Is it normal for him to have to go to her place to see his child?

Sara - posted on 12/29/2011 ( 97 moms have responded )

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Hi everyone,
I'm in a very serious and very happy relationship with a great guy. He has a 1 year old child with his ex and my question is whether it is normal or fair that she insists that if he wants to see his child he has to come to her house. He lives close by, has a great place, is very dependable, but he's always over there several times a week. He assures me nothing is going on between them and I genuinely believe him but she is very cold to me and refuses to make efforts to acknowledge me or integrate me into the situation, despite the fact that my boyfriend has been very clear about the serious nature of our relationship. We have been ring shopping and are planning to get married within the next couple of years, but how do I deal with the fact that bio mom wants everything on her terms and severely restricts the ways in which he is able to be a father? He tries not to rock the boat too much to maintain access to his child but am I right to think that -- even with a fussy baby who has trouble with new situations -- it is not appropriate for him to not be able to develop a relationship with his child separate from her? I am trying to be pleasant and accommodating to her but this is starting to get to me and your advice is so so so appreciated.

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Ricki - posted on 01/01/2012

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I don't see anything wrong with him visiting the child at her house. For many reasons, breastfeeding, the age of the child, trust issues and you to be perfectly honest.
Just because you are in a relationship with the Father and think it is serious does not mean that the Mother has to accept or trust you with her child. At her house she knows the child is safe and cared for and the Father gets to spend time and bond with his child. So it works for both of them and I don't see why your upset.
It doesn't seem like he is unhappy with the situation only you.

[deleted account]

Goodness, there are a ton of reasons this could be going on.

1. If she's breastfeeding, she may simply be more comfortable with visits being at her house so that she isn't pumping and storing for the baby to visit elsewhere.

2. What were the terms of their break-up? During their relationship, could he have given her reason to not trust him? You may not know some of the sordid details, but she may still be sensitive to events of the recent past.

3. At a year, she is still bonding with her baby. It's entirely possible that she's jealous of your presence and is afraid that you may bond with her baby too. Not saying it's right, but it's possible.

4. My son spent the first year of his life sick, with everything imaginable. Since I handled his medical needs, knew his history, understood his medications. He was colicky too and after every meal there was a very specific way that his stomach had to be massaged to ease the pains he experienced. Because he threw up a lot, every ounce he ate had to be monitored and compensated for. It was just so much easier if I was there.

5. Last but not least, that baby could be her only remaining connection to him, and that may be how she is hanging on to him. This is obviously the worst scenario but, it's still possible.

Unfortunately, because every situation is so potentially different, it's impossible to say if it's right or wrong. But, if your confident that he's 100% honest with you (meaning one side of the story doesn't always paint the clearest, unbiased picture) and you aren't comfortable with the situation, your instinct is probably right.

I'm a step mom though and I will say, buckle up because it's one hell of a bumpy ride, and you will undoubtedly be faced with many, many more challenges in the years to come.

Best of luck to you!

LizE - posted on 12/30/2011

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It may be time for your boyfriend to rock the boat.
It seems you have received an overwhelming amount of responses and any one of them could likely be true, but I want to give you a different perspective. I have been in your situation not saying that our situations will have the same outcome but there is something about your post that resonates with me.
Please be open minded when reading my response. Dad’s have right, that may be something you want to reiterate with your significant other. No law book mandates that the father can only see his child at the mother’s house unless there are some other issues or that is the legal agreement. If they do not have any legal issues and his home has not been proven to be unfit then he has rights to see his child in his space. He may want to consider seeing legal counsel on setting up visitation.
You noted the baby is sometimes fussy and doesn’t like new situations, well the baby is 1 years old every situation is a new situation. The baby is still young and will not be able to cope in new situations unless he/she is exposed to new situations. True there could be other reasons, colicky, breast feeding, etc. but from the tone of your post it sounds like the issue goes beyond there being an issue with the baby but better yet an issue with the mother. From your post it seems like the mother is trying to take full control of the situation.
I understand that you and your significant other have a good relationship and plans for marriage (congrats) but you may want to keep an open mind. Not too long ago he did have some form of relationship with the child’s mother, regardless to if he is over it or not she may still have feelings for him or don’t want to see him happy. So she may be using the baby to control him and to keep him coming to her house. I can almost guarantee she doesn’t want you over there.
Seeing that you asked what should you do? Here’s a suggestion keep your eyes and ears open, don’t discount any intuition you may have regarding this situation. Whether the baby is irritable, colicky, or just plain fussy, those things will pass but it is up to the parents to assist the baby along in the process. Adjusting to new situations for a baby isn’t as hard as it is for adults. Once the baby starts to go to the father’s house and be around you all more the baby will be increasingly comfortable over time. Again the mother may be the issues; your boyfriend her ex had a sexual encounter at least once and there may be feelings on her part which she may be using the baby to see your boyfriend. Continue to love and trust your boyfriend but be mindful of what’s going on. There have been many women in your shoes myself include but for me it wasn’t the fussy baby having adjustment issues it was a bitter ex who wanted her boyfriend back and I later found out he must have wanted her also, in the mist of our “marriage plans” he slept with her, although he apologized profusely it wasn’t enough to repair our relationship.
I’m not saying your situation will end up like mine and I pray that it doesn’t. If there is anything to remember for this post and the others is your boyfriend the father, has a right to his child and does not have to sit in his ex house to see his child. He may want to seek legal counsel while the baby is young. For you, be supportive of his situations but keep your eyes and ears open and I’m sure you’ll find that it’s not the fussy baby that’s the issue it’s the mother.

