It’s a common complaint when couples separate or get divorced, that one parent won’t let the other see their child or children.
While it may feel like there’s nothing you can do to make your ex let you see your child, there are some simple steps you can take if this unfortunate situation arises.
So if your ex won’t let you see your child, here are some things you can do.
What to do when your ex-partner won’t let you see your child
While it’s not easy, try to remain calm. Getting panicked or stressed is not going to help you see your child any faster.
Stop, breathe, and then think. What are the next steps you can take?
Talk it out
If you can, talk to your ex about the situation. Find out what are their reasons for not letting you see your child. Are they valid reasons? Is there anything can you do to change their decision? If they are completely irrational reasons, it’s unlikely they’re simply going to change their mind.
Keeping the lines of communication open is critical to prevent the situation getting out of control.
When you’re finding it hard to communicate with your ex, you might want to suggest counselling and/or family therapy.
Counselling can be a way to get you both talking with a neutral party to help you communicate better with each other. It may also help both of you understand the changed family dynamics after separation.
Attend family mediation
Family mediation is another option when it comes to couples who are struggling to come to agreeable terms for their separation or divorce.
Who will take care of the kids and when can be one of the hardest decisions to agree on in a divorce but it is also one of the most important.
An independent family mediator can help both parties find some common ground and come to a mutual agreement on a range of decisions like where you’ll live, who will care for the children and financial decisions too.
Seek legal advice
If your ex is seemingly intent on not letting you see your child, it might be wise to seek legal advice and find out what they are allowed to do and what not.
Generally contact with both parents is enforced by the courts, even if it needs to be short visits that are supervised.
Sound legal advice can inform the next steps you take when it comes to seeing your children.
Notify the court of breaches
If you have a Parenting Order in place concerning child care arrangements following your separation or divorce, breaches of these are taken very seriously by the Courts.
You can notify the Family Court of any breach of your Parenting Orders and your ex can be penalised for this.