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Advice needed over dp's ex!!

(158 Posts)
fifisboys Tue 16-Jun-09 09:04:05

To cut a long story short..

I live with my dp and we are engaged to be married next year. He has a 2 year old dd with his ex and she is refusing to let him bring her to meet me.
There is no reason behind it at all, she has even said she has no reason for it, other than she doesn't want her dd to be with me.

I was just wondering if, legally she can dictate who dp can introduce her dd to, and how we go about fighting this.

blinks Tue 16-Jun-09 09:06:09

could you meet up with her on your own so she can get to know you a bit.

she must feel threatened.

fifisboys Tue 16-Jun-09 09:08:13

We did suggest that about a month ago..that she could meet me and my 2 ds's...she pulled out of it and isn't willing to do that anymore sad

ginnny Tue 16-Jun-09 11:20:55

Don't know about the legal aspect but it sounds threatened.
How long have they been split up. Maybe she needs more time to come to terms with it.
My dc are older now and I don't mind them seeing ex's new gf but I would have hated it when they were younger.
Could you phone her yourself and reassure her a bit?

junglist1 Tue 16-Jun-09 11:55:02

It's not about fighting her, she's the mother, you're the new girlfriend in her eyes. She doesn't need a reason. If you want to see the child it's up to you to keep things friendly. And if your P is putting on a united front with you he's in the wrong as well.

IveGotHamButImNotAHamster Tue 16-Jun-09 12:02:06

You are not in the wrong, as long as you are being reasonable about it, and it sounds like you are.

Perhaps if it was not such a serious relationship than maybe the ex would be justified, but the little girl has a right and a need to know her daddy is ok and that she is not excluded from his new life with you.

My advice would be to be patient - his ex will come round in time (I waited two years and eventually it happened with her blessing, which I never thought it would) and make sure that any meeting you plan is in the best interests of the child. This will help her mum to see that it is ok.

junglist1 Tue 16-Jun-09 12:46:29

My post sounded a bit harsh. I just meant it's best not to turn it into a legal thing, if she's reluctant now, that'll make things worse. She will probably relent anyway, everyone wants whats best for the child at the end of the day.

2rebecca Tue 16-Jun-09 12:59:26

Legally if he has pr then he can go to court to get regular access. When he has access it's usually up to him where he goes/ who his daughter sees. This can be expensive and women can fight the court order though so it may be best for him to try negotiating. If she won't budge then getting acourt order now may save alot of arguments in the future.

GypsyMoth Tue 16-Jun-09 13:02:57

What are the contact arrangements at present?

fifisboys Tue 16-Jun-09 15:13:51

at the moment he is only allowed to see her for 2 hours on a sunday...and thats with her telling him where he can take them..he was supposed to have his dd 3 days a week for 3 hours at a time but she keeps changing it

CarGirl Tue 16-Jun-09 15:16:11

sounds like he needs to put it in writing to her solicitor that he wants more frequent access. Were they married?

blinks Tue 16-Jun-09 15:48:37

what was the reason for their breakup?

Hawkmoth Tue 16-Jun-09 16:13:48

Didn't he get a contact order with his divorce?

I know how hard it is for men to push for their rightful contact if mothers are being manipulative and difficult, but they should. Frankly, the family court wouldn't be interested until the parents had been through mediation procedures, which could prove useful for the whole family.

As we said to DP's XW, what he does with the children, as long as he doesn't put them in danger, when he has them, is up to him. If your partner has PR he needs to start finding out about his legal rights, be forearmed and start to think about being a bit tougher. It's key to sort these things out early on, get into a routine that the kids are comfortable with, else they'll soon be too busy/too teenage to be interested.

And hang in there, none of it is your fault... nor is there a great deal you can do except support and inform your partner.

