13 Comments Family & de facto law, financial agreements, consent orders
It would probably go into an affidavit showing the extent to which either party has or has not tried to cooperate. That in its own is unlikely to change the outcome of any access.
If there is agreement a call can take place then times would need to be arranged. If no agreement not much you can do but document. If agreement but excuses you can only reshedule and document.
To the extent you can focus on the court hearing and realistic outcome you want from orders (interim I assume).
mate I'd focus on your behaviour. Simply continue to make the calls or try to make the calls. This shows that despite her circumventing your attempts to speak to your child you have persisted.
The magistrate will work out for himself the reason why the contact has not been happening and will not be impressed. The law states children have a right to have a meaningful relationship with both parents. Your ex is depriving your child of his rights.
You may think that, but I would like to see some proof before you put it before a court, If it was me I'd be putting the efforts into the retrieval order.
Making a big thing about not being able to have a Skype call to a baby could well be seen as harassment, and counter to the prime retrieval order.
MartinO 2014-02-09 10:01:09
I think with the age of the child age of the child the advice from Daisy and Martin is worth thinking about. Especially, given the ex is going to play the victim card, after all she has already.
Don't make a big deal of it.
Have you suggested visiting the baby at a friends place in the state where she is now living? Even if you meet in public with a friend as a neutral witness? The witness is to protect you from further allegations. I would suggest you consider this, even if the ex is likely to refuse, or worse still agree then change her mind once you have travelled. WHY? It demonstrates your desire to see the child AND if you get to see the child then GREAT but if you don't it helps paint the picture of the ex being the difficult one.
Just a thought...
Hi DF... I think you have received the best advice thus far, ie, persist in your efforts to establish some communication, but tread carefully... communications should be about arranging times & places only, not about the argument you had last week for example..
If she does give you a time to contact, via Skype or whatever, do your very best to keep it, even if the time is not convenient for you. Otherwise she may try to argue that you have not taken the opportunity when it's offered...
S60CC (3C) (ii) (iii)
(c) the extent to which each of the child's parents has taken, or failed to take, the opportunity:
(i) to participate in making decisions about major long-term issues in relation to the child; and
(ii) to spend time with the child; and
(iii) to communicate with the child;
End of the day, unless there is a good deal of actual evidence that you are a danger to the child, then the court will find that establishing & maintaining a meaningful relationship with you (the Father) is overwhelmingly in the childs best interests...
Frustrating as hell that you should have to go this route, but be patient & mindful of how you tread, & you will get there..
can I offer you my opinion as someone who is on the "flip" side of the coin.
Others have mentioned that she is citing FV, sorry to say, but any form of videoing will be meaning that ex will most likely be forced to have some sort of contact with you & I can see how that will only aid her claims to FV.
I've 2 children (toddler & baby) who have family overseas & I have been skyping them since before we got home from hospital. TBH, for a baby of 9 mths this is a waste of time. I know you say its imperative "bonding" but what the child needs is contact. Look at the developmental stages of the child. I know about 9 mths is when they start to realize that "mum" exists when they are not there. Before that, they thought they were mum for a long time.
I was diligent & made sure that I "read" our favourite story book to the children. This was pictures of dad & his family when dad wasn't part of our life. I played video clips etc so that he could hear the voice. Honestly, Dad was no more than a character in another story.
Dad's reentered after almost 12 months absence. It has been a long and hard battle & even now, I don't think my toddler really has a bond beyond a character on a TV show with the father.
There is the view of no screen time for under 2's (and this includes devices) on top of that.
Eamon's advise is wise. Be mindful of how the MOTHER feels threatened (regardless of any truth), put in plans to alleviate this and stick to the plans. Document, document, document. Be specific with your plans, but also provide options [ie, I will can met you at X on, X date or X date. I can bring Y with me to supervise to make you more comfortable, or will agree to whoever you choose.] - preempt if/and/buts. Find out about the child's usual sleep pattern.
I do hope you find some clarity in the situation, Maybe look at Relationship Australia for their contact centre services.....you may find it not necessary, but hey, you are willing to do whatever it takes to see your child.
It's nice to hear advice from the other side so thank you.
Fortunately I have done everything you've stated including not pushing the matter re video call.
I received a text 2 days ago confirming that Skype was available to her and we scheduled a skype call yesterday which was successful and went very well.
I've just read your post on "prohibiting relationship with child" and that's good common sense advice you have given . I experience a similar problem although not to the extent that this poor guy has. It must be incredibly difficult for him. It is, frustrating and upsetting when you know the other parent is deliberating sabotaging your relationship with your child and you can do nothing about it and hopefully as you said the courts will see that. I just try and focus on improving my relationship with my children when I do have them.