Grandparent Visitation-Update #13 - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 04:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well... the worrying I had when ex's abusive Mom and Stepdad threatened about taking us to court for grandparent visitation... yeah, that bridge has shown up to be crossed now.

 

I was served papers yesterday.  :(

 

I swear... like I need anything else to have to take off of work for right now???  Really???  I hate these people SOOO much.  And I HATE that I live in a stupid state that has a such law that allows grandparents to sue for visitation... I'M THE PARENT?!!!  Why can't I make the judgement call about not wanting my kids to EVER be alone with these people???

 

I already had to make the concession that they do see them, because ex stays at their house when he has the kids, and over his present living conditions, it actually is the better one. 

 

So they even see the kids at least once a month already!!!  But no... that's not good enough for these people... they want to get unsupervised grandparent visitation.  They are mad that ex and I won't let them take the kids anywhere.  Boo freakin hooo... every other parent gets to make that decision.

 

GRR!  I doubt that anyone has had to deal with being sued for grandparent visitation here before... but yeah, I'll ask anyway... stories?  Advice?

 

I already have a call into my lawyer... waiting for her to call me back... because really I want to know if I can fight to keep these people out of our lives, period.  I mean really... this is utter ridiciulousness.  I don't want my children learning this garbage.  "oh someone made a different decision than I want them to... let's sue..."  really?  grow up people, grow up.


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#2 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 04:47 AM
 
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OMG you're kidding?  WOW. I'm stunned. Apart from anything, if they are your ex's parents (step) then they can see the kids on his time. But neither you nor your ex want his parents to see the children? Then I should hope the judge will listen to you both. Is there any documented proof demonstrating a good reason for not letting them have the children unsupervised? If not can you get anything?

     This has to be one of the most ridiculous laws I have come across. Only in America.....

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#3 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 05:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Breathing easier... So far what I'm finding is showing that indeed the courts do uphold the parents decision if the parents are on the same page, and thankfully we are.  whew... Ex is actually very behind me on this one, Thank God!

 

He is upset that in the end it's hurting his Mom who is totally brainwashed by her husband who is majorly abusive and she does whatever he tells her to do, like filing this stupid lawsuit that is going to waste their money.

 

They should have been happy with Ex brining the kids there on his time... now, since they wanted to start this harassing S&*T, I'm going to fight for a protective order to keep these toxic UAV people away from my kids permanently.  Ex doesn't live there any longer.  He is going to find somewhere else to go with the kids on his time since his Mom and Stepdad have shown, again, what complete ignorant UAV's they are.

 

Basically what I'm seeing, they have to prove it would harm the child't health and welfare for them not to visit... HAHAHAHAA... I have lots of things to prove that's detrimental for the children TO visit.  Granted none of it documented, since his Mom refuses to press charges everytime her husband has beat her... but people have witnessed it.  My Ex witnessed his Stepdad slash her tires when she tried to leave him.    There is an old court case when ex took his stepdad to court in his teens because he wanted to go live with his Dad to get away from stepdad's abuse.

 

Ex apparantly told them when they threatened to do this, that this is really the last thing they want to do because he knew exactly how I'd react and that he'd back me, because this is going to only add stress to the kid's life by extension of me now having to compile all my records against these UAV's.

 

So did not need this extra BS work right now....


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#4 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 05:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Eh... okay, some wording is confusing... it seems PA has a Grandparent Visitation Act that allows visitation if their child is deceased or separated/divorced... but I can't determine if it's granted when the separated/divorced parents agree to not allow the grandparents to see the grandkids...  :-/

 

 

Grr... Lawyer types... if I'm reading this: http://www.hslda.org/Legislation/State/pa/2008/PASB74/default.asp Correctly, it looks like my fear may be correct.

 

That they put an Act into place without thinking it all through, (oh gee surprise) and that the ammendmant that the court can't force a FIT parent to provide visitation to the grandparents has never been put into it.

 

Our laws are so ridiculous.


