I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

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I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Shackleton » Tue Jul 24, 2012 10:44 pm

Here's one you've never heard before, the ex is a dictatorial, hypocritical controlling b'th who wants to interfere with my time with my son out of spite. The problem is she is very good at manipulation and always thinks in terms of the court.

I want to change our Parent schedule in two ways. First, I want a provision that neither parent can schedule activities on the other parents time without permission. She will not take our son to activities that I schedule but wants me to be a chauffeur for the activities she schedules. Second, I want to change my Thursday from school to 8pm (8am to 9pm during summer) to Thursday overnight.

Please advise on how to accomplish these goals. My son is 12 and wants the overnights. The provision about scheduling activities is becoming more common but is not a part of our parent agreement or a policy for our County.

Thank you.
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Shackleton » Wed Jul 25, 2012 6:04 am

I should mention that I filed a Motion Pro Per in 2011 to amend parent time and gained ground. I gained Thursday overnights during the summer on my alternating weekends as well as clarifying my Monday drop off time during summer as 5pm and getting the ex to agree to letting me keep our son an hour later on Thursdays during the school year (though the extra hour was not written in the agreement and she recently reigned out of anger). I want further clarification that my pickup time is 8am when our son does not attend school (8am is my summer pickup time and what we have always done in practice during the school year when our son has a day off or is sick) and every Thursday overnight, which our son really wants. The Thursday overnight is a time sensitive concern because the ex reigned on letting our son stay with me the extra hour during the school year so he can participate in a self-defense class that I teach for him, another boy and the other boys father. The two boys have benefited greatly from our weekly training sessions and the beginning of this upcoming school year will be the first time in over a year that the two boys will be denied the 6:30pm to 8:30pm training time.

The ex also recently refused to let our son participate in a safety camp for kids that I taught in June which he really wanted to participate in. Our son's best friend was in the camp too and they were going to spend the week together. The ex did not bring our son to 2 of the 5 days and brought him late every day he did attend, including 1 day in which she brought him almost an hour late. Needless to say I never missed a day of the 2 week band camp she put him in and was never late. The ex refuses to bring our son to a weekly self-defense class that I teach on Sundays too, so he only gets to attend on my weekends. The class is taught at a Fraternal Order of Police Lodge and is full of great role models and influences. I feel like this is a perfect storm of examples against her so I want to act while the iron is hot.
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Trevor » Wed Jul 25, 2012 10:42 am

1. You can't control what your X books on your time. What you can do is choose how to spend your time with your kids. That is, don't show up for stuff you didn't plan or approve.

2. If she is getting the kids all excited about such plans, then putting you in the Bad Guy role, document every example for the next time you go to court. Your clause should include not mentioning the activity to the kids unless and until there is agreement of both parents. If a parent hears from the kids aboout something cool, the parent is obligated to check the custody calendar first, then say "you need to check with your father" for example.

3. To get the extra overnight you need to petition the court for a modification to the custody schedule. Not sure you should ask only for one more night; why not more than that, such as Sunday night overnights?

4. Calling you out on a double-standard, bro. "The ex refuses to bring our son to a weekly self-defense class that I teach on Sundays too." Of course; it's her time.

5. Sure it sucks that the kid comes late to camp during her week. Your priority might well be camp. But her priority might be a nice breakfast and conversation instead. You don;t get to make her rules. This will further your case...zero.
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Shackleton » Wed Jul 25, 2012 11:46 am

Thank you for the response Trevor. It's much appreciated. My schedule during the school year is every Thursday from school to 8pm and Friday from school to Monday school on my weekends. During the summer it's Thursday 8am to 9pm on her weekend and Thursday 8am to Monday 5pm on my weekends. I get 4 vacation weeks and she gets 3. We alternate holidays.

Here is the problem I'm having. We are required to take our son to his scheduled activities. So, if she enrolls him in baseball and the baseball schedule overlaps with my time she can ask the court to recognize baseball as a scheduled activity and therefore require me to take him. If the court agrees baseball is in the child's best interest they can mandate it. Plus it makes me look like a heel.

Now, I love my son playing sports. My concern is that I have limited time with my son and I need to be the parent of that time not her. And while it makes her look good putting our son in sports the reality is she is looking for a baby sitter and she needs to get him physical active because I kick her < hindquarters > in front of our previous Judge in August 2011 for letting our son get overweight, unfit, and unhealthy.

