Visitation schedule

I’m not sure if the courts would force you to work with your ex…
Could you not meet him 1/2 way for both drop off and pick ups? I understand that gas prices are up but how are you affording anything if you are not currently working? Are you getting child support? Alimony? Could you not put aside $20-30 out of child support to help pay for gas for this twice a month?
Is your ex home permanently or is there a chance that he will be deployed again?
You suggesting that he stay in NC for the weekend to visit his children would mean more than just the gas money to get here…it would also mean hotel room and food for two days unless he has family here.
As I said this is just my opinion, but think of it this way; he could just refuse to bring the children home on Sunday forcing you to come pick them up…

Yes I am getting child support, but at the same token, he has family here, he is from NC. He has also on many occasions thrown it up in my face that he has all the money, he is rich and he can do whatever and pretty much buy anything. I don’t have a reliable enough vehicle to do. It gets me around here, besides my child support does not cover all that I need, my boyfriend and parents help me when needed, but that is not the issue. The issue with him is not the money, As he told me, he just doesn’t want to spend the time with the kids driving because they get on his nerves. This was never an issue before he left for deployment. He was happy and willing to drive back and forth.

By the way, I would have to spend more than 20-30 dollars in gas to drive to VA. With Child Support and the help from my parents and boyfriend I am just getting by until I finish school and get a good job. He always throws it up in my face how much money he has and how he can afford anything, so why cna’t he continue like he was and spend the money. He has stated that it is not the money, it is just out of his way and he doesn’t want to be stuck on the road with three children like that.

I would suggest that since he is not hurting for money, recommend that you will either pick them up in Va or meet halfway on dropoff and pickup if, he pays your gas expenses. Otherwise, he will end up spending a whole lot more on legal cost trying to get what he wants.

[i]Originally posted by lookingforanswers[/i] [br]By the way, I would have to spend more than 20-30 dollars in gas to drive to VA. With Child Support and the help from my parents and boyfriend I am just getting by until I finish school and get a good job. He always throws it up in my face how much money he has and how he can afford anything, so why cna't he continue like he was and spend the money. He has stated that it is not the money, it is just out of his way and he doesn't want to be stuck on the road with three children like that.

I’m not in any way trying to down play what your situation is like. I only mean to suggest that you work with him on some points. As would the courts and an attorney…
Child support is not supposed to cover everything that you need. It’s the other parents portion of what the state determines is the amount needed to raise a child. This means that along with that the custodial parent also has to contribute to the care and maintenance of the child(ren).
You have primary custody, you are paid child support, you have your children with you all but those 4 nights a month. It’s not about you or your ex. It’s about them. It sounds to me like his bragging about having “all the money” has gotten to you…what do you care? If you are going to make it about the money then from the sound of it he will win. Maybe it bothers him just a little that you have a boyfriend who is/would be around his children more than him…Maybe he really doesn’t like his kids or want to see them as you suggest and is just trying to make your life more difficult.
The reason that I was suggesting to work with him is that there’s not a lot else you can do. Maybe an attorney will answer this but I believe that unless you have something specific in your court papers about pick up and drop offs the courts expect you to work together to make visitations happen…
EDIT: Here’s a suggestion since you said your car is not reliable. Have your boyfriend drive you to pick the kids up…(?) Or if your ex really insists that it isn’t about the money ask him to fill your car up once you get there…(?)

I do not care about him having more money than me, He always throws it in my face about having more money than me. I have asked him to put the gas in my car and he refuses. It should not matter to him about my boyfriend, He just got remarried and has another child on the way. I feel that he just wants to accomodate his new arrangement. It was never an issue before all of this for him to come pick up the children and bring them home, so why now does he want me to come to Va or meet him half way to pick up my children after he wants to visit with them. I don’t mind the visits, it is his right and he should spend time with the children. My situation is that he says it is a BURDEN to come back and forth every other weekend, not because of money, not because it takes away his time with the children, but because he doesn’t want to be on the road with them for that long. He can’t handle the talking and playing that they do. This is my point. He wants to see them, but he does not want to spend that much time on the road with screaming children. I just want to know could I be forced to meet him or go pick up the children even though he could spend time here with them or continue to do like he was doing before his deployment, marriage and new baby. I do respect and value everyone’s opinion’s and suggestions, Just trying to weigh my options.

Anything “could” happen. My husband’s ex wife moved to Virginia a little over a year or so ago. She has since moved back to Raleigh. But since she choose to move that far away it was her responsibility to drop off and pick up the kids. We are their pirmary residence. They have 50/50 custody and it was her responsibility to pick up the kids on Friday and have them to school on Mondays. There was a stink in the beginning where she wanted to get us to pay for her to have a hotel one night a week because he moved in with me (1/2 hour closer to where she lived in Va) There were times my husband met her 1/2 way due to time constraints. Is there a possibility that someone from his family could meet him 1/2 way? This is one of those pick your battles situations. Is there a way you can comprimise? maybe picking them up every other time? Is this a battle you want to make a stand on? Would his relatives allow you to borrow one of their cars because your transportation is unreliable? Give your ex these options. Yes he does have a life that has moved on. And him saying he doesn’t want to be in a car with 3 kids talking is petty, but so is not trying to work with him. Money may or may not be an issue, but if you offer a compromise, you’ll find communications will go smoother fo you, your ex, and most importantly, your kids.

