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#771220 - 12/31/15 03:23 PM Parent who is manipulating child
Helpless88 Offline

recently joined

Registered: 12/31/15
Posts: 1
My ex wife is very Controlling we recently went to court and I was granted joint custody which she is very angry about. She goes to the extreme that I can't take my child to get a haircut, I can't ever take them to the doctor, dentist or eye doctor. She doesn't notify me of anything going on school related but expects me to tell her. She is constantly trying to manipulate every situation so she can take me back to court. She has the money to do so. She has now bought our child a cell phone for Christmas so she can keep track at all times when it is on MY TIME. She doesn't do the same courtesy for me. My child is 10 and I checked the messages she sent and I noticed that they were deleted. To me this is another way to manipulate my child against me. I am constantly being told there is nothing I can do about her behavior, but I am worried about the constant threat of going back to court. She treats our child as if they are an adult. She is very bitter and angry and constantly telling them things they shouldn't know like when we went to court and what happened. She talks to them about her day and what's going on. In my opinion it's not the kids business to know. She doesn't let them be a kid. She is too blinded by her hatred for me that she is constantly putting our child in the middle. During the holidays she had them ask me if they could go to her house on MY TIME. She is constantly asking for time on my time. She also plans some of their activities on my weekends. I was over the scout program and she has taken over that and had them pretty much had them tell me I wasn't allowed to be a leader anymore because she didn't want to work with me. I am tired of living my life like I have to watch everything I do. I have another child with my current wife and she has told our child that it's a stepchild not a half child. She has even said that my own step mother is not their grandmother. It's as if her family is the only family he should consider to be his family. Any advice is helpful....Also is there anything I can do or say to my child without putting them in the middle like the mother always does? I just want to be left alone.

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#771221 - 01/04/16 11:52 PM Re: Parent who is manipulating child [Re: Helpless88]
oldsmom Offline

member

Registered: 06/08/15
Posts: 100
This sounds very familiar. My husband's has done much of this.

Understand that you do not have to listen to her. She has drawn some hard lines with you, and she can only boss you around as much as you let her. Joint custody means you have as many rights as she does. If you don't approve of cell phones for a 10 year old (I personally don't), then tell your child to leave it at mom's or it is pulled when the child arrives at your house. It's that simple. Your child and ex will throw a fit, but if you stay calm and tell her your style of parenting is different, then there is little she can say. If she tries to argue about accessing the child at your house, then tell her you will agree to JOINT communication protocols if she wants to develop calling times for the child at BOTH houses. Otherwise, she gets just as much access as she has provided to you. What is good for the goose is good for the gander.

Also, unless your parenting plan explicitly allows her to plan activities on your time, JUST SAY NO. Or you can tell her, "Please provide the information and I will take our child to the appointment". By allowing her to take the child during your time, you are actually giving her evidence to go back to court. She can tell the courts that you "didn't want the child during that time". Trust me. My husband's ex tried that, and took him to court to get rid of joint custody. (Fortunately it didn't work, but we had to pay a lot of money fighting it.)

Depending on your region, sometimes a Guardian ad Litem can help. In our county, they don't have much power. But in some circumstances, they can work as the child's advocate to reduce bad parent behavior by bringing it to light.

Last, our kids are now becoming adults. And from experience, if we could do it over again, we would have worried less about that my husband's ex would do, and worry less about her exploding. We would have just parented as we saw fit in our house, and ignored her calls and demands for access. We would have hung up on her more often, demanded more emails, and given her less access to the kids when they were at our house.

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