when Skids no longer want to come around
My SSs are both in middle school. One is failing out of school and also would prefer to spend his time going off with his friends getting into trouble. In many ways, these are typical middle schooler issues, however, the dynamic between DH and BM serve to further exacerbate the issue.
BM pretty much removes obstacles for SS and always has. He only gets bad grades, because the school doesn't provide him enough support, so it's not his fault. When he gets in a fight with another kid, the other kid started it, so it's not SS's fault.
SS has been complaining that he doesn't want to come to our house for a bit - he regularly calls DH on the Thursday or Friday before the visitation weekend starts to ask to "switch" weekends. DH always says no, but he did allow SS to go home early on two consecutive visitation weekends because he supposedly had to go to a birthday party on each of those weekends.
The latest is that BM has demanded a mediation and the only issue for them to really mediate is that she wants to "reduce the amount of residential time" that SS spends with DH. SS is only spending EOWE with us, so it's not as if there's much to reduce.
DH has vowed that he will not give up time, but I don't think he should make this a fight.
I think he should call SS and tell him that he loves him, he wants to see him, but he will not force him to come to our house EOWE, so if he doesn't want to come, he doesn't have to. I know that this will bother DH, but my thinking is that it's not worth it to force a pre-teen who doesn't want to be at our house to be there. I also think that this should be a discussion between him and his child, not a discussion driven by BM and involving the lawyers. If anything, the parenting plan should become less restrictive, not more restrictive as the kids get older.
Admittedly, I have ulterior motives - this SS has now become difficult and he creates drama and causes problems when he comes to our home. He's not my child, so I won't miss him when he's not around. I've encouraged DH since I've known him to plan for the day when his kids won't want to come around and think about how he will work to maintain a relationship with them even if they don't stay at our house. He resisted even thinking about that.
At this point, this SS is slightly PA'd, but still hasn't rejected DH. I think if DH tries to work with these changes instead of fighting against them, then SS might start to want to come around, rather than wanting to never come around.
It's not as if SS is hanging out with BM when he's at her house. He's out with his friends getting into trouble. I think he's also started fighting quite a bit with BM, so that's also part of my ulterior motive, let BM deal with the moody teenager and keep DH out of it. BM undermines any efforts on the part of DH to parent, anyone, so it's not as if he has any influence.
My thinking is that if DH tries to accommodate SS's desire to not come over EOWE without making it a fight, then he has a better chance of maintaining a relationship with his son and he can also cut BM out of being in the middle of fanning the flames. In other words, DH will take control of the situation, without letting BM dictate when SS should be allowed to not see DH.
I'd love to hear thoughts from others who have dealt with SKids becoming teenagers and not wanting to come around or SKids just deciding they don't want to come around.