Parental responsibility chances when father not in agreement?

(32 Posts)
Claire2390 Thu 10-Oct-13 20:20:51

I have been the main career of my 3yr old stepson for the last 2yrs. His father has been given contact since he was 18 months and was given PR at this time to! A final order 2 months ago has given him 12hrs a week contact. I would like to have PR as it is a pain not being allowed to sign playgroup letters and doctors and dentists cant see him without a parent present. I believe it will also be useful when he is older if i do have legal standing as his parent! My question is, can i get PR as his father doesn't accept me as part of his life and will not consent to an order? If i can how do i go about this? And what are my chances?

elliebellys Thu 10-Oct-13 23:09:55

Sorry cant get my head round this one.how did you become sole carer.?.nd was residence sorted thru the courts?

Claire2390 Fri 11-Oct-13 06:10:50

Im not sole carer I'm his main carer as my partner, his mum works all the time. And there isnt a residence order only a contact order for his father

allnewtaketwo Fri 11-Oct-13 06:24:12

I don't think you have any chance at all. I can see why the child's father doesn't want a third adult to have PR when the child already has 2 parents. The fact that your partner relies on you for childcare is irrelevant IMO. It's hard enough for 2 separated parents to sort out parenting issues never mind a third adult entering the mix.

ballstoit Fri 11-Oct-13 07:37:29

If your 'DSS' dad has a contact order, then your partner has a residence order. You don't mention her views on whether you having pr - what does she think?

The reasons you've given for wanting pr don't ring true to me...I've been a stepparent who was the sahm (was also at home with my own DC). If letters needed signing, I brought them for h to sign. Doctors and dentist were both happy to see dss without their dad being there. They wouldn't do invasive treatment without parental consent, but tbh I am now a lone parent and I'd still discuss with my ex if the DC needed invasive treatment.

In an emergency, treatment would be given without parental consent (DSS had an asthma attack in my care, paramedic and a&e docs treated him). You could get round this anyway with a letter signed by his Mum ( as school and childminders do).

I suspect you have another agenda here...perhaps you worry what would happen if you and your do split. It's not an unreasonable worry, but seeking pr is not the answer.

allnewtaketwo Fri 11-Oct-13 07:54:28

This is puzzling me " I believe it will also be useful when he is older if i do have legal standing as his parent"

What do you mean ''legal standing"? Why would/should you have any legal standing for a child who already has 2 parents?

basgetti Fri 11-Oct-13 09:40:04

I have read your other thread and unfortunately you didn't do things the correct way in the first place in order to be the legal second parent. You weren't civil partnered at the time, and relied on the word of a teenage young man that he would willingly disappear after the child was conceived.

There are rightly many protections in law for same sex couples to now be recognised as equal parents and be on the birth certificate and therefore have PR. However you don't seem to have followed any of the protocols and the courts have decided that the father wasn't mature enough to have made such a life long decision and that your son would benefit from time with him.

I think the best thing you could do is just to continue raising him with your partner, and when he has his weekly contact with his father just wave him off and make it seem like a positive experience for him, in the same way many separated parents have to do all the time.

Claire2390 Fri 11-Oct-13 09:43:58

My partner wanted me to adopt him i wanted to wait and then his father ( was meant to be anonymous sperm donor) decided he wanted access. I have taken him to the doctors before when he had a viral rash and thy said thy were unable to examine him without someone with PR. Also at playgroup my partner had to leave early from work to come and sign papers and i felt it would of been a lot simpler if i could sign. And with regards to a legal standing, ive seen it with others as thy get older and a true understand of the situation they can use the fact ur not a real parent to undermine authority. And with regards to if me and my partner splitting up i would have contact, its hard enough him being split between two people i wouldn't force him to be torn even more, i would step back for his sake. It does concern me however wht might happen if i lost my partner cause id assume he would go straight to his father but that isnt what he knows. What is the letter from his mum ?

Xalla Fri 11-Oct-13 09:51:41

Maybe you could send a letter to playgroup giving you authority to sign papers there.

With regards to doctors, I suggest you ask your partner to call up in advance and let the surgery know you'll be bringing him or send you with a signed note.

I've been the 'main carer' for my DSD whiles she's with my DH for 5 years and never felt the need for PR. Actually I've never been asked for it. Her nursery / school were all well-aware of our situation and I've taken her to the docs, for vaccinations, to the dentist without any problems either.

fairy1303 Fri 11-Oct-13 17:09:06

I am main carer for my DSD too - I always do doc apps etc and never had a problem, so day to day honestly I think you should be fine - personally I think given your circumstances (I saw your last thread) I would try and gain PR, this was supposed to be your child completely wasn't he? I just feel so sorry for you - can you get your free 30mins with a solicitor? I agree that you would want some legal standing - what if you and your partner ever split?

Chinacupsandsaucers had some good advice for me once about step parents having rights to access etc in the event of a split if you have been living with the child for x amount of years - hopefully she will pop along soon, she is very knowledgeable.

My friends had their twins through IUI, they are very definitely both their babies, and the thought of this happening is just too awful to comprehend, you poor thing.