Good Luck

Jodi - posted on 12/29/2011

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Does he have a court order for his visitation? If he doesn't, then it might be an idea to get one. Yes, he should be able to develop a relationship with his child without her around, EVEN if that child is breastfed. A few hours at a park or at his own house shouldn't be denied. And eventually, in the not so distant future, some overnight time. She has no right to make the decision that he can't have these things. I would talk to a lawyer about getting a court order to ensure visitations into the future.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 01/03/2012

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Ok, this child is 1 year old. 12 months. Therefore, you have only been in this relationship for a max of 21 months, and that's only if he left her the day she got pregnant. Which, if that's the case, I'm not sure why he's that "wonderful".

You are in a situation where you have no control, nor do you have any right to control! If your boyfriend wants to see his biological child, then he has every right to do so. Honestly, I don't know of many infant children that actually change houses during custody visitation. Generally, until they are 2 or 3, it is usually an arrangement where the father visits the house of the mother, or another arranged meeting place.

Again, you are not married, and even if you were, custody agreements are between the biological parents, NOT the steps. I am a step, and I never, ever had ANY say in visitation arrangements. The ex wouldn't let her daughter visit if I was in the home, and would not accept any involvement on my part. It was difficult, but again, not my child, and I had no right to rock that boat.

Personally, I'd look into why you're feeling insecure about him visiting his biological child. I'd be thrilled to see a man taking responsibility and co parenting, myself.

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Kelly - posted on 06/29/2013

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I think i may be one of the bitches on the other side of this.my ex partner left,wouldn't let me tell our children he had moved out.they were told he works nights.every night!then i found out he was seeing our children's auntie.not legal auntie,she never married my brother,although they were engaged.my children knew her as their auntie from the day they were born,and still call her auntie.and Mr.fantastic still won't have the conversation with me and our children,that mommy and daddy both love them very much,but daddy has his own house!he still lets our children think he's coming home one day.he posted on Facebook after being at our house for a family bbq that he was in a relationship with her.she shared a lovely relationship with both me and my children,all of which she now says doesn't exist because she never actually married my brother.im sorry if anyone disagrees with me on this,but that is not a woman that deserves to even breath the same air as my babies,considering she denied all relationship with them to get it on with their dad!

Anna - posted on 01/18/2012

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Also court is very hard on the child. My step daughter was asked who she wanted to live with, so she didn't disappoint either bio parent, she said an aunty. It really upset her and she didn't want to see her dad for months because her mum was slating him and she thought if he was out of sight then her mum would forget and not slate him in front of her. It's also painful for both bio parents, both want to look after the child to the best of their abilities but neither want the other to do that.

