Show posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Show posts Menu

Messages - oklahoma

What is best for the child?  Soccer/sports is better for a child than quality time spent with his family?  What world are you living in?  My husband is ultra-sports fanatic, admits that sports probably kept him out of trouble (i.e. jail); he wants his kids to have the same experience and discipline. We have made last-minute changes in our plans to endure SDs get to a game or practice (difficult when we had to drive 4 hours one way for visits.)  But no way is it OK for an outside party--even a judge--to say that a parent must take his/her child to extracurricular activities.

(I apologize if someone further down has already said the same thing--but this one fired me up.)
Visitation Issues / SDs don't want to come
Jan 11, 2005, 02:33:41 PM
I know I've read posts about this before, but it is a new situation to us, so I want to ask again.  What, if anything, can you do if the children say they don't want to come and CP does not want to enforce the parenting plan by making them come? (BM doesn't care that the parenting plan she agreed to and signed 2 months ago specifically states that SDs cannot decide if they want to come to our house.)

My SDs are 11 and 12 years old.  We had no visitation for 2 years because of false allegations of abuse.  Finally, after all kinds of counseling and supervised visits, we had 2 months of the regular EOW visitation.  Then completely out of the blue, SDs called to say they didn't want to come down for the weekend, then they decided not to come down for Christmas.  We have not heard from them at all since the Monday before Christmas--they didn't return my husband's calls on OSD's birthday, didn't call on Christmas or New Year's.  My MIL has been seriously ill in the hospital (same town as SDs) for 2 months and they have not once gone to see her.  It's as if they have just tossed ourt family aside like garbage.  (How do you explain that to their 4-year old brother?)

SDs are too old to just pick up and bring them to our home, especially with BM wanting to "validate" their feelings (apparently she heard *something* the counselor said, not much else.)  My husband has put the responsibility on their shoulders.  He told them they must call him when they are ready to continue a relationship with him.  My husband is very good at putting issues aside and moving on with his life, but this is one area that he cannot do that in and doesn't want to.  Is there anything else to do?

(Conveniently, the weekend that SDs first chose not to come was the same weekend we recieved notice that my husband's CS was dropping nearly $200/month, based on the increased time at our house....  We are still waiting to hear if BM will appeal the decrease.  She told my husband once that she doesn't care how much he pays, just so long as he pays something, but she sure fights whenever the ordered amount has decreased.)
Visitation Issues / Visitation denied....
Dec 18, 2004, 09:46:50 AM
When I last posted a few weeks ago, my SDs had just told Dad that they didn't want to come for the weekend because I was mean to them--but they wanted to come down for Christmas (like things would magically be better....)  My husband talked to them the night they were supposed to come, calmed things down a bit--he's really good at that--and told them to call that night if they wanted him to pick them up Saturday morning, if not we would see them for Christmas break.  He had told them the night before that these "games" were not OK and they had to come every time or not at all--no more back and forth because it was really hurting our family.  When my husband spoke to SDs that Thursday, he had trouble discussing the issue with SDs because stepdad kept hanging the phone up.  But Friday night he was very clear, and I heard him say, "We'll see you at Christmas."

That Friday night was the last we heard from them.  They no longer answer the phone or return messages, and the email account that had been set up specifically for SDs to communicate with my husband has now been cancelled.  (Same thing happened two years ago.)  Finally, after calling almost every day this week, my husband called BMs mom and got something....  Apparently they (BM and/or SDs) have been telling everyone that we told them they could not come down for Christmas.  SDs were spending the night at a friend's house at the time we were supposed to pick them up (glad we didn't drive the 200+ miles to go get them.)  And still, no response from SDs or BM.

The problem is that we can't do anything.  My husband refuses to go to court because it is too expensive to just have the judge say "Follow the court order" and have BM not follow it anyway.  SDs are old enough that my husband really can't drive up there and force them to come--especially with BM telling them they can decide.  But, I have never seen SDs turn away from their dad when he was there in person.....  We don't know how much of this mess is SDs and how much is BM--we do know that they all bear some responsibility.  OSD just entered middle school and is at the age when friends are the ruling force, not family--and, again, BM does not help the situation.

I am just so worried about what this is doing to my husband and to my children.......
It is extremely frustrating.  I sometimes feel bad laying it all in the SDs laps, because they are only 10 and 12; it is good to hear others saying just what my husband and I have been thinking--that the girls are playing a big game, and they ARE old enough to know what they are doing.

I really wish I could convince my husband to do more about BM legally.  But he has been in court a lot more than I, and been battling it out for a lot longer.  Even when he had one of the best--and most expensive--attorneys in the area, not a whole lot changed.
My husband is actually pretty good about dealing with his children--he knows it is all a game for them.  The counseling was court-ordered joint counseling with him and SDs in response to their accusations.  They tried to pull the same stuff in counseling--kept saying they would not come to our house until Dad admitted guilt and apologized, even after they told the counselor they had lied about the abuse.  Finally my husband said "Fine, I'm done.  You just let me know when you are ready to start visits."  They were in tears, and begged him not to stop seeing them, so we started the supervised visits.

