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Grandparenting

Heading for breakdown

(43 Posts)
Summermary Sat 04-Jan-20 10:01:39

I’ve posted before about my daughters ex. He’s my 9 year old GS dad. Daughter lives with me with GS and younger GS with different dad. The ex wasn’t interested in GS as a baby-spent 5 months pushing abortion. Then went off for 3 years working on cruise ships. Returned in 2017 and started demanding access on his terms. GS has ADHD and Aspergers. Ex denied diagnosis and dragged daughter to court for faster/considerably more access. We got a court order not considering GS issues. The ex texts demanding holidays, gives no time for reply, a couple of days later he’ll send Solicitors letter (to wrong house no), then a signed letter from him. It never stops. My daughter battles with ME so all this aggravates it.

Yesterday a large pack arrives - he’s now got another court hearing, miles away with a huge list of wants. Daughter asks GS if he wants to see his dad more. GS said no, happy ad it is. She can’t cope with hearing. She’d sent a list of holiday dates in Nov. He says he hadn’t got it. She resent it in Dec. He says he hadn’t got it. Told her to get more efficient phone as I told her to send copy to me and I didn’t get it.

All this affects me - I shake, my stomach reacts, I can’t get situation out of head. To start new year like this is horrid.

GS knows his dad pushes for Court at times, he’s knows his dad has lied on what GS has said. We don’t want to involve him but again this Court application is full of fabrications. He is trying to get daughter involved in transport at times she is feeding/putting baby to bed. Police advised her to stay away from him as she is petrified of him.

Ex says GS exhibits severe anxiety on returning here- we see a boy who rushes in excitedly, smiles, says how glad he is to be home.

We like to involve GS in choices. His dad controls/manipulated.

I just don’t know what to do or how to cope any more. I can’t just tell daughter to keep it to herself as she needs support. I have been through this situation years ago with a divorce 😢

Any advice ladies. So sorry this is long.

Hetty58 Sat 04-Jan-20 10:11:26

It sounds like your GS (and/or daughter) needs a social worker to help manage the situation and protect his rights. Remember that this won't go on for ever. When your GS is older, he'll be free to decide how much contact he has.

Summermary Sat 04-Jan-20 10:32:00

Hi Hetty58. Thank you for replying. I worry about Social Workers. Not had good feedback from friends about their involvement. I had a conversation with a lovely Police lady who did say at 11 or 12 we could pretty much rip up the court order but ex is so manipulative. He’s currently buying GS with expensive things. My daughter only realised how controlling/manipulative he is when she got out of the relationship. I worry that GS will start seeing us as not buying expensive stuff and not being able to do physical stuff like ice skating etc. Daughter can’t and I would break. The ex and partner have just had a baby so are doing happy families. GS says his dad always refers to this house as Nannas house. Have told GS it is our home and always has been.

Doodle Sat 04-Jan-20 21:39:34

summermary I would imagine funds are not available for a solicitor but could you try talking to Citizens Advice and see if they can give any guidance.
As for ice skating, ice rinks usually have a sort of plastic penguin type thing that novice skaters can hold on to while they skate around so you would not necessarily have to go on the ice with him. Why don’t you phone the ice rink and talk to them.
Wish I could be more help but don’t know what to say really. Hope someone with a better idea will help soon.

Quercus Sat 04-Jan-20 21:51:12

Where is the second child's father in all this? Why does she need to live with you if she has a new partner?

M0nica Sat 04-Jan-20 22:04:47

Your DGS is 9. I would talk to him directly ask him how he feels about his father. Discuss with him that his father is giving him things that you and his mother cannot give and explain why.

Think of things that you and your DGS (and, hopefully his mother) can do with him, that his father wouldn't do. Day trips out to a country park or stately home or castle., where there are grounds he can run around. Costs of garden only access are usually quite low, take a picnic. Take him to the local park and let him play on the playground equipment for an hour or more, again take a picnic. Does he cook with you? Would he like to? If you look around there is a lot to be done for free. Will he sit still in the cinema? another cheap treat. Do not try to compete with his father, do some thing different.

I would definitely go down to your local CAB to talk the issues through with them, they can give you a lot of help and advice.

rosecarmel Sat 04-Jan-20 22:49:31

Is your daughter receiving financial support from either of the children's biological fathers? I'm in the US, I have no idea how child support works in the UK- If not I don't understand how he could be in a position to make demands-

There is the library, paper projects, many games can be played with dice and a deck of cards, building with cardboard boxes and heavy tape, building a fortress out of blankets and tables and chairs- Spending time together talking while engaged in activities that are imaginative-

Namsnanny Sat 04-Jan-20 23:15:53

Monica and rosecarmel| … whilst I see the value of your suggestions, I don't think a 9 year old will.
I'm sure the op and her daughter have been through all of these ideas themselves. They both are short on energy and money.
I think it is a valid worry that the shiny new daddy with the big wallet can fill the young boy with all kinds of ideas.