Anna - posted on 01/18/2012

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Hi sara. Reading some of these posts, I don't think court is a good idea. I've been through all of that as a step mum and it's not pretty. My advice to you would be to let your fiancé visit his child at bio mums for the time being and let him build up a relationship with the child, then a few months down the line maybe he could take the child out for an hour on his own to establish trust with the baby and then eventually integrate you into some visits. It does take time and don't feel you're being selfish cos you're not, you're eager to be a part of every aspect of your blokes life. I was where you are 5yrs ago and I was extremely frustrated at not being able to see my 6yr old step daughter, it broke my relationship up twice and we had a new born together ( no we didn't cheat on his ex, I fell pregnant early in the relationship). Just be supportive of what he does and in the end he will thank you for it and so will the child when it's older. My step daughter is now 11 and is grateful for all that I have done, backing off when her mum makes a scene in public, being nice and not slating her mum even though she is absolutely unbelievable and doesn't think about her daughter, just the amount of money she can get out of my boyfriend in maintenance. It does pay off in the end, just make sure you have someone to rant to when you get frustrated, it does help. Good luck though, x

Sueanne - posted on 01/15/2012

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I think the dad needs to include you as well especially if wedding bells are in place he needs to make it a point that you are part of his life and that mean being apart of the baby's life fined a local park to meet in or a child friendly place and if she don't agree to that she is out to make your life a nightmare trust me I know she know she has some thing he cherish the most and will do anything for her so it's up to your partner really

Brianna - posted on 01/12/2012

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how long have u been with your boy friend? why did they break up in the first place?

Sharon - posted on 01/12/2012

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...everyone wonders why i wont let my x have his child either thats because my x tried to hurt me while i was pregnant i get talked about and his friends dont know what hes done neither do new gfs he has mental disorders and previous suicide attempts and makes me look bad leaving himself out of everything

Crystal - posted on 01/12/2012

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not to mention COURT IS NOT THE BEST CHOICE EVER! IF TWO PARENTS CAN GET ALONG AS FREINDS AND RAISE THEIR CHILD TOGETHER AND STILL HAVE OTHER PARTNERS THAT IS THE BEST WAY TO GO FOR THE CHILD. court tears familys apart ruins kids mentality and starts more problems. not to mention its not good for kids under 12 to spend the night at two different houses. they need one stable home to sleep at till they understand the situation and can make their own choice to willingly stay the night at the other parents place

Crystal - posted on 01/12/2012

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i was in this situation a few months ago... my babys father and i separated when our daughter was 6 weeks old and about a week later he started seeing his x. i told him that it was not her place to be involved in our childs life when she is so young. understandable that to be kind she wanted to care about and see my child but it was not her place. like someone else said in a comment dont try to be a part of the kids life at this time just concentrate on your boyfriend and be supportive of him seeing his kid. if you want your relationship with him tocontinue be supportive of him seeing his kid whenever and however he can. and if him and his babys mom are doing something behind your back take a step back and remember they were wonce a family and it would be in the best interest for that child to have their parents together. if of course they dont abuse eachother etc.... when you get into a situation where one has a kid you have to think what is in that kids best interest not your own. he has every right to see his kid at the mothers house and it benifits the child to have a positive interaction with mother and father in a place the child feels safe and knows well. wait till the child is older and the parents have better established their parenting plan and routine. dont force your way into the childs life just let him and her if given a chance know you will be a supportive figure in the childs life. but let him do whatever he feels is right for seeing his kid. luckly my baby dady and i got back together and we are working on being good coparents for our daughter. keep in mind no woman EVER EVER wants to see her child raised by another woman especially at a young vounerable age.

Vanessa - posted on 01/07/2012

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I agree with you Kayla x. That's why there are so many cases in court... it too often seems to be "what I'm entitled to" coming from one or both parents. What is the child entitled to? I wonder how many adults would like to live in two homes. How many would like to be forced from their home to sleep in another several times a fortnight or week. It infuriates me ~ not that the father wants to spend time with his child but that there is no understanding from the child's perspective. x

Kay - posted on 01/07/2012

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Vanessa, I think that you put it very well. It is scary to let go as a mother regardless, and I think that it is worse for a single mother. Toddlers and small children really need stability--it kind of surprises me that so many responses to this post take Mom's side or stepmom's or dad's side and fail to consider the child's best interest...

Vanessa - posted on 01/07/2012

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This thread really worries me. It worries me that so many are so quick to say "go to court". I wonder how many of those people recommending that have been through the court process. It's awful. Every.single.bit of it. It's awful for the applicant, the other party and the child. You are speaking of a one year old child here. As somebody else said, you don't know the whole story and as somebody who has been in the mother's (or 'bio' mum's as you put it....) role, I can tell you that the poor woman is probably scared silly that she's going to lose her baby. I suggest you concentrate on the relationship you have with your boyfriend and give the issue with the baby some time to settle. One year olds need a primary care-giver ~ they don't need to be shifted from home to home and they definitely don't need their primary care-giver dragged through court.

