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Old 12th November 2017, 10:21 AM   #1
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No-coparenting, ..

Hi All,

Need some help from the Pro's! I am a divorced father with a 6 year old son, my ex left and moved out and filed for divorce when our son was 9 months old. Fast forward 5 years, I have had 4 attorneys and spent 70k to fight for my son. I am an excellent loving, nurturing Father however his Mom resents me and refuses to co-parent with me.

My ex has told me she refuses to work with me because I am narcissistic. I am very nice to her, I bend over backwards and always take the high road when it comes to our son. I have our son 4 nights and 3 days every week of the month except one, it's like a 47%/53% split. She has played the victim card for years, calls herself a single mom despite working part-time and living off child support. She filed bankruptcy last year over 14k of debt.

Long story short I don't view my time as my time and hers as hers, I think about our son's needs. She will take him to his grandparents two hours away vs letting him stay with his Dad for example. Lately my son has been asking to see me while with her, and she always tells him no and my son is upset.

I have asked her to put his needs first and to let him see me but she refuses. I am worried about our son growing up and hating her or resenting her. I also don't know how to handle this with my son. Do I encourage him and say it's Ok to ask to see me despite her refusal to do so? Do I protect him and tell him that's time with his mom, don't ask to see your Dad. That seems wrong to me.

I was hoping the resentment would pass 5 years later, but it hasn't. I wasn't husband of the year but I am an excellent father. It is an odd world to live in wanting a co-parenting relationship with his Mom for him and she refuses.

A good example of this is we travel a good bit, I will send her pics of him. She doesn't say is he having a good time, what are his favorite rides, thanks for the pics or nothing.

I hate this for our son, as I know it's going to lead to conflict. She claims I am just making her the bad guy by making it ok for him to ask to see me knowing how she feels.

How do I go through all this and protect my son when I am super open to co-parenting and she totally refuses?

Thanks..
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Old 12th November 2017, 11:05 AM   #2
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Not sure why you brought up the details of finances.. didn't seem to have any part in this.. but I'm confused.. what are you trying to protect him from?

Unless she's abusing the child in some way, I fail to see how what she's doing while the child is there is any of your business. The child does get time with you. 47%/53%, in fact.. so whether or not you discuss anything else, you're already co-parenting. IMO, you're creating something out of nothing.
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Old 12th November 2017, 11:26 AM   #3
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Not sure why you brought up the details of finances.. didn't seem to have any part in this.. but I'm confused.. what are you trying to protect him from?

Unless she's abusing the child in some way, I fail to see how what she's doing while the child is there is any of your business. The child does get time with you. 47%/53%, in fact.. so whether or not you discuss anything else, you're already co-parenting. IMO, you're creating something out of nothing.
I am trying to protect him from resenting his Mom and not understanding why one parent is flexible and the other isn't. Our child is requesting to see his Father during extended absences which don't quite match the rest of the schedule. In other words it's confusing to him. He is getting upset when being told he can't see his Dad, or that he has to go see Grandma versus seeing Dad. Just because you have split custody doesn't mean you're co-parenting. She doesn't co-parent at all.

Basically he is getting mixed messages, Dad saying it's OK to ask to see Dad, Mom refusing to let the child see his Father when he requests to do so. This is the crux of the issue.
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Old 12th November 2017, 12:32 PM   #4
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I have been in your shoes. I was married to a woman with three sons and their biological father didn't allow them to contact us when they were with him and his family. And, he certainly wouldn't bend on his visitations, for any reason. On the other hand, we allowed them to contact him whenever they wanted and were flexible with visitations. We would let them see him and his family outside of his visitations for family functions and what-not.

It was a frustrating situation but I learned two things from it; we had no control over the visitations/communication and we certainly had no control over how they viewed their father. We had a legally binding parenting plan in place, we followed it and we did what we felt was best for the kids from our end, even if that meant giving up some of our time with them.

