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Grandmother using children as Weapon, my mother

Using children to gain access to parent.

Hi all

Looking for some advice.

From some of my previous posts, I have explained my situation, where I am genuinely unable to afford contact of my kids ..for now, working very hard on this.

I am estranged from my mother, I have not talked to her since last Christmas and no, I haven't made the effort to call, for reasons that are very important to me. My mother was very disappointed, that didn't come to live with her, when I separated from my ex. Further disappointment when I re-partnered, more when I remarried and more still when my partner and I had children. We have yours, mine and ours so to speak.

My mother was of the same opinion about my ex, worse, as my ex wife retaliated and often.  My mum had very little to do with my kids, from my first marriage and was very negative about my ex until last year, when I stopped contacting my mum. Last Christmas in front of all our kids, on Christmas Day, she demanded to know why my wife was their. My wife released from hospital that day with our new baby daughter.

It was a show stopper, my wife in tears, my daughter in tears, who has a very close and endearing relationship with my wife. So all left after a very quiet dinner. A day or two later my mother texts my daughter, and asks her to come with her for 4 days, to my other brothers holiday house. My daughter was very stressed and finally revealed the text. I said if she wanted to go that was fine, I tried to be unaffected by the fact my mother hadn't asked me, or text me about the matter at all. A brave face, my daughter Im sure saw through.

In a proceedings it was made very clear, by FM because my children are teenagers, as parents, we should respect their wishes for contact. It works both ways, previous Christmas and following holidays my daughter stayed the entire holidays and my son came a little later, so as to not miss out on a very important New Years party, first on his own. However at that time, we were  still in the middle of proceedings. Things have however changed now. Last Christmas exactly 3 weeks before my children were to fly here, my daughter sent me a very short email. Dad we don't really want to come these holidays, could you come here instead. Later she conceded in a phone call,about three weeks later, that her mother had organised for her cousins from interstate, to visit in my time. My ex I feel, I know, is abusing the respect the wishes of the children as conveyed by FM.

After a couple of very emotional phone calls recently with my kids, I had  explained, why I could not fly them here these holidays. Today I have  just found out, my ex has organised with my mother to have the children, in the times I was to have them. My ex and mother have not said a word to me. Instead it has been filtered through my brothers family on face book.

Similar event happened, a few months ago, when my mother organised my ex, to attend one of the cousins 21st birthday. Not in my time, however,  my mother told me to stay away, that my ex would not allow the kids to come without her and not if I attended. I was told to stay away and I did. Ex spent the night ranting, to my family about my CS debt, and how I take precedent over my new kids. My brother asked her to leave. The next day my daughter was in tears, and had asked her cousin, if she would take her to see me. Ex said no. I live around the corner from my mother and very close to my brother and his kids.

I have no problem with my mum wanting genuine time with the kids. I have very serious concerns, about how my mother and ex are going about this. How will this psychologically and emotionally effect my kids, my daughter mainly as my son a bit older a little removed from all of this.

I know in all honesty, that my children would find it weird, to say the very least. The fact they are coming here, but may not be seeing me.

I won't interfere, I am hoping my mother or ex have the decency to call me. I in-fact have already sacrificed my limited time with my children to pay my CS liabilities, so I can't object to them being in my mothers care, as my ex has organised this.

My main question is do I have rights to complain and expect that in such instances, given, I live around the corner from my mother, that their be some communication. If their is none, how will my kids digest this. My ex has already informed me by email everyone, (ex and mother) think I am prioritising my new family. Simply not the case.

I don't want put pressure on my kids, by asking them as they have not mentioned it. Had a great text chat with daughter yesterday, I don't think she even knows she is coming yet.

Am I wrong to think this is really twisted, should I sit back and wait. If this is the in the best interest of my children, I have no problem, I will whole heartedly promote the new relationship with my mother.

I can't promote how these two adult women, have gone about this. It would be different if I didn't live locally, I spend significant time with my children's cousins, who they will be seeing.
Your ex and mother are treading on very thin ground. It sounds like they have become frenemies and the question is if things went to court would your mother make an application for contact and/or would she turn against your ex by bringing up history.

Basically they are both doing the wrong thing because your mother has made it clear in the past on her position regarding your children, so ultimately it is your decision. It is very noble of you to continue to say the children should see their grandmother but from the information you have given (which you should be keeping diary evidence of) this would not be seen very highly in a Family Report. This is all emotional and psychological trauma and would also not be looked upon highly in a Family Report but would your daughter be honest about it in front of a psychologist for the family report.

More to the point the mother may be in contravention because if she can afford to pay for the children to attend a birthday party but not to visit you if you can't afford it.

The mother is also in contravention for organising cousins to visit in your time which is clearly discouraging your children from visiting not to mention the fact that the mother did not encourage them to visit despite the cousins being there or altering the contact so that you could still see them. This is definitely grounds for contravention.

Saying such things in an email to everyone is slander, defammation and character assassination. You should warn her of such.

Also it is clearly stated that individuals are to avoid discussing court related stuff infront of the children as it can discourage children from spending time with the other parent.


In saying all the above, I feel like a bit of a hypocrite because my stepdaughter has not seen her mother or paternal grandmother (who is also a party to proceedings) since December 2009. Some of the circumstances are similar to yours such as that my husband can no longer afford the airfares (child's mother reduced her CS to the minimum despite her husband earning in excess of $62,000 per year while we continue to survive on Centrelink benefits), telephone, etc; both parties do not encourage stepdaughter to reside with us telling her things like she should be living there because that is where her family lives (she has a sister and brother with us), I am not her mum and can never be (this we all know is not true because I am her stepmum and just because her biological mother gave birth to her doesn't make her a mum/parent), that my stepdaughter does not have to listen to me or do what I say (you can imagine the problems this has created); finally my stepdaugther is the victim of Maunchausen Syndrome by Proxy at the hands of her paternal grandmother; the mother and paternal grandmother are frenemies which has confused and upset stepdaughter.

We have now not heard from either to see stepdaughter since just before Christmas 2010 (if I recall correctly). Paternal grandmother (who I need to add does not want anything to do with her other grandchildren that my hubby and I have together despite them being as much hers as my stepdaughter - though this is probably a good thing) sent email ranting and raving about where stepdaughter was because she went to my parents who are really supportive for help/respite last year (somehow paternal grandmother found out) and now we have new baby so presume stepdaughter is foster care, threatened to move over here to find her. Reply was sent stating that if that's what she needed to do then so be it but now that we have more information pertaining to how long she has had Maunchausen Syndrome (since before husband was born) we are not prepared to let her have anything more to do with her granddaughter. Mother has only sent email to wish her daughter "Happy Easter" and "Happy Birthday" - no other emails on a regular basis or presents/cards. Also the child is now 13 years old and
Secretary SPCA said
The courts can only set up an environment that will facilitate contact arrangements. The children will eventually vote with their feet and no amount of court orders will stop that.
thus no amount of court orders can result in forcing a child to do something they do not want to do. Also an airline will not physically put a child let alone an adult on a plane if they refuse to.

Sorry this is probably a little :offtopic:but I am hoping it helps.
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