Sarah - posted on 01/05/2012

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I'm trying to see things from her perspective, and I think there could be many factors that are contributing to this. It could be that she's anxious when the baby's not near her (you said the baby is only 1). It could be that she finds it difficult to get out and about with a young child. It could be that she's not comfortable with seeing him in a relationship with another woman so quickly after the birth of their child. I'm willing to bet this is probably the reason. I think that most moms want to be with the father of their children. I can imagine how hard it must be to be around you and him together. Having said this, he needs to insist that since you will be the baby's step-mother that maybe that child needs to develop a relationship with you too. Maybe you can sit down with her and explain that you aren't replacing her as a mother to the child, just as a friend who can help support that child emotionally as they grow up (it takes a village to raise a child). He also has rights as a parent and if he's worried about her restricting his access to his child, petition the courts for a visitation agreement (though preferable to him and her to come to one together). Maybe he can take the baby one night a week to start. Definitely try to maintain a healthy, open, honest relationship between the three of you (you, him, and her) because it's what is best for the child to see as he/she grows up.

Georgina - posted on 01/04/2012

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Tell him to get lost as I think he is being dishonest with you, another loser I'd say!!

Liz - posted on 01/04/2012

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Don't make this about bio mom accepting you. It's important for children to see their parents interacting and spending time together. It's very healthy that the father spends time there. Sounds like you trust him to be there, so you gave a healthy relationship. That's good.

Ruthie - posted on 01/04/2012

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I agree with Shawnn. It is their child not yours. There's many headaches along the way, when your in a relationship with a person that has a child (ren) from a prior relationship.

Jodie - posted on 01/04/2012

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I wouldn't let my son, now 9, out of my sight when he was one and it wasn't a trust issue, I just wanted him with me all the time. It was different with my daughter, now 6, but alot of people I trusted let me down so if I have another child, I would probably be the same as I was with my son.

Tessa - posted on 01/04/2012

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I made my ex come to my house to see our son until he was old 3. If mom has full custody then it's up to mom how she wnts to do it. If he was really so concerned about it, he would take her to court but I'm thinking he's fine with the situation the way it is

Sinead - posted on 01/03/2012

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I have got the same problem i have two lovely kids aged 2 and 2months and my partner have two with ex-wife and if he wats to see them he has to drive to bristol to get them and we live in weston-super-mare. But if he was not well to drive she would have a go at him, if u understand wat i mean.

Hannah - posted on 01/02/2012

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It is true he should have his visitation established however with young children especially when the parents are able to have an arrangement like they are already doing, the court will continue that until the child is old enough...then it's only a couple of hrs a couple of days at a time...over nights often don't start until the child is three at least especially if the child isn't accostomed to having the other parent present or without the custodial parent....

Pamela - posted on 01/02/2012

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I never left my first child until he was about a year old. (poor little guy was pretty clingy....and, obviously I was no better). I nursed him pretty frequently and he really always seemed to need his mom. (my daughter was more independent right away). Anyway, my point is, maybe it really has nothing to do with her relationship with your boyfriend and more to do with her relationship with her child. Why don't you invite her over for a tea and ask her what you could do to make this situation easier for everyone. Sound like she is going to be a part of your life (for better or worse) forever. Good luck.

Elizabeth - posted on 01/02/2012

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Unless he has done something that would make the mother think that he can't be trusted with the child. Then she has to abide by the custody papers. If they say the child can go with him, not that he has to be supervised. Then she is in contempt and it is time to talk to a lawyer.

Layla - posted on 01/02/2012

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There is another question here, which is if the bio mom is controlling access at her house to the father only, then the child has no relationship to the fathers family also, ie child's grandparents, etc. Ultimately that type of hole in a child's sense of "family and tradition" does a lot of damage.

Carrie - posted on 01/02/2012

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It doesn't sund like there is any sort of official custody/visitation agreement. Your boyfriend needs to file papers with the courts since it doesn't seem that the bio mom is going to allow any sort of co-parenting without the courts forcing her to. Unless there are any known reasons for the child not to be with the dad, the courts will allow him to have at least a couple of hours of visitation at a time unaccompanied by the baby's mother. Most states aim for shared/joint custody as much as possible but with young babies, it isn't always possible.
If he wants the situation to change, it is up to him to change it. Unless there is already an existing order on file with the courts, he is entitled to have the child with him as much as she is. But it is up to him to instigate any changes--not you.

