Porkchop's picture
Porkchop

My ex wants to take my daughter

Ok so my ex has been a deadbeat dad. He owes me over 20,000 in back child support. We had always worked out visitation between. The two of us. I even would drop her off and pick her up so he could visit with her. He has a new girlfriend and they just had a baby. They live in a one bedroom apartment with his two other sons. Lately my daughter hadn't wanted to go and visit him. Through out this time I has left my husband and stayed in a shelter for a little less than a month and got my own place. Since then my husband and I have tried to reconcile. My ex started paying child support in January and now wants to enforce the visitation order. I have been cooperative, but since the whole reason my ex and I split up was because he was abusive he was arrested and convicted I don't feel comfortable giving him and his new girlfriend my address I offered to meet them at the local police station , but he refuses so I gave him my address knowing I was moving in another week. He started asking me for my new address but I wasn't compliant. He text me that he wasn't going to be able to bring her home cause he didn't know my address I text back immediately the same place his girlfriend picked her up. Then he started texting that is not where you live, that my daughter showed his girlfriend where I lived and if he has to go to the apartment complex to get my address he will and that all of the texts were being save for court per his lawyer's advice. I didn't respond he then asked me for clothes he sent home with my daughter I had already explained to his girlfriend I would return those clothes on Sunday when they dropped her off. He proceeded to tell me he should be yelling and raising hell like I did when he forgot her sandals which he never returned. I will admit my husband and I have had our share of problems but are currently workin through them. I have not kept his daugter from him. If I talk to him on the phone and we don't agree he calls me crazy, an idiot, tells me I'm stupid. I tell him to not talk to me like that and he tells me whatever I'm focusing on the wrong stuff. I feel that he is still trying to control me by telling me he is going to take me to court. What should I do? My daughter will now have to spend the entire month of July with him. She has never been away from me longer than 3 days. His new girlfriend even told me that she was my daughter's step mother and that maybe she wanted to spend mothers day with my daughter. I feel helpless I feel that they are just trying to make my life miserable by not letting my daughter attend my graduation this summer because it is in the month of July. I offered to pick her up and drop her off so she could share it with me but they denied my request. His girlfriend told me it's just one graduation that my daughter had missed alot of special moments with them. I feel his girlfriend is over stepping boundaries she should not be. I am remainig calm, but between his treats of court and her misunderstaning of what she is entitle to as his girlfriend. I want to scream!!!



SnglDad's picture
SnglDad

First of all, it sounds as if both of you need to put aside the pettiness and focus on the one thing that matters, your daughter. You are both stressed from dealing with each other, but you are adults, this kid needs a break more than the both of you do.
The girlfriend needs to realize that even if she marries the father, she has no claims or rights to the child. Just because they act as if they are in charge does not mean they are. Read your order well, and know every part of it. If the father has a court order for child support that he has fallen behind on, let him know that when he takes you back to court the child support that are in the arrears will need to be addressed. Child support is not the admission fee for one to see their child, support and visitation are separate issues. Never withhold the visitation based on non-payment.
Unless the court has granted you permission to withhold the child’s current address, you may be in violation of the order. That being said, no court will look fondly on the father for placing his child in the middle of this by making her show him where you live, it is unthinkable that he did that. Keep all text messages, and communicate in a way that everything you say will be read by a judge. Best to do this via email so a hard copy can be printed and entered in to the court. Stick with the court order. I never go outside the court order. I would send an email or certified letter to him with a return receipt to show that it was received. In this letter I would ask the following.

Ex, as you know I will be graduating in July from wherever. I am aware that during this time the court order calls for Susie to be with you, but I am asking that you consider the following proposal. On such and such day I could pick Susie from your home and bring her with me to attend my graduation. After graduation we may get something to eat and I would then return her to your home before such and such time.
If you would agree to this, we could work together to agree on an extra day for Susie to spend with you to make up for the day she attended my graduation. Please let me know your thoughts on this as soon as you can so I can plan accordingly.
Sincerely,
Porkchop

This is a realistic request which, depending on his reply, could make him look unreasonable. Since there is so much animosity I would also write a letter asking that exchanges, and all communication concerning the child be done between the parents. I would explain that you feel that the girlfriend is overstepping her boundaries and that her comments while the child is present only serve to harm the child. Every allegation, every violation of the court order, every nasty exchange should be kept and put in a file. I look at each violation as a brick. You cannot do much with one brick, but when you have a pile of bricks, you can build a wall for them to run in to.
If the father is as behind as you say he is on support, I cannot imagine him wanting to throw himself in front of a judge, he may get less than he asks for. He may also get his wages garnished. If you have the funds, I would retain an attorney and have them write a letter of introduction, and see if he replies with an attorney.