After age 12 step DD says she doesn't "have" to visit anymore, is this "true"??? - Mothering Forums
Blended and Step Family Parenting > After age 12 step DD says she doesn't "have" to visit anymore, is this "true"???
kimmom's Avatar kimmom 06:20 PM 08-24-2010
We are in Canada so I don't know if that makes the rules change. I have a 12 year old step DD , her Mom and DH have been split since she was a baby. They have joint custody with primary residence with her Mom. We usually have her 5 weeks in the summer, 1 at Christmas, 1 at Spring Break and maybe a long weekend.. Step DD had told me this winter her Mom has said once she is 12 its up to her if she comes anymore well now that she is 12 she doesn't want to come and her Mom says she will not force her anymore. Her Mom hurtfully told DH that she has never wanted to come and she has always had to force her since she was baby.. We are trying to figure out if there any rules after age 12, we know that the judge takes the child's opinion into consideration after 12 but our understanding was that would only be if we tried to change custody which we aren't, DH just wants fair visitation rights. Her Mom is not good to deal with at all and is VERY manipulative, not telling the truth and coming up with excuses why she can't come visit. We live on a farm and are building a cob home, we homeschool our other 4 kids but when she is here she loves it and has a blast! We have a very different lifestyle from her Mom and their family but we can see no reason why she wouldnt want to come other than her Mom influencing/manipulating her too.

baileyann3's Avatar baileyann3 06:29 PM 08-24-2010
I have no real advice to offer. I just wanted to say that when I was growing up with that exact schedule, at the beginning of every summer I would cry to my mom to let me not go, and then at the end of every summer I would cry I had to come home.

I loved both of my parents very much and I wouldn't take the fact that you dsd says she doesn't want to go to your house to heart. Hugs to you
RaeDyCo's Avatar RaeDyCo 06:35 PM 08-24-2010
I can't imagine that is true, unless it was in the original custody agreement or the mum wants to change the agreement.

I'm not sure what province you are in but check the Family Law Act for your province. I doubt age 12 is referred to though.
kimmom's Avatar kimmom 06:42 PM 08-24-2010
We are in BC.. We have been looking up info and cant find anything on it other than at 12 IN COURT they have a say.. Also nothing in the original papers saying anything about age 12
and baileyann3 thanks.. for the kind words!!!
4Blessings's Avatar 4Blessings 06:48 PM 08-24-2010
I made the choice at around age 12 to skip all "required" visitations with my mom. Not because I was being manipulated but because I truly did not want to go.

How far apart do you live? Can your hubby take her out for an evening for dinner or a walk where he can talk to her and discuss how she feels?

Twelve can be a difficult age and if she has four younger sibs to deal with when she comes to visit she may not have the opportunity to express her feelings uninterrupted.

Perhaps a little one-on-one time with dad would provide her with an opportunity to discuss the situation and you could go from there. If she truly doesn't want to visit in the way it is currently set up it might be time to make some adjustments to the visitation schedule.
JL83's Avatar JL83 06:50 PM 08-24-2010
My friend was in a situation where her child wanted to move to her dad's. She was advised by her lawyer that if it went to court (she's in Alberta) the judge would side with the teen.
kimmom's Avatar kimmom 07:01 PM 08-24-2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4Blessings View Post
I made the choice at around age 12 to skip all "required" visitations with my mom. Not because I was being manipulated but because I truly did not want to go.

How far apart do you live? Can your hubby take her out for an evening for dinner or a walk where he can talk to her and discuss how she feels?

Twelve can be a difficult age and if she has four younger sibs to deal with when she comes to visit she may not have the opportunity to express her feelings uninterrupted.

Perhaps a little one-on-one time with dad would provide her with an opportunity to discuss the situation and you could go from there. If she truly doesn't want to visit in the way it is currently set up it might be time to make some adjustments to the visitation schedule.
I meant to say we feel it is her Mom's manipulation not step DDs..
We live an hour drive then a 1.5 hour ferry then a 3 hour drive away from her so its not a quick (or CHEAP!) trip to visit. He does talk with her alot on the phone and has discussed it with her. We know it is "not easy" for her to leave her Moms to visit but feel she is still a child and if she is given the choice now it will not get any easier. We have only had her for one week so far this summer vacation, it is written that we should have her for 5 weeks.
PoppyMama's Avatar PoppyMama 07:29 PM 08-24-2010
As kids get towards 12 their social lives become very important and it's really difficult to spend most of your vacation time far away from your friends and activities. Would it be possible for her father to talk to her and empathize with the fact that her life isn't the way she would prefer through no fault/choice of her own? Maybe he can come up with a compromise for her so that she can visit less but still see her family.
pinksprklybarefoot 07:41 PM 08-24-2010
Could she bring a friend with for maybe two separate one-week visits? That might help. I realize that your food cost would go up a bit, but wouldn't that be work having a not-sullen pre-teen visiting? It might make the visit more enjoyable for everyone.
Ceinwen's Avatar Ceinwen 11:46 PM 08-25-2010
I'm in Ontario and my attorney advised me that around that age - the judge would strongly consider the child's feelings. Every year that they're older, they have more and more say in it.
zebra15's Avatar zebra15 11:55 PM 08-25-2010
In in the US but as a single parent (the father has no visits or rights at the moment) I would want my child to have a say in what happens. -If he was every able to have visits etc... Espicially moving toward the teen years, whether the 'parents' get along or not is a moot point, the child should have a say. JMO...

Maybe you can do a web-meeting type of thing, share things via youtube, more stuff like that to supplement less inperson visits.
2xy's Avatar 2xy 12:04 AM 08-26-2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by PoppyMama View Post
As kids get towards 12 their social lives become very important and it's really difficult to spend most of your vacation time far away from your friends and activities.
Yup. My friend's 17yo daughter has been balking about visiting her dad for several years now. She has no friends where he lives, he doesn't know what to do with a teenage girl, and he complains if she spends too much time texting her friends or talking to them on the phone.
ProtoLawyer's Avatar ProtoLawyer 03:18 AM 08-26-2010
(this is not legal advice)

A judge generally will give a 12 yo consideration (exactly how much depends on the child and the judge and the jurisdiction), but a judge won't (usually) allow a child to wholesale refuse a relationship with a parent unless there's abuse, etc. So a schedule might change to accommodate a child's wishes/activities, but no judge I know of will actually allow a child to decide she doesn't want to see her father anymore ad change the order accordingly.

Good luck.
LittleBlessings's Avatar LittleBlessings 03:25 AM 08-26-2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtoLawyer View Post
(this is not legal advice)

A judge generally will give a 12 yo consideration (exactly how much depends on the child and the judge and the jurisdiction), but a judge won't (usually) allow a child to wholesale refuse a relationship with a parent unless there's abuse, etc. So a schedule might change to accommodate a child's wishes/activities, but no judge I know of will actually allow a child to decide she doesn't want to see her father anymore ad change the order accordingly.

Good luck.

this is also what my understanding is
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