Carmen - posted on 01/02/2012

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I think he needs to go to court and get his visitation rights as the father....he has the right to be a father without having to be a part of her life....by her making him stay in her house she's having complete Control over how he is with his baby and must still have feeling for him...if u guys are planning to vet married it is important for u to spend time with this child.

Maryellen - posted on 01/02/2012

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It could be for ALL of the reasons folks have stated above. But, not knowing the nature or true reason for their breakup (because there's several sides to a story & then there's the truth.) I think until said baby is able to speak & communicate with the mom, supervised visits are how it will be. (And I don't blame her...)

[deleted account]

Old habits are hard to break, he is comfortable with the situation it's up to you to decide if you can come to terms somehow. Have you tried talking to her - she may not realize how important you are to him.

Bridget - posted on 01/02/2012

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Angela, Yes you are right to say that if he didnt want things the way they are he wouldnt let it happen. Because of that, is why I say she needs to have a sit down with him as well as a sit down with the ex. See "we" like Sarah dont have the whole story I think... and that why I think Sarah is having the feelings she has, like when she said she trusts him"but"..... so maybe she does have a notion that things are more than just the visitation with the child, but she has a little bit of a denial thing going as well maybe???? I hope you didnt think I was condemming anyone. Because I wasnt doing that at all. Im just saying she needs to cover her bases and be mindful of the situation, try to make peace with the soon to be hubbys ex and if that dont work, then she may want to rethink things entirely.

Angela - posted on 01/02/2012

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This does not sound like you express this to him. Often times we make up excuses as to why an undesireable situation exists. This may help. No man will continually allow a situation that he does not want to exists...especially when the child is so young. One thing i have learned is that there is two books and you know what he wants you to know. If you are having doubts about your place in his life...pay attention to that.

My story: My ex and i broke up 2 years ago and we have two children 9 & now 14. He cheated and i asked him to move out or i would. But my kids are important and i want him to have a relationship with the father. I dont care if they go to his home (now living with the person he cheated with)...I could use the me time. But he does not want me to date so HE makes sure that does not happen. As long as he gets to see me and the kids and does things as a family...everything is ok when i try to change that, he stays away. We live in AZ and agreed that I could go home to another state where both our families live but when I tried this summer (after he did not see them for five month which confused me because he became hostile for no reason) he sent a court order to bring me back. Now that I am back for another year he is being very nice to me and has agreed again (with the courts involved) to let us go home. He originally told the courts i never let him see the kids but my complaint was he never saw them enough (he lied). He did not see them but had no problem coming to take me to lunch while they arenin school. I feel like I have to do these things to ultimately be able to move.

In conclusion...don't be so quick to condemn her. You don't have the whole story...you only have his. If he really did not want it the way it is...he would change it.

Bridget - posted on 01/02/2012

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Sara, I have read over most of the replies to your post and some I partly agree with and I flat out say are just insane! But Im gonna add my "opinion" anyway, so here it goes. First Id like to say Im 45 years old with 2 daughters myself, my husband is the step father to my kids, he has non of his own, but I have had ex's who did have children, so I have been in your situation, and the way I reacted back the when I was younger is probably the same way your feeling now. But please let me say this to you, I know you say you trust your soon- to- be husband, then theres a "but". Then I get the feeling you have reservations about the over-all situation. So, sit down when your alone and write down what your concerns are as well as the suggestion of a court order. unfortunately he WILL NEED a court order to have ANY of his rights excercized. So make sure he understands that your not suggesting the court order to cause trouble, but to insure that HE GETS HIS rightfull visitation weather his ex likes it, or you, or not. Right now she CAN keep the child from him FOR ANY REASON SHE FEELS LIKE. RIGHT OR WRONG. So, he really needs to get the court ordered visitation. You should also know that once he starts this whole court thing his ex WILL PROBABLY stop all visitation right away until shes ordered to let your man see his child. Because SHE WILL BE OFFENDED. Sit down with your man and talk with him about what your feeling and see if you get any resolution on his end as to how your feeling about this whole situation. Then, if I were you, I would make an effort to go talk to your mans ex on your own. Just try to establish a small relationship with her one more time. Go without your man and try to have a sit down with her. If she just flat out refuses to speak with you, then theres not alot you can do to make things easier, at least on her end anyway. But you ARE going to have to figure out how much your willing to put up with. You have to also ask yourself whats his reason for going over there so often? I mean several times a week, is a bit much. And Im not saying be suspicious of it but it just doesnt sound right. Does your man just go there for an hour or so or is he spending a lot of time there when he goes?? Thats a good question. How long have they been split up? If he has a problem with the suggestion you have about the courts getting involved ask why. And if its mainly a money issue then there are way around that, and many attorneys will gladly make a payment schedual for him. Make sure you have ALL YOUR ducks in a row so to speak in case he comes up with excuses why he doesnt want to involve legal help. But the bottom line I think is, you have to repect the fact that this child is his and hers, and if you and your man cant come to an agreeable way to deal with his ex with this whole thing, then there WILL be problems between you and him. He NEEDS to understand your feelings about this situation and if you are to be married you have to come to an agreement on how to handle the ex thats suitable to you both. Because you could become resentful, and feel like hes not respecting your feelings as his wife, and things could end badly. Its really a sticking situation youve found yourself in here and I pray that things work out for you. But hes got to know how you really feel about this. So getting an attorney involved IS BEST! And you need to be able to have a bond to this child as well, or the child could grow up treating you as the ex is treating you and that will create more trouble. This child needs to have respect for YOU as well. And if you cant bond with him/her it will just be added stress on your marriage to the father. Theres no easy answer to this situation. GOOD LUCK!

