Struggling with the custody arrangements for my son

Ashley - posted on 10/06/2009 ( 4 moms have responded )

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I have an 18 month old son and his father I broke up when he was 5 months old. HIs father immediately went and filed for custody which still to this day amazes me bcuz when we were together I was lucky if I could get him to take care of our son while I took a shower when he got home from work. I had been a stay at home mom and so I had no income coming in to fight him on the custody so he got what he wanted and I got visitation every other saturday for 8 hours...which was nowhere near enough...Since then my ex likes to use our son as a tool to hurt me or as something to hang over my head...I've had a bad year and have been in some sticky situations that have prevented me from being able to go back to court over the custody to get it changed so now Im totally at his mercy as to whether or not I get to see my son outside of the court ordered time. Sometimes he is decent and is cooperative and I get to see my son all the time but then the next thing I know he will get jealous of my current boyfriend or get mad at me for whatever reason and then he won't allow me to see my son. It hurts so much and he knows it. This last weekend I had my son because right now hes being decent but my ex lives with his parents and so when I went to drop him off since I live 45 mins away from him we met somewhere and my ex had to work so I had to meet his mom to drop him off and I had to deal with her snide little comments and dirty looks and her so obviously gloating bcuz my son was so excited to see her and bcuz she is his main caregiver....she always likes to make sure I know that she knows him better than I do and that hes more comfortable with her...I hate this and it breaks my heart...I am really at a loss as for what to do. I miss my son soo much and seeing him twice a month for a couple days just doesn't cut it....Im finally in a place where I could have him so much more but my ex enjoys all his power and most of the time makes me feel like crap every time i ask to come pick him up for a couple days.....He makes sure I know that Connor doesn't have much of a bond with me and I have to jump through soo many hoops and kiss his butt to keep him happy just so I can see my son. Im so sick of all of this and I really don't know how to go about changing it. I feel so alone because none of my family or friends really understand what I am going through and have a lot of "suggestions" on how to deal with it and if I followed their advice I know I would never get to see my son short of a long battle in court. Is there anybody else going through this??

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Ashley - posted on 10/10/2009

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We didn't actually go to court it was just done with a lawyer..and I couldn't afford one...I didn't have a job and he did and who knows what else he told them about me. and the thing that sucks is he hardly ever takes care of my son anyway...he just ditches him off on his mom since he lives with his parents...I just gotta find someone who will basically do me a charity because I can't afford a lawyer.

Jenn - posted on 10/07/2009

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Is there any sort of legal aid available to you? When I split with my ex he said he wanted custody, then said he wanted 50/50, then finally agreed to joint custody where he visits him on certain days. I couldn't believe it when he wanted custody because he wasn't there much either and his actions proved what he wanted - to be a part-time father. As it is now he only takes his son about one afternoon every 3 weeks. Anyway, I think they only do it as a way of trying to be in control. But why did the judge grant him custody? Usually they will leave the child with the parent who has already been the primary caregiver - which would be you.

Traci - posted on 10/07/2009

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I agree call a lawyer. There are lawyers out there that will cut the cost if you complete the paperwork yourself. Of course they will review it. Make sure you keep notes of everything he or his mother say or do, so you can show that you are trying but they are being uncooperative and rude. Good luck!!!

Sarah - posted on 10/06/2009

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Call a lawyer and find out if they will do a free consult. Write all ur questions down ahead of time. Ask if u can do it urself because of money. Don't let him bully you. He doesn't deserve it. Be ur own advocate. Good luck!!!!!

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