Missing his dad

Katie - posted on 08/31/2014 ( 4 moms have responded )

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My ex and I have been separated for the past 7 years. He has not always been the best parent, but because of our local court system, we have shared a 50/50 custody schedule. Throughout the past 7 years, there has been many times when the dad was absent for periods of times. Sometimes because he did not have a car, or because he was out of town for a side job. Most recently this is happening again. His dad is now homeless and was at first seeing him for his weekends, but it has slowly decreased and now he has not seen or heard from him for a few weeks. This has affected my son in a variety of ways, but the most aggravating is his inability to sleep sometimes. He will lay there for 2 hours missing his dad (and his dad's side of the family), and there is nothing I can say to comfort him. I am about to go to court to plea for full custody, but am afraid that if I do his father will pop up and tell my son negative things about the case, which he has done in the past. Any advice?

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Katie - posted on 09/05/2014

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I am not interested in totally cutting him out of his life. Just today he came over for about 20 mins while I was at work. My bf told me he was over, and we both expected him to take him for at least the day, but that didn't happen. Instead for some odd reason he thought that it would be alright to drop off a Call of Duty poster and some Junior High math book for him (once again he is 8, lol). I have asked the father on multiple occasions to think about picking up our son after school for a few hours, taking him to the library to do his homework and bringing him to me when I get off of work. Nothing ever came of that. What I have refused to allow him to do is take him to a very specific motel in my city overnight, not because it is a motel, but because it is the cheapest one in town and is frequented my drug dealers and prostitutes. Other reasonable motels would be alright. Heck he can even spend the night at his friends house. And no I am not the one keeping him from seeing the other side of the family. On more than a few occasions, the father has asked his mother if my son could spend the night over there, and she has replied that she would rather not because 2 small grandchildren is too much noise.

Jodi - posted on 09/02/2014

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Because regardless of what you think, your son does have a family outside of your own and he has a right to get to know them. As a parent of your child, you have an obligation to reach out to them to allow your son to develop a relationship with his father, and his family, no matter what that relationship looks like, unless there is abuse. A father who only sees his child, while no ideal, is not abusing the child. So he's homeless. Encourage him to come and pick his son up for a day and go to the park. Reach out to his family. This isn't about you and what you think you should do. This is about your son. Facilitate his relationships with his family. They may not be your family, but they are your son's.

It will affect your son more later in life if you totally cut his father and his family out altogether, and he WILL be angry at you for thinking you had the right to do that.

Having said that, however, you could apply to the court for full custody with visitation, that's very different to you cutting dad out altogether. If dad is homeless, maybe a regular Saturday or Sunday.

Katie - posted on 09/02/2014

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Sadly his paternal grandmother wants little -to-nothing to do with him, while she adores his female cousin. They were born 9 days apart, and both are insane little kids, so age has nothing to do with it. His aunt lives with the grandmother, and while she is more receptive to my son, I still see no reason what so ever to reach out to them any more since they have not once contacted me ( they have all my contact info and know where I work) to ask about my son. Recently on multiple occasions, I have contacted the Aunt to inform her that my son misses her and his cousin, and that it would be wonderful to have a get-together but she never replied back.

Angela - posted on 09/01/2014

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What about his father's family? Grandparents etc ...? Surely they're not all homeless as well?

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