Anita - posted on 01/01/2012

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i thnk that you you should step back and look at the whole picture. the entire situation sounds a bit ifffy. and for sure sit down and get things laid out, so that you can get a very clear understanding,understanding that not only your feeling are there, but a child is involved.

Hannah - posted on 01/01/2012

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again....this child you said is one????? That means they haven't potientially been apart for very long...or haven't moved into a regular routein wiht the child....a lot of change can cause insecurity or emotional distress and if the child has any special needs at all....that could magnify the situation.....You aren't a bad person for feeling this way...I think we all would...just check to see if this is really a relationship you'll be willing to work through all the details of because they haven't yet and it takes a long time..

Hannah - posted on 01/01/2012

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I agree this is very hard situation...however, since you are a new relationship and break ups have two sides there may be a reason for there to be visitation only at her house....my x denied my daughter then demanded to take her places w him....had an unstable home and each girlfriend he had he deceided he was going to marry and that i should be ok with it.....i guess i am just saying that both of the bio parents have to be willing to do what's in the best interest of the child....it sounds like they are still new parents and although you guys have been ring shopping their primary focus should be on the childs needs and as an infant / toddler those are different than an older child.....I really beleive being patient and understanding and as he prooves himself stable and consistant the mom will loosen up and there should be able to move forward.....building trust through respect and longevity and sharing in best interest of child will go a long way wiht the child....and ps...our situation worked out...both of us are remarried, have a good relationship with each other and have progressed into a great visitation routein that our child is very comfortable with .....

Heather - posted on 01/01/2012

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Time to go to court for joint custody so that he can bring his child over to your house and spend time with him or her. It's NOT right for him to only see his child at her house, on her terms. Time for some intervention.

Chris - posted on 01/01/2012

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I don't know the terms of how visitation got to what it currently is so I am going to assume it was a decision between the boyfriend and his ex. Where I live in FL, the ex-couple can make an agreement together to allow as much or as little visitation as they want as long as both agree. If they don't agree, the court gets involved and sets the visitation based on the "standard arrangements". By having visitation as they have currently, they have set a precedent to the frequency which could be in the boyfriends favor in court ordered visitation. He would not necessarily lose visitation. On the flip side, by him having visitation in her presence, another precedent has been set. That one could work against him until the child reaches two yrs of age but not necessarily. Again, it would largely depend on the unknown history. When my son was younger and his father and I divorced, it was clearly written in the court order that he could not have paramours during visitation and no drinking/drugs. My ex remarried 45 days after our divorce to live out of state. He expected visitation whenever he wanted as long as it was "his weekend, his summer allowance, etc". I refused based on the fact that my son was still adjusting to the divorce, did not know the new wife and that I had not met her. I told him I wanted him to bring his new wife to FL to meet his son and get to know her on my son's home turf. (At that point, my son had never even spoke to her by phone.) I also told him I wanted him to get the court order modified for out of state visitation. He was furious and took me to court as he said he had court visitation. The judge sided with me and said that he was negligent in sharing his plans and that my request was not out of line. The short story is that I got a phone call from the new wife asking me about my feelings/decision. I explained it to her and she pushed him to bring her to FL. He still wouldn't follow-up to get the court order so she went the second mile and invited me to bring my son to their house and stay in her home with them for a week which I did. She is an absolutely wonderful person and would take excellent care of my son (which is what I wanted to know would be). She made sure he paid his child support when he was working. He still wouldn't go for the court order (said he couldn't afford to). In the end, she saw the same problems in her marriage that we experienced, threw him out and divorced him and has kept a friendship with her stepson and myself.

