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Hi everyone,

This is going to be a long one (I'll try keep it as short as possible) but I'm just after some advice from anyone who has dealt with this situation.

I have been separated from my ex for 13 months. Our children are 4.5 and 3.5 yo.

I left him because he was abusive, sometimes physically but mostly emotionally. He destroyed me as a human and I was practically dead inside. I'm very lucky to have my kids because they gave me the strength to leave.
ANYWAY, the last 13 months have been a roller coaster. We agreed back in April 2016 that the arrangements will be 2 visits a week- Tuesday afternoons and full day Sundays. He has cancelled 25 of the possible 75 visits during this time all for different reasons and sometimes without even a phone call to say he needed to cancel. He has also not paid any child support. He has a history of drug abuse and was also selling drugs during our relationship (I have not reported this). He has drink driving charges from 2014, lost his license due to unpaid fines and was caught twice driving on a suspended license in 2016.
He is currently living with his parents, not working (as far as I know) and the kids often come home repeating malicious things he has said about my family. I have stopped allowing visits for the last 3 months because the last time the kids had a visit he refused to bring them home but eventually did 2 hours after the agreed time. The police could not intervene as there are no court orders YET.

On top of this, I have had to stop all communication with him as he was always abusing me and making comments that had nothing to do with the children. This goes against our undertaking that was a result of my application for a VRO in March 2016.

I am due to face him in mediation in one weeks time and I'm fairly sure he is going to push for 50:50 because he has threatened me with this before. I really want my kids to have a healthy relationship with their dad but at the same time I believe he will not have a healthy impact on our children's lives, then I feel guilty for feeling that way and the cycle continues (it's exhausting :oops: )

Can anyone relate to this? What was the outcome? How do you deal with mediators being so unbiased when it's fairly obvious the father is no good?

Thanks in advance for any advice :)
Hi there - I know how you feel . I too have an ex that is very difficult to deal with, went for DVO (verbal/emotional abuse only), ended up
as an undertaking. This was a few years ago now. He got back in his box a bit so to speak after that & my instigating mediation & seeing a lawyer. But I have now just recently discovered that he is emotionally abusing the kids (9 & 7) and am
furious & so upset. I had to hear it all from my 9 yo. So, mediation again now ... I know there will be no resolution... I too have tried to be positive & allow the kids a relationship with their father, tried to always do the right thing with him always doing the wrong thing!! It’s stressful & definitely wears you down! I just want to go for the jugular thIs time! Enough is enough, my kids should not have to be subjected to his emotional abuse & manipulation!!
How did your meditation go?? Did you end up in court?
Hi Piper, thanks so much for your reply. As much as you'd never wish this situation upon anyone else its comforting to hear I'm not alone in the struggle.
That is an absolutely horrible thing to do to any child let alone your own. They are at such precious ages when they're trying to work out their identities and places in the world and the last thing they need is someone being a bad influence on their self worth. Having said that your children are very lucky to have such a caring mum to fall back on and to pick up the pieces. You are doing an amazing job and I hope you get the outcome you're after.
The first mediation session was ok. We agreed on visitation times which have been going well. The mediators put him in his place a bit and made him realise 50:50 care is not realistic at this stage so instead we are taking baby steps. However, the second mediation session was absolutely horrible. He bullied me, called me names, attacked my family members and did everything he could to instigate as much conflict as he could. I too have had enough and will be taking the matter to court. There's just no way I'm putting myself back in that situation. It just frustrates me that I'm meant to let such a horrible person be around my kids :(
Hi again - I understand when you say it’s comforting to know that you are not the only one going through this - as horrible as it is that anyone should have to!!
I’m so sorry to hear about your 2nd mediation being so awful. However his actions @ that mediation session will not bode well in court you would think! My 1st joint mediation is next week. The kids have their child inclusive session today.

After trying to be fair & reasonable for so many years and having my efforts completely unacknowledged by him, I have realised that only taking a strong hard stance will work - well, I at least have to try it, for my kids’ sake!! So, you take him to court and while you will be rational & logical, don’t hold back. Make it count, do all you can to get the result you want. Because you don’t want to go back for round 2!! Believe me, I wish I hadn’t been so worried about accommodating my ex previously & taken a hard, unemotional stance. All good to say in hindsight isn’t it?!

Fingers crossed for us both!