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Need advice about schedule change

MommyT's picture

My SS(12) has asked for a week to week schedule in order to reduce moving around. Currently, we split the week down the middle. During the summer we do week to week with pick ups at 8am on Monday since most activities in our area begin at 8:30.

My DH suggested to BM that we do week to week with pick ups from school every Monday. This reduces parents contact and in general makes life easier for us because we have four other kiddos (6 and under).

Bm agreed to the week to week schedule since it is what ss wants but she is wanting pick ups to be Sunday nights at 8pm.

This doesn’t work for our family since that is bedtime and whenever we have transitions with ss ,  my kids go crazy with excitement, so it would really screw them up for school the next day. Another thing is I feel this schedule would impede on our weekends and her’s. Her reason for Sunday night is so she can talk to him about the upcoming week and so he can have their cell phone. We offered to give him our phone to have back and forth free of charge and she can call him whenever she wants but she still doesn’t want to do school pick ups even though we do that now.

Everything I read recommends school pick ups. What can we do to change her mind?

MrsStepMom's picture

Really? SS can't walk out the door to his moms car because the kids are going to bed?  It will cause your kids to not be able to get into bed? That seems quite extreme to me. I agree with BM on this one. She can get him set for the week, he has his phone, packs up for school and for the week rather than doing it on a school day. Sorry I am not agreeing with you here but I really do not see why this is such a big deal. And if it is a bed time thing then ask for 7:30 instead of 8, or 8:30. If your kids can't go to bed because someone walks out that door that is the problem you need to address and that's a bit ridiculous. Someone grabbing their backpack and walking out the door is not some big event.

Monkeysee's picture

OP’s kids are inportant too, and it’s in kids nature to get excited when someone they know & love are walking in or out the door.  Why does drop off have to be so late? Why not 6 pm, gives both houses time to get ready for the week & time for OP’s kids to calm down. 

MrsStepMom's picture

I have had many many children in my life, raised 5 and have yet to see any freak out because someone grabs a bag and walks out the door. That is ridiculous.

Monkeysee's picture

So is an 8pm Sunday night drop off. Sunday nights are sacred in my house, we all need the time to prepare for the week ahead. BM & SS are not the only ones who’s priorities need to be considered. I’ve had plenty of kids in my life as well, and lots of them get excited when people they love arrive. It’s not an abnormal response.

SayNoSkidsChitChat's picture

Yuppppp! This! The needs of young children supersede BM’s laziness or selfishness.

tog redux's picture

He's also going to be coming IN the door on the opposite Sundays. I'm guessing that's the excitement day.

MommyT's picture

Try explaining to a 2 yr old that his big brother is leaving for a week and not have him be upset. Then think about doing this right when you are putting that 2 yr old to bed. No thank you

MommyT's picture

We can’t always guarantee that we are going to be home on Sunday’s at 6pm. It’s my husband’s only day off usually so Sunday’s are family day. I just don’t understand why we need to change from school pick ups all of a sudden

HowLongIsForever's picture

8pm would interfere with bedtime routines.  6pm, two hours earlier, is when she can't guarantee they would always be home and available to receive him.

There was no gotcha in what she said, relax. 

Thisisnotus's picture

Do you have multiple kids? I am just curious b/c I can see the issue here, depending on the kids ages....my big kids and steps are basically all teens so it's not an issue now....but 10 years ago...maybe. Anytime a new person enters our house, things get a littel wild for a bit. Having a 1 year old that goes to bed at 7 pm, having excited 8 am arrivals un packing their stuff and settling in would likely wake her up.

As far as leaving at 8 pm, that probably won't be an issue.

MommyT's picture

I have five kids total. My ss is my dh’s then together we have a 6 yr old, a 4 yr old, a 2 yr old, and a 5 month old. Transitions from school have always just been easier because the little kids just don’t understand why brother is leaving, so dropping off a school is an easier transition that they understand because all kids go to school. Seriously, we do school pick ups now so I don’t understand why she wants to change it all of a sudden. My ss is 12 and gets all of his stuff together on his own. She doesn’t have to do anything. 

ITB2012's picture

because the hassle of getting him ready for school on Mondays sucks. I know XH and I jockeyed not to have Mondays.

