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Ex telling the kids they're moving away from me
#1
We recently completed our divorce after 2 and a half years of utter crap and the decree absolute was issued a couple of weeks ago.

The marital home is sold and both myself and the ex have bought new properties, with a bit of luck the completion date is a matter of weeks away now. The properties we've bought are approx 25 mins apart.

Access to quality time with the kids hasn't been an issue for the majority of the time the divorce has been ongoing, however I've been stuck in a HMO bedsit the last 18 months so unable to have them overnight. This is changing back to how it was once I have my own place again so back to having the kids for the full weekend every 2nd weekend.

After picking up the kids this Saturday for a day out, they said that the ex has started talking about moving them away in a couple of years regardless of wether they want to move or not as she wants to move in with her boyfriend. He refuses to move any closer so she's going to move to where he is.

This wouldn't be an issue except that it then takes the kids well over an hours drive away from me. The kids are 15, 12 and 9. Don't I get some say in this at all? I specifically picked a property that kept me well within a 30 minute drive of the kids as I didn't want to move any further away, which makes access easier. None of the kids want to move. If anything they've all indicated they'd much rather live with me (although the ex has already told me she won't allow that as she needs the maintenance from me)

Can she just move at the drop of a hat and not discuss it with me? Seems a little unfair if she can do this?
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#2
time she even considers moving at least 2 of your children can make their own minds up and decide where they want to live. She may not even move and if she has just bought a house it will be unlikely anytime soon
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#3
(11-02-2020, 12:46 PM)warwickshire1 Wrote: time she even considers moving at least 2 of your children can make their own minds up and decide where they want to live. She may not even move and if she has just bought a house it will be unlikely anytime soon

This was pretty much my thoughts too, but she's trying to push my eldest into applying for apprenticships in the area her boyfriend lives. I've told him he should make up his own mind, but that should he decide to do it where I live then he'd be more than welcome to come and live with me. I've told ALL of them that they're welcome to live with me but that the ex has to agree to it. I've had enough arguments to last a lifetime in the last 2 and a half years. I don't really want to carry on arguing if we can deal with it amicably. She has previously told me she won't allow the kids to be split up living in different households, which I understand, but she's also told me that she needs my maintenance money to afford the house she's just bought, and therefor she can't allow the kids to live with me.
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#4
Technically over an hour away would work with every other week end. You say contracts are about to be exchanged and she suddenly says this. Being a cynic after some of the stunts I’ve seen I am wondering if she is hoping you’ll pull out of your house purchase when you hear this news - to prevent overnight stays starting up again. For the last 18 months she has had then sleeping at hers every night.

Yes she can just move - it happens a lot. The Dad then has to file a prohibited steps application to try and get the kids to stay with him - because the courts won’t stop the ex moving - all they can do is stop the kids moving (in which case the ex might think twice about moving). But that is unlikely when they are with her most of the time.

I’m guessing there are no court orders for Child Arrangements and this is an informal agreed arrangement.

It’s a very difficult situation if the eldest is being encouraged to apply for apprenticeships elsewhere

You’ve had some warning so some time to think. When is the house due to complete? Regardless of that - she is also buying a house - either of you could rent them out later and the relationship with the bf may or may not last the next two years.

The kids must be feeling stressed in the middle of this.
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#5
(11-02-2020, 01:13 PM)Charlie7000 Wrote: Technically over an hour away would work with every other week end.  You say contracts are about to be exchanged and she suddenly says this.  Being a cynic after some of the stunts I’ve seen I am wondering if she is hoping you’ll pull out of your house purchase when you hear this news - to prevent overnight stays starting up again.  For the last 18 months she has had then sleeping at hers every night.

Yes she can just move - it happens a lot.  The Dad then has to file a prohibited steps application to try and get the kids to stay with him - because the courts won’t stop the ex moving - all they can do is stop the kids moving (in which case the ex might think twice about moving).  But that is unlikely when they are with her most of the time.

I’m guessing there are no court orders for Child Arrangements and this is an informal agreed arrangement.

It’s a very difficult situation if the eldest is being encouraged to apply for apprenticeships elsewhere

You’ve had some warning so some time to think.  When is the house due to complete?  Regardless of that - she is also buying a house - either of you could rent them out later and the relationship with the bf may or may not last the next two years.

The kids must be feeling stressed in the middle of this.

There's a consent order in place that states I'll have the kids every 2nd weekend but it doesn't go into much more detail than that.

It's very stressful for the kids, none of them want to live with her as she doesn't do anything with them other than force them to do whatever her boyfriend wants. i.e Go to the horse races or sit in the pub watching football. They do very little that's actually orientated towards what the kids actually want to do, whereas I make sure we always do something they want to do and I give them the choice everytime I see them. I suppose that makes me the 'good cop' to her 'bad cop' if you look at it in black and white.

I think my best course of action may be to ask her to sit down and have a conversation with her about it. For a start she should be involving me in further education discussions with my eldest.

