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Advice - moving abroad
#1
Hello people, I don't know if this is allowed and it might be slightly unusual, but I'm enquiring for my boyfriend as it does have a big impact on my life, especially at the moment - but we will get to that.

To give you an overview - the boyfriend and I met in June 2014 and while he and his ex wife had had separate bedrooms for several years, they were still living together. They have a son together, who was born in 2008. They had been married for 12 years when this happened and he has parental responsibility and everything.
I did not realise that apparently they had not really broken up though and he was a bit sneaky about it, but the ex found out early September (2014) and essentially kicked him out. He moved in with me straight away as he had nowhere else to go and not the means to find a flat for himself. That is when it all started.

He has a history of depression and anxiety from his teenage years on and after she kicked him out, she did not allow him to see their son for 3-4 months in total and he was not allowed to call either. During that time, he started self medicating with alcohol (totally did not help). It just hit him really bad, as he had worked from home and was the main carer of son for 6 years.We tried to get him into counselling, but the services were really bad and nothing really happened. Eventually she allowed him to see their son again, but only once a week for one afternoon, plus two phone calls a week of 10 minutes.

His depression and self medication got really bad though so we thought that a change of scenery may help to get some distance and to be able to work on him. So we moved to Germany in May 2015 where my parents live. He still went back to see his son whenever money would allow it, probably every 4-8 weeks, depending on what she was allowing and what weekends worked out. But again, when he did go over, he was only allowed to see him one day. Fast forward to this year - we moved back to England in October 2016 and the boyfriend went back to university to get a degree and start getting his life back together, sort out his debt from his marrriage etc. He has also finally stopped drinking and is going to therapy as well, provided by the university.

He is now only allowed to see his son once a month and call once a week. She does not tell him anything about how the son is doing at school, she made the kid change school and did not tell my partner until a week before that was happening, she told the school to not give out any information to him or allow him to pick him up from school, he is not allowed to know the schedule of the football club the kid plays in, so can't even go and watch his games, she does not disclose any health issues or anything. She has also forbidden him to contact her through any means other than once a week for his phone call.
Apparently she will let my boyfriend know in March when she reviews his behaviour with their son, if he will be allowed to see him more than once a month.

And I do get it. She feels cheated on and betrayed and hurt and wants him to suffer. She made the divorce a nightmare - it took from November 2014 to January 2016 to find an agreement. She is refusing to go to mediation and claims that the mediator has told her that she would be better off not agreeing to mediation. He has countless texts from her but she is smart enough to meet up in person to not have any evidence when it comes to setting down rules for visiting and not contacting her and so on. She has also already told him that should he decide to go to court to get visiting rights, she will make up a lot of stuff about his mental health and his depression and his drinking and that he is unstable and not fit for parenting, so that he will not get any visiting rights at all and he should be grateful he is allowed to see him once a month.

In the interest of total honesty, also some negative observations about him, as I know that she will be using all this:
In the summer of 2014, while we were already dating, but he was still living in their house, he went back one night very drunk, they had a fight, he threw a sock at her as he was packing a bag, she called the police. He started an argument with the police how much of a liar she was and that it was all bullshit (excuse the language), so they took him in over night. He had paid his child maintenance while he was still employed until December 2015 (we moved to Germany earlier, but he was signed off sick due to his depression). After that in Germany he was unemployed, so did not pay any child maintenance. Now he is back in full time education and still waiting for his student loan to come in from student finance England, so again, not paying at the moment.
While all of this has been going on and her being horrible and hurt, without my agreement, as I knew it would come back and work against him, he has tried different approaches over the time - mainly claiming several times to have broken up with me, to move into his own flat in the city where they live, to go back to Ireland to his family ... Nothing of which ever happened, but of course she is using this to verify her claim of him being unstable.

Also, as he is Irish, she has forbidden him to tell his son that he is half Irish, he is not allowed to mention his family, his family are not allowed to contact the kid in any way and of course I am not to mention. Any mentioning of any of this and he will not be allowed to see his kid anymore.

My boyfriend merely takes it all, whatever she throws at him - from what I have heard there has been a lot of abuse going on in their marriage, in regards to her mentally and physically abusing him by throwing knifes and full jam jars at his head and so on. I know he is not easy to live with and it has taken me these past 2.5 years to help him to realise what is wrong and seek help and stop drinking and go to therapy ... But it has been quite some journey. He desperately wants more contact with his child though but is very afraid that if he does anything to force her to, as in go to court or similar, he will not be allowed to see his kid at all and he doesn't think he could cope with that.

So apart from me trying to help him with this of course I do have a reason to email as well - mainly that I do not feel comfortable in England and would rather move to Ireland (he has ruled out Germany completely). He is afraid though that should he now transfer his Uni to Ireland and move there, she will forbid him to see his son at all. As in that would be the final thing for her to cut all ties.