I don't think it's unreasonable to do a Sunday night drop-off, but better to be at dinner or 7pm at the latest to give them all time to get settled and mentally ready. I totally get SSs desire not to move around as much. That's about the age DS was when he started balking at having to manage his crap between households. Now that he drives it's not such a big deal.

Doesn't the school allow phones? I don't get the phone as a reason to do Sunday. Why can't she talk to him about the coming week on Sunday even if she has him yet?

XH and I found that the transition was better if we did an after school transition. He's ready to transition from school, is tired, doesn't care which parent picks him up and then it's fewer house-to-house transitions (which is what your SS is asking to reduce).

Goodluck's picture

Dont play defense...tell her you will agree to 4pm Sundays. OR 6pm if she doesnt want to feed her child. Wink

830pm is not reasonable.

As long as overnights in both homes is the same. IF she gains more...well there could be trouble brewing.

 

tog redux's picture

Just change the time to earlier on Sunday, so the kids have time to adjust.  5 pm would work. 

MommyT's picture

I understand it being a pain to get things ready on Monday morning but how is it different from Wednesday morning like how we do it now? Earlier on Sunday won’t work because of prior commitments. Honestly, Sunday’s just don’t work for our family. DH suggested Friday pick ups and BM flipped her lid. We just want to make the transitional period less noticeable for all our kids. 

MommyT's picture

No, the person suggested 4 or 6. Usually we get home by 6, eat dinner, take a bath, and by 8 we are reading bedtime stories and heading to bed. Some times we eat out, rush home, then bath, then go to bed. No one else does things on Sundays?

tog redux's picture

Not every single solitary Sunday right up until dinner time. I would still suggest compromising with BM and agreeing to Sunday at 6 or something.

MommyT's picture

If her only reason is to talk to ss before school on Monday, I suggested that she pick him up Monday mornings. 

STaround's picture

Might not give a lot of time for her to help him get books and papers together. 

MommyT's picture

That’s not her concern. She wants to talk to him before school on Monday. She can get his things ready on Sunday night and have it ready in the car. Although ss gets his own stuff ready. The only thing that goes back and forth are his backpack and soccer bag. That’s always been the same. 

STaround's picture

Some of which may not be allowed at school (phones), some of which there is no space to store at school.  

Thisisnotus's picture

We do 12pm - 4 pm....sometime in that window depending on what is going every Sunday. It works great. 8 pm is too late for me. We settle in around that time. Early bedtimes at my house.

Mondays do NOT work.....they may have to back to the other parents to get stuff....that is what I try and avoid.

Jcksjj's picture

Is she high conflict? Like will she come up to the door and cause drama? We do the Monday pickup and drop off for that reason...BM tried to set DH up once as "physically intimidating" her when she did a dropoff and didnt know I was in the house to witness what actually happened...I dont want her here anymore than necessary after seeing that happen. And in general she would try to mess with us or cause drama through the pick up and drop off schedule....she cant argue with the school about what time it starts or when she will be there lol. So I would advocate for it if that's an issue. Less conflict for the kid to witness also then. 

MommyT's picture

Yes, she is high conflict. Whenever we pick up ss, she stands at the door and cries. It is very dramatic which is why a judge ruled curb side or school pick ups. DH said she doesn’t want a 6pm pick up, because it’s dinner time. I am pulling out my hair right now because we do school pick ups so why suddenly does she want to change it?

Jcksjj's picture

Omg...we've also had that a couple times and it was really weird to have this 30 year old woman I didnt know that well standing on my doorstep crying over nothing. She could just be power struggling you guys or it could make her life easier in some way that she doesnt want to admit because it has nothing to do with the kids. Who knows. 

Cbarton12's picture

I mean I agree that Monday's your DH or BM would pick up kid from school to start the parenting time. That's easier I think even for the children involved.

8pm is too late in my opinion even if you didn't have your own kids. How does she expect to get him ready , talk to him, etc in a short period? I hope his bedtime isn't later than 9:30pm. What about showers etc? 

Sundays at 6pm seems like a reasonable compromise. 

