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Do I stand a CHance of getting my son on my own

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heres my story

on february 21 of last year i get a phone call from my ex could i go see here,anyhow i get there and her mum opens the door i sat down and there my ex with my 3 week old son i didnt even know she was pregnant anyhow he looks like me and i agree to sign the birth cert and start becoming a dad i spend tuesday and thursday and wekeends down with her,any how i had just built a house and was weary that she could just be after me for that anyhow she decides to end it at the end of may but say i can still see my boy well 2 weeks of texting and calls to see if i can see him she doesnt answer the phone i then get a restraining order issued against me for harrassment although day of court she doesnt attend,i also get a call from a mystery person to say leave her alone or i be killed,anyhow i go to mediation and she gets a letter form them asking to attend i then get a phone from her mum to say if i wanted to see my son i have no arms or legs to hold him,she then calls me to say why are you wasting there time i was raped anyhow i did some research on dna home kits and texts her to say i want a test,anyhow she then turn round and said he was my child but she still refused to go to mediation so i got a letter saying that anyhow the next night i get a knock at my door at 8.30 some guy in mask and gloves saying leave her alone or i come back and kill you,i did call the police this time although not much they could do apart from a restraining order but to the people she hangs round with retsraining orders like a red rag to a bull and they have no trouble shooting or getting rid of me,anyhow i get a court date for october well in septeber she calls say i am sorry and would i go back,ocourse like a fool cos i love her i did and stopped the court from proceeding anyhow i had found letters from this guy in prison whos serving 20 years armed robbery who is out in the next month or so she had gone to see him and still was recieve letter the letters also had hes surname as hers as he ask to marry her,she also has 3 other kids and those 2 dads also do drugs and the ex ex hubby is a drug dealer up north,anyhow i had enough so early december its called off,i have currently been seing my son 2.30 - 7 tuesday and thursday and alternate weekends from 10 am saturday to 6 pm sunday.i guess most people would say thats better than nothing i used to pick him up and she then come collect but she ask me to start doing both ways i said no with this she punched me 1 night and now we have to meet in a shopping centre which she normally late and his unfed,so i need to try and get 15 minute travel time 2 feeds abd a bath in those hours,plus when hes with me we always playing on the floor with blocks balls trainins etc and go to the foreshore for him to play there and also take him to church,when we were together he was just put in his rocker all day with a bottle held in his mouth with a towel and she woudl tell me off for picking up cos if i put him down he would cry.the 2nd time he just be put in his high chair all day and i also get the same treatment from her,

i have a court date now in february but legal aid refusing to help since they dont belive i get shared care 50/50 as hes 1,i wanted to go for full custody but as you can see i probably be shot when getting out of court if i got that and i was trying to be fair,not only that i need to work to pay for home loan and thought the court wouldnt like him going into day care only way i see that i am safe would be to get full custody and name change and move i have to represent myself i am desaperately looking for help cos if i lose hours or dont get anymore hours i belive my sons wellfare is not being met but how can i prove it do research mothers seem to get everything please help i love my son and know i can care for him much better than she can
onehurtdad - I would agree that you may not get 50/50 straight away or sole care unless you can show the mother cannot provide adequate emotional support for your son - in other words she has a mental illness, on drugs, suicidal etc…

But I think if you hang in there with your Tues and Thurs and every 2nd weekend care, then you have a good chance to increase this to possibly 40% care over the next few years.

There are many other posts on here showing what you can propose care wise for such a young child so perhaps do some homework and then go back to Legal Aid with some revised plans.  

You need to document everything that is happening and try to get hard evidence of threats etc… so you can do something about them.

I think you need a lot of tenacity to deal with this and by what you have mentioned, it looks like you can handle the situation.
hi there well she does suffer from bi polar but i only just found this out via her dad but told him i never betray his trust;we can be talking normally then she can just go into a mad rage.i have notied on the court form that she anti depression and is on medication and any other issues mental health system would know bout.saying that she also knows that 18 years ago i want to commit suicide myself after a 5 year marraige broke up so i dont know if the courts would take that into account for me
It sounds like you might have a case that might go a little more in your favour.

A few questions:

Do you have a partner?

Do you have other children?

What support do you have from your family?

Could you care for your son 50/50 without using day care?

Do you have the support of her father to care for your son?
i dont have another partner as silly as this may sound i still love her even though shes treated me like she has,
i do have close girl friends and woman from the church that would help

i dont have any other children but have raised over 15 in other long term relationships

i have no family sorry to say

certainly can look after him 50/50 without day care

her father brought her up by his own due to her mum being into drug and aclohol hence the way she is i guess
wish the court could see all the pain and suffering and sleepless nigth i gone thru know if he is mine then hes not almost lost my job in the last 6 month due to the stress of things
If you have raised 15 children in other long term relationships then you should be able to look after 1. Do you keep in touch with any of the 15?

With a court date in Feb and no legal representative it looks like you have to do this yourself. Is the court date an interim hearing? If so what orders are you seeking?
i have no idea if its an interim hearing i just filled out the new forms form i initiating application and case info np3 document

i stated that both us have 50/50 parental responibility

For Our son to live 50 perecent of the week with ex and 50 percent with me

12pm sunday to 11.45 wednesday allowing for a 15 minute handover 12 wednesdsay to 11.45 sunday can work either way if she doesnt want 1 or the other

or that he lives 66 hours a week with me and 102 hours a week with the ex 1 week and visa versa for the next week 102 for me and 66 with her but thats a bit more complicated just that i have him the tues and thurday but have him over night and drop him off at 12 the next day

handover at her house but i remain in the car or at a shopping centre which is equal distance

and as she given the other dads the run around with there orders

i put to have full custody if she fails to comply with orders which i know is a bit harsh

thats final orders didnt put any interim orders in as the court advice line said more than likely the judge woudl send us away for more mediation and thankyou for all your help

There are others on here that might be able to help you with the procedural stuff but I will say I doubt you get even close to what you want for a number of reasons.

