Donate Child Support Calculator
Skip navigation

Recently Separated dad - Don't know what to do

Add Topic

There has been no history of any abuse etc but I can still only get a few hours each week. What gives here?

Hi,
My wife and I separated last December. A basic timeline to now - She disallowed any access to our son until just before christmas and I had to sign a court order to even get time with him on christmas day. Up until 10/01/09, I only got to be with him for a total of 9 hours. There has been no history of any abuse etc, and I was too worried of going to her house to ask to see our son because I thought she would end up stretching her imagination, saying I was knocking the door down and generally make it impossible for contact with my son. We went through mediation, where I was able to eke out 6 hours a week with him. Well, I pleaded for more, but what she said basically was it. So much for fair. We went to court in march as I was getting nowhere with spending time with our son. The magistrate changed time with him to 18hrs a week, tuesdays, thursdays and all day saturdays. Her lawyer argued that it was against an infants best interests (18 months old) to spend time away from his mother and quoted studies to indicate as such. I currently have no overnights with him, which prevents me being able to do the little things that mean so much still, like bathing, settling for bed, breakfast, resettling at night etc. I have searched for ages on the internet for these studies, and the more you look, the more studies there seem to be which favour the "primary carer" and the importance of both mother and father (ie shared parenting). Personally, I believe that shared parenting gives the infant/child bothparenting styles/lives which should only enrich the childs upbringing, so long as no violence exists and acrimony is kept completely away from the child.
I am going back to court on thursday with my lawyer saying to go a step at a time with things. He thinks I should try to get a night a week with our son and go from there. I am wondering if there are any others that have been in the same position that could help me, either with their stories, advice or point me to websites, judgements etc that could help me. I have never said anything short of wanting shared parenting and never tried to say that my estranged wife shouldn't have an equal involvement in our sons life, even though I am sure she is looking at her best interests over our sons best interests.
That is another thing. I am a full supporter of doing things by a childs best interests, but there seems to be no definite answer to a "standard" type of separation. I cannot find anything anywhere. Stupid naive me would have thougt that if it were a separation without violence or anything detrimental to a child, that the law would have a standard instruction to apply, negating the need for things to drag out like they do.

I would love to hear from anyone that could possibly help
hi, am only new to this but am in very similar situation. I have recently filed an iniating apllication with the federal magistrates court. I found on the Family Law Courts website I could view recent and old judments. This included full versions of orders made by the court and also extremly detailed reasons why the Judges made the decision that they did. I have found this to be helpful thus far. I also remeber there was a recommendation from the Family Relationship Centre that at 18 months idealy the child should spend some time with the parent with whom they dont live at least every 3-4 days. And at that age it was the frequency of visits rather than amount of time that was recommended.I know its hard to deal with. Sounds like you doing all the right things,keep your chin up and hang in there
I need to ask a simple Question, Why is it when  parents seperate the Mother walks away with the child?

What is stopping a father in the first instant from having the child reside with him? :ninja:

Finding specific studies that come from our shores is difficult unless they have a bias edge to them.

There is no specific formula for " In the Best Interest of the Child " but a lot revolves around common sense and relates to what each parent does to encourage a relationship with the other parent when it comes to adversarial situations. Adversarial situations do not need both parties to be conflicting and that's why it's important to justify how you feel what you have done to be in B.I.C.  Most is common sense and an adjudicator will look at the specifics for your situation, another reason why there are no denoted criterion for B.I.C., each family has it's own normality there fore undefinable is the common term " normal ".

It's a good idea when you look at judgements look for point of law referrals and not so much B.I.C. referrals, you can get caught up with blinders on if you try to win a point on emotion rather than law, this then can easily make you appear as the aggressor who is not willing to negotiate, as prior your interpretation of B.I.C. may not be considered applicable to your child so use common sense and play devils advocate with your points.

There have been many studies done overseas that relate to what are productive ways to reduce the effects of separation on children which do point to frequent short visits when the child is young then increased time as they grow until 50/50 or close to is reached. This does not mean it is advisable to use this material as reference material but rather personal information to base your opinion that can be useful when you reflect how you interpret what you feel is best for your child in a common sense way with good reasoning.

Personally I tried to negotiate several change overs per week when my daughter was 3, to reduce the separation time and best benefit her, her mother refused and went rather for block periods because it inconvenienced her life. My daughter has been 50/50 since 4 1/2, week about and she has in many ways adapted to this.

If the other lawyer referred to studies get your hands on them and find out the criterion of the studies. They may be reflecting on specific demographics or limited sources, this way you can reflect that information whilst suggesting you do not fit this demographic.

You do need more than " I just believe " though.

