Custody Battle: My 3y/o son's father wants to change the court order

Taixiao823 - posted on 03/16/2017 ( 3 moms have responded )

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I apologize for this thread to be long:
I'm a 21 year old, never married, single mom. My son and I are currently living with my mom. My son's father wants to take full custody of my son. He is currently in the military and I am a CNA aspiring to become a RN. We dated back in 2012 but ended two years later in 2014, 6 months after my son was born. I am currently in a relationship with someone for almost 3 years now. My current boyfriend has been around my son ever since he was 10 months old. My son doesn't call him daddy because I taught him to use my boyfriend's real name, but he is like a father to him. My son would get so excited to see him whenever I video chat my partner. Recently, my ex calls me telling me that he wants have my 3y/o live with him. My son has been living with me and my mom ever since he was born. My ex's claim was "I never got to spend time with him and I want to raise him how i want him to be raised." (My ex left for the military when my child was about 5 to 7 months old) He then asks me if I am putting him in daycare, and I answer that yes, I am, for when I'm working. His response was, "uh-huh, ok. See you in July. You'll see." (This is the time he will be getting back from his deployment) Why is he asking if I am putting him into daycare? We already have a court order for the custody/visitations(est. 2015), but he wants to change it. We currently have joint legal custody with residential custody given to me, with parenting time for the father. It also states that if there are major issues with the child, we should both be well informed. The last thing it states is that if we can't agree on issues regarding my son after consultation, then the residential parent will have final authority. What does this mean? My ex also was put into a psych ward back in 2011, he had cheated on me with some girl he had met online before and during the month I had just given birth to my son, and the day I was going back home from the hospital after my son was born with my ex and my mom, he pulls me aside asking if i want to put my son up for adoption because he didn't like the way my mom was treating me that day. Please help me. I don't want to lose my son. He means everything to me. I'm very scared why he wants to take my son away. Am I wrong in this situation?

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Ev - posted on 03/17/2017

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First off, if your ex is in the military and is coming home he does have a right to have time with his child plain and simple.

Second, You have a court order for that in which you have custody for residential and you both have to be informed or in knowledge of what is going on with the child but you have final say meaning you make the final decisions where the child is concerned.

Third, is dad paying child support?

Fourth, if the dad is getting out of the military totally, he can ask for a change in the custody an d visitation if he so chooses. He was after all in the military and that does not give him a chance to parent the child as equally because of deployments. But it is in his rights to ask for a change in the custody and visitation etc. It does not mean he will get custody because as the other mom said most judges will not want to take the child from what they are used to. That does not mean he can not get joint residential custody and joint legal or decision making either. It is possible.

Why was he put in the psych ward? Just because he had that does not make him unfit to parent a child and I disagree with Carlie on that one. It would depend on why he was in there. Also, I do not see how he would have gone military with something like that on his record.

I do agree with Carlie to document everything that is in the conversation about the fact he wants to go back for custody and what was said and so forth. It might give the judge the idea of what you both spoke of if he or she allows that in court.

Carlie--I do not agree with several things in your post but the one that bothers me the most is the fact you talk about "but from what I have read you have nothing to worry about but if you have to go to war with this man and fight for your baby it's better to be as prepared as possible! " A child is not something to fight over. And a child will hurt the most from a custody battle between parents. At that point it is about the parents wants and desires over the child's best interest. A child has the right to have both parents in his or her life as long as both parents are fit and able to be there for the child in whatever ways possible. It does no one good but adds lots of un-needed stress and worry if they continue a long drawn out process. It is also not about the fact that a mother is the better parent than the father because in all honesty and truthfully; any father that cares enough and wants to bad enough can parent a child just as well as any mother can. You make it like he won't do that at all. You do not know the man. Also, I made a choice 15 years ago when my ex and I had divorce and custody going on. I chose to let my kids go with their dad because I did not want them to suffer more than they already had. It was bad enough their parents split and divorced. They did not need their parents fighting over them all the time and have to worry which parent would have custody every so often. They needed to know that they had both of us available, they needed to know I was always there for them, and they needed to know that this was the best way to handle the situation. I will also add that I could not financially fight him in court all the time to get the kids. I did not have the resources that he had. And I just had to know that the kids had a stable state of mind over this. I did not do drugs, alcohol, or commit crimes that made me unable to be with my kids---I chose to let dad have them for their sakes not ours.

