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The father of my child and I were together 8 years and broke up 15 weeks ago.

We broke up due to fighting about money and we hurt on money because he spent a great deal of it on pills, which I found out at the end. The last six month of our relationship he was moody, slept a lot, called into work a lot, and was always lazy but was worse than usual. I was working 60 to 80 hrs a week, and keeping house clean. He was a server so he easily hid money and was also telling me he needed money for other things that he wasn't using it for. Anyways I refused to be an enabler and we started fighting all the time. He got mad and left one day. Also started seeing a women who is known to be a partier and does pills.

When we first broke up it was hard on our 6 year old. She cried all the time. I'd beg him to see her. He didn't want to see me and I wasn't letting him take her. I tried to set stuff up where he could see her with family members. Didn't happen. He would act like I was calling wanting him and tell me not to call. I can't make him see her obviously so I stopped calling. Weeks went by. He didn't even check in on her. Two weeks ago he called wanting to see her, even if I had to be there. I was very skeptical because she wasn't crying anymore and I didn't want to start it over for him to dissapear again. I told him he could if this was a weekly thing. He agreed. I also told him that if he missed one week I'd make him go to court before he sees her again.

What do you know, he saw her the first week. Second week his girfriend's car, which he is using, broke down. Instead of calling me and telling me when Tuesday, our visiting day, came he ignored my texts and I had to blow his phone up two days later when my daughter realized it and was crying. He knows I would have found a way to meet him at a near by park or something. He lives in a housing addition with his girfriend's mom, so there is probably a park there.

Either way he's asked to see her this week, I said no and he is making me out to be horrible. I feel like I'm in a lose-lose situation. Am I doing the right thing? All I want is to get visiting through court.

I'm going to request supervised and a drug test. He says he can't afford court or attorney. I have raised our child by myself since our breakup and gotten back on my feet. He is bumming off his girlfriend and her mom. So I'm just not buying his excuses.

  • If you are in the US, you should take this through the court system/child protective services. Whether or not he has the money for it is a complete non-issue. This isn't about him anymore, it's about your child. – L.B. Oct 11 '16 at 13:29
  • Welcom to parenting.SE, and sorry to hear about your difficult situation. As it stands, your question is a bit rambling, and it is unclear what exactly you want to ask. Could edit to you clarify? Do you want to allow visits, but force them to be supervised? Do you want to prevent him from visiting? Do you want to change the way he lives? Please clarify what your goal is. – sleske Oct 12 '16 at 11:27
  • @sleske - It's probably waay too soon for OP to figure this out and know what her main goal is. Eight years! And it's only been 15 weeks. Dad is confused, OP is confused, everybody's hurting and angry. – aparente001 Oct 12 '16 at 21:44
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    @aparente001: I know, and I understand. However, to get an answer on this site OP will need to follow the rules. Otherwise we can only recommend to get help from a good counselor or similar (which would be a good idea anyway). – sleske Oct 13 '16 at 8:11
  • I did agree to supervised. He seen her the first week and not the next week. I texted him to ask him if he was still on board to see her Tuesday our scheduled day, no response. He didn't call or anything that week. Tuesday came and went. my daughter was very sad that he didn't come to visit, like he promised the week before. So she stopped crying, he canes around, started her grieving over and left. He thinks because seeing her every couple weeks is good for him, it's fine for her too. So as week went on into second week she stopped crying again and he called. So i told him no all together. – Frustrated mom Oct 19 '16 at 0:51
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Court should not be used as a threat. Family court will help you set up visitation in a way that's fair for everyone. Dad doesn't need to pay for a lawyer -- he can get free legal representation if he feels he needs it.

You can take the initiative -- you don't have to wait for Dad to file. There are people at your Department of Social Services office that can help you get started.

I was raised by a single mother and only met my father a handful of times. It is so much richer for a child to know both parents.

  • Plus, in most countries social services or similar will also help the parents to negotiate visiting rights, so things don't need to go to court (contacting them may even be a pre-requisite for filing a formal court case). – sleske Oct 12 '16 at 11:29
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Based on your description, throughout this entire sequence of events, you have put your child as the #1 priority, over considerations of yourself.

So, yes, you are absolutely doing the right thing. Someone in the grips of a self-destructive drug addiction absolutely should not have private, unfettered access to a child like that. You have given him the opportunity, with very clear requirements, that he agreed to and promised to continue to agree to. He failed after only one week.

He has demonstrated repeatedly that he has not earned your trust, and when given opportunities to prove himself trustworthy, he has squandered it.

He's trying to manipulate you through guilt and making himself feel like the victim. While unpleasant, that isn't "losing" unless you allow him to succeed in changing your priorities that have served you so well thus far - "What is best for my child?"

I'm sorry you have to go through this. You are doing all the right things.

Find out if there are any resources, government or charitable, that can help you through this tough time. What I mean is - do they have information on assistance for child care, free legal advice on how to keep control of the custody situation, help in getting court ordered child support put into place or a formal order of custody. Do they have advice on whether getting an order of support means you have to give visitation? Do they have counseling services they can refer you to just so you can have someone you can talk to who can give you solid, reassuring advice? Are there similar resources available to help your daughter through this time? Do they have resources on the best practices you can use to support your daughter?

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    My daughter starts seeing a councilor next week. So that will help to have her to refer to. Thanks I feel better about it. If he wants to see her I told him he needs to go file visitation through court. Untill then he isn't even seeing with with me there. I want it to be legal so that his coming and going is documented. He threatened to call cps and tells me when I do get a attorney I'm going to take her from you and blah blah. I know the court would never take her from me seeings how I have a stablilty and he doesn't. Thanks for the comment. It just helps to have a outsiders opion. – Frustrated mom Oct 12 '16 at 2:29
  • Good luck with all of that. Maybe comment back here when things are settled to let us know how the process worked for you. – PoloHoleSet Oct 14 '16 at 14:05

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