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Ex not providing childcare when he should

Posted by: Anonymous
Mon 2, Oct 2017 at 5:00am
After Separation

My ex and I split up 3-4 years ago. We have two children aged 10 and 12. Our financial agreement was based on an arrangement that he would have the children on Wednesdays overnight and every other weekend (Friday to Monday). This worked reasonably well until he and then girlfriend (now wife) had a baby last September, and now he has re-located some 200 miles away.

I tried to discuss new arrangements before he went and was told it wouldn't affect arrangements - inevitably it has. Ex has a job which means he travels a lot and can be located in the North or South. The contact has dropped dramatically with weekends being missed and Wednesday nights virtually non-existent.

The children are at an age where travelling 200 miles every other weekend is just not practical. So ex drops by when he is working in the South. He does give me ad-hoc payments but these are sporadic in addition to normal maintenance payments but, the boys are confused and making any plans for my life has become impossible.

I have asked him to discuss new arrangements, but he has put this off - he never has time, he's too tired etc.

He receives a reduction in effect as child maintenance was worked out on basis that he has the boys one night a week and three weekend nights per fortnight.(CMS calculator).

I am having to pay additional childcare costs, as well as extras of having the children 100% of the time - bar the few hours he sees them. But mostly it is the unpredictability, and lack of care/contact that is affecting us. As he rarely has the children in the holidays I am struggling with my annual leave. I work f/t.

I don't know what I can do - and would be grateful for any thoughts/advice/suggestions.

Thank you

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  • Pc jaybee (moderator) Flag

    Thank you for your post.
    I guess when you and your ex set up the initial agreement between you, neither of you was able to foresee how your circumstances were going to alter over time. The reality for both of you now is that things have moved on in ways that are difficult to change but which will almost certainly have an impact on the relationship that your children have with their father.
    It can't be easy to find yourself with almost total care of your kids when, clearly, you had hoped for the continued support and 'hands on' involvement of their father.
    I'm wondering if using mediation might help both of you to get more of an idea of what each of you is up against in these new circumstances and maybe re-think your expectations of each other?

    Wed 4, Oct 2017 at 1:33pm