In the end, your relationship with your son is your own. His relationship with his mother is his and there isn't anything you can do about it. Well, you could take her back to court, spend more money and try to establish a parenting plan that states that your son will be with you when she is on extended vacations but that is going to be a stretch. A judge probably won't grant that as it's not a set schedule the way holidays are.
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Old 12th November 2017, 12:37 PM   #5
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I'm also trying to understand what the problem is exactly? Is your ex keeping your son from you during your court mandated visiting times? If not then I don't think you have much to complain about.

Your son is six so he doesn't get to dictate who and when he will see people. If his grandparents love him and wish to see him then it is perfectly healthy and normal for your wife to foster a relationship between him and her parents. It's not abusive for a boy to visit grandma.

If you're concerned about your son receiving mixed messages then stop giving him mixed messages. If mom has plans with him or want to take him to see her parents and you're telling him that he can come be with you instead then you are the one creating problems and giving the boy mixed messages. If you want to coparent with your ex then you need to back her up, not create conflict between her and your son.

I'm sorry but you do have to be respectful of the her time your time thing. If she wants to take her son to visit her parents during her time then that is her right and you need to respect that. As long as mom is not abusing the boy or putting him in danger you don't get to dictate how she schedules her time with him. You actually sound kind of controlling.
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Old 12th November 2017, 7:10 PM   #6
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I'm also trying to understand what the problem is exactly? Is your ex keeping your son from you during your court mandated visiting times? If not then I don't think you have much to complain about.

Your son is six so he doesn't get to dictate who and when he will see people. If his grandparents love him and wish to see him then it is perfectly healthy and normal for your wife to foster a relationship between him and her parents. It's not abusive for a boy to visit grandma.

If you're concerned about your son receiving mixed messages then stop giving him mixed messages. If mom has plans with him or want to take him to see her parents and you're telling him that he can come be with you instead then you are the one creating problems and giving the boy mixed messages. If you want to coparent with your ex then you need to back her up, not create conflict between her and your son.



I'm sorry but you do have to be respectful of the her time your time thing. If she wants to take her son to visit her parents during her time then that is her right and you need to respect that. As long as mom is not abusing the boy or putting him in danger you don't get to dictate how she schedules her time with him. You actually sound kind of controlling.
She is at work when she takes him to see his Grandparents. I have nothing against them but if she is at work he needs to be with his Father. I am respectful of her time, but I care more about our son and his wishes and desires. If he is requesting to see either parent arrangements should be made to make it happen.

I don't ever give him mix messages, I always tell him he can always ask to see his Dad, and I'll never stop telling him that. If she wants to refuse to honor his wishes or desires I can't do anything about that. I am super flexible, and take him to his Mom's work, etc when she wants to see him.

I am headed toward a situation where he is going to ask me why she hates me and or dislikes me.
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Old 12th November 2017, 11:34 PM   #7
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I'm also trying to understand what the problem is exactly? Is your ex keeping your son from you during your court mandated visiting times? If not then I don't think you have much to complain about.

Your son is six so he doesn't get to dictate who and when he will see people. If his grandparents love him and wish to see him then it is perfectly healthy and normal for your wife to foster a relationship between him and her parents. It's not abusive for a boy to visit grandma.

If you're concerned about your son receiving mixed messages then stop giving him mixed messages. If mom has plans with him or want to take him to see her parents and you're telling him that he can come be with you instead then you are the one creating problems and giving the boy mixed messages. If you want to coparent with your ex then you need to back her up, not create conflict between her and your son.

I'm sorry but you do have to be respectful of the her time your time thing. If she wants to take her son to visit her parents during her time then that is her right and you need to respect that. As long as mom is not abusing the boy or putting him in danger you don't get to dictate how she schedules her time with him. You actually sound kind of controlling.
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She is at work when she takes him to see his Grandparents. I have nothing against them but if she is at work he needs to be with his Father. I am respectful of her time, but I care more about our son and his wishes and desires. If he is requesting to see either parent arrangements should be made to make it happen.