Monica the op has already said they explain everything they can to the boy to keep him in the loop.
Too much 'explaining' is likely to have the opposite effect imv.

Have you heard of Home Start? They are a charity who help families and children in your type of situation.
When I volunteered with them some years back, I was sent to spend time taking children to the park, swimming etc., or just playing at home.
Sometimes I would go shopping for Mum taking a child with me.

I'm wondering if this is the sort of practical back up your daughter and gson needs.

If you get any free time perhaps you can find out your daughters rights by accessing some free time with a solicitor?

It must be so overwhelming to be continually harassed by this man. [flowers}

Namsnanny Sat 04-Jan-20 23:19:41

www.home-start.org.uk sorry cant do links, hope this helps a little smile

Doodle Sat 04-Jan-20 23:19:53

namsnanny, yes home start is a good idea. I had forgotten about them.

Hetty58 Sat 04-Jan-20 23:31:22

If ex and partner have just had a baby, I'd predict that things should settle down fairly soon. I doubt that your grandson will coldly compare what's on offer.

Ideally, he should be in contact with his father. Take care not to criticise his dad too much (when he can hear, that is). It could make him feel insecure. He knows where he lives and who cares for him. What you can offer by way of trips and activities is far less important. Children basically just need to know that they are loved.

BlueBelle Sun 05-Jan-20 03:44:21

If only that was true hetty but of course children can be ‘bought’ by a parent who has more ability to give them fun and expensive items
rosecarmel if a 9 year old has the choice to go ice skating with his dad or build a cardboard fort with a sick mother and new baby what’s he going to want to do !!!

she sent a list of holidays in Nov told her to get a more efficient phone as I told her to send a copy to me and I didn’t get it it does sound as if the daughters chaos is playing into the fathers hands

Is the father good to the boy? I know you call him controlling and manipulative but your daughter who has ME and a new baby isnt coping is she? Is the new baby’s father involved or are you looking after her, a grandson with special needs and a new baby, no to mention court papers etc if so no wonder you are worn out and sick to the stomach
It’s a really difficult one and I truly feel your pain and fear but might it be better to work WITH the father instead of against him after all the child sounds happy if he comes bounding in all smiles and excited he sounds as if he enjoys both houses
If your daughter is sick you are not coping well and there’s a new baby to be fed and looked after perhaps not adding to the fight is best at the moment until someone is stronger

Namsnanny Sun 05-Jan-20 04:16:39

Doodlesmile thanks

Sparkling Sun 05-Jan-20 04:42:17

Having trouble sleeping, this post caught my attention.
It sounds as if you are dealing with so much Summermary, no wonder you are heading for a breakdown. Why is your daughter living with you when she has a baby with another man? Where is he in all this? It sounds all very chaotic for a 9 year old to cope with. He goes to his father who is now settled with a partner and young baby, his half sibling. The fact that he wasn't part of his life the first three years is hard I know, but perhaps he was too young, felt trapped into fatherhood with someone he didn't love, I don't know, it doesn't justify his behaviour, he now is firmly in his first child's life and you need help sorting this out as clearly your daughter can't. It all sounds so unsettled. It really sounds as if your daughter cannot cope. I feel for you trying to support everyone when you need help. Perhaps going to see your GP asking their advice. Good luck.💐

rosecarmel Sun 05-Jan-20 06:15:03

I understand that the mother and daughter are short on money and energy but neither is short on love- And a loving environment provides support for all involved-

My one grandson would choose an attentive listener along with cardboard and tape over skating-

I'm no longer a fan of the father of my grandchildren, difficult as that is to admit, but despite that fact I don't compete with him-

The grandchild in the OP suffers with ADHD / Aspberger's, his mum suffers from ME and his dad with some sort of mental disorder- If the child prefers skating more than cardboard so be it but it doesn't mean he prefers being with his dad- Skating sessions last an hour or two while the love he receives from his mum and grandmother will last him the rest of his life-

BlueBelle Sun 05-Jan-20 06:56:30

Hey hey hey rosecarmel where on earth does it say his father has a mental health problem and the skating was only a tiny example you really are making your own scenarios up which is far from helpful to summer

downtoearth Sun 05-Jan-20 08:19:39

Having been through the courts for residancy of my GD,we where in high court for 6 years....a guardian ad litem would be appointed to speak for the child and would only deal with the childs best interests.
Perhaps you could get a half an hour free appointment with a solicitor dealing in family law to find out best way to achieve this.
We where involved with social services,and they where very supportive and helpful.

