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Putting the kids best interest first

Posted by on May. 16, 2017 at 2:20 PM
  • 23 Replies

The backstory:

Mom and dad have been divorced 4 years, dad gets the 3 boys every weekend, and usually goes to their house once during the week (either to take them out and visit, or help with sport transportation, etc.). He attends every school event, sporting event, and all in all is an active parent in their life. BM started dating a man in another state, 5 hours away, who also happens to be her cousins ex (so yes, her cousin, but not by blood), who has his own two kids, almost 2 years ago now. BM was a stay-at-home mom prior the divorce and has struggled to continually justify working full time ever since. Wtih their mom, the boys have lived in a 2bdrm condo where all 3 boys shared one room. We recently bought a house so that when the boys are here, they all have their own room and space. 

Current Issue:

BM has decided she wants to move to the other state, 5 hours away, to live with her bf (who mind you has never come up to attend any kids events, or help out there in any way). Obviously she wants all three boys to move with her. She does not have a job lined up, she does not know where they are living yet until she sells her condo here, and her primary argument for moving is that she feels she has no help here and wants the support of living with a spouse again, as well as health benefits to moving away from a city (something about "the ionized air off the ocean..."). 

We want what's best for the kids, and what the kids want. 2 of the boys are adament about going. We are saddened by their pre-scripted reasoning but don't want to argue with their wish. The third has stated on multiple occasions that he has no intentions on moving and will gladly live with us full time. We are ok with this. BM though, is concerned about how good our schools are where we live, although in comparison she's moving to a small town with a high school population of 200, so I'm not sure where they'd be going will have much better of a school. She also wants to see her boys grow up - understandable, although so would their dad...

Question:

Do we fight for the third kid to have a right to live with us, or do we suggest that he at least try it out down there, and put it in an updated parenting plan that if he wishes to come back he can?

The whole situation kills me because it's a no-win all around. We just want to do what's best, but is taking one away from their mom and brothers the best route? But if we force him to go will he forever feel like we've abandoned him? Advice and thoughts are welcome. 


by on May. 16, 2017 at 2:20 PM
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Replies (1-10):
codysara
by Platinum Member on May. 16, 2017 at 2:28 PM
2 moms liked this
How old are the boys?

I do not think splitting up siblings is ever a good idea. The population of the school being small may be a huge benefit to the boys education. The teachers are not overwhelmed and have time for one on one if help is needed.
Will dad continue to have weekend visits? If so, figure out transportation, I would suggest each drive halfway or bm a little more since she is the one relocating.
swede88
by Member on May. 16, 2017 at 2:46 PM

Boys are 9, 11, 14. 

It's the middle boy that wants to stay here, partly because he's the quieter one and gets pushed around by his brothers a lot. I think the idea of his own space is appealing, especially since they'll be gaining two more siblings when they move. I definitely understand the concern over separating them though.

As for the driving every weekend, I just think 10 hours of driving every weekend would be exhausting on everyone. She's proposing once a month, 3-day weekends since it looks like the school they'd be in has at least one Friday/month off almost every month. 

oranguglad
by Silver Member on May. 16, 2017 at 3:48 PM
4 moms liked this

What does the court order say? Is bm allowed to move the boys without dad's permission? If not (which is typically the case), she is welcome to move, but dh can veto her moving the boys.

9 and 11 they really should have little to no say, the 14 yo maybe a bit, but really kids do not know what is best for them. 

If the court order does not say bm cannot move them, then dh cans till try to fight to keep as much visitation as possible. 

Idk how I feel about splitting up siblings. As long as they get time with both parents and with their siblings, it could be better for some kids, not for others.

CampHarris
by Gold Member on May. 16, 2017 at 4:44 PM
1 mom liked this

Yes, this.  I thought most court orders required permission by the other parent to move past a certain distance.  I know both mine and DHs does.  

This is definitely a situation that would require updating the court order anyway.  She should be held responsible for all transportation (my ex is as he decided to move five hours away) and it would be wise to spell out an updated visitation schedule regardless.  Like dad gets all summer, longer breaks, etc.  

