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June 10th, 2006, 12:43 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Anaheim, CA
OK, some background. I was 17 when I got pregnant with DS and married his father. Divorced when DS was 1 yr old and I had just turned 19 due to domestic violence. Got sole custody of DS with bio-dad getting visitation. Child support for the amount of $230 a month and health insurance through his employer if offered . At the time, lived in the same county, 1 city apart. Me and DH had our daughter in October, We do not allow my ex to even see DD, which pisses him off. DS tells me bio dad tells him to hurt DD. Eventually move to next county over due to cost of living being too much in original county (like between $200-600 more a month for rent alone). We still drive to next county to do drop off and pick ups for all exchanges because it was our move and giving bio dad time to get his truck fixed, with the agreement that he would get his truck fixed and start doing the pick ups at our complex.
Fast forward 6 months. Health insurance offred through his employer, so Department of Child Support makes him enroll DS in plan. 1 month later he quits his job. Now he's not working at all, no child support, no health insurance. Fine, we can manage without it. BUT gas prices have gone up and we're already on a tight budget, especially since me and DH were laid off. Bio dads truck is fixed but he's still not doing any of the exhanges. Except an occasional exchange that he really wants. He's constantly wanting "extra days" or to "rearrange" a visit. I'm pretty understanding. We have had to cancel a few visits because our van is breaking down, and bio dad still is not wqilling to come up with a more ammecable plan for the visits.
Basic breakdown of visits is every Wednesday night 4:30 PM-7 PM, and every other weekend from Friday at 6 PM to Sunday at 9 AM. We have had to drive DS down every Wednesday and usually drop him off early so we can avoid major traffic. The water pump on the van we drive is going so traffic is really bad because it causes van to over heat. My dad has counseling in the same city bio dad lives in so he picks DS up at 8 PM when he's out of counseling, so we're not sitting in that town with a 7 month old baby. Fridays we drop him off at 6 PM and pick him up sunday around 9 AM since we go to church in the same town anyways.
There has been 1 time bio dad has met us half way and 3 times he has dropped DS off or picked him up at our house. Of these, 2 were from a re-arranged at his request visit (traded a wednesday night visit for yesterday and brought him home today, so he could go to a cousins b-day party(bio dads family)).
Now I'm looking at the fact that they (meaning bio-dad and his mother) refuse to do any of the exchanges (except the few listed) and the court order offers no specifications for the visits. I understand that DS should still be allowed to attend his cousins b-day parties and other major family events and have so far been really working with bio-dads mother about making these arrangements, to keep some sense of 'normalcy' for DS.
I'm thinking it's time to go back to court. Get an order that they HAVE to do some of the exchanges also. This is wrecking havoc on our gas budget and on our already worn down van (we inherited it from my grandma when she died and it was not maintained properly, but it's our only car). I think these are HIS visits, he's NOT working by choice, so he has the time to drive down and do the pick ups. And if he wants the visit, he should be willing to drive the 30-45 minutes to pick him up. I'm even willing to work with the traffic situation so he's not caught in major traffic, and as is my dad picks him up an hour after said visit is supposed to end anyways, so the time in the car is already being made up.
SO am I wrong in thinking bio-dad needs to do part of the exchanges? Or in being mad that this is not the 1st time that within a month of health insurance starting he willingly quits his job, cutting off the child support also for HIS son, which helps pay for DS's preschool, which is also cheaper in this county than the other one?
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