MommyT's picture

Do Monday mornings seem like a good compromise? She just wants to talk to him before going to school. She didn’t complain about packing him up or anything because we have always done that, so maybe she can pick him up at 7:30 and take him to school then and we will just pick him up from school on our mondays. Then she gets like an hour of extra time with him. I mean we do mondays during the summer so it just makes sense to keep the same freaking time.

Cbarton12's picture

Can't she just call him on the phone???

Seems really disruptive but I guess at worst, sure give her Monday mornings? 

ESMOD's picture

Why not make it after/at school on Friday?  That way either parent has the ability to catch up and prepare the kid for the school week ahead when "in their custody"?  No interferring with weekends?

MommyT's picture

Thank you! I suggested that as well. BM literally replied, “that is the worst f***ing idea ever.” Do you see my dilemma? That’s why I was thinking Monday mornings since that’s what we do in the summer?

ESMOD's picture

Friday switches are the literally one of the best ways people deal with this.  Send the kid to school on Friday.. he either gets off bus at his other home after school.. or he gets picked up by the parents from school.

If I were your DH I would tell her that she has two options to choose from.  Either the exchange happens at school Friday.. or at school Monday.  He will be willing to consider adjustments on a case by case basis.  He is offering TWO options.. her ONE option is not an option.

Jcksjj's picture

We've never had that issue. At most theres an extra outfit, but we arent super picky about getting clothes back every week so usually she will just wear something back from her moms anyway.

SayNoSkidsChitChat's picture

Don’t allow the stepdemon or Biohag to dictate when he is in your home. Either status quo or make it convenient for you, your marriage and your real kids.

my husband’s prior spawn tries to get out of being with his “mother” is told NOPE!

ESMOD's picture

I think it's a perfectly reasonable ask for the kid to not have to make a midweek change.  That has to be disrupting.. and probably is even disrupting to the members of both households.  But, I think they should be able to figure out a compromise on switching off.

ESMOD's picture

I don't understand the "monday afternoon" doesn't work for her.  I mean.. if he is going to the same school.. what is the difference if he leaves for school from one home.. and comes back to a different one? does he ride the bus?  how does she deal with him being at school mondays on her own time now?

 

STaround's picture

That the poor kid has to drag a suitcase to school with him mondays.  

MommyT's picture

Um, no. He takes his backpack. She has clothes at her house and we have clothes at our house. It’s really simple. 

MommyT's picture

I don’t understand either. We do school pick ups now. She picks him up on Monday afternoons now because those are her days so what is the difference? We are only switching days around, not rewriting the Bible.

MommyT's picture

My ss is a good kid and honestly we have wanted week to week from the beginning which is why I think BM is making this so hard. I know my kids and i know our family. Sunday nights would really be hard for us. I did put my foot down on this one and usually I am very cooperative but I have to put my kids first. 

MommyT's picture

She’s not sticking up for her kid. It’s all about her. She wants to make sure he knows what’s going on for the week. She is going to miss him on her weeks off. Ss wants school pick ups because BM makes pick ups so dramatic

STaround's picture

Do they have two sets of everything at both houses?  Or is kid expected to bring toys, games clothes etc to school?  Would you like to have to do that?  Bring all your week's stuff to work?  

Cbarton12's picture

I've never seen a kid not have two sets of everything at different households. Why would a kid need to pack a week worth of clothes every week? That would be exhausting not to mention would feel like he didn't even have a home.

SD goes to mom and just has the last outfit she wore from her mom's in her backpack. As our CO states we have to return personal effects when we switch. But that's it. She doesn't lug anything else around. 

STaround's picture

Do you know kids with two phones, two sets of books?  What happens if some classes do not meet every day, kid still has to drag around?   Two sets of gym shoes?  Other athletic shoes?

MommyT's picture

um, I have never heard of a kid having to pack a suitcase each time. DH’s mediator said that ss needs his stuff at dad’s and his stuff at mom’s. She gets the backpack, we get the soccer stuff, and he does have two phones which is stupid. We offered to pay for just the one but she doesn’t want that. Our exchanges are really simple with school pick up and drop off. I wouldn’t want stuff from her house because then I have to keep track of it. This way only one set of clothes gets passed back and forth. If he forgets something, we drop it off at the school. It’s really not that hard.

