Any divorced Moms who do NOT have physical custody of the child(ren)? Am I alone here? - Mothering Forums

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Old 11-27-2010, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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here's my story, as short and sweet as I can make it:

 

My ex forcibly took my daughter from Texas to GA (on advice of his parents) in '06 after I told him I wanted a divorce. I moved back to GA to file for custody and was told that I wouldn't get her due to my living independently (away from family) and being financially unstable. So my ex got custody of her. Then he moved to FL in '08 just after the custody agreement was set. So my custody agreement is basically useless due to it not having any stipulations on travel, other than to say if one party should move from the area, they have to travel and pay expenses. But we both moved and my ex believes since I moved first, I should have to travel the entire way. *sighs* So this past thanksgiving, i was scheduled for visitation, and we typically meet at a halfway point for exchanges. But he didn't have enough gas money(so he says) to travel, so he expects me to travel the entire way. Which I was unable to do. 

 

Anyways, I talked to a lawyer and was told it was something we'd have to either deal with as adults, or file for a modification, which will cost me $1500 to $2500. I don't have that kind of expendable income right now as a stay at home momma. 

 

He can deny me visitation and unless i go to court and pay tons of money, I have to take it or travel 12 hours in one day for a 3 day visitation. 

 

And I am like a leper. People always assume that since I didn't automatically get custody, I must have been a drug addict, don't love my daughter or am a crazy person. :( I am so tired of this stigma.  Am I alone on MDC that I do not have sole custody of my daughter?


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Old 11-27-2010, 03:04 PM
 
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Can't you sell your stuff, move to a cheaper place or get a parttime/temp job to raise the money? I feel for you, it is unusual for a mother to not have custody and I can see how you would feel stigmatized.  

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Old 11-27-2010, 11:46 PM
 
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There are a few and the two on here that I know the semi-full story of break my heart.  Hopefully they will respond after seeing your post


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Old 11-28-2010, 10:22 AM
 
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Can you buy the airline tickets and fly her out to you on your visitation days?  Would he be willing to combine your visitation days into two larger chunks of time during winter and summer to make it easier on both of you?  I suggest starting out the conversation or an e-mail on this issue by thanking him for being willing to drive half way whenever it is possible for him so that you and your daughter can continue to have a relationship then telling him you would like to work together to find a way to make it easier on all of you and suggest chunking the time together then asking if he has a suggestion.  It sucks that you would have to work with him like that, but the courts may side with him since you moved away first and showing that you are trying to reach an agreement first may look better to a judge.  Is moving to where she is a viable option?  If so that would take care of the problem and you would be able to have all of your visitation plus push for more once you established that you are working hard on a relationship with your child.

 

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Old 11-28-2010, 10:33 AM
 
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Hi momma, I am in the same boat. After 10+ years of a horrible marriage I moved out. He cancelled our bank accounts (they were all in his name), and before I could even find a job, open a bank account, find a place to live, he got a lawer and sought full custody. I had been a stay at home mom for that entire time, and lost both my boys. I see them on Wed. and Sat. They stay the night sometimes on the weekends. It was so god aweful going through it the first year. People would talk to me like I naturally had custody. I wouldn't say anything because of the looks on their faces when I did. I too am not a drug addict or anything, I am a college educated yoga teacher who unfortunately left all finances, work, etc up the husband, and believed him when he said we would work together on what was best for the boys.

 

That being said, I have no advice for your situation, but just wanted to let you know you are not alone. Can you set up Skype or something that she can see you everyday for phone calls, etc?


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Old 11-28-2010, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by One_Girl View Post

Can you buy the airline tickets and fly her out to you on your visitation days?  Would he be willing to combine your visitation days into two larger chunks of time during winter and summer to make it easier on both of you?  I suggest starting out the conversation or an e-mail on this issue by thanking him for being willing to drive half way whenever it is possible for him so that you and your daughter can continue to have a relationship then telling him you would like to work together to find a way to make it easier on all of you and suggest chunking the time together then asking if he has a suggestion.  It sucks that you would have to work with him like that, but the courts may side with him since you moved away first and showing that you are trying to reach an agreement first may look better to a judge.  Is moving to where she is a viable option?  If so that would take care of the problem and you would be able to have all of your visitation plus push for more once you established that you are working hard on a relationship with your child.

