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  1. #1
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    Default And if the worst happens..? - SINGLE PARENTS SECTION

    The previous thoughts on why some partnered parents have it as hard as single parents got me thinking. The one thing that really worries me is what happens if I die.

    If I die my two children would be effectively orphaned. They have no other relatives in Australia, because I'm British. I suspect they would end up in temporary foster care for some time, and then would be farmed off to some member of my family who I barely know, or somebody I do know and really don't like, in another country. There are good reasons why I live so far from my family but there's nothing I can do to stop them gaining custody of my children in the event of my death. It's possible that they would be separated, as they have different biological fathers.

    You can't 'leave' children in a will. If there is no father, no partner, no other parent, then a court will always have the final say on where they go. Your written wishes will be taken into consideration, but there is no possibility for peace of mind when you are a lone parent with no secure back up. The thought that they would be completely alone keeps me awake at night sometimes. I make them things, write them notes, take photographs, so that there is evidence of our lovely and fortunate life. Because I have no control over what might be said to them about their origins and about me, if I were not here.

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    You poor thing, that's frightening. Would your family fight your wishes on you decided as guardian?

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    Something I think about often.

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    Something I think about often.
    Me too. My kids would unfortunately end up in foster care if i were to die. I have no family or anyone who would take them.
    It's sad. I'm guessing there are a fair few in the same situation.

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    Scary isn't it? I hope that if the worst did happen my family would go with what I want, (some nice counsins in Canada), rather than the easy path that I don't, (frankly vile half sister in uk), but who knows? I have lots of lovely friends, 'aunties' to my children who would make awesome parents to them, but I have no idea at what point it would become reasonable for my children to be able to choose their own guardian.

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    This happened to a friend of mine (2 actually now I think about it)
    1st was a good friend died suddenly had a 6 year old who didnt even know her father but spent a lot of time with her mums parents. She died and her DD was sent to her dad who she handnt seen since she was 18 months old.
    2nd Mums neighbours her daughter died and her 8 year DD found her she now lives with her grandparents AGAINST her mums wishes she had a huge falling out with her Mum and step father

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    Oh, that's just awful. I have very little doubt that my wishes would be ignored by my family. My will specifies who I do not want to have custody and that my estate should be used to fight it if they try to take my children.

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    Hugs to you all who have to consider this, but as a former foster carer, I know some wonderful people who care for children who have essentially been left as orphans. The courts work very hard to keep children who have been raised as siblings together. And foster families support this - I had four siblings at one stage, aged between 1 and 12. They were all "half" siblings, but had lived together with their mother until she was incarcerated and later passed away. While no-one can guarantee that your wishes would be supported, I have seen letters from parents read to the court, delivered to the foster carer or social worker and left for children. These are powerful messages. NEVER under estimate the power you have as a biological mother of your children, and the impact you can have on your child/children's future, even after you are gone (I know one single mother who updates her letters and will every year, just to keep things current. This is important for her mental health and her children's well ring should the worse ever happen).

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    Crossing different countries makes things very difficult. Have you spoken to your friends and cousins about this. Perhaps if you pre-organised (in the event of the worst happening) some friends to temporarily look after your children until your cousins could come and collect them, you might be able to get them to be physically with your cousins before someone else had a chance to challenge the arrangement. At that point, I think your cousins would be in a good position to keep them, because the courts seem to prefer to keep things as they are rather than changing things unless good reason is given.

    -----------------------------------

    As for my own situation it is confusing as well. And personally I'm not sure what would be the best option. The easiest option would be for them to go to their respective fathers, but that is splitting siblings - and in that instance they would be unlikely to have any contact with each other.

    Options for keeping the family together would be:
    a) My father stepping in and taking over. He would happily do so, but this would create tensions, as he doesn't get on with either of their fathers, and the teenage children don't like him either, but the little ones adore him.
    b) My eldest (now 18yo) takes custody of them to keep them together. She was talking to me last year about how strongly she feels about keeping them together and that was the only viable option she saw so she would fight for it ... but that is not what she wants to do with her life, and I fear it would emotionally destroy her.

    So I'm really at a loss as to what the best option would be.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sweetseven View Post
    Crossing different countries makes things very difficult. Have you spoken to your friends and cousins about this. Perhaps if you pre-organised (in the event of the worst happening) some friends to temporarily look after your children until your cousins could come and collect them, you might be able to get them to be physically with your cousins before someone else had a chance to challenge the arrangement. At that point, I think your cousins would be in a good position to keep them, because the courts seem to prefer to keep things as they are rather than changing things unless good reason is given.

    -----------------------------------

    As for my own situation it is confusing as well. And personally I'm not sure what would be the best option. The easiest option would be for them to go to their respective fathers, but that is splitting siblings - and in that instance they would be unlikely to have any contact with each other.

    Options for keeping the family together would be:
    a) My father stepping in and taking over. He would happily do so, but this would create tensions, as he doesn't get on with either of their fathers, and the teenage children don't like him either, but the little ones adore him.
    b) My eldest (now 18yo) takes custody of them to keep them together. She was talking to me last year about how strongly she feels about keeping them together and that was the only viable option she saw so she would fight for it ... but that is not what she wants to do with her life, and I fear it would emotionally destroy her.

    So I'm really at a loss as to what the best option would be.
    What an amazingly selfless daughter you have raised.

    I'm sure you are very proud of her.


 

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