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2 Bumps

Right of first refusal and a step mom. (mostly just a vent)

I have a 5 year old dd. When me and her father went to court, we agreed for both of us to have right of first refusal. For those who don't know that just means that if she is with me and I have to go somewhere or do something without her, I have to call her dad and see if he can take her before I ask anyone else, and of course it goes both ways. Me and my husband can complied with this 100%, he never watches her alone unless I ask my ex and he is unavailable. Well I have recently found out that my ex's new wife has been watching my dd most of the time she is over there. He picks her up Sat morning at about 9 am and apparently is only there until about 4. Then he goes to work and isn't home till the morning and sleeps all day until it is time to bring her home. So according to our order, My dd should come home to me at 4 on Sat instead of Sunday. I called my ex about it and he said "why shouldn't she spend time with her SM?" I said "because our order says she is to be with a parent whenever possible" Why should his wife of 3 months be allowed to watch my dd without asking me first buy my husband of 4 years can't? I guess the part that pisses me off is that me and my husband have gone out of our way to comply with the order and my ex doesn't even care.

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 12:00 PM on Feb. 10, 2011 in Parenting Debate

Answers (25)
  • Well, that is the order and that is what should be upheld.  What can you do to make sure that he holds up to his end?  Can you take him back to court because he isn't complying with the order at all?


    Answer by MrsHouston47302 at 12:03 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • Yes, if i take him back to court, he will be found in contempt, as he should be.

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 12:08 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • that is unfair. a deal's a deal.

    Answer by gwen20 at 12:08 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • So your child should not build relationships with her step parents? That is what I am getting from this. She doesn't stay with your husband and you don't want her to stay with her step mom. How is she supposed to feel comfortable in either house if she is only welcome when her parent is available for her?

    Answer by SleepingBeautee at 12:08 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • You should be thankful that her father and his new wife want her there, even if he isn't home, how wonderful for your DD to have another adult in her life that cares for her. You aren't saying she is treated bad or neglected - just that the evil stepmother is with her instead of you. I sense a lot of bitterness in your post about him being remarried, that's what this is really about. FYI; there have been many precedents set in the family court regarding this - the stepmother can actually considered as a "parent" in ROFR clauses. You should talk to an attorney before you make a big stink out of this, you are splitting hairs and could be seen as trying to PAS (Parental Alienation Syndrome) your DD.

    Answer by Scuba at 12:10 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • It sounds like the order needs to be changed to include BOTH of your SO's

    Answer by lovinangels at 12:10 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • File for contempt of court. If he isnt allowing your husband to have her while you are at work or out then whats good for the goose is good for the gander in this case. I would document everything then go on down to the court house and file for contempt of court against your ex. Odds are he will settle with you before ever going to court and you wont have this problem ever again. I have had to do things like this before, and believe me no one likes going to court but they wont take you or the order seriously if you dont do it.

    Answer by gemgem at 12:12 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • I would take him back to court for non-compliance and I would also think about changing the order so step-parents are included as 'approved caregivers'

    Answer by MizLee at 12:14 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • It isnt PAS if she only has a problem with the SM. Geez, and anyway the courts have determined PAS is nothing but JUNK SCIENCE.

    PAS is touted to be an accepted psychological “syndrome” when, in fact, it has no scientific foundation and has been routinely rejected by courts and mental health professionals as admissible in the courtroom. Nonetheless, PAS is still being used by unscrupulous attorneys and hired gun “experts” to attack the credibility of, parents, usually mothers, and undermine the testimony of little children who have accused their fathers of unspeakable acts of abuse.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:15 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

  • For those of you who say I am just being bitter, well in a way you are right but it is not cause my ex is married, for the past few years, every time I wanted or needed to go out without my dd, I had to first call my ex to see if he could care for her, then if he could, I had to drive 20 min out of my way to drop her off and then again to pick her up, even with my husband was sitting right there, but NOW he gets to ignore the order. I did these things because that was the order. Here is the kicker, he was the one who wanted to put in the order that the right of first refusal doesn't include step parents (of course then, I was married, he wasn't). The way I see it, the order is the order, and he can't just ignore it when it doesn't work for him.

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 12:17 PM on Feb. 10, 2011

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