My husband called them Friday night and told them they could either choose to come all the time, and deal with the issues that we may have.  Or they can choose to come not at all.  He explained to them that it was not fair to any of us (especially their younger brother and sister) to have to follow their whims.  They didn't ever call back, so I don't know what their decision is.

The funny part about them wanting to come here for Christmas is that we have never had huge Christmases.  My husband is a full-time student, has been for the past three years, and SDs know we don't have a lot of money--but every time they have been in our house on Christmas, the first words out of YSDs mouth are "What did I get?"  Drives me nuts!!!
Two and a half years ago, SDs accused my husband of abuse because they just didn't like doing the chores at our house.  2 years of no contact with them followed.  Regular visitation started up again in September of this year.  (After months of counseling, where they admitted my husband did not abuse them.)  Now they are saying they don't want to come because I treat them "like crap."

When my husband pushed the issue and asked for examples, they complained because YSD had to clean the toilet without gloves (note: we don't have plastic gloves in the house, never have, not worth the expense--and I was not the one who told her she had to clean the toilet), and OSD complained because she had to make her own sandwich at lunch (age 12) but that I made my children's lunches (ages 2 and 4.)  That's it.  Actually one more thing, OSD had to do the dishes after her brother's birthday party--again, I did not ask her to do it, Dad did, in fact I suggested that she didn't need to because there were only like 6 dirty dishes.  What an evil stepmother!

Of course BM "believes" them, not my husband.  But when my husband tried to reason with her--ie "Imagine SDs were at our house and said they don't like SF (which they have on numerous occasions) and we decided not to send them back...."  BM didn't get it at all.  Rather than suggesting that the girls sit down with my husband and I and discuss their concerns (like a normal family), BM supports them picking and choosing when they get to come to our house and what they get to do here.  We need to "validate" their feelings, etc. etc.  (YSD doesn't want to come this weekend, but thinks by some miracle things will get all better and wants to come down for Christmas--a whole week--how selfish is that?!?)  My husband pointed out that BM signed a legal document just two months ago that specifically states SDs are not allowed to choose whether or not to come for visitation, she does not care.  BM knows she won't be held responsible because she never has.  My husband has said to me he won't pursue anything legally, because nothing ever comes of it.

Those little girls are headed for big trouble, and BM needs to deal with it.  They have their way at home, are completely disrespectful and dishonest to all.  OSD is just plain mean.  We have a very strong suspicion that YSD is ADHD.  SDs know that BM will let them say and do whatever they want, while their dad will not--what child/pre-teen wouldn't pick the lenient parent?  The biggest part of me wants to just drop it all.  Let them stay with BM--my life would be easier for sure, and it's not fair to jerk my children around, sometimes they see their sisters, sometimes not.  But that means when their lives are completely screwed up, they will come crawling back to Dad to have him fix it all for them.  (And it will happen--BM is duplicating her life for her children--when she hit bottom, she ran to Dad and "Stepmonster" until things were all in order, and now has no contact with them at all.  She chooses instead to hang out with--and let SDs stay with--the mom who abandoned her and who is now on her 6th or 7th marriage.)

The worst part is that I sit here and wonder how I got sucked into this big mess.  And knowing that even if I left, the mess would follow me and my children.  There is no escape.
Visitation Issues / One big happy family
Oct 01, 2004, 12:47:48 PM
No advice really, but I had to laugh at your comment about "one nice happy family hanging out."  I went with DH to SD's 5th grade "Promotion."  There was DH, ex#1, her current husband (he was just there at the end for a few minutes), DH's ex#2, me, and the children: DH and ex#1 have two girls, ex#1 and her husband have one son, me and DH have a son and daughter.  I jokingly commented to my husband that he needed to get a picture of all of his wives--he almost fell down laughing :)

That type of situation has very rarely occurred in the past 5 years I have been with my husband.  We certainly don't seek them out.  But it is manageable for all when it happens--and my SDs see that we can all act like adults.....
Visitation Issues / Vent....
Aug 30, 2004, 12:32:01 PM
We had our 5th supervised visit with SDs.  BM stipulated 6 and then we'll "look at things."  We ended up having a family get-together with my husband's family, and BM **allowed** SDs to come.  BM's mom is supposed to supervise the visits, so she came along too--after much whining and complaining.  (We told BM and her mom when we set the visit up originally that we would plan on 2:00 pm, so when we called to say "Meet us at 2:00 pm," she wanted a more specific time?!?!)

