What if the child doesn't want to visit?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
What if the child doesn't want to visit?
5
Fri, 07-05-2013 - 4:11pm

As the kids get into their teen years, it can be challenging to get them to visit during the summer, especially when they are involved in sports, jobs, their friends, etc.  How do you handle it when a child doesn't want to follow the custody arrangement?  How flexible should the parents become in dealing with it?

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-11-2005
Sun, 07-07-2013 - 12:23am

When my xh & I spilt up he took the middle dd {who was 16} I got the youngest dd {11} the judge forced youngest one to go see xh, middle dd didn't have to come see me. Which was just so wrong in my eyes

~~Sam stitches well with others, runs with scissors in her pocket. Cheerful and stupid.
Community Leader
Registered: 07-26-1999
Mon, 07-08-2013 - 10:24am
Well, if you are my DH, you go to court, make the judge enforce the (out of state) visitation order, and then listen to the 14 year old sulk the entire 5 weeks he is visiting... One week down...
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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Tue, 07-16-2013 - 4:47pm

My ex & I have always gotten along & always been flexible.  It's not like I would ever deny him time with the kids if they wanted to spend extra time with him, so he had to get used to the idea that when they were teens, they had things to do and maybe couldn't always go over.  It actually drove me crazy for a while after DD was grown that he & DS would make their own arrangements & not tell me things had changed--like I never knew when to cook dinner and it was hard to plan for weekends.  Now that DS is almost 18 and drives, they just do what they want.  I just ask DS to tell me when he's going to be home or gone for dinner.  But DS has a part time job & it's not like they ever give him the same hours from week to week.  Plus my ex, at over 50 yrs old, still wants to play softball in a league--DS isn't interested in sports so why should he go over there if his dad is going to be playing ball.  I do think parents should be flexible but that the teen should still be encouraged to visit and have a relationship w/ NCP.  I also think that the foundation for the relationship should have been in place before the teen years.  My Dd is 24 and lives out of state--if she comes home she always arranges to visit both parents.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-12-2002
Thu, 07-18-2013 - 9:58pm

With teens, it's so tricky...both as CP and NCP. 

My kids are now 16 and 15, and we haven't followed the Court Order in some time.  Since Ex-Husband moved away three years ago, Daughter-16 hasn't really followed it at all.  She plays a soccer, which has games in both the spring and the fall.  Additionally, she has indoor during winter & summer, camps, tournaments, etc.  This year, she got her driver's license and a job.  Obviously, she cannot work the job and spend the summer with her dad (as stipulated in the Court Order).

This year, Son-15 has spend significantly less time with Ex.  He has friends here, he has hobbies here, he has church here.  Next year, he'll likely have a job. 

It has never been a fight with Ex.  If it had, I don't think he would have a relationship that is anywhere near as close as what he has with our kids now.  He realizes that our kids have a life here with friends and activities and interests.  Instead of drawing a line in the stand and enforcing the schedule, as listed in the Court Order, he has worked with the kids to stay involved without pulling them away from their lives. 

HOWEVER, that has required a lot of flexibility on my part, as CP.  If I hadn't been willing to do that, I don't think things would have turned out as they have.

Okmrsmommy-36, CPmom to DD-16 and DS-14

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-12-2002
Thu, 07-18-2013 - 10:12pm

OMG, I hate that I never know who is going to be home for dinner...whether they are with Ex or not.  That's just the life with teens, I think.  I have finally just learned to go ahead and cook.  If nothing else, they eat the leftovers.  Hell, they eat EVERYTHING.  ACK!

Okmrsmommy-36, CPmom to DD-16 and DS-14