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What can we expect for father’s rights/moving/nightmare ex wife? Help!

CampingKitty7's picture

We are moving 2 hours away from where my husband's son lives.  A year ago, we moved 3 hours away due to careers and no other real choice unless we wanted to go homeless and hungry without jobs, so 2 hours is an improvement.  My husband previously had 50/50 custody, but ex wife is mean, bullying, harassing, and every other thing you can really think of and it has only gotten worse and worse.  We try not to communicate with her unless it is documented at this point because of the horrible things she and her husband say to us.  We are generally non confrontational and nearly every interaction with her is met with her anger, attitude, and bitterness.  We recently got a good lawyer on retainer who specializes in father's rights.  We are going to attempt to change the parenting plan to include more weekends with dad, more time in the summer and school breaks, and a neutral drop off and pick up location because going to her home is a nightmare and is stressful for everyone involved.

Has anyone had experience with this?  What can we expect?   Dad would love full custody but mom just wants to rub it in his face that she has him a few extra days during the week through school, but doesn't want to give us extra time to make up for the fact.  We love our son/stepson.   Is this going to be hell or does the legal system allow for fairness truly?  

tog redux's picture

So - give up the idea of full custody, that won't happen unless BM is unfit, and him moving 3 hours away would undermine any argument he could make that she is.

I think Family Court is still very mother-biased.  I think they voice that they want to be fair to fathers, but they don't deal well with high-conflict women who lie, cry, make false allegations and get kids to say they don't want to see the father.  So if she's likely to do any of that, then fasten your seat belts.

What you are asking for doesn't seem unreasonable, but BMs like this want control, and someone telling them what to do (court) makes them feel out of control.  That and any potential lost child support as a result of more time going to DH could make things ugly. 

If he can get her to agree with more time (through attorneys) without going to court, that would be ideal. 

fedupinwa's picture

DH had 50% custody so it's unlikely there is a reason to deny him some extra time due to the move.  Just focus on the fact that the move was due to income, which is required to provide support and how the child would benefit from more time with DH.

Kiwi_koala's picture

My boyfriend lives an 1.5 from his kids and he can't see them during the week with school it's not possible. Maybe you guys can take all breaks or most of breaks and a month in the summer? That would probably be about 30 percent custody which is still considered shared.

CampingKitty7's picture

We definitely aren't doing any of this because of child support/money.  We want our kiddo to have what he needs, no problem.  Ultimately we have him every other weekend and half the summer but are going to ask for all of his 3 day weekends from school now too, adding more time.  Plus a neutral pick up drop off location (close to BM house).  The one thing we have going for us is the place where we are moving to is also her former hometown and where her family still lives so hopefully she won't scorch us too badly and be open to a little reason.  My husband just wants to see his son a little more, and sadly she won't budge and allow a few more weekends unless we force her with a lawyer.  

Rags's picture

Distance is key in visitation.  Most jurisdictions, as I understand it, invoke a long distance visitation schedule if the CP lives 200 miles or more from the NCP, and vise versa.  

50/50 legal custody can still stand but visitation modifies for the distance if either parent files for modification.

Providing for your kid is completely separate from visitation.  It is comendable for you  and your DH to provide for the kids in your marriage, regardless of kid biology, so get to court for a reasonable and sustainable visitation schedule.