Unless you can show the mother is an unfit parent then you should start with the status quo and set out a plan of gradual incremental increase in care over 6 month periods for the next two years that might arrive at 50/50.

You need to change the orders sought ASAP as you will be disappointed with the outcome.
i feel i am a visitor to my own son if i dont get any less i spend more hours shopping in 1 week than i do seeing him as i see it she is unfit but i have to prove that and i guess its not easy,before term finished she woke late and didnt send the 2 others to school,will the court look at thoses sort of problems,why is it men have to suffer just because a child is young if the mother died whislt given birth then automatic the father should have rights and how is it that the polcie when you call them and places liek crisis care say it 50/50 custody if there are no orders yet if you go to court you lose that right somethign has to be done surely i know i going off subject but she is a lousy mum
To be quite honest with you and I know you don't want to read this, but the chances of you getting 50% shared care at age 1 are simply not realistic and just won't happen.

Fairgo is giving you some good ideas.
onehurtdad said
i just filled out the new forms form i initiating application and case info np3 document
I am not sure what np3 refers to but the initiating application will require Primary Dispute Resolution at a Mediation centre. Have you done that? You say legal aid won't help because they don't believe you have a reasonable chance of success so have you discussed assistance from them with a graduated program of contact.

You can join the SRL-R group if you are self represented but reading your posts I suggest you try and find someone with either a legal background or has been in the Federal Magistrates court system before relating to a family matter. You can go along a  few weeks before and sit in on a case and see what goes on. Which Federal Magistrates Court will this be heard in? Is it a circuit Federal Magistrate in a country area?

You can also get much information from the advice line.

general information about family law court procedures
general information about applying to the Family Law Courts
general procedural information about your case
family law forms and publications,
referrals to legal advice and other services in the family law system, and
copies of divorce certificates and orders.

The Family Law Courts cannot provide legal advice.  

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Work with the contact you have now and work with the Federal Magistrate to get that contact you have now secured and a gradual increase in contact as your son gets older. 2 , 4, 5 are good ages to target increased time.

When parents don't agree it is a problem. When you don't agree you are asking a third party (The Federal Magistrate) to make a call on what is best for the child. Not what is best for you or the mother. There are no rights for parents when you go to court. If you saw Forest Gump the movie, you would have seen poor Forest sitting there with a box of different sorts of wrapped chocolates saying "Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are going to get". That is pretty well how it is going to be here.

You say the mother is unfit to be a mother. To go down this path is a double edged sword. On the one hand the judicial officer will want to get to the bottom of things and you will need evidence of days and times that things happened and I don't just mean the washing wasn't done last week… On the other you open up the argument of parental conflict where neither of you can speak to each other because you are saying she cannot do anything right for the child. Judicial officers don't like parental conflict at all. If you can communicate there is a MUCH higher possibility of working things out to get reasonable orders. You need very frequent regular and shorter contact periods when they are very little. Thats what most of the research says so that is what the court is going to take up on.
onehurtdad said
why is it men have to suffer just because a child is young if the mother died whislt given birth then automatic the father should have rights
In an intact family where the extended family is not arguing as to who the child should live with dad usually has the child and the extended family will assist bringing up the child. That is what would normally happen.
onehurtdad said
…and how is it that the polcie when you call them and places liek crisis care say it 50/50 custody if there are no orders yet if you go to court you lose that right something has to be done surely i know i going off subject but she is a lousy mum
The Police come when you call them usually around matters of violence and danger to persons and property. They are not a counselling or mediation service. Their job is to protect public citizens and property and to uphold the law. The Police should not be telling you it is 50 / 50 care because that is not their role in life. It is usually not 50 / 50 in intact families as dad is off working but what you mean I think is that when parents are together you can have any amount of contact and relationship but when you separate then suddenly it all stops and you get nothing. That is something we have argued for years and at this stage we cannot get a presumption of equal time parenting up in legislation, so we have to get the next best thing and maintain the ground we have before looking for other alternatives that may get up into legislation. The argument is if the parents know it is equal time to start with in law they will work something out that fits the circumstances. ie 40% / 60% or 38% / 72% etc. … Whatever the situation you have and those threats of violence all around you make sure you don't get involved going down that road as it will spiral out of control and you will end up with supervised contact or no contact.

Use the existing contact as a springboard for some more. Can you discuss with your ex that giving you some more time will give her a break from time to time and if I had 15 children I would be waiting for you to turn up each day !! Come up with some other times that might be good for her. Calculating handover to 15 minute periods isn't going to work.  Stick to easy numbers like pick up at 9am and drop off at 6pm or Saturday 9am through to Sunday 4pm… One overnight every so often should be okay at this stage if not breast feeding unless you arrange for express milk to be stored and available. I would definitely work on a graduated contact regime at ages 2, 4 and 5 (When he starts Kindy). The Magistrate will probably guide you anyway down this path so think about some options you can give the Magistrate rather than be completely inflexible. If you are going to argue the mother is unfit you are asking for trouble unless you have really solid proof and it is not easy to get that proof. You will need to subpoena police records to get arrest warrants etc.. Not an easy business at all. If you go down that path you will end up with one "angry" mother that will make contacts even more difficult.

Do you have  a DiDS group near you. Worth going there and also a Mens Shed if there is one.

Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
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I recommend you get a DNA test done.


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