I don't ever give him mix messages, I always tell him he can always ask to see his Dad, and I'll never stop telling him that. If she wants to refuse to honor his wishes or desires I can't do anything about that. I am super flexible, and take him to his Mom's work, etc when she wants to see him.

I am headed toward a situation where he is going to ask me why she hates me and or dislikes me.
Again, unless there's any abuse, who she asks to watch the kid is none of your business. As was stated earlier, you have your time, she has hers.

It's a little odd to say you'd tell him he can always ask to see his dad when you've made it clear he's too young to know what's going on/happened between you and the ex.

Every child at some point is going to "hate" their parent(s) because of things they can/can't understand. Again, wouldn't think too much into this.. if the child being with you while she's at work is non-negotiable for you, then it sounds like going back to court is your only option here.

Last edited by Sammichmaker; 12th November 2017 at 11:37 PM..
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Old 13th November 2017, 10:35 AM   #8
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Children thrive on routine and structure. What your son needs is stability. He can't bounce from house to house whenever he pleases.

You have your time, she has hers. Your son needs to know that now is his time with mom, he'll be picked up by dad in XY days.

When my daughter first started spending time in her father's house, she would ask for me. Emotionally - yes, I'd tell him to bring her over in a second. Rationally - I told her that now it's her dad's time and I'll see her on Sunday evening. Same goes for when she's with me and asks about seeing him.

Part of co-parenting is facilitating a healthy bond with the other parent. Your son needs to have time with his mother and you need to let her have her time and not interfere with it.
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Old 13th November 2017, 11:27 AM   #9
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She is at work when she takes him to see his Grandparents. I have nothing against them but if she is at work he needs to be with his Father. I am respectful of her time, but I care more about our son and his wishes and desires. If he is requesting to see either parent arrangements should be made to make it happen.

I don't ever give him mix messages, I always tell him he can always ask to see his Dad, and I'll never stop telling him that. If she wants to refuse to honor his wishes or desires I can't do anything about that. I am super flexible, and take him to his Mom's work, etc when she wants to see him.

I am headed toward a situation where he is going to ask me why she hates me and or dislikes me.
Again, I don't see the problem. Your son's grandparents probably adore him and take excellent care of him. Parents cannot be a child's whole world. It's perfectly normal for children to spend time with other family members. A six year old's wishes and desires cannot dictate a parent's decision. Kids have to do a hundred things every day that they do not desire or wish for. We make our kids do what is good for them, not what they desire. Spending time with his grandparents and bonding with them is good for him and you should encourage him to embrace all of his loving family members, not just you and his mother.

I doubt very much that he is going to ask you why your ex hates you but if he ever does you simply explain to him that she does not hate you, she just wants him to spend time with everyone who loves him. Honestly though I think if your son ever says something like that it will be because of you.

Last edited by anika99; 13th November 2017 at 11:35 AM..
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Old 13th November 2017, 9:54 PM   #10
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Again, I don't see the problem. Your son's grandparents probably adore him and take excellent care of him. Parents cannot be a child's whole world. It's perfectly normal for children to spend time with other family members. A six year old's wishes and desires cannot dictate a parent's decision. Kids have to do a hundred things every day that they do not desire or wish for. We make our kids do what is good for them, not what they desire. Spending time with his grandparents and bonding with them is good for him and you should encourage him to embrace all of his loving family members, not just you and his mother.

I doubt very much that he is going to ask you why your ex hates you but if he ever does you simply explain to him that she does not hate you, she just wants him to spend time with everyone who loves him. Honestly though I think if your son ever says something like that it will be because of you.
I don't think you understand. This is a deranged woman who has attempted to play keep-away with our son since he was 9 months old. She only thinks about herself and not our child. She needs to value his needs and desires. I understand he can't dictate all decisions and I have no issues with him having a great relationship with his grandparents. I do however have issues with her refusal to work together for his benefit and having lunch or some time with his father, especially during abnormal time frames. It's been 5 years since our divorce, she eventually has to move beyond hate, resentment and anger. Our battle is over, she lost. She needs to accept our son loves his Father, instead of refusing to let him see his Dad over anger. She needs to put him first.

