IMHO is In my humble opinion. “No Contact Order” is a restraining order.
I understand the difficulties of this situation but unless you get sole physical and legal custody, take away his visitations there is nothing you can do. I am not sure if there is a way to keep them in the state other than that. If you keep them in the state then it will restrict his visitations. You can file for primary legal custody but you will have to show the courts why you are the parent that should make all finacial, medical, religious and eduction decisions for the children. Essentially, cutting him out of any part of these decisions and it’s not absolute that you will win that. NC is joint legal custody by default.
You said that he is a good father (when he is here). Does that mean that you believe he is not a good father in the other state where he resides? There would be no cause for him to change. If he’s a good father, he’s a good father regardless. It sounds to me that what you are trying to do is to keep your children away from the other woman and her children and legally, you have no say in this. There is nothing you can do. If you are having behavioral problems with your children, get them in to talk to someone. It is likely stemming from the situation of separation and divorce all together, not because there is someone new in their father’s life. Children adapt to situations a lot easier than we give them credit for. You should be very careful about how you talk about their father or his girlfriend. They can pick up on negativity easily. What happens if he marries this woman? What happens when you meet someone? They are going through this situation with you. They are angry and confused and scared. You and their father together is all they have known and they will watch how you both act to see how they should handle this situation.
My husband and I met a few months into his reasonably amicable separation…his ex went crazy. She went after him finacially, turned around the whole situation. It was no longer that she left him for another man and live the single life, that she just wasn’t happy with him any more. Now, since he had started dating the story was that he kicked her out so he could move me in to her house to raise her children. She trashed the house…took him back to court for the remaining items that she didn’t take when she left…keyed my car, stalked me, threatened me, cursed me and generally made me afraid to go anywhere alone and even a little nervous to be with him. Attacked me at the youngest child’s Christmas program at school…He has two children and she swore that I’d never be part of their lives…the cussings were in front of the children as were most of the threats. They knew that she hated me…and I have to this day to EVER even speak to her. Everything I said ended up getting turned around on me so I never talked about her to the children at all much less talked badly about her. She doesn’t know the first thing about me or my life. She told the children all sorts of things that weren’t true to make sure they wouldn’t like me…we still aren’t as close as I would like and I believe it is because of what happened in the beginning. The youngest was in therapy for anxiety attacks at age 7, the oldest was figuring out new ways to manipulate the situation so he wouldn’t have to do his homework, or wouldn’t be in trouble about something he did. It started out that he wanted them back together so he thought that if he got them in the same room things would be ok…after a while he figured out that if he got them in the same room, they started arguing and then the F he made on homework grade or test was no longer the issue. It got so bad at one point that I thought of getting a “No Contact Order” against her…but didn’t because of the children. In the end, the boys took care of it for us. They both yelled at their mother for talking about me. They told her that they loved me and that I loved them and that I was NOT a bad person like she said I was. They told her they never wanted to hear her talk about me again…while that didn’t completely stop it, she still swears to this day that she’ll catch me alone one day, it did put a stop to it where the children are concerned.
Most parents do not like to believe that their children are manipulating them because they want to believe they are smarter than to let them…but sometimes we are too wrapped up in our own emotions to pay attention to the big picture. Divorce hurts and it’s ugly and there’s no way to make it easier except to pick your battles, learn the laws and deal with what you CAN control. Focus on your children and yourself. Make sure that they get the attention and even discipline they need. Your STBX does not matter to YOUR life any longer. You can still provide your children with a stable environment and you should continue to do just that. But you have no control over your stbx or his life any longer. If he is active in his children’s live then you should not stand in the way of that. You should encourage it. Regardless of whether that involves new people in his life. Find a support group for yourself too…find a good friend to vent to. Take care of yourself and your children. He is their father and if he’s a good father, then trust that he will not do anything to jeopardize his children. It would be a good idea to sit down and talk to him. Make sure he knows what’s going on with the children when they are with you…ask him to include you if something major goes on with them while they are with him…
Encourage them to talk to both of you about their feelings. Keep in mind that over the next couple of years, you and he will both do things that irritate or even piss the other one off but that ultimately, you are going to be raising your children together though separately so you will need to work together at some point, even if you don’t share physical custody…make things easier on yourself and the children and let this part of it go…
As I said, this is all just my opinion and probably should have been posted on the “Emotional Issues” forum.[;)] I do hope the best for you and your family and please keep us posted.