My wife has taken our two boys, 9 month old and 4 year old, and is denying me all contact with them. I already haven't seen or spoken to them in 2 weeks except for a 2 minute phone call with my 4 year old.

He was very distraught on the call, telling me he loved me and crying for me to come to see him. I have always been present in his life every day until now and it could take at least another 3-4 weeks for a court order to establish contact, although hopefully my wife will come to her senses before then.

My question is how do i explain my absence to my child, Do I tell him the truth, that his mother stopped me from seeing him, tell him in a more general sense than some people have stopped me from seeing him or do i just make up a complete lie ?

  • 2
    My sympathies. I can related to exactly how you feel. You always want to tell the truth to kids. They know the difference. But you don't need to tell the whole truth. Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 13:28
  • Hopefully things turn out well with the judge. They did in my case and after a long wait, I have equal custody. Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 13:28
  • @GeoffHutchison does the pain of not seeing them and not having them a part of your daily life ever go away. Do you think the time you were seperated had a big negative effect on your relationship with you children ? Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 14:50
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    Separation from one parent happens in lots of families, even for something as mundane as a long business trip. The effects would be best asked as a new question -- you have a good, focused one here, and that second one you just brought up can also be a good question.
    – Acire
    Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 15:29

2 Answers 2


I am so sorry to read this. You have my sympathy.

First (I hope you've done this already), hire a lawyer. Does your wife have the legal right to withhold visitation from you? Find out. If she doesn't want to see you, maybe she can drop your children off at a friend's so you could see them without fear of confrontation.

Second, is there an equivalent to Fathers for equal rights in your country? Maybe they can help you as well. There is also information on co-parenting, etc.

Avoid blaming your wife to your children (ever). Read about co-parenting do's and don'ts. Don't lie to your child but don't go into details with him. Your problems with your wife belong to you and your wife, and should not be discussed per se with your son, which will cause him further pain. It is truthful to say you really want to see him right now, but because a judge has to give you permission (or whatever your lawyer advises you), you can't just yet. Tell him you love him, and that will never change.

I hope you're able to see your children very soon.

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    Another alternative might be something like "I wasn't allowed to see you, I missed you, and I'm glad I can see you now." And definitely something along the lines of "I love you and that won't change" or "I always love you, no matter what." Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 13:26

Two weeks is an eternity, but it is also a blip in time. If you had the power, I am 100% sure you'd alter time so that those weeks would be only seconds! A loving parent's absence is devastation no matter the duration!

First, assuming your ethics are as mine, do not lie! The truth told without regard to the listener, though, can be harmful. "Oh, son/daughter I want to be there with you but something bad that we both don't like isn't letting me! I'm working on it and I'll be there to give you a super-big hug and kiss just as soon as I can." -- it tells the truth, does not involve negativity with the mother, and simultaneously offers your child realistic hope.

The characteristics I just identified are those you want to keep forefront in your discussions with your child: 1) I am there for you; 2) I love you and will express that directly as soon as I am there; and 3) nothing will stop me from being there for you.

No matter the mother's faults, she may see the error of her current ways (see my previous posts as an example) and she will always be their mother, so doing your utmost to facilitate a positive relationship with both parents is in the best interest of your children, even if it feels (or truly is) challenging to support on your part.

I have been there and done that, so I truly understand the type of challenge you are currently undergoing and -- no offense intended -- I wish the best for your children (which is, I believe, why you posted here).

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