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Getting remarried and planning to move with a child you have shared custody of


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Old 2nd June 2018, 7:00 PM   #1
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Getting remarried and planning to move with a child you have shared custody of

Iím sure many of you have gotten divorced and remarried with a child involved, where the ďremarriedĒ person (the woman) had been granted most of the ďcustody timeĒ after D. With the ďmost of the custody timeĒ territory (aka always with the child except for every other weekend) comes the fact that there is a certain school district that the child belongs to, friendship circle etc. etc. Now - what to do if the child (12) ďrefusesĒ to move, because all his friends are in the area, and thatís the school district he has always been a part of, sports, and other activities involved, etc., what do you do? Especially if his bio father (xH) is not necessarily supportive of the move.

I know there are certain laws in certain states regarding this. Not being able to change school districts, etc. And you have to make sure that the judge will be convinced that the move is in the best interest of the child and wonít harm them. Maybe even claiming a better school district in the future, or even a private school,Ö but in general - has anybody ever handled a conflict like that in their immediate family environment? With the child being completely against that move? I know many kids are afraid of change, and that comes with the territory, age and all, but how do you convince them that itís in their best own interest?

The bio father in that particular circumstance is somebody who has moved himself (figuratively) 1 million times, is not financially too stable, although he pays his child support like clockwork, and despite moving several times, tries to stay in an area that is not more than one hour away. Recently he has just moved even closer to the childís home, and he tries to be very much involved in the 12-yo childís upbringing.

Thoughts on how to handle that with lawyers (I have a good one), judges, and on a personal (child-friendly) level? TIA.
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Old 2nd June 2018, 7:21 PM   #2
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Which party are you in said move? The biological mother, father, or the new boyfriend?

I can tell you, my boyfriend of two years has an almost 14 year old child. If we did not have the child to consider, we would be buying our own home and moving in together this summer. We dream about this all the time...

BUT, because of his child, we are not moving in together for a year or two. When/if we move in together, it will be because his child is fine with this decision. I will move into the father's home because it backs into the high school which will allow him to stay at the same school and walk to school everyday. We plan to make this sacrifice until the child is finished school, at which time we will consider buying our own home and moving (with the child, assuming he be in university and probably not be ready to leave home yet).

So no, I have no advice for you because I would never dream of forcing a child to move - leaving their friends, school, sports, and biological father. I think it's a selfish and cruel thing to do to a child.

Let's be honest here, is this really in the child's best interest - or your own best interest?
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Old 2nd June 2018, 7:26 PM   #3
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Every effort needs to be made to keep kids in their school/school district, especially at this age. They've been through enough.
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Old 2nd June 2018, 7:45 PM   #4
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Iím the mother and Iíve been with my boyfriend for more than five years. According to our state law, I do not think I have the legal right to move the child out of his school district, it will all have to go through the courts, if the parties involved disagree on any of this. However, I see a lot of potential in the school district we would like to move into. Our current school district is not bad, but there are better options out there for him. But of course at the age of 12, he is reluctant to make any changes whatsoever. Heck, most adults are afraid of change. Even if itís in their best interest.

I would like to make the move, for personal reasons, and I would not consider it, if i didnít think it would benefit my son academically, and for other reasons. BTW, we are talking less than an hour by car here. And same state, too. But Iím not quite sure what the right thing to do is here. Hence, my question. I appreciate all the input. Thank you so much.
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Old 2nd June 2018, 9:13 PM   #5
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Will you moving an hour away to be with your future husband? Is there a reason why he is not able to move to your area?

If you were to move, could you possibly do it during a natural transition ie) the stat of high school?

With much respect, I don’t agree that “people” are afraid of change. Children need security and consistency. If your school system is basically good, I don’t see any reason to take your child from his friends and school activities. I think the damage from that decision could impact the child more than any perceived benefit from a “better” school.

My family moved because my father got a new job when I was 15, my brother was 13. It was HARD. I was blessed, I had a friend at my new school and she introduced me to a new group of friends. My brother was not as fortunate. He lost his friends, his hockey team, his school work suffered... it took him years to find his way again... I would not dismiss the disruption this potential move could cause your child. I would urge you to think carefully before you make such a life altering decision, and be sure you are making it for the right reasons.

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Old 2nd June 2018, 11:26 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Minnie09 View Post
but how do you convince them that itís in their best own interest?
Is it? I get why it might be in your best interest, but do you really think it's in a 12-year old boys interest to move further away from Dad, friends and activities?

Not sure why it's so important for you to spin this as something you're doing for your son...

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Old 3rd June 2018, 12:08 AM   #7
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Is it? I get why it might be in your best interest, but do you really think it's in a 12-year old boys interest to move further away from Dad, friends and activities?

Not sure why it's so important for you to spin this as something you're doing for your son...

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Huh? Not ďspinningĒ anything here, just asking for unbiased advice with regards to what will be best for the whole family. And Iím looking at all the perspectives that are available, and Iím thanking everybody who provides input, however, life is not only about the 12-year-old, life is about everybody involved, so the whole family has to be happy, correct? Thatís at least what Iím thinking. But I will do as Iíve always done, which is, whatís best for my son.

