Wednesday, 18 June 2008

My ex-wife has turned our kids against me

Full Story:

After a bitter divorce, my ex-wife has ensured that I've lost touch with our children. Should I e-mail them on MySpace? I had a very acrimonious divorce from my first wife. Without going into the details, I no longer see my two sons, aged 8 and 14, or my 20-year-old stepdaughter from this marriage: nor, it seems, do they want to see me. My first wife was, and probably still is, a dangerous manipulator of my children's feelings, and I suspect that their feelings were severely influenced by her. I do not attempt to contact or see them because I believe that they have been forced to see contact as hurting their mother's feelings. In the US this is termed parental alienation syndrome. It is not recognised in UK family courts, but I won't waste time talking about the UK family legal system. Suffice to say, not all Fathers4Justice supporters are lager louts. Recently I joined the social networking site MySpace, and noticed that my eldest son and stepdaughter have accounts. Would it be OK to contact them or would this do more harm than good, raising all sorts of half-forgotton ill-feelings and family politics? Common sense tells me not to even attempt to contact them, but to wait for that fateful day when (if?) they search and find my contact details. Presumably they are happy with the status quo. You might say that the same argument applies to letters, but of course the advantage of MySpace is that my ex-wife is not in control of such contact. However, I suspect that they would feel harrased (via their mother) if I even attempted any form of contact other than the yearly birthday and Christmas cards. I now have a new wife and family, and part of me wants to forget my previous family now... but part of me wants to be there in some way. So, should I drop them a line via MySpace or wait for them to find me online? - Mike It is estimated that there are up to 200,000 relationship breakdowns involving children each year: they usually result in fathers having less contact with their children, sometimes none at all. Your story is sadly familiar and painful to read because in the fallout from your marital breakdown there are so many casualties - especially the children. Clearly your story is more complicated than you can tell here and there is more than one side to the story (everyone will have their version of events), but what is clear is the amount of anger that has cut through parent-child relationships and how that has led to substantial loss for so many.

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