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My 16-year-old daughter has not been seeing her father since we divorced (in 2008 on the basis of infidelity (from him)). We live cities apart.

She is against of having any relations with him. I was always for they keep relationship with each other, but he was absolutely unresponsive. She likely feels attitude and does not want to have any contact.

I want to do it for her because responsibility on me is bigger than I can bear and I am afraid I can be not giving fully what she will need for life and also can be doing it myself on the expense of my health that I will need in the future to support us, as I am under tension and constant stress.

He does not feel any responsibility at all, just paying very small amount of (for an Eastern European country) aliments. He never contacted her after divorce, they met twice, both times when she needed to take passport and his consent with it. In the past I gave him her email in hope he would write to her, but it did not happen. Now, I had an idea to give him her phone number and by the viber or other apps they could interact with each other, but she opposes it categorically.

I am not sure if I should do it without her consent. Also in the viber he has his current family's photo that can be traumatic for her.

What should I do?

  • I want to do it for her because responsibility on me is bigger than I can bear and I am afraid I can be not giving fully what she will need for a life and also can be doing it myself on the expense of my health that I will need in the future to support us, as I am under the tension and constant stress. He does not feel any responsibility at all,just paying very small amount of (for eastern Europe country) aliments. He never contacted her after divorce, they met twice, both times when she needed to take passport and his consent with it. – Sofiko Nov 27 '16 at 11:21
  • @Willow Rex Happened nothing special, on the basis of infidelity (from him) we divorced. I was always for they keep relationship with each other, but he was absolutely unresponsive. She likely feels attitude and does not want to have any contact. – Sofiko Nov 27 '16 at 11:32
  • I feel for you, but you cannot make your ex or your daughter do something, even it is the right thing in your opinion. – WRX Nov 27 '16 at 23:19
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  1. Do NOT do anything without her consent. This will damage trust in your relationship and is likely to make things worse
  2. As long as neither your daughter or you ex ask you specifically to get involve, it's best to stay out of it.
  3. If you feel strongly that it's good for your daughter to connect with her father you need to talk it through with her. Ask why she doesn't want to see him and than LISTEN. Don't say anything until you are sure you fully understand what's going on insider her.
  4. Now you can make your point. You can explain why you think it's good for your daughter: be prepared to listen to her counter arguments and deal with them.
  5. Either you can convince her or not. If she agrees to see her father, than the two of you should work on a strategy together. If she doesn't, you just have to agree to disagree or you may even come around to her view point
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I agree with Hilmar and add that you could suggest that the father write actual paper letters and send gifts as a way of breaking the ice.

However, I have no idea what happened to stop him talking to his child. She may have most excellent reasoning and she is far too old to be 'told'.

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