Is this reasonable or am I way off? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 14 Old 06-19-2011, 07:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sbx doesn't request or ask me if he can shorten or totally miss his parenting times, he informs me. I've reached my limit and wrote all his parenting dates and times down and sent it to both sbx and his attorney a while back, informing sbx that if he wanted to changer any of the dates/times, he needed to send a request by email to me. Well, of cause he is pitching a total fit saying it's not written anywhere that he needs to do that etc. Well, last night he informed me via text he was returning our children tonight (Sunday 8pm) instead of the agreed time/ date, Monday 10am. I've refused and he now still has the kids and told me I have to pick them (the children) from his moms place of work (which I don't actually know the location of). It is court ordered that he is responsible for pick up and drop offs.

 

   Am I being a bully? Should I be more flexible and let him pick up drop off whenever he wants to? I don't mind so much if he gave me notice (7 days) by email, but this being told the night before just rubs me the wrong way.

 

Opinions? Be honest, even if it's not what you think I want to hear!!! Thanks!!

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#2 of 14 Old 06-19-2011, 07:37 PM
 
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Can you just side-step gracefully and say "Oh sorry, I have other plans. I'll be back at our agreed-upon time. If you want to change our agreement because the times don't work for you, please submit it in writing and we can see about making a new agreement that works for us. Ta ta!" Then politely let him know that if he doesn't return the children at the agree-upon time or at a time that you agree works for you, that you'll be contacting your lawyer. It is not okay for him to just change plans without working it out with you. My STBX talks the same way. I think that they use that kind of language ("will" rather than "would it be alright if") because they don't want us to make it a discussion. But it's just incredibly rude.


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#3 of 14 Old 06-19-2011, 07:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh, tried that, didn't work. He has responded how he plans to inform the court that I "refused to receive the boys" at the time he wanted lol.

 

he also told me how he isn't supposed to keep our boys on Sunday nights, even though it's in the signed parenting agreement, and I sent the full list of dates for the next 3 MONTHS.

 

He has also written that he isn't required to use the word "please" to me lol. Seriously, this man is in a world of his own....

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#4 of 14 Old 06-19-2011, 10:14 PM
 
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I don't think you should be flexible with him. It's fine and desirable to be flexible on both sides, in a functioning coparenting situation. That's not this. He's trying to yank your chain by having you at his beck and call, making sure that you never know what to expect and that you are constantly in reactive mode. This is really the one thing that makes up for all the difficulties of single parenthood- you don't have to be controlled by him anymore. You can be unavailable during their visitation time, just don't answer the phone. Make sure you document his pick up and drop off times. If he tries to retaliate by bringing them home late, document that and take him to court. Your parenting plan is a legally binding agreement, which he is legally obligated to follow. You don't have to play his games, just let him dig a grave for himself. He's behaving like an a**.whistling.gif


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#5 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 03:48 AM
 
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You really shouldn't force him to exercise all of his parenting time.  It's his parenting time to shorten if he so chooses.  Not only that, how do you think the kids feel when he tells them that they can't go home early because Mommy said no?  You should have had the kids come home and documented how he didn't exercise all of his parenting time. 

 

And if this is a regular occurence (I suggest keeping a journal) and child support is calculated using the overnights that he is giving up, I would go back and have the parenting plan and child support reflect the actual parenting time.   

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#6 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 03:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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This has really been etting at me. His last messages to me were that he wouldn't be bringing our boys home today (monday) so I am waiting for a more decent time to call  my attorney for advice. Legally speaking it will be kidnapping if he doesn't return the children at 10am from what I remember my attorney telling me a few months back, but I want confirmation before I call the police.

 

I did write an email declining taking his parenting time for next monday when we have court. He can book and pay for a babysitter, the same as I would have to do if it was any other day.

 

I wish I could sleep, I called home and had a cry with my mom, then she told me how my Dad had a small stroke a few weeks ago. Every time I tried to sleep I started crying.

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#7 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 06:58 AM
 
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:(  No advice.  Just sympathies.  It sounds like you've been trying everything rational.  My first reaction is that you can't really force him to keep them the whole time.  If you're unavailable, that's different, but it does sound like he's just trying to exert power because he can.  Poor kids though.  I've taken DS back early lots of times, but it's been because he's getting pretty hysterical and is begging to come home.  Once in a while, XH will have something come up and *ask* if it's ok.  Asking makes all the difference!  If he TOLD me, I'd be getting all sorts of pissed off and our co-parenting arrangement would quickly deteriorate.

 

As for not bringing them back!!!  Um, NO.  Hope your lawyer calls you back asap!   Not ok!!! 

 

He definitely sounds like the type who is going to insist on his own rules and no one can tell him what to do from everything you've said.  Hope you get it sorted soon!! 

 

Take care!!

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#8 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 07:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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it's 10:35 am here and I have just sent an email to sbx asking when he is returning our children (as per court order) or where they are. This is following my attornies advice. I also sent the email to sbx's attorney. I want her to know what games the man plays.

   I did finally fall asleep at 7am, but woke up at 9am. This has got me sick to my stomach.

    I have been advised to stay with the court agreed parenting scedule from now on. No more bending over to accomodate sbx. We will be submitting a motion for his parenting time to be decreased on the basis that he is just too unreliable with the midweek visits. Neither the children nor I know if he is ever coming or not. I can not deal with that, so how are they supposed to be able to?