HowLongIsForever's picture

We had classes meet every other day - i.e. 1, 3, 5 on Monday and 2, 4, 6 on Tuesday.  90 min blocks.

We also had a large campus and a large student body.  That meant for most of us on any given day we weren't walking around with one book for one class.  We had no time to get from 1 to locker to 3 in the 15 min passing time between classes.  

If you were lucky you had a friend with a locker somewhere between yours and one of your classes where you could leave one or more of your books to lighten the load.  Huge on Wednesdays when you went to all of your classes for 55 mins.  Although with multiple people in and out of a locker you likely weren't leaving anything personal or of value in your locker (assigned or otherwise).

The district adopted such a schedule to help prep kids for high school (similar schedule) and college demands.  And I graduated a couple decades ago so it's not like challenging kids in more than just actual curriculum is a new thing. 

Having to drag multiple books for multiple classes, gym shoes or outfits, making project or presentation accommodations is the norm for lots of kids all over the place.  And yes that might even include your athletic gear for practice after school whether you have two of everything or share between houses it still has to go to school and get dragged around.

A kid having to lug some or all of his books to school on Monday morning so they aren't inadvertently forgotten at dad's is no different than having to do it any other day of the week.  

That exchanges were ordered to happen during school transitions because of BMs behavior speaks volumes.  No reason to deviate from that if she hasn't proven herself capable of avoiding that exact behavior.  Is it inconvenient for multiple people involved? Sure.  Is it the lesser of two evils? Apparently the judge presiding over the case thinks so. 

When someone can't be adult enough to put the children's best interests first a court will make the decisions for them.  That's what happened here and what will likely happen again.  

That one or both homes want to support skid in his request to avoid a mid-week transition, while great, doesn't change the fact that the actions and behavior out of one home have led them to where they are.  

Reluctance of the lower conflict home to meet the demands of the higher conflict home doesn't make them bad, inconsiderate, out for the skid, putting bios first or whatever other negative implication we'd like to attach to OP.

MommyT's picture

Toys stay at home. The kid is 12. That’s why school pick ups are better. I just respond, “buddy, toys stay at home when you are at school.” Seriously, there is no drama.

tog redux's picture

My SS had everything he needed at both houses. He took his school book bag and any sports gear back and forth, and that's it. And we had doubles of most of the sports gear as well.

Not everyone makes their skids schlep everything back and forth.

Jcksjj's picture

Lol! Why would they need to bring toys and games? They cant survive a week without particular toys? My poor kids must be so confused why they cant bring the toys at grandmas house and at school home. Now that I think about it...ODS must have been absolutely devastated when the daycare he went to rotated toys out monthly.

MommyT's picture

Seriously? Is it so hard to say, “that toy needs to stay here so that it is here when you come back”? That’s what we say when we leave the grandparent’s or aunt’s house. I am being accused of complicating things but I think lugging a bunch of crap back and forth is really complicated.

Jcksjj's picture

In not sure if you read the sarcasm in that or not...no it's not hard. Claiming it's too hard for them to bring things back and forth at 12 without mommy's help or to leave things at one house is really reaching IMO. It's the stereotypical GUBM "but it's for the kids" when it's actually just what BM wants.

MommyT's picture

I am confused on what your kids are packing. We have a backpack that goes back and forth. He leaves everything else at home other than the cell phone that we provide. Why complicate things?

STaround's picture

Atheletic shoes?   Books.  YOU are the one complicating things.  Why can't your kids accept your stepkid leaving Friday at say 6 or Sunday evening. 

MommyT's picture

I believe I said Friday’s worked great. I am just confused on what he has to pack. Each house has their own stuff, so he has a backpack and an athletic bag that goes back and forth but only during soccer season and he has to carry the bag to school anyways since the games are right after school. I mean it’s easy enough.

Cbarton12's picture

Yeah two cell phones is silly. But the child would have to take a singular cell phone back and forth regardless if he was switching homes. 

School books he would also need to take school regardless of whose house he is at. He's in middle school not college, so why would his classes not meet every day? 