The boyfriend is rather inactive out of fear that she will cut him off completely and does not want to upset her. Unfortunately this is impacting my life big time, so I am trying to get some information to help him out and hopefully get some advise that he has rights and will get a contact order and be allowed to see his child?

Any advice be great not only in regards to moving abroad again, but also what his chances are in court and what he would need to do if we were to stay in England. If him going abroad again would massively impact his visitation rights or to take him for half the school holidays etc, I would of course get accustomed to staying in England for as long as necessary to make sure he can see his son grow up.

Otherwise ideally he would come over from Ireland to England at least once a month, if possible twice, to see his son at the weekends, plus phone calls and skype a couple of times a week. Of course it would also be great to get him to stay with us in Ireland for a couple of weeks during school holidays, but not sure if that is realistic? We would of course cover all costs of this.

Thanks so much for reading and any advice you may have and sorry for the length of the post - was just trying to explain it the best I could!
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#2
(01-03-2017, 03:38 PM)sunandsea Wrote: Hello people, I don't know if this is allowed and it might be slightly unusual, but I'm enquiring for my boyfriend as it does have a big impact on my life, especially at the moment - but we will get to that.

To give you an overview - the boyfriend and I met in June 2014 and while he and his ex wife had had separate bedrooms for several years, they were still living together. They have a son together, who was born in 2008. They had been married for 12 years when this happened and he has parental responsibility and everything.
I did not realise that apparently they had not really broken up though and he was a bit sneaky about it, but the ex found out early September (2014) and essentially kicked him out. He moved in with me straight away as he had nowhere else to go and not the means to find a flat for himself. That is when it all started.

He has a history of depression and anxiety from his teenage years on and after she kicked him out, she did not allow him to see their son for 3-4 months in total and he was not allowed to call either. During that time, he started self medicating with alcohol (totally did not help). It just hit him really bad, as he had worked from home and was the main carer of son for 6 years.We tried to get him into counselling, but the services were really bad and nothing really happened. Eventually she allowed him to see their son again, but only once a week for one afternoon, plus two phone calls a week of 10 minutes.

His depression and self medication got really bad though so we thought that a change of scenery may help to get some distance and to be able to work on him. So we moved to Germany in May 2015 where my parents live. He still went back to see his son whenever money would allow it, probably every 4-8 weeks, depending on what she was allowing and what weekends worked out. But again, when he did go over, he was only allowed to see him one day. Fast forward to this year - we moved back to England in October 2016 and the boyfriend went back to university to get a degree and start getting his life back together, sort out his debt from his marrriage etc. He has also finally stopped drinking and is going to therapy as well, provided by the university.

He is now only allowed to see his son once a month and call once a week. She does not tell him anything about how the son is doing at school, she made the kid change school and did not tell my partner until a week before that was happening, she told the school to not give out any information to him or allow him to pick him up from school, he is not allowed to know the schedule of the football club the kid plays in, so can't even go and watch his games, she does not disclose any health issues or anything. She has also forbidden him to contact her through any means other than once a week for his phone call.
Apparently she will let my boyfriend know in March when she reviews his behaviour with their son, if he will be allowed to see him more than once a month.

And I do get it. She feels cheated on and betrayed and hurt and wants him to suffer. She made the divorce a nightmare - it took from November 2014 to January 2016 to find an agreement. She is refusing to go to mediation and claims that the mediator has told her that she would be better off not agreeing to mediation. He has countless texts from her but she is smart enough to meet up in person to not have any evidence when it comes to setting down rules for visiting and not contacting her and so on. She has also already told him that should he decide to go to court to get visiting rights, she will make up a lot of stuff about his mental health and his depression and his drinking and that he is unstable and not fit for parenting, so that he will not get any visiting rights at all and he should be grateful he is allowed to see him once a month.

In the interest of total honesty, also some negative observations about him, as I know that she will be using all this:
In the summer of 2014, while we were already dating, but he was still living in their house, he went back one night very drunk, they had a fight, he threw a sock at her as he was packing a bag, she called the police. He started an argument with the police how much of a liar she was and that it was all bullshit (excuse the language), so they took him in over night. He had paid his child maintenance while he was still employed until December 2015 (we moved to Germany earlier, but he was signed off sick due to his depression). After that in Germany he was unemployed, so did not pay any child maintenance. Now he is back in full time education and still waiting for his student loan to come in from student finance England, so again, not paying at the moment.
While all of this has been going on and her being horrible and hurt, without my agreement, as I knew it would come back and work against him, he has tried different approaches over the time - mainly claiming several times to have broken up with me, to move into his own flat in the city where they live, to go back to Ireland to his family ... Nothing of which ever happened, but of course she is using this to verify her claim of him being unstable.

Also, as he is Irish, she has forbidden him to tell his son that he is half Irish, he is not allowed to mention his family, his family are not allowed to contact the kid in any way and of course I am not to mention. Any mentioning of any of this and he will not be allowed to see his kid anymore.

