Need guidance

Young - posted on 09/27/2015 ( 17 moms have responded )

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My daughter is a year old now almost 2. I left her father with her when she was three months old and moved back in to my mom's house. I left a verbally and physically abussive relationship and he cheated on me numerous times resulting in him having another kid with someone else. I originally reached out to him when I moved home to try and get him to be involved with my daughter and help financially. He ignored me for the longest time.

There has been a lot of back in forth in our relationship and i have finally gotten to a point where all romantic feelings for him are gone thank goodness. I would take my daughter to see him often and he would only come see her if he could get a ride to us which was rare. He only really got a ride for her birthday. Another about six months passed before he saw her again for two days. He had also stopped financially helping my daughter because he said "you don't send me pictures of her so I stopped paying." I recently filed for child support, but I did not tell him about it. He only sends about $80 which is not a lot for a one year old. I am a full time graduate student taking care of my disabled mom at home and I have been raising my daughter by myself.

It feels like whenever he is back it causes stress for me and I don't want to deal with that. I do not know if I should continue to talk to him. I felt uncomfortable when he was around her recently, but I also don't want him to see her for a couple of days one week and miss out on 6 more months then come back. I guess I don't know if I should keep talking to him and updating him or if I should just ignore him all together and continue to raise her alone. I know when I updated him about her doctors appointments she had an MRI and CT he got an attitude with me and acted like he didn't care.

I am afraid once he finds out about me filing for child support he will try and take custody of her. She doesn't even know him and he wants overnights with her. When he was here he picked her up and she was crying because he doesn't make the effort to be consistent in her life so she can know him. He is the type of person to want to see her for a few hours then give her back when its time to be a parent.

He just wants to play all day with her. He keeps saying " I will do what I have to do to see my daughter" he has been making that threat to me for months now and nothing happens but it is still upsetting. talking to him stresses me out so much I feel sick. He really wanted to come see her and I told him a different day next week would be best to come see her and he has the worst attitude about it, but I didn't say he couldn't come I just need to reschedule with him.

I don't feel like he can be a parent or he doesn't understand. It seems like whenever he doesn't get his way he becomes defensive and negative. I really don't want him in her life if he will be popping in and out, but that is not fair to her and everyone is saying my daughter will grow up to be mad at me. I don't know what to do. Things were easier when he didn't have my number or address.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Sarah - posted on 09/28/2015

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Family law attorneys often do charge for the initial consultation because otherwise they get hit up for advice and then then you don't hire them. You can look for a lawyer thru legal aid services. Another option is to represent yourself, you get the forms for a DNA test, child support orders and custody from the county clerk. You fill them out yourself and file them. You'll get a court date and go from there. There are lots of parents who cannot afford lawyers

Lisa - posted on 09/28/2015

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The more you have things documented the better. Is there a lawyer you can talk to? Someone who will help you get the papers in order? Can you make sure that your side of the interaction with him is always on the up and up? Can you save his texts and messages? Hugs mama, I hope it works out!

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/27/2015

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That's the point. You NEED the custody orders, AND the visitation orders as well as the support orders.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/27/2015

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I only made it through about half. Paragraphs, or some breaks help the read.

What I got from what I made it through: He was abusive and unfaithful so you left him. Good for you.

HOWEVER. He is attempting a relationship with his child, and in this you do not have the say. Just because your relationship with him causes you stress, that is not a valid reason for you to arbitrarily limit contact.

DO YOU HAVE any sort of court order? Do you have proof of paternity? Proof of paternity is necessary, as are court orders for custody, visitation, and support. If you don't have these, GET THEM. If you have proof of past abuse (photos, police reports), that can be used as grounds for requesting supervised visitation and exchanges.

Dove - posted on 09/27/2015

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You need to get a court order for custody and visitation as well as the child support order. Then it is up to him whether or not he takes his daughter during his parenting time. It is not up to you to just decide to cut him out of her life.

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♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/28/2015

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Sarah explained it much better than I did...Sorry my post was so short!

Sarah - posted on 09/28/2015

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Your lawyer would be speaking for you, not your child, just and his lawyer would be speaking for him. I realize your child is only 2 and she can't speak for herself, which is why a GAL or CASA (court appointed special advocate) is helpful. This person is solely committed to the benefit of your child's welfare. He/she will have access to all the records, past orders, doctors notes etc. He will speak to you and to your child's father and share his opinion with the judge. Ultimately it is up to the judge to make the decisions of custody and support. If you feel like you need to have representation, and a lawyer is probably helpful, because lawyers understand how the proceedings work and can help you explain your position. Call a local women's shelter and ask them for a referral to a lawyer that work with a sliding scale payment. Or, borrow the money from family for at least the consultation to get some of your questions answered and get your bearings on where to start.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/28/2015

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Actually, the GAL that Sarah mentioned is a very common step in cases involving children. It gives the kids a representative of their own, who is supposed to ONLY look out for the benefit of the child. In older children with more communication skills, the GAL is also the representative when speaking in court.

Young - posted on 09/28/2015

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My daughter is only one I didn't know she needed someone to represent her. Thank you for being so helpful. Her dad is trying to see her this week and I said that was okay. He just showed up in town at a hotel. I am going to meet him in a public place so he can't hurt me or act crazy.

Sarah - posted on 09/28/2015

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You won't be presenting anything but the truth. It is quite likely that a CASA worker or guardian ad lit um will be assigned to the child. It is the opinion of those people as well and CPS (if they are involved), that will matter most.

Young - posted on 09/28/2015

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I want to increase my chances of getting custody and him only having supervised visitation which is why I contacted attorneys I didn't want to risk losing my daughter if I tried to represent myself.

Young - posted on 09/28/2015

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I keep trying to find lawyer with free consultations. They are so expensive here wanting to charge $300 or more to discuss things first and see if they can represent me. I am now documenting our conversations. He was supposed to come today and I didn't fuss over it with him. We waited 8 hours for him to show up when he was supposed to and he just recently told me he would be here about an hour before our daughter goes to bed, so I told him that was too late for today. I am going to start saving txts now. I lost a lot of our conversations in my phone.

Young - posted on 09/27/2015

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Thank you I think that is the best option he doesn't even want to do mediation. I will look into this since I have already filed for child support.

Young - posted on 09/27/2015

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He only wants to see her randomly not on a consistent schedule I tried to work out with him. Even though he has a car now he doesn't want to come unless his mother gives him a ride or I take our daughter to him. I don't want him to show up for a few days and leave for months. I am not trying to keep him from her I recently let him come to my house even though I was extremely uncomfortable. I just wish he would see her more often instead of show up randomly. I have only filed for child support I have no custody order. I only have that he signed our daughters birth certificate. I do not have any police reports I just know my family has called the police on him and his brother witnessed him beating me holding my daughter when she was 3 months old but no one helped me and I finally got out. He keeps threatening to take her from me because he is about to move out into an apartment by himself.

Young - posted on 09/27/2015

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I didn't cut him out I just don't want to deal with his drama or tantrums. Even when we were not on good terms I took our daughter to see him, but I feel like he needs to try more to come see her at my house. Whenever I take her to him he just plays his video games around her. He doesn't really interact. If I do not take our daughter to him he won't make the effort to see her. He can drive and has a car now. He saw her for 2 days and hadn't seen her in 6 months. I also don't like how he is in and out of her life. I do also feel uneasy about him being alone with our daughter because he was inappropriate with one of his female cousins. I would prefer if he just had supervised visitation since he keeps telling me he wants our daughter to live with me since I take care of her, but then he always threatens me when I try to get him to help out more.

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