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Advice on how to tell SD about temporary custody?

Murri90's picture

Temporary custody orders should be coming out this month. BM is trying to come up with a "fair" way to tell SD (14) about what the custody orders are.

Just for some background, SD wants to live with her dad (DH) and has maintained that for almost a year now. Her mom is a felon, amongst other things, and SD claims her mental health is not good when she's with her mom. 

So with these tempoary custody orders being released soon BM thought it would be best if both her and DH told SD in-person together so they could answer her questions together and 'look' amicable in this.

The issue is, if BM gets favored and granted what she wants in these cusody orders then it's going to be against SD's wishes, and thusly against her dad's wishes. He doesn't really want to stand next to BM and make it seem like he agrees and that he won't keep fighting for SD and SD's wishes... 

And we don't expect that BM would love to stand there and make it seem like she agreed if DH got granted temporary custody rights. You know?

I guess DH could forewarn BM that he will talk about it in-person but that he will be honest. He does not agree with the judge's choice but respects it - so that SD knows he's still on her side. And I suppose DH could tell BM that she could say something similar if DH is granted what he wants. You know, so both parent's are being honest with the teenager, but not too honest. Like we don't need to talk about how mad or hurt we are. Just that we agree or don't agree but that we will remain respectful.

IDK though. That seems like a lot of work for two parents who still seem emotionally raw. What do other people do? How do they fairly break the news to the kid?

CLove's picture

Dh discussed things personally, but one-on-one with SD15. From the beginning of things not working out. Kids are reslient.

Murri90's picture

So this whole time BM and DH have been talking to SD separately. That's just the way it has been and I don't see why it shouldn't continue that way. I think that's great, especially with an older kid. So I like what your DH did.

However, this would be big news, especially if SD did not get what she wanted. She would feel hurt and frustrated I'm sure. If DH did not want to drop the news in-person with BM there, then BM will probably break the news by herself and she could say anything. DH probably won't have a chance to talk to SD about it privately until his next visitation time, which could be upwards of 7 days later. But perhaps that isn't such a long time and SD would be just fine waiting to get that chance.

Also, if they drop the news in-person all together and SD is excited with the news, it's going to be awkward lol. Will she run to her dad and hug him while her mom stands there with her mouth hanging open? Is that really what she wants? Because that could happen if they do this in-person... It's almost as if by asking to do this in-person she's already expecting she will win and isn't considering how she would act/feel if she doesn't win.

Maybe he should ask her about that, because if they do this in-person there is going to need to be rules and boundaries to avoid an argument.

simifan's picture

It's a trap !!!!!

BM wants to do it together so she isn't the bad guy for going against SD's wishes. She will throw your DH under the bus and make it look like it was what he wanted as well. Don't do it. 



BethAnne's picture

I would tell sd that her mom and dad do not agree where the best place for her is so they are asking a judge to look at the situation and decide. 

She does not need both parents present to be told that. 

Rags's picture

Just tell her.  No need for Felon crack head BM and your DH to collaborate on the message.  I also think that it is okay for DH to tell his daughter that he is hurt and disappointed in the CO if the Judge goes in the felon/crack head direction.

Since DH is likely to know the outcome before the discussion with SD, if it goes in his favor I think that it is a good idea if he is there when feloncrackhead is with SD for the discussion.  Who knows what she is going to do if she does not like the Judge's decision?

We always erred in the direction of giving SS the facts, all of the facts, and nothing but the facts once he got into his teens. Though we did temper the message a bit for facts that were likely to be extremely upsetting to my SS. We did provide him with the facts in response to any of his questions regardless of what age he was when he asked.  Presented in an age appropriate manner.

IMHO of course.