Carlie--no child asks to be born into the situations and to the parents they have. They do not have the choice in any matters when it comes to their parents wanting to split up and even move on to a new BF or GF. It tears their world apart as it is when the parents split up. Being fought over makes it worse. Do you want that for kids? Is it fair to the kids?

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[deleted account]

Ev-Witt I respect your experience and input and agree on many things you are saying, obviously this post is only one side of the story as we know, but the overall tone of the post is that he is doing this to spite the mother not to have a relationship with his son, any man who cheats, pressures for adoption, hasn't seen the child for over two years and now wants to take his son out of the stable environment he has come to know and trust doesn't have the child's best interest at heart, this is self serving behaviour and I assume that the court orders that are in place are probably there for a reason, and I don't think the mother should be intimidated or feel threatened.
I also have a similar experience to your own, but unfortunately I don't have the peace of mind that my child is being properly cared for as his father is an abuser, but I also had to let go because I didn't have the financial resource to continue and he did because he is a very wealthy man. My son has suffered way too much for his age and I have always protected him from it as best I could, unfortunately they were continually putting my child in the middle, the stress and trauma he has endured from there relentless bullying manipulation and abuse towards him has been devastating! By giving them what they want I pray everyday that I have removed the reason for this to continue. My son is distressed and doesn't want to go back he is to young to understand, it's devastating on all accounts! I never wanted to go to court but as my child's father had taken off with him out of state for an extended period of time without my knowledge on more than one occasion, I felt that I had no choice because he was causing upset and confusion in our child's life. You don't go to win you go for answers no one wins in the heartache of a broken family I 100% agree with you on that! I don't believe in fighting over a child but I do believe if there is a situation that is detrimental to the child's wellbeing then you should fight for your child! I wish for this mother to be confident and strong in her decisions and approach and to not be intimidated...she will need to be if this is the journey she has ahead of her.
I would be really interested in hearing more of you story if you are willing to share, as it has only been a month since my eldest son has been living with his father and this is so hard for both of us, obviously I am trying to be strong, shower him with love support and try to help him with his emotions and always reassure him that we all love him and try to normalise everything, I would love any wisdom,advise and tips you may have on getting through this really tough period of adjustment and grief. I would also love to know how your relationship with them is now that they are grown? This is one of my fears that we will loose our close bond... I have little involvement in his life now except for the 8 days a month I see him with will go down to 4 next year, I try to make the days we have together really great, but when he is not with me I miss him in everything I do and worry that he feels abandoned and is missing me also, this is not a situation where if he wants to call ...he can his dad won't allow it out of his hate for me, but I'm just like you I have done nothing wrong..I'm not a drug addict, or abusive or unstable or any of those other stereotypes that seemed to be assumed if your a non-custodial mother, so I would love any helpful insight you might have to handle this situation.

[deleted account]

No you are going to be fine don't be intimidated by his b.s you are the primary career of the child and the Oder says that you have the final decision on your child welfare and best interest should you not be able to come to an agreement..so you hold all the cards and you get to make the decisions in regards to you son..and this is legally so there is nothing he can do! If he really wants to you son he will have to drag you through more court proceedings with will cost him thousands and take years ..like it could take two years before you would even get to the final stages in court and by that stage your son would be 5? So no judge is going to disrupt a stable home for a child because of what one parent "wants" it's not in the best intrest of the child and that is all judges are interested in! Plus if you do go back all you need to do is prove mental instability by getting subpoena for his medical records to show in the past he has been committed. Just always be nice to him and ad amicable as possible without compromising your boundaries..keep everything and I mean everything all communication in written form and alway come back to what's in your child's "best interest" and document anything that may happen even the smallest of events. I know it's scary but from what I have read you have nothing to worry about but if you have to go to war with this man and fight for your baby it's better to be as prepared as possible! Don't be afraid xxx

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