I've been put in a tough situation. DD is 4 years old. Her father has always been in-and-out of her life. He currently lives in a different state far away from us. Back in August he stopped calling (phone visitation set-up for once a week). Today, he finally called and left a message saying he's in our area and wants to see DD.
DD's father has never been consistent in her life. He's gone as long as a year without seeing her. Besides being in her life until she was 3 months old. He's only visited her a handful of times. DD know's he is her dad but often tells me she doesn't want to talk about it. I don't think it is fair to her to let EX have a visit when he has not made any contact in 4+ months. I have also found out through the grape-vine that he is expecting a baby and I fear he will bring it up and she will be confused. He also doesn't provide child support (his parents pay me some money).
I need some input on how I should handle this. I personally want to deny the visit until he has proven to make better contact. A friend has mentioned that I should deny the visit push for reunification therapy between them. But he lives in a different state so I don't know what that will do.
Any advice would be much appreciated!
What is the legal arrangement? Do you have sole custody and the right to refuse visitation?
My gut says "no visit" because it may be painful and confusing for your DD... unless perhaps you take her to a playground and her sperm donor shows up to say hello, so that there's an option to leave whenever you want (or whenever your DD says she wants to).
can you ask your dd what she wants to do? Hey- Bobs in town- do you want to see him? if not its totally ok?
I don't know how I feel about it- but as an adoptee- I would have liked to probably been asked. But at four I just don't know.
You could bring up topic of her dad and see how she responds and go from there.
I think whatever you do should be done in best interest of your dd and not just because you want to hurt him for making bad choices.
My gut says - hell no too tho. What a jerk.
Thank you for the replies! I do have sole custody. I don't know what entitles a right to refusal of visitation. As much as I'm hurt by him (for not calling & just how he has treated us all along) I do understand that I can't refuse the visitation just to get back at him. It's all about being in the best interest of DD. I'm just torn between what is the best interest. I don't think it's going to hurt her and yet I don't think it will benefit her. He's just the same old guy that comes around when he wants to.
I'm starting to think that he's feeling obligated to visit because he's in town and it wouldn't look good if he was here and never called us. But does he actually care? If it's an obligation then why even visit. Why wouldn't he give me a heads up before coming?
I would tell him that you'd be happy to set up regular visitation (which shows that you are willing to foster a relationship between them) but that it's upsetting for your DD to have him drop in and out. The only other thing I'd offer is what HAM suggested - he can meet you at a park where you usually take her.
Robin~ single, work-at-home momma to my Wonderboys
BigKid (6/00) & LittleBoy (6/04)
This is a tough one, because she is four and likely less able to understand. From my perspective, I think a short supervised get-together with you there might be a good option, with a directive that next time he needs to give you more notice and that consistent parenting is essential to your daughter's emotional health...
Mom to two terrific kiddos, affirming every day that the Universe is unfolding as it should and all is well...
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