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CT 50-50 custody split questions


itsjustkate

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Ok, where do I start??? My stbx and I separated almost 4 years ago when our son was about a year and a half. We have both moved on. I have just recently filed for divorce. Just after the split 4 years ago I moved into the condo that I live in now, in Waterbury.

 

My ex until recently for most of the last 4 years lived in New Britain. My son went to a preschool near my house and now attends the local Kindergarten there. We agreed to share custody of our son equally and have done so as best as possible. We try to work together when scheduling changes occur.

 

Currently I have him every other Saturday, every Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. So I have him slightly more than his dad does. Not a big deal. I LOVE this schedule. I would love to have him on Thursday as well since his dad works a 3rd shift job and he is often with his dad’s long time gf. My son likes her, but would prefer to be with his parents. He often asks me to pick him up instead of her.

 

His dad has recently moved to Farmington because of the better school system. He is requesting to have primary residency there and have my son go to school there. I feel like he is being very closed minded about everything. He has started to tell me instead of consult with me. He has stated to my son that he hates EVERYTHING about his current school. I have talked with him and he loves his school.

 

His teachers are great. I am also hoping to get him into the Magnet school that is based on arts. My son is a very active little boy and I think he would do better in a more "fun" environment (he couldn’t even sit still at swim practice). I recognize that Farmington schools score better on tests, but I am not uneducated and am perfectly capable of helping enrich the public school curriculum.

 

I am currently in school finishing my degree in Accounting. I don’t think that a schools test score is what solely makes it the better choice. For me to transport my son to Farmington, it would be an hour each way 3.5 days per week (I only drop off Thursday morning). Also, I have a neighbor that is able to pick Marc up for me if I need to do an errand after work (and I do the same for her as our kids go to the same before and after school place). We have developed some routine things that I feel give him stability and are things he looks forward to.

 

My dilemma is should I suck it up so my son can go to "a better school" and drive him (I cannot afford to live there) or should I fight for my son to maintain the life he knows (which isn’t so bad). I have other issues with my ex but I am truly truly truly trying to make the best decision for my child and not let my feelings about his dad make me a bitter person. I would appreciate any opinions either way about this. I want to hear both sides. It will help me weigh this further.

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I don't think this is about just the school system.

 

Frequently, when boys get older and past the infant/toddler stage, the father starts to 'relate' to his son better, and many will want to spend more time with them at this age. There are lots of fun father/son bonding activities like little league etc., so many fathers will suddenly show a much deeper interest in their child than they did when the son was a baby/toddler.

 

And once he enters school, this half week split just won't work if you two are far apart, and if you agree to let him go to school there, it will reduce your time with him, and your ex may well also file to make this situation permanent and to also reduce any child support he pays you since he now has your son more than you do.

 

So you need to be very careful what you agree to here, because you could be setting the stage for him to return to court and say your son needs to be in one place to attend school, and since he is attending school with his father, the custody should stop being joint and the father should be awarded primary custody, his own child support payments lower, and in fact, you may end up paying child support to him if he has the boy 2/3rds of the time, which he will if he lives with him for school.

 

So don't make any decisions on this without talking to your divorce attorney. Unless the schools your son is planning on attending are terrible, i would not agree to this unless you were prepared to see a lot less of your son, and also to have your child support reduced, and possibly start paying child support to your ex since he has your son most of the time.

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if he is active and artistic then its best to keep him there, however if he was better at the academic education then it would be better to go to the other school. As you know your son better than we do, do what is best for his style of learning. If you want to prove the school you've chosen is better, then take your son to do a learning styles quiz, then both you and your ex can decide which way would be best suited to his needs. Your ex is only thinking in what he believes is his sons best interests, which very often are wrong, on both parents parts.

 

All the best B~W

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Thanks to both of you for your opinions.

 

To Lavenderdove: We have agreed to mediate (or at least try it). I did consult a divorce attorney when we separated to talk about this. I will reach back out to him and bring him up to date. Looks like my taxes wont be spend on a mini-vacation for my son and I. But there is always next year!!

 

Butterfly~Wrists: Do you mean like an online quiz or is there a professional I should consult? I will certainly do this. I am open and looking for the right answer here but I don't think there is anything I can say to make him not think that his school is better.