 



 

Thank you for your suggestions. She is fortunately old enough now to fly on her own, so I will suggest that to him, keeping your wording in mind. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bendmom View Post

Hi momma, I am in the same boat. After 10+ years of a horrible marriage I moved out. He cancelled our bank accounts (they were all in his name), and before I could even find a job, open a bank account, find a place to live, he got a lawer and sought full custody. I had been a stay at home mom for that entire time, and lost both my boys. I see them on Wed. and Sat. They stay the night sometimes on the weekends. It was so god aweful going through it the first year. People would talk to me like I naturally had custody. I wouldn't say anything because of the looks on their faces when I did. I too am not a drug addict or anything, I am a college educated yoga teacher who unfortunately left all finances, work, etc up the husband, and believed him when he said we would work together on what was best for the boys.

 

That being said, I have no advice for your situation, but just wanted to let you know you are not alone. Can you set up Skype or something that she can see you everyday for phone calls, etc?


I am sorry to hear you went through such a horrible situation, I was also a stay at home mom when I sought a divorce, and having no way to support a child was the most difficult realization I had to make.

 

I would love to be able to afford moving down to Florida but my husbands company has just been bought out, so they are in a transition. If I need to, as his new company has offices in FL, I will consider moving, which includes distancing myself from all my friends and family to make visitation easier. I do loathe the idea of living in FL but to make things better for my daughter by being closer to her, I would.


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Old 11-28-2010, 03:18 PM
 
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I feel for you - I'm sorry it's this way, but I hope you can change it.  Maybe I'm not understanding, but I don't see how you're at fault for moving... if you moved to Georgia after they did - then HE moved to Florida AFTER custody was set... wasn't he the one to move?  Plus wasn't there anything in the agreement about the custodial parent moving out-of-state? I do have custody, but even custodial parents can't just take off with the child to live in another state since it affects the non-custodial parent's visitation.  I would most certainly go to court - scrape up the money, work a temporary holiday job as hopefully your partner can watch your kids - anything, everything... but it's worth it.  Your ex seems to have an unusual amount of leeway, and if that meant I couldn't see my kid, there would be some mountains to move!  You would have a good case in court as theoretically, the court likes both parents to be involved in the child's life.

 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by BettinaAuSucre View Post

here's my story, as short and sweet as I can make it:

 

My ex forcibly took my daughter from Texas to GA (on advice of his parents) in '06 after I told him I wanted a divorce. I moved back to GA to file for custody and was told that I wouldn't get her due to my living independently (away from family) and being financially unstable. So my ex got custody of her. Then he moved to FL in '08 just after the custody agreement was set. So my custody agreement is basically useless due to it not having any stipulations on travel, other than to say if one party should move from the area, they have to travel and pay expenses. But we both moved and my ex believes since I moved first, I should have to travel the entire way. *sighs* So this past thanksgiving, i was scheduled for visitation, and we typically meet at a halfway point for exchanges. But he didn't have enough gas money(so he says) to travel, so he expects me to travel the entire way. Which I was unable to do. 

 

Anyways, I talked to a lawyer and was told it was something we'd have to either deal with as adults, or file for a modification, which will cost me $1500 to $2500. I don't have that kind of expendable income right now as a stay at home momma. 

 

He can deny me visitation and unless i go to court and pay tons of money, I have to take it or travel 12 hours in one day for a 3 day visitation. 

 

And I am like a leper. People always assume that since I didn't automatically get custody, I must have been a drug addict, don't love my daughter or am a crazy person. :( I am so tired of this stigma.  Am I alone on MDC that I do not have sole custody of my daughter?



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Old 11-29-2010, 04:27 PM
 
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My story is similar to bendmom's, but even more complicated because I'm a foreigner and in a very corrupt district in an inhospitable country.

I understand your leper feeling.  I am between the second and third rounds of the courts process, and now have them for 5 days, twice a month, which is a start.  I also moved heaven and earth to get my address within a stone's throw on the same street as my ex, so my sons know that I am right over there, within sight, every single day, even if they aren't technically allowed to come to my home on my ex's days.  My ex actually forbids them to approach me in the common neighborhood courtyard which I am naturally allowed to enjoy along with the rest of the enclosed neighborhood, which is where my kids play everyday.  But who cares what he forbids, I'm a force of nature and a mama bear.


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