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EX Partner causing havoc in me and husbands relationship

(20 Posts)
costamum79 Wed 30-Mar-16 16:29:39

I have been married to my husband for a year now and have a son from a previous relationship. No problems there as me and my ex are amicable.
My husband has two children from one ex.

His ex doesn't always let him have them and he is supposed to every other weekend. Its got worse since we got married and so bad that she just switches her phone off or makes sure she is not home when its his turn to have them. She especially makes sure of this on birthdays or at Christmas.

We have booked numerous theatre trips and holidays away and she has not allowed them to come and the final straw was last weekend, we booked a holiday to Disneyland for all three children and she would not allow them to come, even though my husband told her about it last year and then a couple months back.
Anyway, this infuriated me, because she always says to the kids that the dad is full of empty promises, he will never take you away etc and my husband just doesn't want the drama so says nothing.

The kids came over two weeks ago and I explained how disappointed I was that their mother would not allow them to go. I showed them the tickets to proved that we had bought them and I also said that this is not the first time we have booked trips and they haven't come and for that reason im not spending any money again on any more. They were very upset and I said to them that when they are old enough they can come when ever they want and we can take them away but I want them to know that we tried.

So as kids do, they went back home and reported back. The ex calls up my husbands sister saying that Im always calling her fat, how insecure I make her feel, that I was shouting at the kids, telling them off and that she wont allow my husband to have the kids again. Now my sis in law knows im not like this so didnt believe her.

Normally I keep quiet because she is quite the drama queen. But I couldn't let the kids think that we didn't book anything and I felt so much better after it.
My poor husband though but im staying well out in future.
Shes always threatening stuff like this so its another roll eyes moment and the kids seem to understand what I tell them.
Not too long ago she was complaining why is it the daughter cant sleep in the room with my nearly going through puberty teenage son, then it was the kids cant stay over because they are scared of the dark (9and 11 years old! - this was never a problem before), then its a problem that we are forcing them to eat all their food, then its mandatory that he drops off one of their jogging bottoms when we live 10 miles away!


Wdigin2this Wed 30-Mar-16 16:43:12

Oh dear, difficult! I can easily imagine why you showed the tickets to the DSC, to prove you really wanted to take them! But, I wonder what effect it had on them, I know they're not babies but it must be pretty hard to be told, 'you could have come with us, to DL, but your DM didn't want you to go, so she wouldn't let us take you!'

So hard to know how best to deal with this situation, because it's obvious you want the best for your DSC! The EW is obviously struggling with letting them be a part of your (perhaps more exiting) lives, and it sounds as if she's still harbouring resentment against your DH!

I would think, that if she simply refuses access,/refuses to discuss it, you go back to the courts to reset/update whatever access arrangements were originally in place. Maybe the threat of a judge deciding to give your DH more, rather than less access, will make her rethink...good luck!

costamum79 Wed 30-Mar-16 16:58:52

Thanks Wdigin2this but we did actually look at court as an option and Dads really have no rights. Even if he took her to court, and rules are set, if she doesn't abide by the rules there are no consequences! so spending a few grand is not going to make any difference

Wdigin2this Wed 30-Mar-16 17:04:43

That's terrible! I thought the courts could enforce access arrangements!!!

Well, another option is if you want to take them out on a trip, just don't tell her beforehand. Obviously you couldn't take them abroad on that basis, but you could maybe have a few days out. It does seem as if she's jealous that you're taking them places she maybe cannot afford, but if she thinks it's just a day at your house you could manage it?

Fourormore Wed 30-Mar-16 17:10:59

I disagree, I would go to court and I don't say that lightly.
If you'd had a court order, booked a holiday and she had prevented it, Dad could go back to court and claim costs from her.
Dads don't have rights but children do have the right to have a relationship with both parents and the courts don't take kindly when resident parents mess about in the way you've said. You don't need to spend money - you can self represent.

It's a tricky balance but I think you were justified in showing them the tickets. When my husband's ex threatened to prevent the DSC coming on holiday, the court welfare officer told DH to continue getting the kids excited about the holiday, talking about it and packing for it and so on, so that if she had prevented contact, they would have at least known they were supposed to be going. They came in the end, thankfully.

costamum79 Wed 30-Mar-16 17:16:06

Its so difficult because it means we can only really book holidays in the country as I'm sure she wouldn't hand over the passports.
Even in the past, we haven't told her about events and she just stops him having the kids making up a new excuse so its not even the case that she even knows!
It was the same for our wedding, they never knew the dates and even when my hubby turned up to collect them she said he can only have the son as she booked for the daughter to go somewhere (Even though it was his weekend and she never mentioned it before)
In the end, he said he will take them out to macdonalds and then text her half hour later to say hes getting married he will drop them back on the Sunday!

Bananasinpyjamas1 Wed 30-Mar-16 17:21:54

Oh my what a terrible situation. This is being really messed about. How often do the kids actually see their Dad?