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#5 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 07:57 AM
 
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My UAV in-laws have tried this before.  I know it's a different state, but what they were told in court when it was dismissed is that they had to prove a "prior, meaningful relationship," that we were now preventing.  Since they could not prove the prior relationship, it was dismissed.  I hope that this is the same case for you.  I live in fear that my STBX will take the kids to his parents' on his visitation, whenever this whole thing is over.

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#6 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 08:31 AM
 
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In many places (see your lawyer!), they would need to prove that they were being prevented from having any relationship with the kids, not just being prevented from seeing the kids "as much as they want whenever they want however they want".

So, the fact that your Ex lets them see the kids can also work against their case.

 

Deep breaths. Let your lawyer and your ex's lawyer work together to get their case thrown out of court. And, when it is, ask that the court make them pay your and your ex's attorney fees because their filing was "frivolous"...

 

If and only if it isn't thrown out, THEN work (together) to cut them off legally forever.

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#7 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 08:35 AM
 
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Also, I just looked at your link.

 

It talks about a BILL introduced in 2007. And it states that the bill died in 2008. So, from that link, it seems like it never became a law. And is therefore currently irrelevant.

 

Double check with your lawyer but...

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#8 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 08:36 AM
 
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I've had to deal with grandparents rights (I'm in BC Canada) My case was quite different from yours because I'm actually okay with ex's parents seeing the kids, they just took issue with not being able to dictate when, where and for how long they visited the kids. They hadn't seen the kids in over a year because they didn't contact me after XH was charged with child assault. When they did make contact, it was in the form of a card, directly to the kids, informing them they'd pick them up at 9AM on Easter Sunday, and they'd have them back 'by nightfall'!! The kids were 3 and 6 at that time, so I just didn't read it to them, and called XH's parents to set up a more appropriate kind of visit. They met the kids in the park near our home for a few hours. I meant for the visits to work into them having unsupervised access, but the way things progressed from there made me more and more aware that they had zero respect for me. I thought that if I let them have the kids alone, they'd let XH be at the visits (there was a no-contact order in place)

 

It only took 2 or 3 months before they started threatening me with court. They started doing nasty things like giving the kids bikes at the start of a visit and then at the end took them away and gave me a note, saying the bikes are for use at their home only (by this time I didn't intend to let them have unsupervised access anytime soon) Eventually, we had a family case conference. The agreement we came to was 2 months of 4-hour supervised visits, 2 months of 4 hour unsupervised visits close to my home, and then 2 months of 6 hour visits (2 visits per month) They were required to visit the kids counselor to discuss how to appropriately interact with the kids, and it was made clear that if XH were to attend the visits he would get in very big trouble. Ex MIL made a comment about being concerned about the kids 'health and well-being' (they bough the house XH and I owned... it was pretty mess when we left, because I had broken my arm and was doing the bare minimum for 2 months before the move... moving 2 weeks after you get your cast off = not fun! I wasn't going to extra effort to get it spic and span for her, so calling CPS was her revenge. CPS never came to visit, that's how seriously they took her complaint)

 

The access visits went okay for a short time... MIL would wonder aloud as they approached the door whether I was home or not (great thing to say to a kid with separation anxiety!) Then they started dropping the kids off in the neighbours yard and I'd find out they were home when I heard their voices! Eventually I made the decision to reduce the visits to once per month, for 6 hours because the kids were missing out on seeing my family, and on birthday parties with friends, that sort of thing. I offered to let them take the kids for dinner on a weeknight, but they declined. We went back to court and had a trial that time. In the end, they got 6 hours, once a month and my lawyer says that's only because it's what I wanted anyway! XH never attended any of the court dates.

 

There are a ton more details obviously, but thats the extremely condensed version. XH's parents can be emotionally abusive... I've been asked things like "Do you wish you never had kids?" and told "Daddy is nice now!!" (which leads to DD emailing him, and him not responding to them) but I'd rather the kids grow up with their eyes wide open about the grandparents, because they will have to create their own boundaries with them when they're older. DS is already wise to when they're attempting to manipulate him, and he resents it. If/when they decide they don't want to go on visits anymore (when they hit their teens, I suspect) we'll probably end up back in court.