Hawkmoth Tue 16-Jun-09 16:17:03

BTW, if there's a will, you could suggest they go for a course of mediation (about £300) and put the contact order through court themselves (I THINK it's £140, but check).

housingmanager Tue 16-Jun-09 16:26:48

I am astonished that there are posters on this thread who believe it is acceptable for the resident parent to dictate to the non-resident parent that he must not let his new GF meet the children. What gives her ownership of the children, such that her wish overrides his?

MaggieBee Tue 16-Jun-09 16:32:37

Well, are you desperate to meet the child? I think if she's only two then their breakup was still relatively recent..

It may not feel it to you, but it was to her.

My advice to you is to not force the issue. You dont' have to meet this little girl. The little girl doesn't care either way. ALthough I'm sure even at two she'd probably come more down on the side of not wanting to meet you.

Park the issue for a year or two.

HecatesTwopenceworth Tue 16-Jun-09 16:33:34

So can he tell her that any boyfriend she has must not meet the child?

Didn't think so.

Does she have any reason to dislike you? I am assuming they had already split before you got together so perhaps she is just jealous that he is moving on?

Children should not be used as weapons, or as the rope in a game of tug of war. Perhaps mediation might help, with the focus firmly on the best interests of the child.

housingmanager Tue 16-Jun-09 16:35:18

The OP and her partner are engaged to be married. He wants his DD to meet and be part of his new family. Why shouldn't he? How can XP veto him? Please answer this.

MaggieBee Tue 16-Jun-09 16:37:03

housingmanager I'm astonished that there are people who think the child is something to be introduced, how cosy for everybody if they can just introduce her. Well the little girl doesn't care and doesn't want that, and it would cause a huge amount of distress to the mother, but the new couple want to play happy families. Not judging them for that, but they need to think about whether the introduction is for them or for the little girl. It's not for the little girl, it's to foster the fantasy that everybody is rosy with their new set up.

By the sounds of it, everybody is not.

Just cut the mother some slack. Allow her some time to grieve for the traditional family life she thought she'd have.

HecatesTwopenceworth Tue 16-Jun-09 16:37:50

She can't. Or she shouldn't. A good parent puts the needs of their child first, so unless the father is abusive, then she should make her child's right to be part of the father's family her priority, not keeping control like the child is her property.

MaggieBee Tue 16-Jun-09 16:39:59

ps, to give you some perspective on the time frame of 3 yrs...

I left my x when dc2 was just a bit older than one. He's now 3 and a bit. I am so relieved that we left him, because he was a nightmare. I won't go into it. But I would still be shocked if he were already newly married to somebody else, when he had a 3 yr old child with me.

By the time his daughter is three, he'll be married to you. You have to admit, it is kind of speedy.

housingmanager Tue 16-Jun-09 16:42:13

I still don't understand why you think the resident parent has the right to stop her DD meeting the other parent's partner.

MaggieBee Tue 16-Jun-09 16:42:28

I think that a two year old child is still very bound up with it's mother. It's not a question of property. To handover your young 2 yr child to your x and his new partner, the mind boggles.

why would you be so desperate to force that issue? OP honestly, are you that desperate to meet his daughter that you would cause great distress to her mother and probably at best indifference in the two yr old daughter.

MaggieBee Tue 16-Jun-09 16:47:05

Housingmanager, I think you're underestimating something, the extent to which a small child and its mother are almsot the same person. The bond is felt so strongly at that point that it is torture to handover your child to 'an enemy camp'. Can be hard enough to leave them at creche.

It would be a point scored by the father and his new partner if they can introduce the girl to his new partner. WHY does this woman want to meet the little girl so badly???? to 'win' I expect. To show the mother.

Do you think the little girl wants to meet her dad's new partner??? NO they are doing it for them! And everybody is talkign about their rights!!!

housingmanager Tue 16-Jun-09 16:49:39

MaggieBee, I'm relieved to say, for the sake of millions of families in this country, that your viewpoint of the mother's superior rights, overriding XP's wishes, has no basis at all in family law

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