Anyway, we had a lot of fun.  SDs love being with our family and especially with their dad.  You could just see OSD (11 years old) just craved for that daddy-daughter relationship--he threw her in the pool, she pretended to be all upset, etc. and then asked him to throw her in again....  At the end of the visit, BM's mom mentioned to my husband that it seemed like such a loving atmosphere and that she didn't think they needed to continue the supervised visits.

Grrrrr!!!!  It's aggravating on so many levels--first and foremost the fact that NOTHING has changed!  My husband parents his children exactly the same way as he did two years ago when this all began, and yet somehow BM and her mom have somehow deluded themselves (and SDs) into thinking that he has changed for the better and it is "safe" for them to be with us now.

Then to hear a comment about "loving atmospheres" from a lady who abandoned her own children on multiple occasions, and who was found       and drunk by her teenage daughters on numerous occasions.  Incredible what the family "justice" system has done to my family!

We probably will still have to do the one more supervised visit.  Then we will probably have to wait longer for BM to "write a letter"--she's not the brightest--it took her a couple weeks to write a letter saying we could start supervised visits in the first place.  She's totally cooperative when she speaks to my husband on her own, but if anyone else is around, including me, she plays the victim.  At least we are on the tail-end of this whole big mess.  My husband just wants to get them in our home in time to go to a college football game with him:)  And I have a deep belief that BM (and her mom) will come to know, if nopt in this life then in the life to come, that they really screwed up.......
Background: BM took SDs from our home summer  2002, refused to allow any contact between us and them, and took my husband to court in October 2002 with false accusations of abuse.  We were ill-prepared and just plain unlucky.  Judge ordered 1. anger management for my husband, 2. joint counseling between husband and SDs, 3. supervised visits with the intent that regular parenting time eventually be reestablished.

My husband has completed first 2 requirements--it was like pulling teeth to get BM and her mom (who brought SDs until she got bored with it) to stick to counseling appointments, so that took like 5 months instead of the few weeks it should have.  The counselor told BM point-blank that my husband had done nothing wrong in the "situation;" BM point-blank told counselor that she would not allow things to move on until my husband admitted guilt and apologized.

Anyway, we made it through that circus, and finally my husband had his first "supervised" visit July 9th.  Last Friday, BM's mother, who is the supervisor, went out of town so no visit last week. (And of course, my SDs will be told that somehow this is Dad's fault and he is so inconsistent, when BM did not let us know it was a problem or offer another date/time until that Friday morning.)

The dilemma: My husband is a full-time student, starts law school in August.  Before he can start law school he has to complete 24 more credit hours, and his new summer class schedule starts today.  He has class from 9 am to 8:50 pm Monday-Thursday (with a few short breaks in between some of his classes.)  Fridays and Saturdays are supposed to be devoted to work--so that we can feed our family and pay rent....  (Plus he has people depending on him.)  This schedule goes through August 13th, after that his class schedule is much more open.

So because BM put things off for so long (and continues to), we are in a position now where my husband really cannot afford to drive the two hours up to see his daughters for two hours and then drive two hours back home.  BM originally stipulated 6 supervised visits and then "discuss," but at this rate we won't get through those until like December!

If my husband doesn't pass even one of his classes this summer, we are out of luck for law school. (It stresses me to no-end to be that tight, but it was finish a few extra credits this summer, or wait a whole other year to go to law school.)  But if my husband even suggests that he is unable to visit for the next few weeks, he will immediately be labelled the bad guy--he already has that label without it being his fault at all.  Of course, he could continue to set up appointments, and let BM be the one to cancel them.....

After two years of no visits and almost no contact at all, we are just on the verge of getting back to "normal," and I hate to think of doing anything to ruin that.  My husband, obviously, is anxious to have his daughters back in our home, but he is also just relieved to know that they know he cares--he always talks about when his dad disappeared for years and then just showed up on their doorstep on Christmas Day, and how that was the greatest day because, despite all that his father had done in the past, they knew he cared.  We know that OSD is anxious to get here too; YSD is pretty non-committal either way--of course that doesn't matter because despite all her pretty words about the "girls' comfort level," BM is only worried about her own self.  The court order is extremely vague, and essentially gives BM all power....
My husband has always been required to provide all transportation.  And when we moved 4 hours away, it was with the knowledge that we would still be doing all of the transporting.  But, we fudged a bit....

One year we were to have SDs until 10am Christmas morning.  That would mean on the road by 6 am, getting home at 2 pm--with good road conditions.  My husband called up BM and told her that we were not bringing the girls back due to poor road conditions (they were always poor in that neck of the woods, but the roads were not actually closed that day.)  But, if she felt it was safe enough to drive, she could come pick them up.  About 2 minutes after she hung up on my husband, he got a call from the local police department.  They told him straight out that they couldn't do anything, especially since my husband had told BM she could get them.  We drove them back the next day.

BM took us to court the next summer.  But you know what--she didn't say a word about my husband's "contempt."