Good luck.

purpleroses Fri 11-Oct-13 18:58:33

From what you said on your other thread, your DSS's dad is fairly new in his life, and DSS is currently unhappy going to him - do you think that if you give it a bit more time for their relationship to settle down and his dad to feel more confident in his role, that he might then come to accept your role a bit and not oppose letting you have PR? I can't see it working otherwise really - having 3 people with PR who don't trust each other and disagree on how things should done sounds like a nightmare.

Claire2390 Fri 11-Oct-13 21:43:16

Fairy 1303 if my partner and i were to split up! I would step back from the situation as i believe it would be in my step sons best interest that he wasnt split between 3 familys! He finds it hard enough being between two so i wouldnt put that on him! I would always be there for him should he want it as any parent would be! I would never deny him access to me but i wouldnt force it! At the end if the day he is my boy always will be no matter what pieces of paper say what! I just want some legal recognition within schools and playgroups and for doctors although i might just have his doctors changed as it seems his must be over strict. Also i have the fear that should anything happen to my partner my stepson will loose everything he knows! I dont believe that his father would by any means let him stay with me and his step brother or have contact abd this is what he knows! And purpleroses i understand what your saying and i maybe wrong but i honestly dont think he will ever let me have pr. As he had said " hes my son nothing to do with you" and as i said in my last thread even the cafecass said my stepson is somewhat of a possession to the father.
And theres not really any descisons left to be made once school is choosen is there?
My partner and i are as one, so it wouldnt be like 3 people with it , i dont think.

fairy1303 Fri 11-Oct-13 21:50:18

Claire - I have the same fears as you as I look after my DSD full time and she is very much MY child - her mother is barely involved.

I posted about it on here and felt much better - IF god forbid anything happened to your partner, the courts would look at who he had been living with up until now, what he is used to etc, it would not be in his interests to just be taken from you and given to his dad, who he barely knows, but I understand completely why it would worry you - it worries me too.

Do you both have wills explicitly saying what you want for the children? That would also help.

I really think you need legal advise though.

Claire2390 Sat 12-Oct-13 11:10:29

I have been doing alot of research on it and on a few different forums. By the looks of things i don't have much of a chance as he has both parents. We dont yet have a will but this has been suggested in a few places. It explains that if its stated in a will hes to stay with me thn it will go to court for a court to decide, thy will create a residency order in which if its in favour of me ill be given PR which is settling as i would hope the court would want to keep him where hes settled rather than up root him to someone with such little time with him. I have also looked into this letter idea suggested and loco parentis seems pretty good and covers the important things! I am going to seek the advise of the solicitor that has dealt with the entire case so far, but i do feel that i can still do well by him without pr now, providing we get a will sorted.

fairy1303 Sat 12-Oct-13 12:16:46

That's good.

Also, there is a place on here for lesbian/gay parents - they might have some advice for you from someone who has been through similar.

Mojavewonderer Sat 12-Oct-13 16:27:40

My husband takes my children, his step children, to the doctors, dentists and all sorts and he doesn't have parental rights with no problems so I really don't see why you need it. You really should have sought legal advice before you two got yourselves into this pickle in the first place.
If your step sons dad doesn't want you to have parental rights then so be it! You will just have to put up with it I'm afraid.

ModerationInEverything Sat 12-Oct-13 16:32:49

You can make an application to the Court for pr. Father can object but it doesn't lessen his rights at all, just gives you some. Sounds to me like you have solid reasons for wanting pr and the Court should grant it.

Viviennemary Sat 12-Oct-13 16:32:59

Why exactly do you think you should have parental rights over this child. You're not his mother.

ModerationInEverything Sat 12-Oct-13 16:34:56

Viviennemary she's talking about taking responsibility for him, NOT rights over him confused

fairy1303 Sat 12-Oct-13 16:40:08

vivienmary that is so rude! unnecessary and I expect very hurtful for the OP.

Her stepson was conceived using a sperm donor so her and her partner could have a child. The 'anonymous' sperm donor then decided he wanted contact.

So actually, I would argue that she IS his mother, as is her partner.

I think you owe the OP an apology.

Viviennemary Sat 12-Oct-13 16:40:43

Sorry I thought PR meant Parental Rights..

Viviennemary Sat 12-Oct-13 16:42:25

But it is for the law to decide who a child's parents are in these cases. And I am not a judge.

fairy1303 Sat 12-Oct-13 16:43:46

Irrelevant. Personally I think even if it was parental rights she should be entitled to them. I can't think of anything worse than deciding to have a child with my partner, using a donor and then suddenly being told that I had no rights over the child.

You should see the tragedy in this situation not jump down her throat for trying to get rights over HER child, the one she is bringing up, loving, caring for.

How dare you.

Viviennemary Sat 12-Oct-13 16:48:35

I misunderstood the situation completely. I did not realise the circumstances. I apologise.

purpleroses Sat 12-Oct-13 16:51:01

I'm assuming the DSS's dad was OK originally about being a sperm donor to a lesbian couple, so presumably was OK at that stage about the OP being involved in bringing the DC up.

He's now changed his mind and 1) wants a role in his DS's life, and 2) he's also decided that the OP should not be involved. I can't help thinking these two facts are connected, and they needn't be. If the OP could make the DSS's dad feel that his role is secure and permanent, but that she is ALSO involved with her DSS, then he might in time be OK about her formalising the relationship she has with him, once he no longer feels that to be a threat to his own status. There can be room for more than 2 people to be parents to a DC.

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