally i am a calm person...

even last year when he starting smashing things up i kept saying calmly "you need to leave now" tho after two hours of him not listening i have to admit the tone escalated ...

if you were to analyse my emails to him over last 12 months you would soon see all the insults/accusations/anger are from his side. i only do the yes/no factual responses...

is is just so tiring always trying to be reasonable.

i spent so many years always doing things his way to avoid the outbursts etc. I thought by leaving that was over - but obviously with dcs involved it isnt...

i keep repeating to myself - "i am not repsonsible for his feelings and actions" - and try to protect the dcs from them to a degree...

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