All best D4E  

      
Hi Monaro,
Your question is simple, but there seems to be no explanation. I am guessing that many fathers would ahve been worried like me, that any attempt to see their own child may be misrepresented by their ex partner as an act of some sort of aggression and as such, kept a good distance until "allowed" by either their ex partner or the court system. As I mentioned earlier, I couldn't get to see my son for nearly a month, and the first few visits were at his mothers house. I have no idea why my ex would have thought that I wouldn't return him. Then it only worked up through to the end of January to about 6 hours a week, until I pursued the court option. I only went that way as she wouldn't talk to me and mediation didn't seem to do anything. I'd hate to think she did see it that way, but it felt like she was using him as a possession where she dictated when and where I could see him, as a control measure. She still prepares meals etc for him when I pick him up, which I have said quite nicely to her that I could organise that. I am trying to make everything as nice as possible as we are attached no matter what because of our son, and I would ove to be able to have at least a tenable "business" relationship for his sake. However, she is just so cold and wont talk about anything. Now, if I did anything wrong to cause this, I'd accept it, but in my case, there was no drugs, alcohol, violence etc. She just decided to pack herself and our son up along with most of the items in the house and move out when I wasn't home.
my son starting having overnight contact with his dad well before his 1st birthday and his dad also had contact all weekend every 2nd weekend which included the overnight plus every tues and thurs for 4hours each arvo   this is what we agreed and i do feel it was best for our son due to this is the time that the bonding needs to be done.

Been there done that!

Confused Dad said
Hi Monaro,
Your question is simple, but there seems to be no explanation. I am guessing that many fathers would ahve been worried like me, that any attempt to see their own child may be misrepresented by their ex partner as an act of some sort of aggression and as such, kept a good distance until "allowed" by either their ex partner or the court system. As I mentioned earlier, I couldn't get to see my son for nearly a month, and the first few visits were at his mothers house. I have no idea why my ex would have thought that I wouldn't return him. Then it only worked up through to the end of January to about 6 hours a week, until I pursued the court option. I only went that way as she wouldn't talk to me and mediation didn't seem to do anything. I'd hate to think she did see it that way, but it felt like she was using him as a possession where she dictated when and where I could see him, as a control measure. She still prepares meals etc for him when I pick him up, which I have said quite nicely to her that I could organise that. I am trying to make everything as nice as possible as we are attached no matter what because of our son, and I would ove to be able to have at least a tenable "business" relationship for his sake. However, she is just so cold and wont talk about anything. Now, if I did anything wrong to cause this, I'd accept it, but in my case, there was no drugs, alcohol, violence etc. She just decided to pack herself and our son up along with most of the items in the house and move out when I wasn't home.
  Hi confused

My son was a simikar age whem Mum and I separated. I now share 6/14 (could have been 50/50 but there were other considerations)

It took 6 months after separation for overnights to start. make use of the spare time and learn what you need to know - believe me there is heaps to learn.

For a start, join Self Represented Litigants - Resources (SRL-R) for a chance to discuss in private and gat some usefull guidance on the process.

For me - Shared Parenting is a Reality - Maybe it can be for you too!
There are two definitive parts to separation confused Dad, one is emotional and the other is legal.

What makes sense morally and emotionally does not equate to legally right.

It's important that both issues are dealt with separately so as not to confuse your legal battle with regards to the best outcome you can achieve for your child.

It is important that you keep a running diary that expresses what happens and why you chose to make the decissions you make ( B.I.C.).

You will have to think twice about every decision you make, once will be the initial emotional morality response then more importantly with consideration to how the general consensus of B.I.C. will be practically considered.

You will need to develop a business like relationship with your child's mother and learn when is the best time to make a stand or intervene with regards to control issues ( emotionally ).

She might not want a business relationship but rather opt for a more controlling relationship to take advantage of the situation, this becomes irrelevant because you control how you act and if you stick to consistency she will eventually adapt or not, this again is not your concern as you can not make her do what you want but if this continues and you diarize all information it will provide you with some very good legal points.

This portal is a very good source of legal information and assistance and will give great support to a point with emotional struggles but it is better for a legal resource. As oneadadc suggests it's important to restrict the amount of information you share on any public forum and you will be better served joining the SRL-R to share more information as well as get strong legal help.

For more of an emotional support role their is D.I.D.'s forum which can help you with separating and untangling your emotional confusion, it can also help determine if an emotional response is worth chasing up.

The system is still bias and fathers and mothers are not considered equal but this does not mean reason will not be seen but it needs to be put before the mediator and court in a way that the needs of the child have been taken into consideration at this and in the future, your legal references and information need to be done in a way that the family law system can understand and see relevance to the child is priority.

This is still very fresh and raw for you but it is important that you tackle your emotional aspects so you can get your head into the legal zone.

All best D4E  
D4E said
This portal is a very good source of legal information and assistance and will give great support to a point with emotional struggles but it is better for a legal resource. As oneadadc suggests it's important to restrict the amount of information you share on any public forum and you will be better served joining the SRL-R to share more information as well as get strong legal help.

For more of an emotional support role their is D.I.D.'s forum which can help you with separating and untangling your emotional confusion, it can also help determine if an emotional response is worth chasing up.

Two points, DIDS also have a MIDS forum (Mums in Distress) and the SRL-R members areas are restricted private forums.

http://flwg.com.au/srl-r/pg/start

Our Forum is closed! ::





Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (look for the Avatars) Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
1 guest and 0 members have just viewed this.

Recent Tweets