(Dealing with Conflict, protecting children)
Separation and divorce can be a nasty and bitter experience for every one concerned especially the children. It appears to be that 90% are fathers that lose out but it can happen to mothers too.. You would not believe your new loving sweetheart, presently telling you that “I will always be yours”, could be anything else but loving and gentle.
In our experience in dealing with grandparents that are prevented from contact with their grandchildren is that there is at least one parent involved too. We have come to the conclusion that both are inseparable and in the end it is the children we feel for in the conflict of hatred, spite and revenge that ruins their lives.
We just hope you will not experience any of these horrors but! Some of you certainly will.
Too often we have heard “I just can’t believe it, that she/he could go to these extremes like telling lies about domestic violence and using the children for revenge and blackmail to get back at me for their own selfish means”.
If you are experiencing marital problems or thinking of separating get in touch with a family group for advice. Do not delay and do not try to work it out yourself or force your will on anyone. Contact any of us listed on the contacts list before you do anything, and we mean anything. If we can’t help we will know a man that can.
1. Urgent! Firstly contact an outside family agency, someone not involved with the family and keep contact throughout. You must resolve the situation without any aggression or incidents or you will lose. If you don’t heed this you will possibly lose your children as well.
2. Speak to someone in a help group before contacting anyone you are in conflict with.. You will be too emotional to handle this on your own.
3. Do not swear or raise your voice or obstruct in any way. if you do come in contact with your ex-partner or their family.
4. If the police become involved move away as directed immediately. The police have no stomach for family problems. Do not argue or try to reason as you will get removed and possibly charged with breach or harassment and it will never be removed from your record, even if you are innocent. It could be used against you if courts or Social Services get involved. Don’t give any excuse or you will be indefensible and not even we can help. You have been warned!
5. You will have to fight for any rights you do have regarding your children. It is equal on paper but don’t be fooled by this, in reality if you don’t live with your children, in the eyes of Social services, schools and the police you have no rights at all. Always have witnesses to everything you do and record everything in a diary.
6. If you need a solicitor make sure they are family law specialists as others could possibly take your case and lack the expertise. Be prepared to do most of the case work yourself, they are your children, make sure you get things right, you will only get one chance.
7. Mediation has resolved many disputes before a molehill becomes a mountain, before it goes into the real slanging match with accusing and condemning in court. You don’t want to be the cause of them saying, “you are angry and aggressive so I won’t attend mediation”. Give no excuses to refuse to attend. Make sure that the mediation is provided by an independent organisation like Family Mediation. They ask for donations only. You will find them in your local phone book or computer.
8. There also appears to be a standard template used by the parent with residency so do not be alarmed to find yourself falsely accused and branded as:-
a) Violent b)Controlling c)Abusive d)Aggressive c) Sexually abuse.
All of these will be used to alienate you from your children.
9. Above all try and gain agreement through mediation without involvement of lawyers, courts, police or Social Services. If you gain a court order for contact it is not always complied with and is often not enforced making a mockery of our family laws. Your children have nothing to gain by these agencies involvement and very real significant harm can come of it.
10. Seek help as soon you can from a help group and keep in touch with at least one of their members or/and their meetings.
Jimmy - 0141 882 5658 - UK
Jim - 01389 874 095- Clydebank and the west
Charlie - 01324 410 064- Larbet
Bill - 01563 821 869- Ayrshire
Richard - 01224 297 175- Aberdeen & the north
Eamonn - 0141 580 0102- Barrhead & the west
Frank- 01492 874 395- Wales
Elton - 01253 341 659- Blackpool area.
The Ten Commandments of Family Law.
(What we feel needs to change for our children’s best interest?)
1…Our motto is “Bringing Families Together” so we think the best interests of a child starts with Equal parenting when there is no factually proven reason not to.
2....The ‘Charter for Grandchildren’ to be Mandatory for Professionals working in Children’s welfare and answerable in law.
3…Children are human beings. Stop treating them as Commodities like a business deal. Cost only criteria and can ruin children’s lives
4.....If adopted, where appropriate, child contact maintained with birth family in line with article 8 of the UN Convention on the rights of the child. (Should only be stopped in the worst case scenario)
5 ...Kinship care before strangers to be the first choice.
6. ..All below accountable to law.
(a)--..False accusations. (b)-..Erroneous reporting by social workers.
(c)…Flouting of court orders (d) Social Services Orchestrating “cover up’s”, when children are failed
7…Proper recording of all social work meetings and discussions E.g. Dual tape recording similar to police proceedings (to prevent and combat section 6 b+d)
8….More “transparency” and especially “accountability” for Social work and their managers
9….Specialised training for social workers in the best interests of children. (Only the most highly experienced social workers to deal in child protection)
10…. Accusations removed from record, when not proven.
Grandparents Apart UK
22 Alness crescent , Glasgow G52 1PJ, 0141 882 5658. http://www.grandparentsapart.co.uk