I really feel for you.
My DH came home devastated last time he was in court (was about money not contact though)
He was in court because he was up to his eyes in debt - even his own solicitor was telling him to take voluntary insolvancy.
I will never forget finding him lying on our bed, wishing that he could just die (not suicide) so that his ex could get the insurance money she was so desperate for.
It's just criminal. The amount of times we get stuck in the whole 'if we do X she wants Y and if we do Y she wanted X' - Our latest is dates for contact. IF DH suggests some, he is dictating. If he doesn't, she assumes that he doesn't care (and tells the kids that)
But, life will get better. His DD will get older and she will have to make up her own mind.
Good luck for your DH tomorrow. I hope it goes as well as can be expected.
Jammi - have no experience of all this but hope everything goes well for your dp tomorrow. I have no idea of the procedures but why does he have to be there with his ex esp if she has made contact a problem to the point that it has to be court ordered - I would like to think that this would go against her but knowing the way things seem to work against dads who are desperately trying to do the best for their dc I wouldn't be surprised that it doesn't.
Good luck to him.
Unfortunately, this whole farce of a family court system will never achieve what it is supposed to .... i.e. court orders actually being respected and adhered to ..... until the powers that be bring in realistic deterrents and actually use them.
Unlike other crimes, parents who obstruct contact and flout orders are never punished. Why not ? Other parents are jailed for stuff like non payment of council tax which surely is far less damaging in the overall scheme of things than a child who is prevented from maintaining a meaningful relationship with BOTH parents ? Equally ...... other single parents are commonly hit with fines for such things as speeding, yet nothing similar ever happens to the women (usually) in cases like yours ..... the argument always being that a jail term or a fine would ultimately affect the children. If this is the case, why are single parents (or any parent) punished when they break the law in other ways ??
I firmly believe it's about time that community service was brought in to make these vile so-called parents play ball. This could be done when the children were spending time with the other parent, so they wouldn't be impacted in any way.
Just wanted to say I have nothing useful to say but I am sure you have much support and are in many thoughts from a large silent group here. As I just start into the court system, the stress for me is sky high....and you've been doing this for ages now.
catsmother: I just hope jail doesn't come, right now I am entering the court system and one of the complaints is I encourage DS not to like the step-dad and I refuse overnights completely. I know thats not true, but heaven help me if a judge believes the story.
Hope it went well!
Jammi - did you get my e-mail?
Hope you guys are OK.
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