With all that being said, I feel that a court ordered visitation is important because it helps keep both parents being fair to the other, it protects the child's right (to know both his/her parents), and protects the right's of the non-custodial/non-residential parent. If the boyfriend/girlfriend are ready to become engaged, it would be appropriate time for the child to meet/spend time with them as a couple, even though the child is young. As hard as it is as a mom to accept that someone else is going to be helping your ex care for your child, it is in your best interest to get to know that person and become friends (I don't necessarily mean bff) with them so that you can relax and enjoy/recharge yourself when your child visits with the ex knowing the child is in good hands.

Jeannie - posted on 01/01/2012

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In answer to your question, it's only normal if you allow it to be. Your fiance and his ex couldn't have shared that much history if he's engaged to you and his child is still a baby. The two of you definitely have to set some firm boundries. He will have to stand up to her and insist on visits on his terms as long as they are reasonable. You need to put your foot down as well. I don't think it's at all normal that he spends time with her in order to spend time with his child. You may be getting played here girl. Unless he has a history of bad behavior, like drug abuse or criminal behavior, there is no reason for him not to insist on having the child at his house with the two of you. This is going on because you're allowing it and there's no reason for it except that someone wants to have their cake and eat it too. This isn't about the child I can assure you of that!

Kelly - posted on 01/01/2012

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Have you discussed your thoughts with him? Unfortunately he's going to have to 'man up' to her at some point. Thats the only way I'm seeing that it's going to change.
Best of God's blessing to you and your fiancee,

Kellz

Monica - posted on 01/01/2012

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Hi, I recently became a step mother to a fifteen year old, and I can say that at times it is difficult to deal with his mother. Simply because we have two very different ways of seeing the world.
All I can offer is patience. When a child is that young I don't believe the courts usually allow overnight visits. And if that is what is drawn up in any paper work from the courts then that is what must happen. Also, how did the relationship end? Was it just a fling between the two of them, or was there a history? If there was a history and she was left broken hear-ted you may need to step back and look at this situation from her point of view. If there wasn't a history or if she left him, she may be dealing with something that either of you could understand. Jealousy, thinking that you may one day may become "mom", or she just may be a dirty, you fill in the blank.

Cate - posted on 01/01/2012

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I would go with legal advice with this one. My uncle didn't get legal help and now my cousins are horrible horrible people. Just like my ex aunt. You meet her for 5 min and all of a sudden why men are gay make sense. That is how evil she is.

As for my brother-in-law he pretty much had the same situation and then when my sister got involved he knew that he was going to marry her, so he kinda put the foot down on his ex and said hey, im starting a new life with this girl and my child NEEDS to be a part of it. So he got legal help and his ex instantly folded. She does however do the -if- u -want -to -see -your child -she -will -be -at this -place -at -this -certain -time-u go -pick -her -up, now and then just to tick them off, but it' nowhere near as bad as what it was before. She also moves away further if my sister and her husband move closer just to be closer to HIS child.

Your man is probably thinking about this stuff and his ex is just being completely moronic about it because she wants him to suffer. Whatever you do, DO NOT GET TOO INVOLVED. that's just a recipe for a major disaster of titanic proportions. Just support him and be there for him. That's the best you can do...and his ex will hate you for it, but, you have a ton more class and respect than she will ever have.

Melysa - posted on 01/01/2012

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legal advice seems highly required but on top of that perhaps trying to remain civil with the birth mother could help her to start to feel safer with the idea of her baby being with you if you are in it for the long term think of how many events the 3 of you are going to have to be at together it would be easier if you all learnt to get along ESP for the child involved just think how they would feel come school graduation or wedding day if you are all still fighting

Charlene - posted on 12/31/2011

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Get your state law handbook, because every state is a little different when it comes to custody. As a mother who's child's father may be with someone else we have a understanding that him and her need to come to terms with one another and on what my expectations are of them. As each of us are not overly exposing our child to anyone who is not a actual husband/wife I can understand but I understand your concern but don't worry too bad but me & my child's father maintain a sense of family between actual bio-parents so she knows who and what mommy & daddy are.