However, I know many families and divorced families that have moved, at least partially, even to different states, far far away, and all their kids have flourished, and have done pretty well after the initial discomfort. I donít think itís going to kill them. Itís going to teach them that life is full of changes and opportunities, and that they have to make the best out of every situation. And again, thatís just my way of thinking, and because I appreciate other peopleís input, I am asking this question on this board. My parental goals and intentions need not to be questioned. I think thatís inappropriate.
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Old 3rd June 2018, 9:18 AM   #8
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With respect Minnie, try to go back and reread your first post from an unbiased perspective. It certainly reads like you have your own agenda, you have made your decision, and you are looking for support/validation that it is the right decision to uproot your son and move him away from everything he knows and loves... you are most definitely trying to spin the situation such that you are doing what is in the best interest of your son...

And, while I don’t doubt that you have your sons best interest at heart, this decision and your justification of this decision certainly screams “it is in my own best interest” and I’m trying to spin it so that it will be more acceptable to my son and others.

I will say quite honestly, when my father announced we were moving for work, I didn’t talk to him for a week! I was so upset. If you take your child from his friends and school and try to tell him that change is good for him, and it will make him a better peraon... well, I don’t think he will buy that. As we are not buying that.

You have the right to do whatever you want. I can appreciate why you want to get married and move to be with your new husband. Just be sure that you are honest with your son and making these decisions for the right reasons...
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Old 3rd June 2018, 9:21 AM   #9
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However, I know many families and divorced families that have moved, at least partially, even to different states, far far away, and all their kids have flourished, and have done pretty well after the initial discomfort. I donít think itís going to kill them. Itís going to teach them that life is full of changes and opportunities, and that they have to make the best out of every situation.
I think this can be true, for sure. My family moved to a different state when I was 12 and I was super excited for something new. However, my parents were still married and I had a twin sister always "with me" so I wasn't entering a new school "cold" with no friends.

In what ways do you think this move would be great for your son?
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Old 3rd June 2018, 9:44 AM   #10
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The first issue is whether you can move, based on state law and your specific divorce agreement's terms. If you can, then it may be a matter of consent from the father. As a minor, your son has limited say, but could - perhaps - choose to live with his father full time instead (reversing the priorities of custody), if that keeps him in his school. Could you accept that to get what you want?

Kids are often forced to move, and have little say. How about all the married military parents? They have no choice. It often isn't "good" for them, but they have to adapt. Often, business executives have little choice either, if they want to keep their job or career. Loss of a job or the opportunity to do better often leads to the same thing - a move. While it is great if you can accommodate the child (for a year or a few), the parents have rights and needs, too, and a right to pursue their own happiness.
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Old 3rd June 2018, 10:10 AM   #11
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Kids are often forced to move, and have little say. How about all the married military parents? They have no choice. It often isn't "good" for them, but they have to adapt. Often, business executives have little choice either, if they want to keep their job or career. Loss of a job or the opportunity to do better often leads to the same thing - a move. While it is great if you can accommodate the child (for a year or a few), the parents have rights and needs, too, and a right to pursue their own happiness.
Thatís what Iím thinking, and thatís why Iím hoping to hear from parents or children who went through that. No desision has been made whatsoever, and it wonít kill me, if I stay put, either. Trying to figure out the best solution for everybody involved. Both decisions will have their pros and cons.
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Old 3rd June 2018, 12:50 PM   #12
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Having had D many years ago I moved our kids outside of the city we lived in. I had primary custody. I wasn't concerned about how they felt about this as my new H and I were the main source of their support and wanted to live where we felt they would have a better life.

We had a dream to buy a home and live more comfortably and that's exactly what we did.

There was no way they would have dictated that decision for me.


If their bio D would have had an issue with that too then it would be his own as the visitation required that he have them every other weekend which he still did during that time after we moved. I didn't move out of state. Just a outside of our city which meant a 45 minute drive.

Eventually their bio D followed us up here and live 25 minutes further. So even he could see it was a better life choice!
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Old 3rd June 2018, 1:06 PM   #13
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My parents were always together (no divorces), but they made a decision to move to a place with a better school because they believed it best for me, despite my protests. The first year or so was really rough, but it got better afterwards. Now, I personally believe that it was one of the best decisions they ever made. I would not be where I am now without it.

That said, it is possible for it to backfire in other cases. But children tend to be more resilient than people give them credit for, and IMO one move is highly unlikely to severely damage anyone for life. However, it shouldn't be a regular thing, and you need to be REALLY honest with yourself about the potential benefits. If you were single, would you still consider this?
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Old 3rd June 2018, 1:08 PM   #14
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and you need to be REALLY honest with yourself about the potential benefits. If you were single, would you still consider this?
Agree. It can become so easy to rationalize selfish decisions.
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Old 3rd June 2018, 1:51 PM   #15
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Moving your 12 year old son away from his father, friends and school district is not in his best interests. Second and third marriages are even more likely to end in divorce than first marriages.

Have you considered letting your son live with his father so that he wonít have so much change and upheaval? Or better yet not moving away?

The judge might take into consideration what the 12 year old wants as far as legal outcome. Sure a good lawyer stands a chance of getting you what you want but will that really be whatís best for your son? No probably not.
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