Visitation Schedule for a three year old .... any advice?

Jhahn Meagan - posted on 04/04/2013 ( 3 moms have responded )

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Hi there,

I left my boyfriend last year when my little one was two. We had been together for 19 years and I finally realised that it was not working. He is a good father and we both love our daughter to pieces. She is our life. I live with my parents while my boyfriend still stays in my house that he refuses to pay rent on. He does pay maintenance (although we have not started that yet) and we are in the process of negotiating visitation schedule.

He has only this year found another job and last year as with years gone past, I was supporting him and even bought him food while he had my daughter sleep over at the house.

We had previously an arrangement whereby my little girl (then two year old) stay 3 nights at him and 3 nights at me and this proved to be very disruptive indeed. I then stopped the schedule and although I didn't want her to spend the nights away from home, I did let her dad spend as much time as he wanted with her.

I then went to see a lawyer this year and she advised me to start to let my now three year old daughter to spend nights with her dad as that is the law. We drew up a letter and in there it stated that he could have her spend the night every second weekend and then he could see her for a day during the week when it wasn’t his weekend.

This was not accepted by him at all.

Over the now past Easter Weekend he took her for two nights, against my wishes, and pleads to only make it one night, as she had not spend any time away from home since last year October. She's been a bit clingy and does not like me to be out of her site since she came back, which I guess is normal.

We go for Mediation on the 12th of April - and there we are supposed to agree on a visitation schedule. I would just like some input as to what would be fair for my daughter here. She is my main priority,

Any and all input would greatly be appreciated.

3 Comments

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Jhahn Meagan - posted on 04/04/2013

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Thank you so much for your advice and comments.
Amy, I am not preventing her dad from seeing his daughter. He had a job and sees her every evening on his way home. I just know that he is the type of person where no matter what I go and place on the table as a schedule he will reject. I am trying to be fair and put her needs first, although he is doing everything he can to hurt me and "make me pay for leaving him" in any way he can.

But I do thank you for your comment and value all and every opinion I can get to help me have a complete picture on the situation. As the saying goes, you sometimes can't see the picture when you are in it.

Thank you.

Sarah - posted on 04/04/2013

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I babysit a little boy who's parents just divorced. For the most part they do an every other week schedule. One week moms, one week dads. And then they keep the days the switch consistent....always on Sundays. The little boy does well with this schedule. In saying that no matter what schedule is put into place it is not ideal (mom and dad together in the same place). So with it not being ideal there are going to be ups and downs. There are times when he would rather be with dad or mom on a particular day.....just as we all have certain preferences each day. But in general this schedule works well because it keeps it consistent for him. He knows that on Sunday's he goes to the other person's home and he knows he spends a week there. Since at 3 yrs old they don't know days of the week it is best to not do Mondays you are here and Tuesdays you are here......or Monday through Wednesday you are here and such. I would also advise keeping to the schedule and routine. It REALLY messes them up when the schedule changes. I know sometimes life does not always work that way and some times you have to change the schedule, but it really messes the kids up. When the parents of this little boy switch things up he is left counting on his fingers....mommy,mommy, daddy, daddy, mommy, etc. Since they don't know days of the week time/days is really confusing for them and they are left not knowing who they are with or where their home is.

Amy - posted on 04/04/2013

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Your daughter has every right to get to spend time with her father. It sounds like you don't want your daughter away from you for any extended period of time but unfortunately you're probably going to have to be more flexible when you get to mediation. It's not fair to say he can have her during the days during the week because what if he were to get a job that requires him to work days? That would only allow him to see his daughter every other weekend.

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