You get your children back from your ex’s house after their visitation and they are openly telling you all about the divorce case, what your ex has called you and where you should go, etc. You are appalled and upset that your children know anything about your case. You call your ex and tell them that this is inappropriate to discuss with the children and they completely dismiss you. You know that the judge clearly said that neither you nor your ex could discuss anything about the case with your children.
While the damage has already been done with your children with what they have overheard or discussed so far with your ex, there are some helpful requests that you could make to deter this type of behavior. For starters, as long as your orders do not contain anything requiring an agreement before enrolling the children in counseling then you should do so. Having a professional who can meet with the children, give them an outlet for their emotions as to the divorce, and help them process the effects of the divorce is such a positive movement forward when this type of situation arises. If the professional meets with you and discusses any concerns with respect to what they are reporting about your ex, then their testimony can be used in a court hearing.
Additionally, if you do decide to pursue a contempt hearing against your ex for violating a court order (discussing the case with the children and making disparaging remarks about you), then you will need proof of such. If your children are 10 or older most judges will talk with them and the children can tell the judge themselves what they have overheard or what they have been told. If your children are too young or are too afraid to be put in the middle, then this would be where a professional’s testimony would be helpful.
Moreover, you could also request or the Court might require that both parents participate in a parenting class. Often times, this helps both parents understand how the case is affecting their children and teaches you how to co-parent with each other when you are no longer a couple. A good parenting class that most courts utilize is called For Kids’ Sake and it is offered in Dallas County and Kaufman County. Dr. Nancy Ferrell teaches the class and many people say it a life-changing experience that definitely puts the divorce process into perspective for them.
As you can see, there are many ways to approach this issue. Do not let these actions go unnoticed. Call and schedule your free consultation today with an attorney at Guest & Gray.