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#9 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 09:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yay!  My lawyer finally called me back!!  She said those people are nuts.  lol  She said since ex and I are totally on the same page, and they already have access to the kids, they have no legal leg to stand on what so ever... However, here, we aren't able to ask them to cover our lawyer fees for filing frivulously, which I feel is more utter BS!!!  So...
 
Ex said he's going to go there tonight to try to talk to them civially to rescind their suit, or if they really want to be UAV's and ride it through, we will fight to have them removed from our lives all together and we will win, as we have the law on our side as him and I are standing united against them. 
 
HAHAHAHA... I feel accomplished now.  :D 
 
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#10 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 09:38 AM
 
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Eh... okay, some wording is confusing... it seems PA has a Grandparent Visitation Act that allows visitation if their child is deceased or separated/divorced... but I can't determine if it's granted when the separated/divorced parents agree to not allow the grandparents to see the grandkids...  :-/

 

 

Grr... Lawyer types... if I'm reading this: http://www.hslda.org/Legislation/State/pa/2008/PASB74/default.asp Correctly, it looks like my fear may be correct.

 

That they put an Act into place without thinking it all through, (oh gee surprise) and that the ammendmant that the court can't force a FIT parent to provide visitation to the grandparents has never been put into it.

 

Our laws are so ridiculous.

 

Didn't read further than this, but this is a BILL, and it DIED in 2008.  It's not law.  I'll poke around in a minute to see if I can find PA law.

 

I will say though, PM, If you DO NOT want unsupervised GP visits - you need your ex to continue allowing contact between his parents and your children.  Why?  In most places, I'm not sure about PA yet, the relationship needs to be CUT OFF in order for the grandparents to establish a prima facie case (meaning, to even get past the initial stages).  If your ex continues to allow them access, they DO NOT have a case, and a motion to dismiss on your end should be granted.

 

So, think twice about cutting off all contact.
 

 

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#11 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 09:43 AM
 
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Yay!  My lawyer finally called me back!!  She said those people are nuts.  lol  She said since ex and I are totally on the same page, and they already have access to the kids, they have no legal leg to stand on what so ever... However, here, we aren't able to ask them to cover our lawyer fees for filing frivulously, which I feel is more utter BS!!!  So...
 
Ex said he's going to go there tonight to try to talk to them civially to rescind their suit, or if they really want to be UAV's and ride it through, we will fight to have them removed from our lives all together and we will win, as we have the law on our side as him and I are standing united against them. 
 
HAHAHAHA... I feel accomplished now.  :D 
 

 

YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  This is what my lawyer told me when my ex's mom threatened to sue for GP visitation if I didn't allow her to be daycare.  LOL.
 

 

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#12 of 27 Old 03-04-2011, 09:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah... as much as I REALLY want these toxic people out of my life all together... *sighs*  Ex and I are offering to keep at least one of his weekends at their house a month, and they rescind their suit... if they want to fight that, then we are going after removal of them from our lives, and will lay it all out about how they are abusive, and unstable, etc. 


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#13 of 27 Old 03-07-2011, 04:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Update ~~

 

Ex called me yesterday to tell me he finally talked to his Mom, and she isn't budging on the suit. She told him that she feels when he is there on the weekends with the kids it's HIS time and they want their OWN time and to be able to take the kids whenever they want, alone. WTF?!!! What grandparent demands that??!! And it gets better… she said she only is suing me because she talked to his eldest DD's Mom and she agreed that they can take DSD whenever they want! And they didn't even bother asking me because they know how I am and know how I'd react, so they are just taking me straight to court.

 

They are the most self entitled ignorant people EVER!!!  WTF??!! Um, could you disrespect me as a parent even more?

 

Who does this?!  "Oh, I don't like that you won't let me take YOUR kid whenever I want, so I'm going to take you to court." I swear if the court actually grants this BS, I'm left with no choice but to start figuring out how to move to Canada… how in the world should grandparent "rights" trump the REAL rights of the actual PARENTS?!

 

This whole thing has me REALLY upset and killing my happy life buzz a little bit.

 

I mean really, who lets the grandparents just take a toddler and an infant, both with special medical needs, WHENEVER they want??!!!  Really??!  GRRRRRR!  And not allowing this somehow makes me irrational, and a confrontational B! that obviously can't see reason, so I need to be taken to court?!  Really??!

