Of all the challenges life throws at you as a single parent, one of the biggest dilemmas that we can struggle with is when the other parent comes back into our life after a long time away, and demands that they have an input in their child’s life.
Whether this is a father that left before the baby was born, and you got by without him perfectly well, or it’s someone who was always on the periphery, but they want more of an input now, it can feel like a bit of an insult. You’ve done all of the hard work, and they are there too, in effect, swipe the trophy after you’ve won the race. But, should you really let the other parent back into your child’s life?
What Does The Child Think?
The child has a right to decide if they are old enough to make their own decisions. They may decide that they’ve got by this far, but it’s important for you to provide the options for them, should they want to pursue a relationship with this person. It can be very easy for us to deny the other parent access and do what we can to protect our child from all of this, but if the child wants to find out, then they will eventually, so it’s far better for you to put your cards on the table.
A Phased Return
If the other parent has proven that they are worthy of a return into your child’s life, then maybe it’s better to do a phased return, rather than a full-on assault. Regardless of the circumstances, boundaries need to be set. On www.annecohenwrites.com there are some handy hints on the importance of setting boundaries after divorce, but regardless of the situation, boundaries are vital. This ensures that your child is protected by your standards, emotionally and physically.
From there, if you are happy but the other parent is keeping up their end of the bargain, you may want to bring in legal representation to flesh out the details. There are numerous child custody lawyers out there, such as www.browndahan.com, and sometimes the result may not be music to your ears, but in a legal sense, this has to be respected.
Remember, It’s Not A Battle
If a lot of time has passed since you last saw the other parent, you’ve single-handedly raised the child, and you can feel that they are swooping in to take all the glory. But this is just anger you’re feeling. It’s not a battle, and even if it is, it isn’t one that can be won overnight by them.
It can get to the point where, possibly, you can both co-parent the child, but if the other parent has come back after a long time, naturally there will be tension. But you mustn’t feel that you’ve lost the child forever, because you’ve raised them, and you’ve cemented the bond. But we can feel that this is all for nothing, this is not the case; don’t lose heart.