Beanie654321 Sun 05-Jan-20 10:13:01

How about getting grandson a person to talk this through, advocate. He can then tell the truth from his side. Speak to Social Services for help. X

Hithere Sun 05-Jan-20 10:38:37

I can see different issues here - all piling together

www.gransnet.com/forums/ask_a_gran/1235325-Advice-dealing-with-daughters-bullying-ex
March 2019
I get issues with your dd and her ex have been going on for a while as you mention the help a poster (now gone for a year in march) has provided

www.gransnet.com/forums/ask_a_gran/1236216-So-much-stress-how-to-get-it-under-control
From April 2019
What do you mean by he was pushing things too much for her?
What kind of behavior and demeanor was he showing?

www.gransnet.com/forums/ask_a_gran/1260781-Dd-s-Ex-wants-to-take-DG-abroad-ex-so-irresponsible
April 2019
You admit your dd is ignoring the issue of taking your dd to court to grant him permission to take his dd overseas on vacation hoping it would go away. Is that the standard m.o. for your dd -avoiding reality?
the phone incident you mention- it sounds very unpleasant. I cannot help being uncomfortable with you trying to remove his phone from his hand to shut it off.
It doesn't sound like a good action to de-escalate the conflict

www.gransnet.com/forums/ask_a_gran/1263901-How-to-get-family-to-stop-leaving-everything-to-me?pg=1&order=
From July 2019
Has this improved?
Would you call it hoarding?
Are you still doing too much for her and the kids?

This is out of control and has been like that for a long while.
The suggestion of guardian ad litem is spot on.

The ex is a bully (using your words) but your dd is not showing a good track record at all.
You admit bringing up your 9 year old gc. Is it the same case this the 2 year old?
It sounds like your dd is not stepping up as their mother and not managing her mental illness.
Your mental and physical health is also suffering. What are you doing to manage it?
Could you be enabling your dd? She certainly doesn't sound liked she can handle any responsibilities by reading your posts

Where is the father of the second child?

These poor kids.

Sassie1961 Sun 05-Jan-20 10:39:02

See www.autism.org.uk/about/benefits-care/community-care/children/england.aspx Aspergers falls under this umbrella. Please get the right help and support for GS, the social workers should be there to support you as a family and open the door to valuable support services and not something to fear. I assume that ex is paying child support for him and your daughter has claimed any benefits that GS's disability entitles him to? As for the difficult ex, simply put everything in writing in future, keep a copy of it and post everything recorded delivery to his home address, can then be no dispute over not receiving it. Try looking on times ex has GS as respite for your daughter, which she sounds like she needs if battling ME, I suspect his current interest will drop off once he's tied into a set agreed arrangement and the baby gets older. Also contact your local Autism support group as they will know about Autism friendly cinema events, local support services, special clubs he can join in with and of course it would be chance to meet with other parents, some whom whom are probably going through this same thing or have already experienced it and can really give the best advise. GS is 9 at the moment, there will be bumpy times ahead as he makes transition to adulthood,try not to make that journey on your own. I speak as a parent of an autistic daughter, who's ex dragged me through the courts over divorce etc... he didn't want to pay for her, hid money from CSA and shirked his parental responsibilities and only wanted access when there was nothing better on offer and then only on his terms. Fast forward a few years and he's paying the price for his behavior now that daughter and sons are adults and can choose who they see.

Hithere Sun 05-Jan-20 10:56:11

Apologies, the fist link is from March 2017.

Jan135 Sun 05-Jan-20 10:57:41

Hi I work on the family section of a County Court, the hearing should normally be held at the nearest family Court to where the child lives, is this is not the case write/email to the Court which is currently dealing with the case, quoting the case number and request a transfer to your local Court. Cafcass can be ordered by the Court to speak to the child, they are used to situations you describe. Hope all goes well

Hithere Sun 05-Jan-20 11:00:37

Only the last thread is from 2019. The others are from 2017

I need coffee ☕

This situation has been going on for too long. I am surprised you haven't reached the breaking point before.

4allweknow Sun 05-Jan-20 11:39:21

Would try what Namsnanny suggested. Homstart could have an input into helping with both children. Also seems important your DD has some legal advice. Try CAB but DD may have a time to wait for an appointment.

grannymy Sun 05-Jan-20 11:47:21

You are at a time in life where you should be relaxing and enjoying life instead of all this hassle. No wonder you feel bad. Those poor children too. I hope you get the help you need and that it works out for all of you in your home.