Hmmm…trbotina brings up some excellent suggestions and points. Do you really want to make a big deal out of driving two days a month to bring your children home just because your ex is? Would his relatives that live here help you out at all…maybe even picking them up for you so that they could visit with the children for the drive?
Maybe his attorney is just threatening you with the suit to see if you will compromise…but as I said, unless there is something specific about “exchanges” in your papers, order, or agreement it’s likely that a court will request that you work together on this.

Another thing that I thought of is if he is remarried with a child on the way his new wife’s income could be included into the child support calculations once they have a child. You could run the calculator adding in one other child on his side and what you guess an average salary for her would be and see…quite often this lessens the amount that one parent has to pay due to having another finacial responsibility. Even including the stepparent’s salary seldom increases unless they have an unusually high salary. His next step could be having child support re-calculated…

If you went to court there is a possibility you could be required to share the travel expenses, or the responsiblity for the travel that is to take place. If you are required to share travel expenses, there is a possibility it could be taken into account when determining child support.

Helena M. Nevicosi
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm

4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.787.6361 main fax

Charlotte Office
301 McCullough Drive
Suite 510
Charlotte, NC 28262
Main Phone: (704)307.4600
Main Fax: (704) 9343.0044

Durham & Chapel Hill Office
1829 East Franklin Street
Building 600
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
(919) 321.0780


The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service only, a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action. The information posted on this forum is available for public viewing and is not intended to create an attorney client relationship with any individual. These answers are provided for informational purposes only, a person should consult with their own individual legal counsel before taking any action that could affect their legal rights or obligations.

My ex’s new wife has a really good income, she has her own business, not to mention he has come into his own money. his income minus the child support is about $4,000 and hers is about that or more. And yes he was the one who chose to move to Virginia. I have been the one to compromise on everything and give into him. I have agreed to everything with him, it’s just you get tired of always compromising to fit his needs. What about my kids needs, I know they are too young to have a say, but they don’t always want to go to Virginia, they want him to stay here in NC sometimes, but he won’t compromise there because he lives in Virginia. As far as him having family that maybe can help, don’t think so. That is a whole separate issue.

How far is the actual drive? Going and picking them up once a month would let him feel he has “won” but gives you some reprieve from having full responsibility of bringing them home. I would ask for compensation for fuel costs. If this goes to court, you could be required to meet him 1/2 way to and from visitation. I understand the feeling you give and give and give while the other parent “does what he/she wants”. These are his children. He deserves to know them as they deserve to know their father. Your children may be too young to have a “say”, but they are not too young to see what is going on around them. In 10-15 years when they look back at the situation, do you want them to think that momma did everything she could to make our childhood as good as she could. She gave us the chances to make up our own minds about stuff, or would you want them to think… I love my momma, but I really hated it when she’d fight with daddy over stupid stuff. It’s like she didn’t even want us to see him. It is a juggling act to be sure. But you always have to put the kids first. If you do and your ex doesn’t then that will show up in time. Not today, not tomorrow, maybe never in the ephiffany moment when the child is 18, but when the child is grown and has 100% control of their life… Who will that child CHOOSE to spend holidays with? Who will that child send picture of the grandchildren to? Who will that child thank for being there? I will be that parent for my son. Oh his dad gets to do all the fun stuff like going to Orlando next week, but I get the Mommmmm I need wrestling shoes… Mommmm I need lunch money… Mommmmmm what’s for dinner? This shows me that I am the one he depends on to give hime what he needs. This is what a momma does. I am very proud of the man he is becoming. He (when he doesn’t have wrestling at school) cooks dinner on Mondays because his step sister has cheer practice and I don’t get off work until 5:00. He is writing a play with his step brother about star wars. He and my husband watch WWE. He has adjusted well to this new life. He will be 14 next month. His life was turned upside down when he was 9. He knows his dad is not paying child support and that we have court next month. He also knows that I do not stand between him and his father. I really didn’t mean to post so long, but I just want to share my experience because one day your kids will be at this point in their life. Outlook means so much… If you treat it as positibe the kids will pick up on that… If you grumbe and gripe about driving them home, they will begin by feeling guilty about having to be driven home, then they will resent you because the father will be come the “perfect” parent because he doesn’t have to tell them “no”,“go clean your room” or " you’re grounded… a D in history isn’t acceptable". Then there is also the possibility since he is active military that these same kids won’t be able to see their daddy for extended periods of time when he gets redeployed. I am not saying you should bow to his every whim, but instead of picking them up every time, it would show class and strength to offer to pick them up once a month. The reationship between you and your ex is no longer yours, it is your children’s… you two are just the adults involved.