My boyfriend merely takes it all, whatever she throws at him - from what I have heard there has been a lot of abuse going on in their marriage, in regards to her mentally and physically abusing him by throwing knifes and full jam jars at his head and so on. I know he is not easy to live with and it has taken me these past 2.5 years to help him to realise what is wrong and seek help and stop drinking and go to therapy ... But it has been quite some journey. He desperately wants more contact with his child though but is very afraid that if he does anything to force her to, as in go to court or similar, he will not be allowed to see his kid at all and he doesn't think he could cope with that.

So apart from me trying to help him with this of course I do have a reason to email as well - mainly that I do not feel comfortable in England and would rather move to Ireland (he has ruled out Germany completely). He is afraid though that should he now transfer his Uni to Ireland and move there, she will forbid him to see his son at all. As in that would be the final thing for her to cut all ties.

The boyfriend is rather inactive out of fear that she will cut him off completely and does not want to upset her. Unfortunately this is impacting my life big time, so I am trying to get some information to help him out and hopefully get some advise that he has rights and will get a contact order and be allowed to see his child?

Any advice be great not only in regards to moving abroad again, but also what his chances are in court and what he would need to do if we were to stay in England. If him going abroad again would massively impact his visitation rights or to take him for half the school holidays etc, I would of course get accustomed to staying in England for as long as necessary to make sure he can see his son grow up.

Otherwise ideally he would come over from Ireland to England at least once a month, if possible twice, to see his son at the weekends, plus phone calls and skype a couple of times a week. Of course it would also be great to get him to stay with us in Ireland for a couple of weeks during school holidays, but not sure if that is realistic? We would of course cover all costs of this.

Thanks so much for reading and any advice you may have and sorry for the length of the post - was just trying to explain it the best I could!

I am not seeing any reason why his ex should be able to stop him having contact, as long as his medication is not making him a risk to a child.

What I am not seeing is the age of the child as from 10 in most parts of the UK, the Child's Wishes and Desires will come into this.

The Court will as well as taking into account the above, want to make an order giving both parents quality time. This is why the starting point is along the lines of Friday till Sunday every 2 weeks, and up to half school holidays.

As part of a court process, he would have to do a position statement, setting out what he wants. This might be just school holiday contact, if you do move abroad.

Unless a court order says otherwise, the child has a right to know he/she is half Irish. This might become even more important once Brit exit details are known, but as things stand now, as an example if they are good at any sport, they need to know they are entitled to represent either country.
Posts made by me are my opinion and any factual information should be checked out. If you do not have a Solicitor, often your local CAB can get you some initial advice.
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#3
Thank you for your reply!

His son is 8 now, will turn 9 in August this year, so just a year short now.

The boyfriend is not on any medication, thankfully with the right therapist and some lifestyle changes, he now manages quite well.

Just worried what she will make up in court to prevent him from getting any visitation rights. Thanks a lot though!
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#4
(01-03-2017, 09:26 PM)sunandsea Wrote: Thank you for your reply!

His son is 8 now, will turn 9 in August this year, so just a year short now.

The boyfriend is not on any medication, thankfully with the right therapist and some lifestyle changes, he now manages quite well.

Just worried what she will make up in court to prevent him from getting any visitation rights. Thanks a lot though!

What happens at the First Hearing, is both will get Ordered to do Position Statements, normally you have 2 or 3 weeks.

Once you get hers, at the next hearing, if there is anything in it you do not agree with, you need to ask to Judge to set it down for "Finding of Fact".

Either she proves it with evidence, or the Court can not consider it.

I forgot to say, indirect contact can also be part of the Order, for example Skype, Telephone, Email etc.
Posts made by me are my opinion and any factual information should be checked out. If you do not have a Solicitor, often your local CAB can get you some initial advice.
Reply
#5
(01-03-2017, 03:38 PM)sunandsea Wrote: Hello people, I don't know if this is allowed and it might be slightly unusual, but I'm enquiring for my boyfriend as it does have a big impact on my life, especially at the moment - but we will get to that......................................

I just wanted to add what a wonderful person you are to support your boyfriend in his time of need. it is heartening to see such kindness and selflessness. It is quite ironic that I am diagnosed with depression and have spent most of my life focused too much on alcohol. My dependence was from a lifetime of socialising for work and taking customers out for dinner. It was never a factor in the marriage but certainly was not a help either.
I too left work when divorced and went back to university to change careers, mine was so i could get a job back in the UK so i could see my kids.
It is hard to give definitive advice, but I would suggest your boyfriend needs to look towards his current relationship with you rather than appeasing his ex. he is at the whim of her on visitation and Ireland is hardly the other side of the world. Snatched hours here and there is very unsatisfying, if he can agree less often but more time visitations he will cherish these times far more. When i used to take my kids for a pizza for a couple of hours it was nothing like having them for the whole weekend.
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