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contact with kids, MIAM on 20.12 please help me
Me a my ex have 2 kids (6y,7y old), I have moved out in April. We have agreed that I will see kids every Tuesday and Thursday after work, until 9 pm, and every other weekend from Saturday morning until Sunday 9 pm. Than she wanted to change times until 8 pm but we have agreed to 8.30
Other than that she used to give them to me pretty much when I wanted them and they were not doing nothing with her.
I used to pay her just over £100/week but than my job changed and child maintenance payments changed, she got pissed off and told me that I will see kids only on the agreed days, she has applied for child maintenance payments to be calculated by CMS, which is fine.
Christmas is coming so few weeks ago I have approached her to agree how we will split the time over Christmas, they are over with me on Christmas Eve as it is weekend and than back with her, initially we agreed that I would drop them off after breakfast on Christmas day. Than she wanted New Years Eve without kids (it is her weekend) she asked me if I could take them, I said yes I would if you also give them to me on Christmas day (It would be quite difficult day for me as it would be first Christmas separeted and we got married that day, also she have new boyfriend so it much easier for her and thats why she wants New years Eve without kids) she has agreed to that. 
My kids specially my sons was asking me few time if they could have a sleepover during the week, so I asked her if we could to that on Tuesdays and see how does it work, as I live about 10-15 minutes walk from her we have agreed that I would drop them off to her in the morning before work. We wanted to see if kids would manage to get up about 6 am so I can take them to her.
And I wanted to take them to Kew Gardens to see Christmas lights, we have agreed that she will give them to me on 1.01.2018 so i can spend some time with them, I have booked the tickets for that day.
All of the sudden following day she is telling me that she will have to change all what we have agreed as it does't suit her no more. She is not giving me kids for Christmas day no more, I have to bring them back Christmas Eve and because it is that day I can have them until 10 pm, Tuesdays cancelled, she would think about 1.01.2018
I take my daughter for swimming course it used to be on Sundays but than my ex did't wanna agree for more (changed her mind few times) and told me last minute that I can book new course so it is on Mondays now and that what I would like to keep.
There was few more small changes during our separation so I got pissed off and decided to go for mediation, as I can't be telling kids one thing one day and than next time I see them tell them different think as she keeps changing her mind.
She is using the kids against me, thanks God she does let me see them.

Anyway mediations would start on 20.12 as thats when my MIAM is, could you please tell me what I can ask for so I get it?
I think I would ask for:
- Mondays swimming lessons for my daughter (it takes about 1,5 hours)
- Tuesday both kids from after work until following day morning (only if it would work out fine for kids, if they would struggle with getting up in the morning that I would love to have them until 9 pm)
- Wednesday my son does't go nowhere after school so would like to find him something that he would be interested in, maybe football or karate and take him there so he can learn and do something else
- Thursday - both kids from after work until following day morning (only if it would work out fine for kids, if they would struggle with getting up in the morning that I would love to have them until 9 pm)
- Every other weekend kids from Friday after my daughter Beavers meetings until Sunday 8 pm
- Summer holidays at least 2 weeks so I can take them somewhere
- Easter - Sunday with whoever have them over the weekend and than Monday with the other parent
- Christmas Eve and Christmas day keep changing every other year, this year they with me on Christmas Eve so next year with her, and next year Christmas day with me
- I would like her to keep telling me about the shows that kids make at school, as this year Christmas show was last week and I only found out from my daughter, so had to go and ask my ex when and where it is
- half terms not sure how to go about that as it would mean for me taking quite a lot of time off work and she does sit at home anyway so it does't really matter to her
- I would like to get her to sign to that she won't keep changing her mind every day as this is driving me mad, it is not something that grown up do
- no religious thinks done behind my back, as she wants to send them to Holly communion because we are so called "Catholics" but does't take them to Church at all, they don't know how to pray, etc.  and I told her when we have been together that we won't do it as it is pointless.

What do you think guys, have I missed on something?
Do I have stand a chance to get all that?
Little bit about my situation as I'm sure it does make difference what I do:
- moved as close to kids as I could, about 10-15 minutes walk
- renting 1bed only so kids can have more room and privacy
- I work full time

If anyone can help me with that do so please as it is very important to me to have them as much as I can.
Not sure if I should mention that but anytime I ask them what did they do with mum they say "watching tv" as she has been in the kitchen working (she does work from home). I don't wanna get kids in trouble as she would know who told me that.
Thank you
Hi there. Are you going to get signed off at the MIAM to apply to court, or try and start mediation with her? You will probably end up needing to go to court as it sounds like she doesn't want to keep to an agreement.

As to what to ask for. The usual thing is every other week-end and a midweek overnight, plus half the school holidays. But you could ask for something similar. My only comment would be that 8pm or 9pm is quite late for 6 and 7 year olds to be going back to their Mum's. Son went to bed at 7.30pm at that age. They have to get up in the morning for school anyway, so keeping them overnight and return to school next morning would be the usual thing. Schools have breakfast clubs and after school clubs so working parents can pick them up and drop them off at different times.