I am in no way trying to keep my children and their father from each other. I have no problem with them seeing their father and being in his life, the problem I have is that when we first separated he never complained about coming to pick them up nor bring them back home, when he came to pick them up. I have always been the one to rearrange my schedule and compromise with him on everything regarding the children. Why now does he want to change the arrangement we had with regards to picking and dropping off. It was never a problem until now. My oldest is already having a problem with her dad because she realized just how often he was coming home to pick them up before, he always promised to come and then wouldn’t. She feels that he won’t be there anymore because of his “new” family as she puts it. No matter how hard I reassure her he loves her and everything, I never bad mouth her dad to her, but she sees this. They want him to spend time here in NC with them, they don’t always want to go to VA with him, but he always tells them that he’s not going to stay here because he lives in VA and it’s his way or no way. Why can’t he compromise with his children and do what they want for a change. I’ve tried the fuel thing, but he won’t budge, it is always the way he wants and he is not going to change that. As I said before it is always his way or no way. Like I said before, He had no problem with picking them up and dropping them up before, so why now change it.

Your oldest child is beginning to see how her father is. It is sad. Because once they loose that little pece of childhood where their daddy hung the moon, it is gone forever. Unless there is something in the custody that states your ex cannot take them out of the state, you cannot control where he goes with them as long as they aren’t in danger. If he insists on ignoring the kid’s wishes and doesn’t address the “new” family situation, it will come to bite HIM in the rear end. But your oldest should realize too that your ex’s life is now in Va. I assume he works there. The current arraingement may have been workable before he was deployed. I am not saying you are tying to turn your children against their father. I just want to show you that sometimes being the one who bends when it comes to the kids is worth the hassle if it makes life easier for your kids. Something else your oldest may have to learn is she can’t have things her way. Her way would probably be with mommy and daddy together. My husband’s daughter asked why her momma couldn’t live at our house with us. Granted she was about 2yo when they seperated, but in her mind it would have been ideal to have all of us together. Legally you can probably fight the change in arriangement. But there is the chance you will loose. Give him your proposal in writing, including the stipidend for fuel. Send a copy to his lawyer. He can frefuse and take it to court. An expense his lawyer would probably advise him against. Good Luck

No one is suggesting that you haven’t done everything you can to accomodate this situation but the reality is that your ex lives in Virginia not in NC. His children need to be with him at his home. As they would if you were the parent with visitations. If your ex has a new wife and a child on the way, his schedule is going to be chaos for quite a while. I’m not defending any of the reasons that he’s asking for this change but I’m simply asking you to look at this in a different light. He’s trying to merge his two lives. He does not have his children with him except for these few days a month and trying to include them in his “new” life is going to be difficult at best, and impossible at times.

tribotina is right. My stepsons, while I know they love me, would still like their mother and father back together. I remember wanting my parents to get back together when I was a child and I have NO memories of them together. My stepmother and father married when I was 3 and my mother had no contact with me after the age of 12 until I was 19. That still did not prevent me from wanting them together.

I have learned that the situation when children are involved is constantly changing. We work out a schedule and it works for a couple of months and then something comes up and we switch a night here and there…and as they get older I believe that it will only be more change. What works this year may not work next year. Someone’s work schedule changes, after-school programs come up, or any number of things. If he’s still in the military, what happens if he gets stationed somewhere further than Virginia where driving every other weekend for either of you is not an option? Does his family or new wife take his visitations during his deployment?

What I am suggesting is that you compromise on this issue because there may be something down the road that you can’t compromise on. Talk to him and work something out. Ask that he not resort to having the lawyer threaten you because that does nothing but make you hostile towards any suggestions. It does not help with working towards a solution. You should also realize that you are worrying and arguing over something that means little in the grand scheme of things and that though he has resorted to having the lawyer threaten you with suit, you shouldn’t let him push your buttons this way. “Don’t sweat the small stuff” but most importantly, don’t let the ex know if you do [;)]

My ex and I are now officailly divorced for about 4 months now. He just recently got back from a 6 month deployment and wanted to start a visitation schedule with our children, which he never wanted to do while we were separated. He wanted to do every other weekend. He has now seen them for about two weekends now. He lives in Virginia and my kids and I live here in NC. He says that he is tired of driving back and forth every other weekend to pick them up and bring them back home. He wants me to agree to him picking them up on Fri. afternoon and taking them to Virginia and then me coming to Va. on Sunday to pick them up and bring them home. Well I can’t afford to do that because I am not currently working and I am a full time student. I just received a letter from his attorney wanting me to agree to those terms or they are going to file a civil action against me for visitation. I have no problem to the visitaion, Just that as I see it he does not have to take them to Va, he can visit with them here. I have primary physical custody and I am sure that probably does not matter, but: My question is, can I be forced to accomodate him with regards to the picking up the children. Any help will be appreciated from anyone.