The house sale is due to complete in just over 2 weeks time. I'm not pulling out of my purchase now, I've spent too long not having the kids over the weekend and I can't face that again. I want my kids back for full weekends every 2nd weekend.

The kids have made it clear they don't want to leave. Eldest is in his final GCSE year so there's zero chance of them moving while that's happening so it won't be happening for at least another year. Youngest two don't want to move either as they've got friends and family around the area they live in now. I don't think that counts for anything though. Can't see anything happening for a couple of years anyway as she's taken out a 2 year mortgage to start with.

I didn't think she could change their schools etc without my consent?
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#6
(11-02-2020, 12:55 PM)Gra76 Wrote:
(11-02-2020, 12:46 PM)warwickshire1 Wrote: time she even considers moving at least 2 of your children can make their own minds up and decide where they want to live. She may not even move and if she has just bought a house it will be unlikely anytime soon

This was pretty much my thoughts too, but she's trying to push my eldest into applying for apprenticships in the area her boyfriend lives. I've told him he should make up his own mind, but that should he decide to do it where I live then he'd be more than welcome to come and live with me. I've told ALL of them that they're welcome to live with me but that the ex has to agree to it. I've had enough arguments to last a lifetime in the last 2 and a half years. I don't really want to carry on arguing if we can deal with it amicably. She has previously told me she won't allow the kids to be split up living in different households, which I understand, but she's also told me that she needs my maintenance money to afford the house she's just bought, and therefor she can't allow the kids to live with me.

So its all about her then.  one of your kids is 15 so it should be up to him if he lives with you rather than if his mum agrees. Unfortunately you are looking at a situation where if kids do want to live with you it will be the 2 oldest one but not the youngest due to age gap. I would feel rather agitated if it was all about maintenance and that maintenance funding a house potentially hours away from you in future. your ex needs a reality check dont you think?
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#7
(11-02-2020, 02:09 PM)warwickshire1 Wrote:
(11-02-2020, 12:55 PM)Gra76 Wrote:
(11-02-2020, 12:46 PM)warwickshire1 Wrote: time she even considers moving at least 2 of your children can make their own minds up and decide where they want to live. She may not even move and if she has just bought a house it will be unlikely anytime soon

This was pretty much my thoughts too, but she's trying to push my eldest into applying for apprenticships in the area her boyfriend lives. I've told him he should make up his own mind, but that should he decide to do it where I live then he'd be more than welcome to come and live with me. I've told ALL of them that they're welcome to live with me but that the ex has to agree to it. I've had enough arguments to last a lifetime in the last 2 and a half years. I don't really want to carry on arguing if we can deal with it amicably. She has previously told me she won't allow the kids to be split up living in different households, which I understand, but she's also told me that she needs my maintenance money to afford the house she's just bought, and therefor she can't allow the kids to live with me.

So its all about her then.  one of your kids is 15 so it should be up to him if he lives with you rather than if his mum agrees. Unfortunately you are looking at a situation where if kids do want to live with you it will be the 2 oldest one but not the youngest due to age gap. I would feel rather agitated if it was all about maintenance and that maintenance funding a house potentially hours away from you in future. your ex needs a reality check dont you think?

Sadly the entire process has been about her from the start. I left because I wasn't happy and she has made sure she has made my life as difficult as possible ever since.

I'm going to have to sit and discuss with her exactly what we're going to do. I bought a 4 bedroom house to make sure they all had a bedroom each when they came to stay, I'm happy for the kids to live with her until she decides she's leaving to go and live elsewhere. When she does that I'll hopefully have agreed with my eldest that he's going for an apprenticeship nearby me so he can come and live with me. My middle one can carry on his studies at a local school to me and live with me full time as well. Youngest will have to stay with her mum for now I suspect.

Agitated doesn't begin to describe how annoyed I feel about what she uses the maintenance for. Generally it's to fund her lifestyle. Very little goes on the kids, who she sends to me looking like tramps while she goes out and spends money on betting at the horse races. I've mentioned it before and she said she could spend it on whatever she wanted to. Frustrating woman!
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#8
When the eldest is 16 you don’t need ex’s agreement - he can decide for himself. She is planning to move to a nice place. I’ll edit out the name of it in case it makes you identifiable.

Good that you’re sure about the house going ahead and the kids will like it. I should ignore ex for now - I think she is reacting to the idea of them having overnights with you again and trying to disrupt it. She will be feeling insecure about your new house and the kids staying with you. One thing I’d also say is it is very common for the kids to say different things to each parent - they sense the disagreement and just want to keep everyone onside. Do you have an order for every other weekend - so the kids have to come every other week end. Even if they did live an hour away. If it came to that you could apply for variation for extra time in holidays with you and ex sharing the travel cut pickups and drop offs. Eg you pick them up on the Friday - she comes to collect them on the Sunday. Barge distance would limit weekends to Sunday nights though .

So it wouldn’t be the end of the world and is mor going to happen for a while . Ex is trying to disrupt the present via this apprenticeship. How about saying you want him to stay at school until he’s 18. A court would probably back that. That also takes the immediate pressure off re apprenticeships.
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