Could she have some fear that he will love me more? It's been 5 years, that seems pretty long to hold onto issues..
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Old 14th November 2017, 2:12 AM   #11
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This is a deranged woman...
WOW! really...? i am VERY surprised to see a DERANGED woman having joint custody - usually, when one parent is TRULY deranged, the other has sole custody & you can easily prove how DERANGED someone is... or isn’t.

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She only thinks about herself and not our child.
how so...?

she respects the custody agreement - isn’t that right? you’re complaining about her not giving you time OUTSIDE of your agreement, for what...?

someone already explained it to you - when the child is with you, he is with YOU. that is your time and allowing him to bounce back and forth whenever he pleases is very bad for him. so yes - when he asks to see his mother during his time with you, you should refuse and gently tell him that he WILL have the time with his mother... as scheduled. you can allow him to speak to his mother on the phone.

it’s very interesting how you skipped one of the best posts on this thread, explaining how you’re doing it wrong - instead, you’re hellbent on painting yourself as the perfect father and the ex as some kind of unreasonable woman who is damaging your son even though you can’t really provide any proof AT THE MOMENT. what had happened in the past is irrelevant if she is respecting the agreement NOW.

you seem very resentful and liking the idea of your son loving you MORE; you mention being afraid of your son resenting his mother - why would he resent her...? do you want your son to resent her mother? are you manipulating him to resent her? it seems like you literally invented a problem that isn’t there in order to turn your son against the mother, very subtly. how come it didn’t occur to you that he might resent you for not putting up any strong boundaries and being an actual PARENT? you also mention how your ex LOST during your battle - what exactly did she lose?

again. if she is respecting the agreement - than there is no problem and you work with what you have. you don’t seem to respect your son’s mother, you don’t seem to have your son’s best interest at heart and your kindness comes off as fake - sure, you’re ready to be nice for your son’s sake but only when it suits you. you’re fighting for YOUR needs, not your child’s needs. sit down with your son and explain to him that he cannot bounce from one home to another and that stability is important, when he is with his mother - he is with his mother. when he is with you - he is with you. that is called PARENTING.

stop sending pictures if she doesn’t ask for any. you’re creating conflict out of nowhere because your ex doesn’t want to be NICE to you and doesn’t want to be friends - it’s childish, let it go.

right now, you’re not really the father of the year - far from it, actually. don’t delude yourself thinking you’re the better parent.

Last edited by minimariah; 14th November 2017 at 2:20 AM..
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Old 14th November 2017, 5:29 AM   #12
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Does she allow him to call or facetime with you? If he's really missing you, that can go a long way toward making him feel better.

I might be willing to give up time with my kids for special circumstances, but if my kids were regularly asking to spend time with their dad while I was supposed to have them, I would discourage it. I'd probably tell them they should facetime him.

Also, if he's asking to be with you during her time and he's not asking to see her while with you, she might be feeling hurt by that which could contribute to her not wanting to cooperate with you. And if it's true that it only happens in one direction she probably should be working on her relationship with him, not giving up her time to you.
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Old 14th November 2017, 5:45 AM   #13
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She's not refusing to let him see you. He gets to see you each time you have custody. What she's doing is sticking to the agreed rules of access days. She's not doing anything wrong.