I think you're really nitpicking. 

BM is the one not willing to compromise, not OP. 

MommyT's picture

Thank you. He doesn’t have textbooks for home, only workbooks which he has to carry from home to school regardless.

STaround's picture

If he does not take home books now, i would expect that to change soon. 

MommyT's picture

If it does then we would have to come up with a solution but I had to take books to school everyday in hs. It didn’t kill me

bananaseedo's picture

Jesus holy molly you are so dense!!!  WTH is wrong with you???  She's clearly explained over and over there is no issue now and they do school exchanges now because that is what in the court dictated in best interest of the child- lugging around a few notebooks or the emotional well being of ALL children.  It didnt chage as far as books going back/forth from middle school to HS- in fact as they got older they had LESS stuff to haul around then elementary even.

Give it up, you're beating a dead horse.  The OP offer makes perfect sense and it's how majority do the weekly split.  The BM is being obtuse- I would NOT concede on Sunday home drop off/pick ups since it opens up to many problems.

 

 

fourbrats's picture

they were used to their older siblings going back and forth and it wasn't a big deal so I am not seeing why a simple "Billy is going to his mom's now go to bed" is a struggle. And then "Oh Billy is home. Time for bed" on the opposite end. We just made it no big deal with a curb pick up and drop off. I can see why Sunday nights work (and we always did Sunday nights so maybe it is just something I am used to). It allows mom to remind kid of anything she needs him to know for the week and cuts down on the Monday am struggle or Monday afternoon slump for both parents. I would do 7:30 pm on Sunday which gives the littles 30 minutes to wind down with big brother or 30 minutes to wind down after him leaving. SS could even handle the bedtime story when he returns to your house to give the littles time with big brother without the excitement. He can simply say "Yep I am home. Time for a story." 

MommyT's picture

I am glad someone reads the thread. Any other day of the week is fine but sundays have a lot going on. We have come up with every compromise under the sun and BM shuts them down. 

MommyT's picture

My kids are not used to drop offs and pick ups from our house. We do school pick ups and drop off. Less mess

STaround's picture

Dont your kids deal with this over the summer? Vacations?  Your arguement is really weak.  Your kids will get over it. 

MommyT's picture

Troll, my kids were only one argument as to why Sunday’s do not work for my family. Yes, we do transition during the summer once a week on Monday mornings at 8am because we all agreed that was the best time with the least amount of disturbances for both our families. This has been said several times. The other issue is when ss comes home the kids are excited and don’t go to sleep right away which is why we have made holiday and summer pick ups in the morning. BM has had the same issues with her other kid. 

MrsStepMom's picture

Ya i agree. It seems complicated for little reason. For the millionth time I don’t get why the kid can’t walk out the door while the other kids are in bed without causing an issue. It baffles. Do you never walk outside to take out the trash while your kids sleep? I mean, seriously. It is not that big of a deal. I think your stress is self inflicted. This is a lot of angst over a kid walking out your front door. I cannot even grasp why you are making your own life so difficult. 

Monkeysee's picture

Both you & STaround have a bee in your bonnet about this issue. I genuinely don’t get it. You say you raised 5 kids, were they yours? You’ve never mentioned having kids of your own so I was surprised when you wrote that. You normally seem like a kind person but you’ve been nasty the last couple days.

Every other poster asides from STaround (who sinply refuses to read the posts & keeps spewing the same crap repeatedly) has agreed 8pm Sunday’s are unreasonable, yet you seem to think OP is the one to blame when it’s BM who is asking to change the agreement from school pick ups to at the house on Sunday evenings. How dare OP prioritize her own children over the desires of BM, especially when BM’s desire goes against what’s in the CO and what SS actually wants. Right.

still learning's picture

If it has to be Sunday why not switch while the family is out at the park or something in the afternoon. Can't his father facilitate the meet up without involving the entire family?  Can dad have him grab his backpack and drop him off at BM's?  Maybe dad and BM need to meet at a neutral location so there are no tearful drop offs.  Remember that this is your husbands duty and responsibility not yours or your younger childrens.  

flmomma08's picture

I was wondering this as well, why can't husband just handle the exchange? Why do you and your kids have to be involved? I hardly ever went to SD exchanges.

lorlors's picture

Putting myself in the poster’s shoes: I wouldn’t want every Sunday drop off/pick up either. If I’ve read it right, that would mean she never gets a clear weekend without the stepkid there. She has also said that her husband only gets 1 day off work each week- the Sunday. 

