I’ve been separated/divorced for five years. I’ve signed a separation agreement that spells out child support and visitation with our three children.
However, child support and visitation are two separate, independent issues. I regularly meet my child-support obligations, but have not been able to visit with the children.
They aren’t only alienated from me, but from my parents, plus aunts, uncles, and cousins on both sides.
What can I do, besides keep writing to the kids?
The home phone isn’t answered. Calls are left for the answering machine and get screened.
On facts alone, this is a legal problem. But the difficulties within the painful emotions involved, is a problem of parental/family alienation that may prove too difficult for lawyers to resolve.
Still, show your legal agreements to your lawyer, the family court and a mediator (request this) to discuss your legal rights to visit your children.
The fact that you’ve consistently paid child support should be seen/noted in any discussions on visitation.
Keep writing the children (send your phone number), and search social media for information about them.
Meanwhile, you may have to wait till they’re old enough to, hopefully, reach you.
Unfortunately, an ex who alienates children from their other parent (and supportive relatives), bears enormous distrust/anger/control measures towards them.
Sadly, Wikipedia’s definition may prove true: parental alienation creates child trauma, resulting in “significant increased lifetime risks of both mental and physical illness.”
My daughter, 27, is the eldest of three, always the most sensible, responsible among them, quiet and very good in studies.
She went to university to become a teacher.
My nephew introduced her to his work friend. After dating for a year, they got married last year.
Six months ago we received an overdue notice from her credit-card company. She made an excuse and I paid it.
Her husband saw another overdue notice. She said that she bought stuff for the wedding (which my wife and I had paid for).
Whenever we or her husband confronted her, she made excuses, until she confessed that she didn’t get the full-time job last fall and was a supply teacher.
Recently, her husband found another loan letter. She again gave a lame excuse. Whenever she suspected that he’s onto her, she complained that he’s rude to her or misbehaved.
Now, having complained to my wife that he told her to leave, she came home.
My nephew did some digging and discovered that she’s not registered as a teacher. When confronted with proof of this, she confessed that she never graduated from university.
We asked where she went during the two years when she claimed she had a teaching job. No clear answer.
My greater concern is how she’s so easily lived her life as a lie, as if there’s nothing wrong.
The possibilities are endless, some of them frightening. What’s clear is that your daughter needs serious help for problems she’s afraid to reveal.
Was it gambling, drugs, another person’s influence, that caused her to hide the facts of her daily whereabouts and dealings?
Could the years of her growing up considered the “most sensible, responsible, best student” in the family, have created pressure for her to lie when she couldn’t reach those expectations?
Insist that she see a psychotherapist who’ll probe the deep-seated reasons for all this.
For now, show her compassion and safety living within the family. But stay firm on insisting on getting to the truth, for her sake.
Reader’s Commentary Regarding sex in older years:
“After 45 years of a sexless marriage, I divorced last year at 70. We’d maybe had sex 50 times, and nothing for the last 15 years.
“My ex told me to get a mistress if I wanted sex but she was very willing to spend my money (I was successful at work).
“I never cheated and just put up with her. When I turned 65 I retired and my income was not as high, but we were comfortable. All she did was complain.
“Finally she said for the 10th time that she wanted to separate and I had enough.
“I spent a year alone, then met a wonderful woman with a sex drive like mine. I’m happier than I’ve been in 30 years.
“Warning to others: Separating is very, very costly. But although it cost me $500,000 dollars, it was worth every penny.
Not Frustrated at 70
Tip of the day:
Pursue all legal avenues to see your children while also communicating in any way possible.