 

My question to him would be, if going to the best school is such a concern, why not move to the area with the #1 school in the state? I have always believed learning begins at home.

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Also to Landerdove: I realize that there comes a time when my son will probably want to spend more time with his father. I hope I am able to let go and let him do that. Right now he really is a mommas boy. He told me once that he loves me best because I'm more loving (aww). I tell him all the time that he can love us both and that we both love him. My parents split when I was 9 and not having my father around was terrible. I do not want the same for my son. I would do anything to not have my son feel how I did growing up. However my stbx has chosen to take a 3rd shift job because it pays more than moving to a 1st shift job that would keep him at the same pay (which was covering the bills as far as i know). Working the 3rd shift job means he really only sees our son on Friday after school (because it's his day off) and every other saturday. When there are snow days or days his school is not in session, his dads gf rearranges her school/work schedule to accommodate him so he can sleep in. I find it really sad. He's missing out on a really great kid. I feel, personally, that the move was more about saying he lives in a better zip code than looking at what is truly best for our son (I hope I am wrong). I kind of feel like he is trying to replace me with his gf. She can have all the wifey duties, I'm not lamenting being married to him but she cant have my son. My son often comes home and says that Daddy and Erin disagree with the your decisions about what is good for me (like buckling himself in the car and starting his own shower). I feel like maybe he has forgotten who the mom is here and what sharing means. I hate my ex but that does not stop me from trying to make the best decisions for my son. I am concerned that the move is postering to get custody. He mentioned that he waved off a friend when they suggested he get child support from me. (For what????) And my son just told me he is glad that he will be getting to spend more time with daddy. I'm not sure what is going on with my ex. But i think it's time I called that lawyer back... darn, i really didn't want this to be a big fight.

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I'd consult a proffesional if he is likely to become difficult, which it sounds like he is. I know its money, but at the end of the day, your sons future right no is far more important that vacations. You can still do nice things together.

 

Learning does begin at home, along with primary socialisation (sorry sociology learnings in my posts, along with psychology hence I said about the learning styles)

 

Hopefully once you know how to help your son get the best out of the education system you can, then things between you will get easier again.

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Butterfly~Wrists: Do you mean like an online quiz or is there a professional I should consult? I will certainly do this. I am open and looking for the right answer here but I don't think there is anything I can say to make him not think that his school is better.

 

An educational psychologist should be best, I believe most schools have these types of things and in many cases they are free, or at a small cost. Although I'm not sure if they are where you live.

 

 

[sometimes being a brit can be frustrating when giving advice]

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I have adjusted to a one salary income, we are very well accustomed to doing things together. My son is like me, we like to get out and explore. When I couldn't afford cable anymore we made a bi-weekly excursion to the library to get books and movies. We have certainly made some awesome memories on a miniscule budget. We were both looking forward to a trip to FL but we can do it next year. It's not like we are used to going anyway.

 

I think I will follow through with the meeting with the pediatrician. Maybe it wont be adhd. Maybe they will tell me he's just an active little boy. I know he's intelligent. His teacher commented on how bright he is. He just literally has no organization or focus. He does just fine when i am "tasking" him at home but I have to stay on top of him. He often helps me clean when he's being my helper and loves to help make dinner. He listens better when he is more active and working with me as opposed to me telling him to go do something on his own.

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Do not allow him to be labelled, doctors wanted to label me as ADHD, when infact I was just a very active child. Many are, and doctors teachers and others of the like are too quick to post a label when it is perfectly normal. But yes go to the meeting, as s/he will be able to offer advice on how to handle schooling

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I have a friend whose son was labeled adhd and medicated for a short time. You would never know that now. If he is labeled as such I plan on asking how to help him not where do I get this prescription filled. He is a smart child. His vocabulary and comprehension is better than some adults. So the over abundance of activity does not hold him back mentally. It's just a matter of combining activities that allow him to release that energy with learning. Or me learning how to teach him how to sit still for an amount of time when necessary and how long he can last and then what activities to do to help him release the energy appropriately. That is my reason for having him evaluated.

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