Only issue I could see with overnights, is - did you say you have a 1 bedroom place? They would need a bedroom ideally. I've had a pattern for a long time where my midweek night is alternate Mondays and Thursdays. So son is with me every 3 or 4 days, with the every other week-end as well. Would something like that work for you?

So I would suggest return times are 6pm at week-ends and overnight rather than 8pm or 9pm at other times, returning to Mother's or school next day.

There are various patterns, it depends what would work for you, when knowing what to ask for. If you asked for an order to say the children live with both parents 50/50 then it could be one week on, one week off, all year round. Live with doesn't have to be 50/50 - it could be 10 nights a fortnight with one parent and 4 nights with the other (ie every other w/e and a midweek night).

I would ask for more than 2 weeks holiday a year. You don't have to be going away on holiday to have them stay with you during school holidays. Say 3 weeks in the summer, a week at Christmas and a week at Easter, if you don't want half term weeks, and then ask for the every other week-end to be all year round except for those weeks.

The view I've come to is - if there is to be flexibility and changes it has to be by agreement and work both ways,rather than the ex just changing and cancelling things. So a defined order is a start that she has to keep to, and then you can opt to be flexible - eg if she wanted a holiday one half term and part of it was your week-end, so you could offer to lether have that week-end and have extra midweek time that week or something.

I don't think a court would be interested in what they do at their Mum's unless is was something illegal or dangerous.

Are you in the middle of filling out a court application?
Charlie, thanks for your response.
to be honest I would like to sort it out between ourselves, but unfortunately it does't work as I think she have to many people around that getting involved in this. at least at mediations she will have to make her own decisions, so I'm hoping we will agree on something. If not I would go to court as she thinks she owns them and unless I give her as much as she wont she can do whatever she like.
when we used to live together they did go to bed about 10 pm, now she told me that she has changed it to 9 pm, God only know why.
Breakfast club is an option but ideally would be if I could drop them to her so they can fill like they really have parents that care about them, but thats something we will have to work out together.
yes, I rent 1 bed, if I need to I could rent bigger place, but to be honest for man living alone and having kids for few night this is enough, I know where you are coming from.
I would love to have them 50/50 but not sure if they would give me that much?
should I ask for it and than work out the pattern with her?
Well that what I wanted to ask for, weekends all year round and only exceptions would be her holiday and my holiday.
I'm quite flexible, she used to be, I don't mind swaping weekends if needed, we have done that in the past, but now she is playing silly games.
I have't seen the court forms yet as I hope mediation would help and than we could go to lawyers and sign all whats agreed and it would be bidding is that right?
Have you been to mediation, how does this looks like, and does the mediator get involved in it, I mean like advising that what parent more likely is to get in court or they just sitting there and listening to what people have to say to each other?
Had my MIAM today, nothing really special. Now will wait to see If my ex would book her session with mediator. Fingers crossie that we can go there and talk like grownups do and agree something.
Hey man - regarding the school plays etc .... I was in the same boat . Didn’t know what was happening. I inturn contacted the school . I had to have a meeting to prove who I was !!! In the end I have been added to the schools texting service and email about upcoming dates etc....
You sound like a great Dad ! Chin up man
(12-24-2017, 12:19 AM)Froggy Wrote: Hey man - regarding the school plays etc .... I was in the same boat . Didn’t know what was happening. I inturn contacted the school . I had to have a meeting to prove who I was !!! In the end I have been added to the schools texting service and email about upcoming dates etc....
You sound like a great Dad ! Chin up man

Hi Froggy
I have been in school lately for Christmas show and I Did Ask lady at reception to send me all informations about kids, If there is Any problems etc.
I'm doing anything I can do be as Good as I can Smile
Hope she will Turn up for mediation and I will take it from there.
Does anyone know If she can move When and Where she wish within the country?
I know she can't move Abroad, but England is quite big country, is there anyway to stop that If anything?
Yes you can apply for a Prohibited Steps order. The court would look at whether she has a good reason to move further away (eg a job) or if they consider it a move to prevent contact. If she did have a good reason though, they wouldn't stop her moving. If you get a sniff of her intending to move, apply for a Prohibited Steps order.
Thanks for that Smile
Well my daughter mentioned something once and my mate done So lately, Not really sure What to think about that. What If I don't find out until is Too late? She does work locally but she Maybe able to send everything by post as this can be done at home What she does.
To be honest I can't see No other reason than preventing contact or moving because of cheaper rent somewhere else. Would that be Good reason?
If I apply for it Just in case What Are the chances it would be granted?
Its nothing personal, Its only because I wanna be a dad to them, Not part time one, would like to be there as much as will be allowed and on the other hand I can't trust her, she has done divorce petition behind my back on the grounds of my behaviour (I don't mind getting divorce but she is stretching it out even that she has a boyfriend about 2 months after separation and I was told by solicitors it would be seen by Court as cheating, but I left it like that as it is't worth my time).

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