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Hi - any advice from those who may have experienced this.

Brief history -  young son split from girlfriend shortly after birth of their son due to her controlling and abusive behaviour, he had contact, agreed between themselves and we as grandparents were allowed 30 mins once a week during his time. This was stopped by her when child was almost 9 weeks old, for no reason other than she could and we haven't seen GS since. My son was still allowed to come round to her house but wasn't even allowed to take baby a walk in the pram or change a nappy, eventually contact involved our son sitting in a darkened room in silence watching while she nursed the baby. At the beginning of February he said on his last visit, when she wouldn't let him hold the baby, there was no point in him sitting there and he would just go home. She then text accusing him of raising his voice and shouting in front of the baby and she wanted an assurance it would not happen again before his next visit. He text back to say they both know that didn't happen and informed his solicitor that he could not take the risk in going back to her home on his own as he was leaving himself open to further false allegations. He has since changed solicitors and he now has a court order granting access in a contact centre for an hour a week beginning next month with a second session beginning end of next month. First time he will see his son in 5 months. Part of the conditions agreed was that she could stay in the room for the first 3 weeks to reassure herself my son was capable and that she is on hand should my son need assistance and the baby need fed. As she very nicely pointed out our son after all is an unknown caregiver!!!

This child is now nearly 10 months old! We have suggested that she could express some milk into a cup so as not to interrupt the short time our son can see the baby but we have been told she cannot express milk - she was able to some months ago as she had to, so don't know what has changed apart from that would mean she is not in control.

Our solicitor commented in his 15 years of dealing with this he had never known so many road blocks put up to get contact in a contact centre. I just know that this is just the beginning of a very long and difficult road and I know that the child is young and we should be grateful my son has contact of sorts but this is soul destroying!

If this is what she is like over an hour in a contact centre what will she be like when we try to get contact in the community which we intend to do as soon as possible?

I did the TripleP online parenting course - it headed off a few allegations - but not all of them.
The opinions here are not that of Separated Dads, but merely a loving father who has been through the process and has come out the other side.
Hi invisibleintellectual

Thanks - my son completed the Parenting course for separated Dads - 6 week course provided by Parenting NI. He is also going to counselling in helping him cope with the aftermath of being is a relationship with a narcissistic person.

Is the Triple P course not more in dealing with the child rather than an ex?
Your son has done well to stick it all out and not give up. Time and patience. It will build up gradually via the courts. He should get 2 or 3 hours a week until the child is 2. Unless the mother agrees to overnights before then. The court won't order overnights until after the age of 2 due to it being possible to breastfeed until then. I think he needs to bend over backwards to be indispensible - if possible - even from a distance. Offer to help in any way she needs (but not on his own) - buy the odd thing for the baby. Does the Mother have family support? If so she would probably reject any help. So then it's time and patience. It can help to do parenting courses. And be able to say you know all the ins and outs of sterilising bottles etc. Because once they are weaned it's a piece of cake to change a nappy and feed with a spoon! My son got mince, potatoes and veg every sunday as a toddler because that's all I could cook but hey he liked it and it's healthy. He still likes it!

If he goes on a parenting course he can send her the details to show what he's up on now and it will look good with the courts. Surestart do various courses I think - I'm sure it's not just for Mums!

There's some info here - Fatherhood institute - lists a few

Also check out the local higher education college. If it was me I'd go for the top lol and do an NVQ in childcare that qualifies me as a nursery worker ha ha. No-one could complain about that.

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