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How do I tell my husband that I don't want us to have custody of his daughter?

Posted by on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:12 PM
  • 158 Replies

Looking for advice. My husband and I have been married for only 16 months. We were friends for several years prior to getting married. My 12 year old daughter and his 10 year old daughter were best friends back then and are now step-sisters. I also have a 5 year old son from my previous marriage and we now a new baby boy together. I have joint custody with my ex who lives in another state. My two kids live with us during the school year and visit him via airplane on school breaks and summer vacation unless he is working or has military obligations. My ex is very easy going and since we both make good money neither of us pays the other child support, we just care for the kids when they are with us and take turns paying for plane tickets. My husband has an entirely different relationship with his ex. They have joint custody, she has primary residential and he has scheduled visitation. Last year (the week we got married) his ex called in false physical/emotional abuse claims against my husband. When the Department of Child Services investigated they found the claims to be “unfounded.” A week later she hid his daughter from him during visitation and made a second false claim of sexual abuse, only this time she manipulated his daughter into lying. After a forensic interview they thankfully ruled that the 10 year old was being coached by her mother and no actual charges were ever brought against my husband. During this time his ex threatened him and told him that he would never she his daughter again. Because of all this we hired a new attorney and filed for a change in custody. At the time I just wanted to support my new husband who was scared of losing his kid forever and afraid of people actually believing the horrible false allegations that his ex was spreading around town. Now, as our court date draws near, I am the one who is afraid. I’m afraid we may actually win and I don’t want custody. Before we were married I had a pretty good relationship with his daughter, however I find it very difficult to trust her since she lied about her father abusing her and continues to defend her mother on any and every topic. She keeps telling my husband that she wants to come live with us but is too “scared” to tell her mom that she feels that way. My instincts tell me that she is lying to him to try to make him happy but that she really has no intention of leaving her mother to come live with us if given a choice. There she is a spoiled only child with no responsibilities, while here all of the kids are expected to do chores and be respectful. Her mother has made it no secret that she hates me since I first started dating my husband two years ago and she continues to tell lies about us to his daughter. Another reason that I don’t want custody is that it would force us to remain living here for 8 more years until she is an adult. My husband knows that the only reason I moved here was to get my degree, and now that I am done I want to move back home (other side of country) close to my family and my kid’s dad. He promised me that we would as soon as we could afford to, but then the custody stuff happened and now he still acts like we are only going to be here for “ another year or so” but I know better, because if we have primary custody her mother and the courts would never allow us to move back home and take her that far away from her “poor” mother (who does not work and lives off the state and child support, and my husband has to pay her house payment unless she remarries). My kids adore my husband. They have a good relationship with their biological dad too, but they respect their step-dad and enjoy our blended family life. Of course they also want to live closer to their dad and their grandparents, cousins, etc. My husband has very few ties to the area other than his daughter, both of his parents live in other states too. I know that if it was not for her being here we would have moved over a year ago. I love him very much and he and I have a good relationship with open communication , he is a very level-headed and understanding person, but I’m scared to let him know how I feel about this one thing. I wouldn’t want him to make me chose between him and my kids, so I can’t ask him to choose to the rest of the family over his daughter. I start crying every time I even think of being forced to live here for eight more years, but what can I possibly do?

by on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:12 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by Ruby Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:16 PM

Custody won't change on what your SD wants, so don't worry about that.

by Platinum Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:18 PM
37 moms liked this

All I read was about you.  What about your husband?  Your children are safe and happy but his isn't.  

by on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:20 PM
4 moms liked this

you  married a man with kids this is something  you should have seen comming

by on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:21 PM
6 moms liked this

If he was willing to move across the country and leave his daughter then i  hope moms keeps custody.he sounds like a real peach 

by Ruby Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:24 PM
7 moms liked this
What if your husband doesn't win custody but doesn't want to move away from where his child is living?
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by Ruby Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:25 PM
1 mom liked this

Would he still move if he lost the change of custody in court?

by Bronze Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:29 PM
6 moms liked this

Forgive me for this, but do you want to subconsciously get rid of your SD? You mention that you want to move away, how is that going to affect SD's relationship with her dad, whether or not he has custody? I'm asking for your honest sentiment, no judgment. My ex's gf is trying to talk him into moving across the country next year. Let me tell you, I'll be damned if I let DD go with them. Not because I don't want her  in their care (my eh husband is a great father), but because I don't want this move to affect her life (she is in a gifted classroom, about to hit puberty, etc., I'm sure you know what I mean). I feel like DD should not be uprooted because her dad's girlfriend wants to move. It was her choice to live with a man who has a child. If he chooses to move I'll allow visitations, but I will not let him move her away. 

by on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:31 PM
31 moms liked this

"our" court date and if "we" win. but "i" don't want custody.

you don't really get a choice in the matter here. this is his daughter we're talking about.

you're being overly dramatic. if you're not willing to sacrifice 8 years so your husband can be near his daughter, i realllllyyyy think you should reconsider being married.

by Gold Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:32 PM
3 moms liked this

What makes you think your husband will leave his daughter even if she stays with her mother. Especially if her mother is waging a campaign to push him away?

I think you may have to face the fact that your husband made a promise he simply can't keep, to leave his daughter.

Your choice, what can you possibly do? Leave with your kids to your hometown if you want to go back so badly. I think you already know asking him to leave his child behind...well, there are no words...and it's a good sign for him as a father it seems he isn't following through on the promise he made to you, every child deserves their parents if they are good, loving parents.

by Ruby Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:37 PM
4 moms liked this

Talk to your husband, one of you will have to make a sacrifice in this since you also have a baby together. Is there anything that would make staying workable for you?

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