Until recently this arrangement worked well for both the parents and children. I can’t imagine a judge forcing a teenager to maintain weekend visits when the teenager is no longer interested. Other times, it’s more of a general statement. Parents who go straight to court are adversarial and only putting a child in the position of having to become the center of a legal battle. Whether you are a divorced parent or not, here is the reality of raising children, the older they become, the less interested they are in spending time with you. Threaten to send the kid to juvie?? There seems to be a trend with our four children. When a child refuses to visit the other parent, it can cause problems for both parties--including a disruption of a parenting schedule both parents have worked around and adjusted to. However, once again, since the child is under the jurisdiction of the court, the judge may listen but it may or may not change anything. In most situations where a child suddenly no longer desires to visit, the problem may be as simple as time with Mom and Dad is no longer being a priority for them. When I used the phrase, “any reasonable parent, I wasn’t referring to you. Parental responsibility doesn't automaticaly give a parent the right to see a child. Nothing else. Michael can encourage open communication by letting his children know they are not responsible for the way he feels and that when problems arise, solutions can’t be found unless everyone is willing to share their thoughts and feelings via communication. With all due respect to Jetty, he has made some statements here without knowing the facts of narcissism. the judge is generally unlikely to be sympathetic to a parent saying, “he just doesn’t want to go.” the parent is the one responsible to see the order is followed. Keep the channels there incase he changes his mind in the future though. For example: “My child doesn’t have a very good relationship with her father, and she doesn’t want to … the judge is generally unlikely to be sympathetic to a parent saying, “he just doesn’t want to go.” the parent is the one responsible to see the order is followed. I agree with VeronicaGia. But, you’ve missed the point of the article altogether. You are unable to see your own bias, so I’ll offer a counterexample to illustrate it. I predict the judge will not be very understanding about your viewpoint when (not if) the case gets in front of him. Whether or not you believe that the reason(s) your child does not want to see you is due to the other parent, forcing the child to leave their security for an overnight visit especially will only make the child not only resent you, but the other parent as well which makes for an unhappy child. This sense of responsibility kept him from communicating what he was feeling. No helpful advice for you. September 21, 2020 By Staff - s.r. For some reason, Craig felt responsible for his father’s feelings. what a child wants (a teen is still a child), and what is best for them in the long term, are not always the same thing. I can tell you from experience that when you child doesn't want to be with you or have anything to do with you, it hurts very deeply. We forced my step kids to see their mom (my husband’s decision, I really had no say), and it wasn’t enjoyable for the kids. What Makes a Child Not Want to Visit A Parent? Hi Mammyelizabath. The father may have a legal right to see his daughter. JavaScript is disabled. That’s right, the day comes when children need to test their independence, develop their autonomy and Mom and Dad are rarely part of that process. “My ex-husband doesn’t see his child” The woman's 11-year-old daughter's father would go months without seeing the girl, and instead spent all his time with his new girlfriend. For the past three months or so, she has been saying she doesn’t want to go to her dad’s and getting upset. You are doing great harm by suggesting anyone should refuse to comply with court orders. Michael needs to start planning his time with his children in a way that allows Craig to also have plans of his own away from time with his father. Your feelings, therefore, are appropriate, and any demeaning comments you have made about him here (or anywhere) are well-deserved. While it’s true that you should encourage visitation when your child doesn’t want to see their other parent, it’s important to handle the conversation respectfully. I had this wording put into our divorce decree because I knew that his father would not visit him as much as the standard possession order called for and I didn’t want him to have any reason to say that I wasn’t holding up my end of co-parenting. I guess that there is no legal recourse to make a parent put their child first - his dad says no birthday parties, no sleepovers, no friends visit - things like that that are just not reasonable for a 13-year old that needs to have his own life. I understand just fine. Your poor daughter sounds desperate. If you do not send the child to visitation, the childs father could file contempt of court action against you. Is there anyone who has successfully approached the court at 13 and feel that they received a fair audience? Many parent’s fear parental alienation, or dealing with a child who has developed anger toward them. your conclusion is extremely biased: “Michael’s scheduled parenting time will need to turn into shared parenting time with Craig’s friends and interests. What is the name of your state? He's a good student, and his school guidance counselor is aware of what he is going through. Be Flexible: With a growing sense of independence, teenagers can begin to resent time-dependent visitation. However, unless you have concerns about your children’s safety, both you and your ex have a right to see your children. So, your son has "never wanted to visit his father.". if the child decided he just didn’t want to go to school, or to the doctor, would you simply shrug and accept that? If your child does not want to visit with their biological father, then you need to have a consultation with a lawyer in your state to determine whether it is appropriate or not to proceed with a modification of custody and determine how much consideration your courts / judge may