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Still No Summer Dates

CastleJJ's picture

If you've followed along with my story, you know SS12 comes for a total of 4 weeks in the summer. It is supposed to be in 2 two week blocks but per our stupid CO, BM can break that down into whatever increments is needed for "sport related conflicts" as long as we maintain 4 weeks/30 days total. Oh and the CO gives BM up to one week before SS is scheduled to arrive (day after the last day of school) to make any changes. 

BM said she won't know until sometime in May. I have so much anxiety not knowing when SS will be visiting. We can't plan our family vacation or plan literally anything because we have no clue when or for how many days/weeks in a row SS will be coming. And DH and I can't request PTO because again, we don't know when he's coming. I'm a planner so I find myself getting anxious multiple times a day and perseverating on this because I don't do well with the unknown, especially when it messes with my plans, my summer, and my household. I don't want to spend up to 4 weeks of my summer sitting around because we couldn't make plans because we had no details. I just want freakin dates! BM is still tight lipped about any details. Based on some communication (BM making her summer plans with SS), I think she has a general idea of dates, but is waiting on sharing, which the CO allows her to do. This woman literally pushes the CO to the furthest extent without crossing the line of contempt, always working within the loopholes. It's just so frustrating!

Please send positive vibes that I stop allowing this situation to take up headspace and that I can find peace dealing with the next month or so of unknown. 


Felicity0224's picture

I'm really sorry you're having to deal with this. It would stress me out to no end. To say that this is most absurd summer custody arrangement I've ever heard of is an understatement. I hope it's resolved soon so you can have some peace!

CastleJJ's picture

Me too. BM told DH recently that optional practices also need to be considered when planning visitation because it can impact SS' performance and spot on the team. Basically, if SS isn't dedicated, then they will make him second string... Despite the fact that BM wants to pull SS out this summer for a trip to the UK for an undetermined amount of time, pulled him out of school and football last year for a week for her wedding, and has pulled him out for a week every summer for vacations. Of course the CO just says "sports obligations" and doesn't specify optional versus mandatory, so it's another gray area BM can work within.

DH emailed the coach to ask for any insight he can provide. Hopefully if he says it's all optional and not a big deal, we can use that as leverage when negotiating with BM.

We are just so sick of fighting with her on literally everything for the last 12 years. We are all fought out. The double standard eats me alive sometimes. 

Rags's picture

Refuse any dates specified by BM and tell her what dates you will get him thet add up to your 30 days.  Then when she denies your visitation kick her in the ass in court for denying DH his COd time..  Do your intelligence gathering and refuse dates she mandates because she and her GF have plans without SS.  If she can make changes 1wk in advance, so can you.


CastleJJ's picture

The gray area in our CO states that both parties WILL accommodate sport obligations. So we always feel forced into what BM wants because otherwise we aren't following the CO. But BM never has to accommodate because she has majority time and can basically say "No" to whatever we propose. 

I told DH that if BM provides bullshit dates or chunks the visitation down super small, we refuse, try to default back to the 2 two week blocks and if she files contempt, we go back to court. I also told DH that if she screws around this summer, we go back to court anyway pro se to get this clause ironed out so she can't mess with us like this. 

CajunMom's picture

I'm a planner, too. I think I mentioned before to you about your SS aging and how BM will use that to her benefit. I know when DH's youngest girl got to the 13ish age area, she was always wanting to stay at BMs (during his visitation) for her activities. And how does a loving parent deny his kid the opportunity to "do camp" or other things that teens do at those ages???

I think I'd have to put my foot down on this one. Advise through your portal you need the dates by X date so that you can arrange your own plans. If not, pick your dates, send to BM and let the pieces fall where they may. If that's not an option, then use this year as your new foundation. It's clear she will do this every summer so after this round, hit her up with the first option. "Next year, we need our dates by X." If she doesn't provide, then plan your vacation, submit YOUR dates and if she doesn't follow through, then file Contempt charges on her or begin "letting go of the rope."

And that is something I think you and your DH may need to start discussing. BM is going to constantly do this to you guys and with that crazy CO, she will most likely succeed. This is one of the HARD points in StepHell....having to drop the rope on your own child. SMH 

Sending you hugs. Not easy.

CastleJJ's picture

The problem is the CO gives her that "up to 1 week before" protection. Even if we demand a plan by x date, she can say "I'm just following the CO." I told DH that we will see how this summer goes and if it is total shit like I think it will be, we may go back to court pro se because this is impossible and despite how stupid our judge was, I can't see him agreeing with this arrangement based on how it has worked thus far. I think it will be an uphill battle though because SS is 12 and a judge may say SS can do what he wants and visits are no longer a priority since he's getting older. 

DH understands that the older SS gets, the more dropping rope is the only option. When he's 15, 16, 17 he will be wrapped up in sports, friends, relationships, etc. but he's 12 so it's still that weird age where we don't want to drop rope just yet. 

Rags's picture

We never had the struggles with SS-31 regarding visitations or returns from visitations.  He just got on the plane and went to SpermLand, then got on the plane and came home.  There were a  number of visitations that the SpermClan declined. In those instances, his life just kept going normally.  In the 16+ years we were under the CO, there was several periods of a year or more that they did not take any visitation.

Regarding notification of visitation, our CO required the NCP to provide 60days notice in writing of any visitation they intended to take.  Winter and Spring visitation were mostly set by SS's school calendar.  Summer was the one that the SpermGrandHag played games with.  So, we smacked her with the CO.  She had never provided the 60days notice and then would play games with the COd 10days DW could take with SS in SpermLand anytime after the first 10days of their 5wks summer visitation.  SpermGrandHag withheld SS and went underground to prevent DW from getting SS for that 10 days.  Had we taken the 10days, the remainder of their 5wks would resume after we returned SS to them.