In order to get a Judge to add any provision to our parent agreement I have to look at the Judge and say very concisely "This is why it's in the best interest of the child" and it has to be persuasive enough that the ex looks unreasonable when she fights it. I'm just not sure what the best arguments are. I'm also not sure of the best argument for every Thursday overnights. I'm going to hire an attorney for this motion but I've learned not to trust them. I want to be educated on these issues myself.

Thank you for pointing out the clause that activities not be mentioned to the child unless and until the activity is agreed to by both parents.
Last edited by Shackleton on Wed Jul 25, 2012 11:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Shackleton » Wed Jul 25, 2012 11:56 am

Trevor wrote:4. Calling you out on a double-standard, bro. "The ex refuses to bring our son to a weekly self-defense class that I teach on Sundays too." Of course; it's her time.


I'm hoping I can show that she is being unreasonable, uncooperative not putting his best interest first, while I can show that I am being cooperative, reasonable and putting our son's interest first. She hides behind the "he wants to" when it's her activity but then says it's "my time" when it's my activity, regardless of the fact that he wants to. I'm hoping the double standard will disarm her "he wants to" and "best interest" arguments, since she is clearly trying to have it both ways based on what suits her.

Thoughts?
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Shackleton » Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:00 am

The court wants parents to work issues out themselves. As I'm sure many of you know first hand, my ex thinks working together means doing what she wants. After our 7-23-12 court date I have reached out to her to resolve the few remaining issues that continually cause problems but she has been non-responsive and won't acknowledge my attempts.

Should I take her right back into the courtroom or should I continue to try other means of resolution first? By making several attempts to resolve our conflicts will it strengthen my position if I do have to file a Motion? What means of resolution do you recommend? I'm thinking:

1.) Send an e-mail requesting a meeting between us that states a deadline for which I will seek further action if she refuses to address our issues.
2.) Seek formal mediation.
3.) File a Motion.

The down side is I don't want to tip my hand.

Thoughts?

Regarding the issues about scheduling activities on the other parents time. I want to include wording that addresses makeup time and transportation. Any recommendations on how to word the agreement.

Thank you.
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Fatheroffour » Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:27 am

since she is clearly trying to have it both ways based on what suits her.



SInce you teach the class why can't you schedule it during your time only?

Seems the best course of action, the one that I would take, is to do what you want on your time and let her do what she wants on yours. If she signs squirt up for baseball on your time, blow it off if kiddo doesn't want to go and find a better alternative for you and your son to engage in. Put the onus on her to take you to court and prove that signing up kiddo for a team sport without consulting you and making him go during your parenting time is more beneficial to the kid than some one on one time with dad fishing at the local lake (or whatever activity you decide).

The court wants parents to work issues out themselves.


Possibly so. So do what you want and make her the problem by taking you to court over petty issues.
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Shackleton » Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:39 am

Thank you for the response Fatheroffour. What if our son does want to go? The ex gets our son excited about these activities then signs him up like it's his idea. That puts me in the bad guy role. She is very manipulative. She couldn't care less about what he wants if it does not suit her but if it's something that suits her it's all about "His best interest".
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby texasdad2012 » Thu Aug 16, 2012 2:59 pm

I know how it works for us: we only schedule activities during "our times" with the kids. If she scheduled something during one of my times with them, I don't care how beneficial or exciting or "in the best interests of the kids" it was... I would feel zero obligation to take them. Same goes in reverse, if I tried to enroll them in something during their time with her. It's a nice thought that you can be collaborative on conflicting schedule things and when it works, great, but I think it also tends to lead to lots of conflicts. You have to realize that you have absolutely no say in what your ex does when the kids are with her.
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Re: I want to change Parent Schedule - Please Advise

Postby Trevor » Thu Aug 16, 2012 11:10 pm

You should feel an obligation to your kids, above your own indignation that she booked something on your time, and above your distaste for cooperating for the benefit of the children. Your kids deserve that you consider their interest in the activity, how it would benefit them, or how they would enjoy it. It would be very douchebaggish if you refused to allow the kids to go with their mother to visit the Museum of Natural History and the Smithsonian if that trip happened to fall on your parenting time. Sure, she would be a douchenozzle for not talking first to you about time exchange. But to dismiss it out of hand? Come on.
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