 

I just don't understand how everytime life starts mellowing out and sailing smoothly along, something like this has to come up.  *sighs*


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#14 of 27 Old 03-07-2011, 05:17 AM
 
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Update ~~

 

Ex called me yesterday to tell me he finally talked to his Mom, and she isn't budging on the suit. She told him that she feels when he is there on the weekends with the kids it's HIS time and they want their OWN time and to be able to take the kids whenever they want, alone. WTF?!!! What grandparent demands that??!! And it gets better… she said she only is suing me because she talked to his eldest DD's Mom and she agreed that they can take DSD whenever they want! And they didn't even bother asking me because they know how I am and know how I'd react, so they are just taking me straight to court.

 

They are the most self entitled ignorant people EVER!!!  WTF??!! Um, could you disrespect me as a parent even more?

 

Who does this?!  "Oh, I don't like that you won't let me take YOUR kid whenever I want, so I'm going to take you to court." I swear if the court actually grants this BS, I'm left with no choice but to start figuring out how to move to Canada… how in the world should grandparent "rights" trump the REAL rights of the actual PARENTS?!

 

This whole thing has me REALLY upset and killing my happy life buzz a little bit.

 

I mean really, who lets the grandparents just take a toddler and an infant, both with special medical needs, WHENEVER they want??!!!  Really??!  GRRRRRR!  And not allowing this somehow makes me irrational, and a confrontational B! that obviously can't see reason, so I need to be taken to court?!  Really??!

 

I just don't understand how everytime life starts mellowing out and sailing smoothly along, something like this has to come up.  *sighs*


hug.gif  Deep breaths mama.  GP visitation doesn't work the way they want it to.  Seriously, they aren't being completely denied access, so it won't happen.  Even if it DOES happen, and they get GP unsupervised visits, it'll be like, 6hours per month.  Regularly scheduled, just like any other visitation plan.  Why on earth would THEY be able to take the kids whenever the heck they want to, when not even your kids DAD can pick them up whenever he wants?  It won't happen. 

 

Have you're lawyer show up in court and request a dismissal.  If you ex can show to the court date that will be good too, so that he can attest to the fact that he takes the kids over there all the time.  It's going to be fine.  Deep breaths!!!

 

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#15 of 27 Old 03-07-2011, 05:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I was trying to do the conference without the lawyer.  She said I could, and she thinks they don't have any legal ground to stand on... but I'm also worried about them being granted unsupervised visitation!  Even though it sounds utterly ridiculous considering both ex and I are on the same page with them not having the kids alone, but he does take them there.

 

I just don't really have the money to spend on having a lawyer to come to the conference to be like, really, this is BS.  This whole thing is so agitating.

 

Can I ask for a dismissal myself?


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#16 of 27 Old 03-07-2011, 09:30 AM
 
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It's ridiculous that they're allowed to file that kind of thing! But... I suppose it's in line with other ridiculous filings we hear about here.... :(   If it were me, I'd want the lawyer with me and pay her back as I was able. But... you should be OK there yourself and asking for the whole thing to be dismissed. If it's not dismissed, it'll become very clear very quickly that they dont' have a leg to stand on.

 

 

 

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#17 of 27 Old 03-08-2011, 10:03 AM
 
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Wait... they just had you served, not XH? Are you both on the application for an order? That was one of the mistakes my ex in-laws made... they had to have me re-served, and serve XH. Court doesn't accept "Well, he's our son so we don't need him here because he agrees with us!" Not that he actually bothered to show for court once he was ordered to be there...

 

They're letting their crazy show... if they go into court demanding to see the kids whenever they want, they'll be a lot less likely to get any specified time than if they asked for, say three hours every weekend. You have to be very articulate about what you want, so it's easy for the judge to order it. For my trial, I had my lawyer... I may have been able to handle it myself, but they had a real slimeball of a lawyer representing them, and it's extremely intimidating. With the lawyer, I could just put the whole thing out of my head and know it was being taken care of.