Amanda - posted on 12/31/2011

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Its called custody...he needs to file at the courthouse. Without. Court ordered papers she can do whatever she wants but in turn so can he. If he wanted he could take custody of the child and she then would have to go to the courts. With out court orders its anyones game and the other has to play along. And police can not legally remove the child from either parent unless a violation of court papers has been warranted.

Dee - posted on 12/31/2011

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Oh Dear,
Good Luck with it all, I am a single mother and my ex has never been denied access, (read NEVER).
We live in the same town where he works as a shift-worker at the local ply-mill. Depending on what shift he is on to what hours he is here. My daughter, (oops, should probably have said 'our daughter', but as a single parent I understand the ownership issue) is now 13 and she sees her father EVERY SINGLE day, unless we are on holidays that I have notified him of dates.
If he is on day-shift she goes to him after school and he returns her for dinner. (this did not start until she was old enough for school, before that he came to OUR home in the afternoons)
If he is on afternoon-shift he comes into our home in time to have breakfast with her and drive her to school. (this started at pre-school, again, prior to her being old enough he just came to OUR house before going to work.)
If he is on night-shift he comes for breakfast, drives her to school and THEN she goes to his house after school until dinner.
In our 7 year relationship he successfully ruined my business, broke some of my ribs, fractured my cheek bone, and caused various other injuries.
In the 13 years of her life he has never hurt a single hair on that child, he also tries really hard to not even raise his voice around her. He was the worst partner, but in all honesty he is an amazing dad. Unfortunately she sees him as super-dad and we do disagree about the fact that he will let her have anything she wants & I am the strict 'fun sucker' parent, but she knows it is because she doesnt live with daddy that he can do those things.
If we were to go through court he would lose approximately 80% of his access and then my daughter would also suffer. Wherever your BF is seeing his child is better than him not seeing the child at all, I understand how easily babies form attachments to familiar people/objects, so I believe that the mother is trying to protect herself, but not neccessarily for any bad reason, just because we are protective of our babies. Be grateful that she is letting him see the bub as often as she is, the little one will learn other faces eventually, but at least the ex is letting Daddy's face be one that is there from the start.
The legal side should be saved until needed, why stir the pot? You can not buy back time, and once you start the legal ball rolling people will get offended, intentional or not, it will create drama and stress that is really not needed. Time is more valuable than location.
Take care, keep smiling, and be grateful that you have a man who cares enough about his child to bother seeing it so often.

Kathy - posted on 12/31/2011

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If he doesn't have legal visitation rights then he should seek this as a possible alternative to his visiting with his child at his home and with his future wife who will become the child's step parent as well. He doesn't need to be right there with his mom 24/7 during these visits as it limits the child as well as the parent as to what actions are allowed and what are not it also doesn't teach this child how to behave while in Dad's custody. there may be no custody established yet and no child support either if this is the case when yal do get married she can end all visits until it becomes legal regardless of any custody filed or being battled If he plans to be in this childs life forever and ever he nee4ds to be sure him and his child are protected with legal counsel for many happy years to come. My advice is to talk to him tell him how you feel he cant read your mind and he should seek legal counsel for legal advice and steering in the best direction for not only him and you but for his child as well.

Jodi - posted on 12/31/2011

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That's great Misty, and I 100% agree with you IF the court ordered that it should be supervised access. However, if you don't have a court order saying that, it is not your right to make that decision, it is something that should be decided in court. So when applying that to the situation in the OP, this woman doesn't have the right to demand he go to her house to see the child.

Kara - posted on 12/31/2011

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Never been in this situation and I hope to never be in it from either side, so unfortunately I really have no wisdom to share on that part of this. I would like to comment to the breastfeeding issue though, because I've read a lot of comments about baby can just take a bottle of pumped milk. That's only IF they will take a bottle. My son would have been fine going back and forth if my husband and I had separated, but our daughter wouldn't have. Started trying the bottle at 2 weeks old (I'm a CLC and between 2-6 weeks is the best time to introduce bottle to a breastfed baby), but she would rather starve. Literally. Had to be away from her for about 8 hours when she was just about 3 months and she absolutely refused the bottle anytime the sitter offered it. She waited until I got home and spent the next 3 hours guzzling. It's an issue that she doesn't give in on no matter how long we try to push it.

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