Your boy needs to have no confusion in his life. Telling him that he can ask for something which doesn't work for your ex is just undermining her and confusing him. The best thing you can do is help him learn to divide his time and appreciate both of you. Stick to the agreed plan and he will learn. And your ex will probably dislike you far less if you're not working to undermine her time with him.
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Old 14th November 2017, 6:06 AM   #14
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Try this "Yes, I would love to see you too. But this is the time you spend with mommy and I want you to enjoy being with her too. You will be here with me before you know it and we can spend time together then. I love you."
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Old 14th November 2017, 9:30 AM   #15
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WOW! really...? i am VERY surprised to see a DERANGED woman having joint custody - usually, when one parent is TRULY deranged, the other has sole custody & you can easily prove how DERANGED someone is... or isn’t.



how so...?

she respects the custody agreement - isn’t that right? you’re complaining about her not giving you time OUTSIDE of your agreement, for what...?

someone already explained it to you - when the child is with you, he is with YOU. that is your time and allowing him to bounce back and forth whenever he pleases is very bad for him. so yes - when he asks to see his mother during his time with you, you should refuse and gently tell him that he WILL have the time with his mother... as scheduled. you can allow him to speak to his mother on the phone.

it’s very interesting how you skipped one of the best posts on this thread, explaining how you’re doing it wrong - instead, you’re hellbent on painting yourself as the perfect father and the ex as some kind of unreasonable woman who is damaging your son even though you can’t really provide any proof AT THE MOMENT. what had happened in the past is irrelevant if she is respecting the agreement NOW.

you seem very resentful and liking the idea of your son loving you MORE; you mention being afraid of your son resenting his mother - why would he resent her...? do you want your son to resent her mother? are you manipulating him to resent her? it seems like you literally invented a problem that isn’t there in order to turn your son against the mother, very subtly. how come it didn’t occur to you that he might resent you for not putting up any strong boundaries and being an actual PARENT? you also mention how your ex LOST during your battle - what exactly did she lose?

again. if she is respecting the agreement - than there is no problem and you work with what you have. you don’t seem to respect your son’s mother, you don’t seem to have your son’s best interest at heart and your kindness comes off as fake - sure, you’re ready to be nice for your son’s sake but only when it suits you. you’re fighting for YOUR needs, not your child’s needs. sit down with your son and explain to him that he cannot bounce from one home to another and that stability is important, when he is with his mother - he is with his mother. when he is with you - he is with you. that is called PARENTING.

stop sending pictures if she doesn’t ask for any. you’re creating conflict out of nowhere because your ex doesn’t want to be NICE to you and doesn’t want to be friends - it’s childish, let it go.

right now, you’re not really the father of the year - far from it, actually. don’t delude yourself thinking you’re the better parent.
This is absurd, of course I am the better parent. I am pretty much the sole provider for him financially, as well as the parent who puts the child first in all situations. His Mom enrolled him in school without even telling me, has moved around 5-6 times. She is transient, has residential and financial instability and has failed to put our son first countless times. Thankfully she got spanked legally.

Let's put the notion to bed that being inflexible, rigid and difficult is somehow good for a child. Our custody agreement doesn't always match our son's needs. Our child has difficulties when he goes long stretches not seeing each parent, it's well documented this isn't good for young children either. A simple why don't you take him to dinner would be golden in our son's eyes. Using excuses to block him from seeing his father for dinner is wrong.

This isn't a frequent occurrence, I understand I have my time and she has hers, but I also understand our son's needs. These don't always match the custody schedule, and it's only a few times a year. Here is a perfect example, this year I have my son Dec 20th - 29th. Do I think he should go 4 days after xmas without opening gifts with his Mom, no. Will she ask me? No. That's the crux of the issue.

I have done numerous research going through what I have been through. This concept of stability and not switching homes somehow benefitting the child more than the love of a parent is quite frankly a big lie. I remember her posting I couldn't see my son because of breastfeeding. Anything to try and keep him from his Dad.. Thankfully she lost, and he's with his Dad now half the time.

I have a lot of pain from going through 4 attorneys, and driving 70 miles to pickup my son for an overnight visit for her to pick him up the next morning. I don't hate his mom, but at some point she has to work together, or it's going to hurt our child.
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