I would also agree that going to court seems like the best option. There are consequences, eventually, for a partner not sticking to the rules of contact. It may not be perfect but if you have been paying in advance for holidays etc this is getting crazy.

costamum79 Wed 30-Mar-16 17:26:06

Well hes supposed to see them every other weekend for three days and two nights but shes barely allowing them once every two months now. And she did recently have the cheek to go to child support demanding more money stating that he wasnt having them as much! The whole thing is insane and sometimes I just sit there and wonder when she will actually just move on! its mentally draining. Ill have to speak to my hubby about court again because the worst that could happen is that the kids grow up and say he never made an effort.

neonrainbow Wed 30-Mar-16 17:31:44

I think you're going to have to look at going to court. Even if you just threaten it it might make her realise that it could end up costing her money.

Bananasinpyjamas1 Wed 30-Mar-16 17:35:48

costa - how horrible. However, kids aren't stupid they will be able to see that you made an effort and will feel very let down by their mother in the end. I suppose other than court keep contacting them - they can contact you themselves very soon - perhaps give them a phone or ipad and sort out some things with them directly as well as their mother?

GooseberryRoolz Wed 30-Mar-16 17:36:06

It's not really the case that Dad's have no rights. Court can and does work.

Maybe there are genuine concerns about sleeping arrangements though (I wouldn't be pleased if my pre-teen daughter had to share with an adolescent boy either).

GooseberryRoolz Wed 30-Mar-16 17:38:20

Maybe try ultra-reasonable diplomacy first?

Can you make other sleeping arrangements ?

swingofthings Wed 30-Mar-16 18:11:01

I showed them the tickets to proved that we had bought them and I also said that this is not the first time we have booked trips and they haven't come and for that reason im not spending any money again on any more.
How old are the kids? Sorry but that was a very ill thought thing to do. I can understand your justified frustration, but why punishing the kids for it? Explaining to the kids that their mum is preventing them from joining in is one thing, but saying that you won't spend any money on them is kind of cruel. Is it you that pays for everything or their dad? To be frank, depending on their age, it is the kind of hurtful act that they might not forgive you for.

Next time, how about letting their dad deal with such situation?

Wdigin2this Wed 30-Mar-16 20:28:41

I think (maybe wrong) that the OP meant that the ex was asking, why her DD couldn't sleep in the same room as the OP's adolescent son....which I have to say, sounds a bit odd, why would the SD's mother want that??!

OP, please feel free to correct me if I got that wrong!

Wdigin2this Wed 30-Mar-16 20:34:31

I questioned the wisdom of telling the DC's, their mother was responsible for preventing them going to DL too! But fair play, if you've shelled out on numerous occasions for trips, (especially DL) and then the kids were stopped from going, wouldn't you want to ensure they knew it wasn't you being mean?!

As for letting her DH 'deal with it next time' surely as someone who is no doubt contributing to these costs...she has a right to some input?!

costamum79 Wed 30-Mar-16 21:18:21

Hi all yes, I paid more than half of the trip as well as organising the entire thing. My husbands ex has caused so much chaos not even mentioned and simply wants less headache hence why he doesn't speak up. I've always held back but after forking out my wages on shows (which I paid the full amount for) and paying half for other holidays I have lost out and so have they. Yes it may be hurtful but either way they are hurt by not going and seeing is going away without them or knowing that we wanted them there.

Wdigin2this Wed 30-Mar-16 21:30:16

Those DC's mother should be bloody ashamed of herself! I don't care whether the break up was his/her fault, whether he treated her badly/well, or what her personal feelings are about JUST DON'T EVER, use your kids as a means of hurting/getting back at their father!!!

headinhands Wed 30-Mar-16 21:34:54

Haven't read anything more than than the first post. OP I would have left it to your DH to discuss about the holiday if he wanted to. I do wonder why he booked an expensive holiday when his ex was so unreliable with allowing access. He needs to see a solicitor to arrange mediation and then take it from there.

Binders1 Mon 04-Apr-16 10:51:51

She sounds a nightmare - those poor kids. I don't blame you for showing the children the tickets to prove you had booked the holiday for them and was really looking forward to taking them but your wording was completely wrong and unfair. It is not the children's fault and there is nothing they can do about the arguments and 'havoc' that goes on around them, so comments such as 'so I'm not spending anymore' is really hurtful. Tell your dh you aren't spending money on them anymore and if he can't afford it all, then no-one goes. Once you told them, you admitted 'I felt so much better after it'. You took it out on the kids. You said they were upset. You never take it out on the kids. Take your frustration out on your dh and even the ex if you have to. The excuse of 'he doesn't want a headache' is not good enough.

The only thing you can do is go to court.

MeridianB Mon 04-Apr-16 13:02:17

Why does any parent behave like this? How can getting back at an ex be more important than your children's happiness? I just don't get it. Shameless.

You don't mention how old the SDCs are, OP. How much longer before you can make arrangements directly with them?

Did you go to Disneyland anyway and take your son?

I have no experience of courts and have read about dramas and costs on MN but it may be the only way that your DH can get the access he wants and deserves. Plus it will demonstrate to his DC that he was committed to seeing them, should they ever question it (following the negative comments from their mother) in the future.

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