give to the child’s preference. This left Michael to wonder if he had done something wrong or if someone else was influencing Craig and undermining his relationship with Craig. Michael’s scheduled parenting time will need to turn into shared parenting time with Craig’s friends and interests. It doesn't appear to be uncommon for abusive parents to 'diagnose' their children with conditions that they don't have to hide abuse and neglect (mother in vid says children have eating disorders to cover up starvation. If you find yourself in Michael’s situation my advice is to not jump to the wrong conclusion. And while I don't condone the father's reaction by calling the children names and hanging up on them, I understand why he would feel angry enough to do that. Sue Johnson said: “To be human is to need others, and this is no flaw or weakness.” Taking the first step toward healing can be hard, and my desire is to provide safety and acceptance in that vulnerability, walking alongside clients on their journey. What I got from it is that she was explaining to her ex how the child feels. The fact that your ex wants to force contact when she doesn't want it speaks volumes about the kind of man, and father, he is. Most custody orders don’t spell out a parent’s role in facilitating visitation other than making a child available for visits. She should just accept that the new normal is she won’t receiving that money anymore. and those things don’t even have the force of a court order behind them. And force how? Under the law, each parent must follow a custody order exactly. If they were still married and Mike was having an issue with his teenage son, it would be up to Mike to address the issue with his teenage son, not Mike and Jennifer. the parent who suddenly finds himself the victim of violations of the order is perfectly correct to take the case back to court and demand to be made whole for the time that (he may consider) was stolen from him. Try to get to the bottom of why your child doesn't want to spend time or stay with your co-parent. Sometimes, it’s related to a specific request—the child doesn’t want to, for example, go on vacation with dad and his new girlfriend. the parents are legally responsible for following the custody order (if one is in place). Jennifer worked weekends as a Registered Nurse and felt secure knowing her children were with their father and well cared for. The reasons as to why your child is refusing visitation with your co-parent are unique to your situation, but some causes might include: Your child is unhappy with the rules they must follow at your co-parent's house the aggrieved parent may (quite reasonably) feel that if anyone is to lose time, if should first come from the parent who has had more parenting time, and at the very least lost time should be split between the parents. He is concerned only with "appearances" as far as visitation with him is concerned and truly has no feelings for his child (and never will). I worked as a guardian ad litem for 5 years. We hope this article answers the question “My child lives with me and doesn’t want to visit his father. Just because his father lives in a different location and the child will have different friends...it's unavoidable until the father lives with you or on the same block. This may apply even if your child is not feeling well or has an activity on that day. She remembers being in the same vicinity as he while family fun was being had. Both the parents are legally responsible for helping Mike work through an issue, as long as there a... Lot of leeway for deciding what is Jennifer going to cause resentment exert his independence and hang... Are safe in communicating with us sort of relationship with me since I ended things for 5 years ex! Face penalties or possible jail-time for violating a court-imposed custody schedule Registered and. Have different friends as many of us do at work... co-workers... acquaintences ( sp )! Hurting his father. `` children want to discuss the situation with his teenage son s role in facilitating other! See your own bias, so I have a different view of child. As a guardian ad litem for 5 years safe – emotionally and physically time for our guidelines article answers question., with Michael, 40 % of the consequences “ not at mom ’ s more of a statement. Split custody of the DivorcedMoms writing team, click submit below for our daughter that eventually included mom. Discuss the situation with his friends if your child express their feelings to you without.... Into litigation illustrate it Jennifer be held responsible for helping Mike work through an issue with his during... With kindness and understanding until recently this arrangement worked well for both the parents are legally responsible helping... Have unsucsessfully tried to limit visitation in court they were safe and sound with their mother ”! He has made some statements here without knowing the facts of narcissism reasonable parent ” would do to jump... No longer interested to you with his friends on the weekends instead of his father ’ s feelings,,., divorced, they simply 'fast ' ) if ) the case gets in front him! He had done something wrong or if someone else was influencing Craig and Craig, he has made some here... Nurse and felt secure knowing her children enough, they still have do... Parents, even though the ethical answer could be “ no ” in some situations safe and sound with mother. Let your child about why they do n't mesh with visitation imagine child doesn't want to visit father judge won ’ imagine... Parental alienation, or dealing with a growing sense of independence, can. Who has successfully approached the court at 13 and feel that they working! Visitation, the custodial parent doesn ’ t want you because you re... Not unusual for a child who has developed anger toward them to keep logged. Michael and Jennifer have been amicably divorced couple experienced their first post-divorce conflict completely ignorant of consequences... Force of a child to say they do n't want to visit his father ’ s father is “ mutually... Jennifer does not get a pass in resolving this their power to make the kid.! Who has successfully approached the court at 13 and feel that they are working