Why is everyone hopping all over her about this?! She isn’t being unreasonable, the BM is.

futurestepmomnowstepgf's picture

where people usually don't live a minute by minute schedule, but the day's activities vary, but that is her DH's only day off. I would hate to have to schedule my only day off with my DH around BM coming to pick up the SS. So perhaps they decided to go to the beach for the day (no idea where you live, but you get my point) and they end up getting home later than usual because they wanted to spend an extra hour there, if they schedule the pick up on Sunday night, they can't do that instead have to rush home on their one day of full on family time to accommodate BM. The CO and mediator says school pick ups, so if she wants to deviate from that she can go back to the mediator to request this change. BM can't just have whatever she wants at the cost of OP and DH's wants/needs not being respected. If this isn't a problem for summer schedule, then it shouldn't be a problem for the schedule now. 

STaround's picture

The BM may work too, and may not want to do exchanges that interfere with her job.   She may not want to do between 8-5 M-F.  I would not like having to go to work and leave from work to a different home.   What if the kid has stuff at home he doesn't want the younger kids going through?   As he gets older, this may be more of a problem.  Also, more long term school projects. 

OP is doing this because she does not want her kids being disturbed by the older kid walking out the front door.  Oh please.   How spezul are her kids? 

beebeel's picture

What IS your damn obsession with this skid's stuff? It hasn't even been mentioned as an issue by the OP once, yet here you are with your 8th or 9th post about this kid's crap. 

Kid A hypothetically wanting some item is not a better reason than not wishing to disturb kids B and C's bedtimes. Kid A is not more special than the other kids. And toys vs. bedtime, are you freaking serious? Are you a child?

Monkeysee's picture

So, picking the kid up from school is ok on Wednesday’s during the school year & Mondays mornings curbside during the summer holidays, but suddenly not ok for a week on/off schedule? That makes zero sense.

School or curbside pickups have been written into the CO due to BM’s dramatics, and SS prefers being picked up from school, as per OP, because of BM’s dramatics. You’re intent on finding OP wrong because she dared say her kids are a priority to her (omg the horror!!!), but you’re just making yourself look illiterate.

beebeel's picture

I hated Sunday exchanges for this very reason. It started off at 8 p.m. but that was too late and the skids would be too amped up to sleep when they were dropped off. Besides, bm often didn't bother to feed them dinner before she dumped them off that late, so we pushed it up to 5. Any earlier and we couldn't plan much of anything for the day. But it meant every weekend had to be arranged around this freaking exchange time. Exchanging on Monday or Friday morning makes so much more sense.

flmomma08's picture

So the full week on/week off is definitely the way to go, in my opinion. We used to split down the middle too and as SD got older it was just too much on her and on all of us.

When we did week on/week off, we exchanged on Sunday evening and it always worked for us. She got to get ready for the school week at the house she was going to be staying at. We did the exchange later so it didn't disrupt weekend plans.

However, we now have a BD3 so I can definitely see what you mean about not wanting to do the later exchange - my BD is the same with getting excited about SD coming or going.

So, for your situation, I would prefer to do Friday school pickups. No BM drama to deal with and he still gets to get ready for the school week at the house he is going to be at that week.

ESMOD's picture

I always liked that my dh took the girls to school Monday morning because our weekend was not hostage to a drop off time.  He did pickups from school on fridays.  Both allowed us to maximize our weekend 

Dontfeedthetrolls's picture

The best week to week exchange I've known of is Friday after school through the next week. This gives kids a full weekend to adjust to the new home before the new week of school starts. It's also the least disruptive throughout the week.

MommyT's picture

I think Friday after school is a great compromise for everyone involved. It solves all bm’s problems. I told DH that this is the compromise he needs to go with if they have to meet with their mediator because it is fair for everyone. Plus, if ss forgets something at the other house then we can pick it up