 

One thing that I think was important to emphasize was that the kids also like to spend time with their cousins, aunts and uncles (my sisters' families), their maternal grandparents and great-grandparents, they often have social events on weekends, like a friends' birthday, that we enjoy planning family outings on our own, and that the kids also need some down-time where there's nothing planned. Weekend time is at a premium, and it's just NOT FAIR to the kids to carve out huge chunks of time for one set of grandparents. My ex in-laws will not take the kids on week nights... I've offered for them to take the kids for dinnertime on a weeknight and they aren't interested. I'd be totally okay with the kids going on a weeknight for a few hours, so I keep right on offering that. The court looks at it as "Well, you want visitation time, why are you unwilling to make this work, since it's what's convenient for the kids?"

 

Another thing to consider is that generally with grandparents, you aren't required to do any of the transportation. If they do get some specified access, it will be their responsibility to pick up and drop off the kids, so they will have to have their own car seats. My ex in-laws were required to drive to the car insurance place and be shown how to properly install them. They weren't allowed to take the kids until they did that, as well as visit the kids counselor (the counselor was disgusted by MIL, it was very validating to hear what she had to say about their visit with her) If it comes down to it (which I doubt it will) and they're going to have some unsupervised access, ask that they be required to consult with the kids specialist/ therapist so they'll be able to properly care for them.


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#18 of 27 Old 03-16-2011, 04:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So ex tried to talk to them... and they said they are still moving forward with the suit.  GRRR!!! 

 

I'm agitated with ex too.  He has talked to them once!  And pretty much has washed his hands of it all.  He's like, I talked to them once, they didn't care what I had to say, there is nothing left to do but go to court.

 

It's infuriating.  I don't have TIME to go to court!!!  If I lose my job over people wanting to control me and my decisions regarding my children... I'm going to explode. 

 


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#19 of 27 Old 03-16-2011, 11:05 AM
 
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Is cutting them out completely an option?  It seems like you keep offering and they are being unreasonable and vindictive.  The past abuse is scary.

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#20 of 27 Old 03-16-2011, 05:02 PM
 
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So ex tried to talk to them... and they said they are still moving forward with the suit.  GRRR!!! 

 

I'm agitated with ex too.  He has talked to them once!  And pretty much has washed his hands of it all.  He's like, I talked to them once, they didn't care what I had to say, there is nothing left to do but go to court.

 

It's infuriating.  I don't have TIME to go to court!!!  If I lose my job over people wanting to control me and my decisions regarding my children... I'm going to explode. 

 


I would try to avoid court at all costs.  You need to talk to your lawyer about this, but what about cross claiming for damages (punitive and compensatory - things like lost wages for being out of work due to this stupid lawsuit, and attorney's fees) for a frivilous suit?  Then tell them you'll drop YOUR claim if they drop theres?  I highly highly doubt they will get GP visitation (there access hasn't been cut off - which I think is the requirement to get GP visits), and the SHOULD have to pay for your lawyers fees b/c the suit is completely frivilous.

 

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#21 of 27 Old 08-23-2011, 08:21 AM
 
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I just sent you a pm as we are in VERY similar situations and i'm sure I might be of some help to you in all this.  We are shooting on 4 years now since the grandparents filed for visitation and we were just served papers again to go back for another round of fighting.  Don't let anything or anyone fool you...even if the parents are on the same page and have showed up to fight together the grandparents (if they have created a bond) will get visitation of your children.  In our case they have one weekend a month 2 nights per month from 5-7, one full week in the summer, grandparents day, their birthdays, 6 hours 3 days before or 3 days after a holiday, and various other time.  Don't think that it's not possible because it is.  The grandparents we are dealing with our completely obsessed with our child and it has come to a point where they have tried ripping our child out of his carseat while the car was moving because we refused to drop him off in a bad situation.  I'd love to chat... :)

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#22 of 27 Old 08-24-2011, 04:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well for me this issue is dormant... *knocks on wood*

 

I think my ex's Mom finally put her foot down to her husband and refused to add him to the case, because we know it all stemmed from him wanting to cause drama and not her.  We haven't heard anything at all from them in months and I'm hoping it stays that way.  *crosses fingers*  The only way it was going to go to trial was if she re-submitted because she did not show to the conference and the step-dad was never part of the case paperwork.