I don't know about separating the siblings, either.  I was separated from my brother as a kid, and while it had it's perks for each of us, we both hated it.

Quoting oranguglad:

What does the court order say? Is bm allowed to move the boys without dad's permission? If not (which is typically the case), she is welcome to move, but dh can veto her moving the boys.

9 and 11 they really should have little to no say, the 14 yo maybe a bit, but really kids do not know what is best for them. 

If the court order does not say bm cannot move them, then dh cans till try to fight to keep as much visitation as possible. 

Idk how I feel about splitting up siblings. As long as they get time with both parents and with their siblings, it could be better for some kids, not for others.


Oliviasmom72
by Bronze Member on May. 16, 2017 at 5:22 PM
2 moms liked this

I wouldnt let the boys move. It is not in their best interest. Dad should file for custody. I dont think they should be split up either.

DezarooMama
by on May. 16, 2017 at 5:26 PM
Sounds to me like it would turn out to be 20 hours for the kids. That's too much.

Quoting swede88:

Boys are 9, 11, 14. 

It's the middle boy that wants to stay here, partly because he's the quieter one and gets pushed around by his brothers a lot. I think the idea of his own space is appealing, especially since they'll be gaining two more siblings when they move. I definitely understand the concern over separating them though.

As for the driving every weekend, I just think 10 hours of driving every weekend would be exhausting on everyone. She's proposing once a month, 3-day weekends since it looks like the school they'd be in has at least one Friday/month off almost every month. 

Boobear110
by Audra on May. 16, 2017 at 7:43 PM
5 moms liked this

The kids don't have a clue what is best for and the choice should not be theirs. Yes ask them what they feel but the bottom line is it's DH /BM decision. If it was me I'd file to keep all 3 boys and let BM move if she chooses. 

CampHarris
by Gold Member on May. 17, 2017 at 1:14 PM

I'd be realistic about that too.  My ex is SUPPOSED to take the kids once a month (he moved five hours away) and he did that for about two months after CS was set (conveniently) and then stopped because it was "too much."  

He sees them twice a year now.

Quoting DezarooMama: Sounds to me like it would turn out to be 20 hours for the kids. That's too much.
Quoting swede88:

Boys are 9, 11, 14. 

It's the middle boy that wants to stay here, partly because he's the quieter one and gets pushed around by his brothers a lot. I think the idea of his own space is appealing, especially since they'll be gaining two more siblings when they move. I definitely understand the concern over separating them though.

As for the driving every weekend, I just think 10 hours of driving every weekend would be exhausting on everyone. She's proposing once a month, 3-day weekends since it looks like the school they'd be in has at least one Friday/month off almost every month. 


Verrine
by Bronze Member on May. 17, 2017 at 4:27 PM
1 mom liked this

Since Dad is very involved, if he wants to, he should file for primary custody for all 3 boys. There is nothing that says that mom is always the best parent for the child or that it's always best for siblings to stay together. Court is a pain, but you'll have to deal with it anyway because mom wants to move and there is no way that dad will be as involved. 

I don't see what's so bad about one child staying with you if that's what he and you want. Their lives will separate eventually. His life will be very different from his brothers. You can put into whatever court document you get that you will reconsider it later. No, he doesn't get to choose what he wants but he does get to express his preference. In my state, the kids get a guardian ad litem (GAL) which is a lawyer who talks with the kid and the parents and advocates for the child. 

Straight up, the kids' best interest would have been their bioparents working out their differences and staying married. That didn't happen. Ok, let's move on. They are used to their father being a very active part of their lives and if they move they will not have that. They are used to their mother being a very active part of their lives and if they stay they will not have that. 

There is no right answer. Sorry. 

Quoting Boobear110:

The kids don't have a clue what is best for and the choice should not be theirs. Yes ask them what they feel but the bottom line is it's DH /BM decision. If it was me I'd file to keep all 3 boys and let BM move if she chooses. 

luckyinlife
by on May. 17, 2017 at 5:52 PM
3 moms liked this
It sounds like the BPs need to sit down and discuss all of this. I am curious to know why BF isn't objecting to the move if he is so involved in their lives.
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