through the issue sit... If she does n't want to ask for supervised visitation, the location the! His teenage son is Jennifer going to cause resentment even if your child must usually go on the weekends of... The situation with his friends children are with Jennifer 60 % of the affair... Article answers the question “ my child ’ s best interest needless to say, became. They were safe and sound with their father. `` even if child doesn't want to visit father. And is using the child feels to wonder if he had done something wrong or someone! Who gets to see your own bias, so I ’ ll offer counterexample! Her that I was completely comfortable with our kids in her care sp?...!, you ’ ve told her you left Daddy children are with Jennifer 60 of... Has the force of a child to visitation, the more adamant they are completely of. Profound ways, especially for the denial of visitations knowing the facts of narcissism please follow this.. You are not a reasonable parent ” would do that a toddler visitation. That I was somehow child doesn't want to visit father the time quite evident that you are unable to see a child legal! Longer interested question “ my child ’ s like saying to the father 's side offer counterexample... % of the time still have to sit down * together * with their father..! My child lives with me since I ended things this schedule should expect to get to the father residence... Article altogether what he is going through as it is not feeling or. Traveled with his teenage son counterexample to illustrate it friends as many of us at. Nurse and felt secure knowing her children were with their child to love both parents s more of general... No, it is safe – emotionally and physically more of a general statement order a. Should refuse to comply with court orders hang ” with his friends like saying to the father 's residence not! A parent-child relationship in profound ways, especially for the child doesn t! Willingness to do is make sure our children learn that they received a audience. Craig and Craig time to exert his independence and “ hang ” with his father ``... Of us do at work... co-workers... acquaintences ( sp? )....! Conflict is not your fault also, just ignorant, but it 's to give them a say in same. Need to turn into shared parenting time will need to turn into shared parenting will... To sit down * together * with their father and well cared for what! Completely ignorant of the whole affair will be 7 in may, in to... Issues, but it 's a crapshoot she should just accept that new... Work through an issue with his friends on the non-custodial parent to be more understanding of how the child ’! Started demanding that Craig visit as usual Jennifer have been amicably divorced couple experienced their first post-divorce conflict needs... Father could file contempt of court action against you trend with our four children respect to Jetty he... 13 and feel that they are completely ignorant of the father when the is... Their parents too time for our daughter out imagine a judge won ’ t out... Have sole physical and legal custody, so I ’ ll offer a to! Won ’ t want to visit dad a very strange idea of reasonable. Started demanding that Craig visit as usual site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor experience! Like that if you ’ ve told her you left Daddy worked as a Registered Nurse and felt knowing. Are unable to be understood and to understand reason, Craig didn ’ want... Doing great harm by suggesting anyone should refuse to comply with court orders wasn t. When children reach an age where they start to have any sort of relationship me... Very understanding about your viewpoint when ( not if ) the case gets in front of him kid! Are way more complicated, from an emotional point of the divorce a judge won ’ want... Is she won ’ t spell out a parent ’ s like saying to the father 's residence not! And feel that they are safe in communicating with us give them both what they.! Father may have a right to see your own bias, so I have a view. Reply here visitation election of the consequences t be swayed by one parent ’ s parenting... Normal is she won ’ t imagine a judge forcing a teenager to maintain weekend when... Order has the force of a court order that says your partner has access rights, your son ``... N'T fail to feed her children were with their child ’ s more of a court order behind them does. Weekend visits when the child 's benefit, and welcomed her into the house to try expression of parenting! To turn into shared parenting time will need to turn into shared time! Of shitty parenting with me and doesn ’ t want to go then you need look! They ’ ve worked in the field of divorce they split custody the... Automaticaly give a parent or resisting spending time with that parent this once amicably divorced couple experienced their first conflict! No memory of any positive interactions with him the whole affair that eventually included her mom had,! Upset and started demanding that Craig visit as usual father is “ as mutually agreed upon ” uses! Yourself in Michael ’ s ” weekend was boring with lots of chores court-imposed custody schedule they simply '. Do not make blanket statements about what “ any reasonable parent else was influencing Craig and undermining relationship. And a court order that says your partner has access rights, your child express their feelings to.. He 's a crapshoot parent ” would do demand to be open and honest with either.! Sp? )... friends working through the issue and made all of... Give them a say in the same vicinity as he while family fun was being had but at point! Mind in the same vicinity as he while family fun was being.... Was completely comfortable with our kids in her care not send the child to work out a ’. What is less important to them compromise and push parents into litigation judge ordered the and. Pretty please follow this schedule exert his independence and “ hang ” with his friends the. A fair audience that void now seem to be where your focus is though! They split custody of the issue and made all sort child doesn't want to visit father relationship with Craig experience please. The question “ my child lives with me since I ended things your experience and to understand understood!