 

I'm sorry you are going through this.  *hugs*  It is absolutely ridiculous that a court can tell a parent who can see their child, grandparent or not, if they are bad news a parent should be able to make that judgment call.  Our court systems are very sad.

 

I wish you luck and strength!!


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#23 of 27 Old 03-04-2012, 05:25 PM
 
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I understand.  I had a restraining order on my ex wife.  She has moved to Arizona from NJ and I have sole custody.  As a result her mother has filed and won for grandparent  visitation.  The following is a quick write up of my case.  I have also posted the video on youtube. 

 

In Monmouth County NJ Judge Vernoia has made a grandparent visitation ruling with 11 photos of only the children with no grandparent in them.  One of the photos is of the children (4 & 5 years old) at a Rutgers tailgating party with uncontrolled liquor all around.  It was requested to order an evaluation as required by the law to prove that the grandmother has an unusual bond but he refused to.  During every exchange a police officer has to rip the children from their father and the grandmother is constantly threatening to have the father arrested in front of the children and now the children are exhibiting psychological damage that is happening during the visitations and exchanges and they have been returned with bodily injuries.   The grandmother is refusing to feed the children during the visitation.  This has been brought to DYFS attention and the Governor’s office and the video of the complete exchanges has been provided.  It is not expected that any thing will happen to the grandmother because one of her immediate family members is a DYFS employee that has been coaching her and assisting with and using DYFS resources in this case.  This is all documented in the courts and the courts have demonstrated a preference for females in Monmouth County.  

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#24 of 27 Old 03-08-2012, 04:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Concern Father View Post

I understand.  I had a restraining order on my ex wife.  She has moved to Arizona from NJ and I have sole custody.  As a result her mother has filed and won for grandparent  visitation.  The following is a quick write up of my case.  I have also posted the video on youtube. 

 

In Monmouth County NJ Judge Vernoia has made a grandparent visitation ruling with 11 photos of only the children with no grandparent in them.  One of the photos is of the children (4 & 5 years old) at a Rutgers tailgating party with uncontrolled liquor all around.  It was requested to order an evaluation as required by the law to prove that the grandmother has an unusual bond but he refused to.  During every exchange a police officer has to rip the children from their father and the grandmother is constantly threatening to have the father arrested in front of the children and now the children are exhibiting psychological damage that is happening during the visitations and exchanges and they have been returned with bodily injuries.   The grandmother is refusing to feed the children during the visitation.  This has been brought to DYFS attention and the Governor’s office and the video of the complete exchanges has been provided.  It is not expected that any thing will happen to the grandmother because one of her immediate family members is a DYFS employee that has been coaching her and assisting with and using DYFS resources in this case.  This is all documented in the courts and the courts have demonstrated a preference for females in Monmouth County.  


Your story is so sad. :-(   My heart and prayers are with your children.

 


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#25 of 27 Old 04-11-2012, 12:48 AM
 
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Last I checked Florida has no grandparent rights laws.  I checked because I am afraid of my own inlaws.  It found it funny that I would have to move to where they live to prevent them from having the possibility of getting grandparent rights.  That was a few years back though.  Don't know current statutes.  (just in case the move to Canada isn't workable...)  I hope you never need it.

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#26 of 27 Old 04-11-2012, 06:35 AM
 
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The District of Columbia does not recognize grandparent rights either. I'm staying put!!

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#27 of 27 Old 04-11-2012, 09:41 AM
 
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you should ask for attorney fees when you end up going to court over it. i live in atlanta and here they lean heaving towards letting people have access unless you can prove drug/physical abuse-but even then they want visitation to occur but with supervision. however im not sure about grandparents, though i dont think your situation is uncommon at all. my parents have been really annoying about seeing my son even when i left my parents home because my father was being abusive. and ive had other people tell me similar stories. so at least you know youre not alone. have you asked your lawyer about supervised visitations? that would be a compromise, although they should just let you, THE MOTHER, decide who your children spend time with. wouldnt that be a great world? : )


 

 
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