So, no notice of visitation 60days prior per the CO, no visitation.  We also had 10 days to confirm their 60days notice once they made it. So, we waited until day 10, told them they had not given us 60 days notice and to try again. By then they did not have 60days to notify us of the start of their summer visitation in time to keep DW from taking the 4th of July which is what SpermGrandHag's crap was designed for in the first place. She did not want DW to have SS over July 4th to spend that with her family.  SpermGranHag lost her shit over that.  So, when it behooved us, we played the "You did not provide 60days notice in writing per the CO."  The Hag would blow a gasket, scream that we made that up, and that the Judge she was the housekeeper for said blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.  Sorry Hag. No 60day notice in writing, no visitation. Try again.  We only played those cards a few times.  Some of the last counters to the Hags toxic manipulative crap we played.  After the final hearing on CS, health insurnace, etc.... the 60day notice game broke her.  We never denied visitation, but we made sure that when she got snarky, 60 day notice was our response.  They got all of the visitation that they chose to take.

When you go back to court over this 1wk late change bullshit, push for 30 day notice of changes to your scheduled time with SS.  Hopefully you find your idiot judge on a day where one of their last two brain cells is giving the other CPR and he can make a reasonable decision.

Good luck.

Dogmom1321's picture

Where is DH in all of this? Is he pressuring BM to hurry up and communicate the dates? Or is he laid back, cool as a cucumber, while you stress out? I would also have a sit down with DH. Let him know that you will carry on with your summer whether SS is there or not. You will not be helping with carpool or scheduling your plans around a sport. Take a vacation even if it means without DH. If he can come, great. If not, SHOW him that life goes on without SS. 

BM is using this as a means of control and she is winning. 

CastleJJ's picture

DH is stressed out as well. BM emailed him a few weeks ago to provide an update that she didn't have dates or a schedule and maybe won't until May, which she is allowed per the CO. She fired a test shot to see how DH would react, stating that sports will eventually cause SS' time with DH to dwindle. DH held her feet to the fire, stating he is maintaining his 4 weeks and to provide dates as soon as they are available. He also emailed the coach to get information so BM can't control the narrative. DH is doing what he can do, within the CO. 

I had the conversation with DH that I will not allow BM to control my summer by being wishy washy about SS visiting and dates. DH agreed. He's fed up too, but not sure what to do about it since BM isn't in contempt. 

Harry's picture

Make plans.   SS will get upset if BM. Changes dates and SS Misses something he wants.   You should get SS involved with making dates of visitation.  SS we are going to X. What dates do you think is Ok.  Once the date is set, BM will be the one causing SS to miss that activity.  If she starts playing around. If she changes the dates then X is not done this year.   It's all control and punishment.  BM is punishing her ex for dumping her and her kid .

CastleJJ's picture

Once we get a date, we are proceeding with whatever plans we make. BM can't really change plans once the dates are set. 

BM isn't mad at DH for leaving her. BM chose to leave the relationship the minute she found out she was pregnant. She used DH as a sperm donor at 19 and hoped DH wouldn't try to be involved with SS. When DH pushed for visitation and custody, BM retaliated and she has been high conflict ever since. In reality, BM is just a narc who needs a supply and she can control and abuse DH through SS. 

CastleJJ's picture

UPDATE: The coach emailed DH back. It is clear he has never heard of SS or BM, so BM has no influence. The coach said that there is nothing required of SS until the 3rd week in July and that our visitation schedule should be able to proceed any without issues or negative impact to SS. He literally said "Your visit plans sound great!" when DH outlined our usual 2 two week blocks. DH isn't telling BM we have this. He wants to see what bullshit she tries so we can bury her with this email. Sounds like BM won't have a leg to stand on to make changes. THANK GOD. 

PushedToMyLimit's picture

Bunch of power tripping games with SS as the pawn. I will never understand these BMs whose only intention is to cause a rift in someone else's life. I wish the court system was swift & harsh punising these parents who clearly have issues that affect the children & families negatively as it's a high percentage of what we read here. It's most of why these kids are screwed up, from living under & being taught this behavior. 

Glad your DH reached out to the coach & got to the bottom of the real story & hopefully you can relax a bit now. 

Dollbabies's picture

to go batshit crazy.

Is your stepson actually some childhood sports phenom who's going to scouts looking at him when he's, like, 14 or something? The dramatization about this is just unreal. The coach wants to win. If the kid has ability he's going to play unless - maybe - he has a rotten attitude. 

CastleJJ's picture

Nope. SS plays 3-4 sports per year, one to two per season. He's athletic but there's no stand apart talent there. He's not going to be the next big thing.

BM just knows that this is the only legal way to PAS SS from DH and limit DH's parenting time. Courts are more likely to side with "SS has sports commitments that interfere with Dad's time" over "I don't want my kid with their Dad." BM has been riding the sports train since SS was old enough to join and has used this excuse for everything. It often makes her seem like MOTY, so concerned about SS' wants and his athletic abilities instead of the POS PASing crazy woman she really is. 

Cover1W's picture

Brilliant!  You will have to update us when you pull out this information and present it to BM!!

ICanMakeIt's picture

I was coming here to ask if you had access to the sports schedule to confirm and see in your update you did.

I'd plan what I want (with that knowledge) let BM know and if he isn't there he misses out. She will be the bad guy in that scenario. Sounds like she gets off on control. Gee shocker. Seems to be a common theme with these folks. 


CastleJJ's picture

There is no schedule yet. The coach won't release that until end of May. The coach just told DH there would be no conflicts based on the dates DH provided.