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Author Topic: Daughter has asked to live with non custodial father  (Read 3144 times)

slg

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Daughter has asked to live with non custodial father
« on: Jun 20, 2005, 11:26:54 AM »
My husbands daughter has made mention of wanting to live with us.  She is 11 years old.  She brought it up with her mother who told her 'it wouldn't be right for you to live with them'.  And she also told her she was not to even discuss it with us.  Is there any course of action we can take?  Is 11 years old, old enough to have an opinion the court would honor?  
The original court order for custody was placed in Anoka county.  My step daughter and her mother and sister live in Anoka county still (we live in Benton).  So changes to schools and such would have to take place.  
Is there anything we can do to help my husbands daughter to get her wish?

Thank you,
Stacy


spinner

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RE: Daughter has asked to live with non custodial father
« Reply #1 on: Jun 26, 2005, 09:05:00 AM »
I would think so that an 11 years old has a say in court but who knows what the judge can do.
why not file a motion on the daughter's behalf ?
with school, summer is the best time, in september it will be too late, they'lll never change her from 1 school to the other during school year

keep us posted

EyeInTheSky

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A few things to consider
« Reply #2 on: Jun 28, 2005, 12:39:20 AM »
Yes, I'm sure it would be very nice for the Dad and you.... but I'd have to question the child's motivation. Does she get special treats at your place? Special attention? Is she mad at her BM? Does she like to pit BM against BD so she can get more attention....special privies?  

Our SD started saying these things when she was about 9 y.o.  BM wouldn't hear of it.  OUR SD is a lovely young teen....also very smart and an ace at manipulation.  It took a lot of sitting back, listening, watching body language, etc. to figure out what was what.

As far as changing schools...... it happens. Sure not often...but each circumstance is different.  My SD came here, 5 hours from her first home, between the 2nd and 3rd quarter of school.  All worked out fine.

This was/is a trial period and NOT official w/ the court system in MN. We hope and pray BM continues this into the next school year because the child is absolutely flourishing.  We need "custody" though......... BM has retained this thus far.  However we're content that the child is actually happy, losing a LOT of very negative habits and moving forward in life.  We sincerely hope BM sees it this way too and not just a contest of sorts.

Have you considered why your SD's BM is so against this? Does the child bring it up each time they argue?  Does SD repeat what she overhears in your house?  Remember to ALWAYS keep the talk positive, especially when it relates to BM and her family/friends there.  Nothing good can come out of badmouthing.  It hurts the child......and ticks BM off.

Remember to listen carefully to each word SD says when she makes these statements.  Sure, you'll WANT to jump in and get the scoop (it's only natural)....but now is a time to listen ONLY WHEN SHE BRINGS IT UP.  Personally, I find that - FOR US - not having a sit-down talk works the best.  She speaks to me more about feelings than her Dad... when she does I continue w/ whatever I'm doing... incorporate her assistance (eg: cooking, dishes, yard work, etc) and things flow naturally.  I learned this from a counselor that my son used to go to....many years ago.  He wouldn't sit in a small room and ask my son questions... instead they played pool or basketball.  I thought that was pretty good... and it worked beautifully.  Maybe this will work for you also! (hope so)  Keep in mind that SHE has to start the talking.

Also... has SD been evaluated by a counselor....a psychiatrist/psychologist or another mental health professional?  Often this is a good thing..... just to help the child.  The BM here, at first, didn't want any part of this...... I BELIEVE (could be wrong) that deep inside she may have thought we blamed her or was criticizing her for something.  Nope... finally she took the child in for help.  ~~~~  Right now, in our house...she has a TERRIFIC counselor that she can relate to.  We got lucky.

If you do decide to move forward... keep in mind that you can't represent the child.  A GAL or Expeditor may be of assistance.  When interviewed...also be very cautious about talking negative about BM.  Yikes.

I wish you the very best.  Keep us informed.

*** I am not an attorney. These statements are my personal opinion***

tulip

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RE: Daughter has asked to live with non custodial father
« Reply #3 on: Jul 08, 2005, 09:40:08 PM »
I don't think a court in Anoka County is going to take an 11 yo girl out of her mother's home and move her to another county against the mother's wishes unless she is being physically abused. I live in Anoka County and it's been my experience that a judge would not even want to get child that age involved in a custody battle. So I'm sorry to say, that filing a motion for change of custody with no grounds other than the girl said she wants to live with dad would be a waste of money. (Even if you had a very good reason, you would need a very good atty.)

How much time does your husband get to spend with his daughter? I think if he truly wants to be with her, he needs to try working on it slowly. Not just for her benefit, but because that's the only way he way is going to convince to the mother or a judge that he is a good father and she would be better off with him. She is at a very confusing time in her life and I don't think it's a good idea to encourage her to pull away from her mother. I'm don't want to make assumptions, but your post didn't say anything about why she wants to move. It's very possible she is just trying to see which one of her parents will fight the hardest for her because she's feeling kind of torn. Did you and her dad get married recently, or move? Maybe she's feeling like her relationship with dad is being threatened.

The best thing for her, of course is for both parents to encourage her to have the best relationship possible with each other. I know there are a lot of mothers that many people in this forum can tell you about who poison their childrens' lives viciously out of contempt for an ex-partner, and I can't assume from your post that that's not the case for your sd. If my daughter told me tomorrow that she wanted to live with her dad, I would tell her no way. She's 7. If she told me that at 11, I would say the same thing. It's not because I don't care about her feelings, it's because I have been raising her without him since she was a baby and I understand her needs a lot better than he ever will. An 11 year old doesn't understand her needs that well either.

 

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