What if you have no one to leave your children to in a will? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 42 Old 01-09-2010, 02:51 AM
 
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OP: sounds like you need to go with the lesser of all evils and pray that you and your partner are around until your children are well into adulthood.

AFM: We are on the non-family bandwagon too. My best friend -- who's been more like a sister to me since we were eight -- would take her. I wouldn't have it any other way. DD sees her almost every day, she lives around the corner, she was my labour coach and prenatal class buddy (squeamish DP), and she knows me inside-out so knows how DP and I would want DD raised.

dust.gifFour-eyed tattooed fairy godmother queer, mama to my lucky star (5) and little bird (2.5). Resident storyteller at www.thestoryforest.com. Enchanting audiostories for curious kids. Come play in the forest!
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#32 of 42 Old 01-09-2010, 05:24 AM
 
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Eugh, I know.

My parents are great, but too old, have already raised six kids, and have tactfully intimated that they don't want to. Not that they don't love DD, but they've DONE child-raising (and how!). Plus, they're struggling financially and might not be able to afford her.

My in-laws are out because of a difference in religious beliefs and general attitudes to life and parenting. SIL is out for similar reasons (and again, I'm not sure she'd want to).

I have one sister who's great - is very in sync with me about education, parenting styles, everything. Heck, I'd be able to rest easy in my grave knowing she was showing DD all the "right" movies and reading her all the "necessary" books! It would be a no-brainer... except she's likely to shortly marry a guy with mental health issues who's killed two people. And as nice as the guy is, I couldn't in conscience leave my daughter to him.

I have four other sisters, but they're all single and only one of them is grown up. And she lives on the other side of the world and has met DD once. She'd love her, but it would be problematic for many reasons.

So our current "least worst" option is a family we know in a city 1 1/2 hours away, with two kids. Almost identical religious beliefs, lovely people, adore kids and are willing to take DD. But they're definitely stricter and more structured than we are, and not homeschoolers, and not family (which I know isn't the be-all and end-all, but our family has distinct quirks and I'd like us to all stay together).

Sigh. It isn't ideal. But she'd be loved and provided for. I'd be happy if Sister #2 married a nice stable guy and moved back to NZ, though.

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#33 of 42 Old 01-09-2010, 06:27 AM
 
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Originally Posted by laohaire View Post
This is not a short term solution, but assuming you have no suitable friends now either - make some. Go to FYT and get together with some MDC mamas. Or join local playgroups or whatever. Cultivate a friendship for this.

This said by a mama who is having a really hard time making friends (and nobody else from MDC in my county), but if you're really alone, you need to make a support network.
Reallllly good plan.I am in a similar situation...there isn't anybody. Dh doesn't know if his extended family is even alivehis parents were very abusive , had rigths terminated and hasn't seen his family in over 15 years.

My Mom LOVES my kids, but hasn't even been able to meet the youngest yet as she is so ill, and physically wouldn't be able to take care of them.

My one brother loves my kids, they know him, he is local, but also has a serious history of drugs, alcohol and criminal past, and even though he is working to change his life around for his child, could in no way handle my four in addition to his.

My other brother is not local, lives in the boonies in another province and my kids hardly know him at all, he has also said on multiple occasions he doesn't think he wants kids ever. He also has multiple health issues that would make it impossible.

We have one set of friends who might say they could but...they are not local, they moved out of town a while back and we only see them a couple of times a year now, they have a sn child and health issues as well, and I am pretty sure could not handle my four.

I keep thinking about how I don't even have anyone I could have babysit my kids in case of an emergency, never mind if we died who could take them in!

I really need to start to cultivate an outside community for the kids if not for myself! But it is scary.

Nancy, Mom to Kyra (2005), Zoe (2006), Callie (2007) (2008), and Xavier (2009)
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#34 of 42 Old 01-10-2010, 10:09 AM
 
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Originally Posted by velochic View Post
We have a will and while our designated trustee and guardian will not raise dd as *I* would, she'd love and protect her. Nothing would ease the pain of losing both parents if sent into the system. The best you can hope for is a loving, safe environment. Anything beyond that is pure luck.
That is a really, really good point.

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#35 of 42 Old 01-10-2010, 10:27 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mysticmomma View Post
you can state wishes, but cannot actually will your kids to someone. the state will get involved and decide "best interests of the child."

This is absolutely NOT true. Not to start a debate or to come off as antagonistic, but you most certainly can appoint a guardian for your children and, barring they are not deemed unfit should your family contest, that is who a judge will appoint custody to. My ds has been left to very close friends of ours - not even family - and I have it locked down in my will that those are our wishes. I have included many reasons in a letter to be included with my will as to my decision regarding the placement of my children, which my attorney told me would ensure that a judge would not be swayed, should my will be contested.


To the OP, if you do not choose someone, a judge will - maybe even after a long, drawn out court battle between your families OR and this could be the worst case scenario, your children could end up in state care. Take action now, to protect your children!! Good luck to you, I know that this decision is not easy.
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#36 of 42 Old 01-10-2010, 10:27 AM
 
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Seriously we truly have no one.

My father was verbally and emotionally abusive. Plus they are both ill. I love them and they see the kids but only supervised.

I wasn't clear enough about my sister but I consider her parenting practices abusive. She is pretty much like my father. Again, I love her, but I would not want my children raised by her.

My SIL is basically an adult child. She never grew up. When she visits her mother without her DH she still sleeps in her mother's bed because she cannot be alone. She has a baby and basically everyone else has to take care of him. Plus her husband drinks and we are against that.

