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child custody pre-mediation in California

Started by jeckman7471, Oct 20, 2011, 01:48:04 PM

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mediation for custody of my 14 year old son will be held at the end of November. My son had been living with my wife and myself until July of this year at which time she moved in with her Boyfriend. Since then the time spent with my son has been minimal. No baseball games, no school involvement, no weekends...I could keep going...it's grim. Her boyfriend lives on the other side of town and for my son to live with her would mean he would have to change schools, not play baseball in the league that he is in and live with a man that he doesn't know. He has expressed these same concerns not only to myself, but our therapist that I have been going to since this all started. I am perfectly willing and encourage my son to try to have a relationship with his mother, but there seems to be very little effort on her part to try to reciprocate. Family therapy and a structured environment from myself and my 19 year old daughter who also lives with us is working quite well. While I am quite willing to compromise and negotiate on this issue of custody with my soon to be ex-wife, my fear is that she will be awarded too much time with her son only to disappoint him or damage him emotionally. I mean, she barely called him on his birthday. I have read a considerable amount regarding mediation and how to approach it, i.e. be calm, avoid childish character assassinations of the other parent, be willing to compromise, etc. which is not a problem for me. I'm also keeping a calendar of how much time she spends with him now and I intend on showing that to the mediator. Are there any other tips to prepare for this?   



Keep your child in mind and if he wants to live with you due to school sports etc then bargain with it all in mind. A mediator will push till he gets something signed cuz its his job. My mediator tried really hard to get me to do a 50-50 arrangment and for my daughters it doesnt work. They needed the structure even my counselor said. So ex and mediator pushed and pushed and finally ex collapsed like a folding chair and I got them during school weeks and EOW.


I agree, have in your head what the most you would agree too. Then do not agree to sign anything else. You have a very strong case because:
child's age (can testify), child wants to stay with you, she already left, school and activities are with you.

Offer joint custody (she would have a say in schooling changes and medical), and a schedule for her to see him. Put in there a sentence that if he has practice or games she must bring him to activity.

How far is other side of town? Does son want to sleep there? You probably have a strong case of no overnights too since she left him and moved in with boyfriend and son does not want to go there.

Did she give you a feeling of what she is looking for?


other side of town is about 30 minutes away...well out of his current school zone. She has stated nothing to me with regard to a schedule.
Son does not want to sleep there, has specifically told me that. Wants NOTHING to do with her boyfriend. I am perfectly willing to agree to the bringing to sports events, school events, etc. however, my fear is that she will fail miserably with that and I will end up taking over that role. Reason I am saying this is because she already did so with my oldest daughter, who is an adult now. I really don't want to give her the opportunity to disappoint him because she likely will. On the other hand, I want to give her the opportunity to try to be a good parent and don't want to appear trying to hoard my son.


Do you have any contact with her now? email? Ask her to send you what she would like to see in the papers and then you can see how much you are going to fight.
He is old enough to have a lot of say, especially with the sports. You can say, she can pick him up from after school sports once a week, eat dinner and bring him home. You can even have it be very liberal and say "mother will have visitation as agreed upon by parties, if child has sports or school activity mom will bring him during her time". I really do not like that type of parenting plan but may work due to his age and going to be hard to write a definite day when he is involved at school. I know my girls come home 5:30 from sports bus and 8:30pm on away games and the days switch each week.