    Nothing i can do until he answers my email

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#9 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 07:59 AM
 
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He's being terribly controlling, and as I too have a difficult ex, I can more than sympathize.  But your idea about decreasing his parenting time, period, is the best one.  I realize that at the moment he's playing games, not having the kids back, and I hope they come home soon!  But in general, if he wants to bring the kids home early, I would let him - for the kids' sake.  Because first they know their father doesn't want to spend his full time with them, then they hear their mother won't let them come home.  I wouldn't want any kids to feel that way, even if ex is being a butt. 

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#10 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 08:00 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goodmom2008 View Post

You really shouldn't force him to exercise all of his parenting time.  why should she be forced to take over for him when he no longer feels like parenting?

It's his parenting time to shorten if he so chooses.  and . . . can she shorten hers if she so chooses?  if she just doesn't feel like being a mom that day?

Not only that, how do you think the kids feel when he tells them that they can't go home early because Mommy said no?  he shouldn't say that, but if he chooses to say something so stupid and hurtful to his children, that's not her fault. she is not responsible for his bad behavior, poor choices, or crappy parenting.  anyway, what about the flipside?  how do you think the kids feel knowing their dad only spends a small fraction of their days with them, yet doesn't even want all of that portion of time?  even without anyone saying it, they get the message that daddy could spend more time with them but chooses not to.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hillymum View Post

This has really been etting at me. His last messages to me were that he wouldn't be bringing our boys home today (monday) so I am waiting for a more decent time to call  my attorney for advice. Legally speaking it will be kidnapping if he doesn't return the children at 10am from what I remember my attorney telling me a few months back, but I want confirmation before I call the police.

 

I did write an email declining taking his parenting time for next monday when we have court. He can book and pay for a babysitter, the same as I would have to do if it was any other day.  exactly!  you have to be in court, too, so what?  you should hire a babysitter since he doesn't wanna?

 

I wish I could sleep, I called home and had a cry with my mom, then she told me how my Dad had a small stroke a few weeks ago. Every time I tried to sleep I started crying.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hillymum View Post

it's 10:35 am here and I have just sent an email to sbx asking when he is returning our children (as per court order) or where they are. This is following my attornies advice. I also sent the email to sbx's attorney. I want her to know what games the man plays.

   I did finally fall asleep at 7am, but woke up at 9am. This has got me sick to my stomach.

    I have been advised to stay with the court agreed parenting scedule from now on. No more bending over to accomodate sbx. We will be submitting a motion for his parenting time to be decreased on the basis that he is just too unreliable with the midweek visits. Neither the children nor I know if he is ever coming or not. I can not deal with that, so how are they supposed to be able to?

    Nothing i can do until he answers my email



i'm so sorry this is happening.  hopefully his lawyer will be able to get through to him. 

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#11 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 08:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goodmom2008 View Post

You really shouldn't force him to exercise all of his parenting time.  It's his parenting time to shorten if he so chooses.  Not only that, how do you think the kids feel when he tells them that they can't go home early because Mommy said no?  You should have had the kids come home and documented how he didn't exercise all of his parenting time. 

 

 


When my kids were small, if their dad was supposed to have them I might have used that as an opportunity to pick up extra shifts at work. It could cause employment/childcare conflict if the kids were suddenly my responsibility a full 24 hours before originally planned.

 

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#12 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 09:07 AM
 
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I have no advice... I go through the same BS with EX.  I second what DD said in purple... I can't just up and suddenly decide to cut my parenting time in half.  :p (not that I want to, but to make a point)... it's just infuriating that the guys can play these games.

 

Same as 2xy...  I can't pick up extra shifts at work, but I've tried to set up various plans/events and have had to cancel because EX cancels at last minute.

 

I've gotten the advice to not rely on EX and start searching for an on-call back up sitter for those times I really need it.  Trying to do that now.  Maybe it's something you can look into too, hillymum?

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#13 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 09:30 AM
 
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I am not in the same situation as you, but when my DS (now 10 yo) was a baby, my DH didn't want to change diapers, give baths etc.  I wanted DH to come home and do these things more to bond with his son than to help me (although the help would have been nice).  I found us arguing about who was going to do what.  When DS was four months old I made a promise to myself that my child(ren) would never again hear his parents arguing over who would take care of him (as if no one wanted to).  I vowed that if DH didn't want to do something, I would do it with a smile and I have made that my habit to this day (don't want to take him to baseball?  I'll do it!).  It is not always easy, but definitely worth every minute of extra effort.  In your case, if you have plans (or have to work) then say so, if you can take your boys, then take them.  They really need somewhere they know they can go and be wanted.  This isn't fair to you and lets Dad off the hook, but it can't be about Dad, it has to be about those boys.

 

Good luck, it sounds like you are having a tough time.

 

Liz

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#14 of 14 Old 06-20-2011, 10:08 AM
 
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liz, when you say you aren't in that situation, do you mean you're not a single mom?  so it's not all on you, all the time? 

 

i think taking care of ourselves is really critical to our ability to parent well (that goes for anyone, not just single parents).  i don't think there is anything damaging in the message, "no, i will not be with you for the next 24 hours - there are some other things i need to do.  daddy/grandma/someone else will take care of you, and i will be so happy to see you tomorrow.  i love you.  i'll miss you.  goodbye."  it can't be any more damaging than having to say, "i know honey, i wish we could spend the day together too, but i have to go to work today.  have fun at daycare!  i love you.  goodbye."  our children may experience sadness, but that is OKAY.  it doesn't mean they will question whether they are loved and wanted.

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