My IL's have major issues and are emotionally abusive to my girls. They also would like my son off his meds that save his life.

I have two good friends. One has a lifestyle I would not want my kids exposed to. The other can barely handle the kids she has and would not be willing to take 3 more.

My DH has two good friends, they barely know our kids.

So there you have it. We figure we would have to name my IL's because the kids know them the best and they would be the least abusive. We would then have to name a medical guardian to make sure my son still gets his medical treatment. This all sucks to think about it.
You need to pick someone anyway. I know, it sucks. But I can pretty much guarantee that your kids will either go to your parents or your ILs if you DON'T pick someone. So if you are truly against either set of parents taking your kids, pick someone else. In your case, I'd talk to the friend with lifestyle issues (assuming they aren't illegal ones that would probably prevent the courts to assigning the kids to her), to see if she would change if in the very unlikely event that she got the kids.
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#37 of 42 Old 01-10-2010, 12:05 PM
 
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Generally speaking the Court will take over the role of the birth parents and make a decision after hearing from all the parties as to where the children will live and who will be given legal custody of them.

Even if you have a will, it does not mean they will go to the person named in your will. Someone can contest it, and possibly get the Court to overturn your will with regards to custody (ok, it is very rare, but it does happen).
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#38 of 42 Old 01-10-2010, 12:33 PM
 
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Originally Posted by laohaire View Post
This is not a short term solution, but assuming you have no suitable friends now either - make some. Go to FYT and get together with some MDC mamas. Or join local playgroups or whatever. Cultivate a friendship for this.

This said by a mama who is having a really hard time making friends (and nobody else from MDC in my county), but if you're really alone, you need to make a support network.
This is exactly what I did. I joined a great group, put myself out there to make friends, and over the last 2 years have made lasting friendships. It was even scarier in my case, with an ex-husband who wants nothing to do with my child.

Single mama to one active lil pill, aged 6. Getting my Masters in Counseling while playing as much Farmville as possible
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#39 of 42 Old 01-10-2010, 11:01 PM
 
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Our family does not know but our kiddos would go to friends of ours.

SAHM to my beautiful girl(9/06) and boy(3/09).
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#40 of 42 Old 01-11-2010, 10:39 AM
 
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Have beenthinking baout this lately too and I am in the same boat as op.

Mamma to dd1 3/8/07, one 9.5.08, and dd2 9/9/09
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#41 of 42 Old 01-11-2010, 06:02 PM
 
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I'm going to second this. Get good life insurance, that way you don't have to worry about the financial burden your child would place on a guardian and you can instead concentrate on who would be an acceptable choice.

Also remember you and your spouse are really unlikely to die tomorrow. Siblings and friends are likely to grow up before the worst were to happen. And if you did die tomorrow you sibling or friends would likely step up to the responsibilities and grow up fast with a new family to care for. Not something I'd want to do to my brother but something I can accept. Plus our kids grow up and need us less. My hope would be that were anything to happen to my husband and I my kids would be beyond the needy infant, toddler, and preschool ages.

Like many previous posters have mentioned if there is no good choice you really need to find an acceptable choice.
Thanks for this! It made me re-think things and come up with some alternatives. In particular I'd never considered my single brother. Right now he doesn't have a job and is living with us. But with enough life insurance and financial planning the fact that he doesn't have a job isn't an issue. And eventually things will change and he'll have a job (he's trying to start his own business right now). Other than that its all positives. He's the sibling I'm closest to and the one I think would parent most like me. Plus he's lived with us for DD's entire life. She knows him and loves him and its amazing how much he loves her.
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#42 of 42 Old 01-11-2010, 08:47 PM
 
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We're in a similar boat. Quite awhile ago, we had asked some good friends of ours to think about taking dd. The male half of the couple is also dd's donor. I'm not sure if that played in to things at all, but while they didn't say no, they also didn't say yes. They would be awesome - very similar parenting styles, wonderful, caring people, and it would ensure that dd remains in contact with her half siblings and her donor - but we have no interest in pushing the issue. We wanted them to take her, but only if *they* wanted to take her. So, onward.
We also discussed my sister. She married about a year ago, to a guy who seemed really neat, and I just assumed my kids would go to her. She'd love our kid(s) to no end, and would raise them very similarly to how we would. But, I recently had the opportunity to spend some time with her husband, and the more I got to know him, the less I wanted my child anywhere near his parenting, especially because my sister seems easily swayed by his wishes.
What to do?! Especially because my sister and I had previously said that she would take any children of mine if DP and I died?!
Our current picks are actually my sister's sister in law. As in, my sister's husband's brother and his wife. It's a really great fit, but I don't even know how to go about asking. Never mind the fallout if we designate someone other than my sister. She would be absolutely devastated. It's not like we have "abuse" or anything remotely like that to rationalize the decision either. I'm just uncomfortable with how I feel DD would be parented by my sister's husband. He's a good guy, just not the good guy I want raising my child!

Anyone have experience rescinding a guardianship request, especially with someone with whom you have and want to maintain a healthy, loving relationship?

We need to get on the ball with life insurance too. Maybe asking my sister and her hubby to be the financial end of things (they're very good at that stuff) while having sister in law do the physical parenting would be enough to apease sister?

Holy, complicated. This is one of those "it takes a village" things, that makes me wish we lived on in a commune, or a farming community in 1850.

For greater things are yet to come...

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