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Mom2Six's avatar

Bio Dad has been absent for most of daughter's life now he wants back?

Asked by Mom2Six (7points) November 19th, 2010

I had my daughter when I was 17 years old. Today she is a beautiful 12 year old that is thriving. Her biological father has only seen her maybe 30 days in her life and I think that would be generous. When she was a baby he did a lot of in and out and finally when she was six he disappeared. I got married and my husband wanted to adopt her. We went through the motions and her bio dad signed papers terminating his parental rights for my husband to adopt her. The adoption was complete and a week later I found out that my husband was cheating constantly and then one night he put his hands on me. Needless to say my daughter and I left and had the adoption overturned. My attorney tried to notify her bio dad but he never showed up to court so I was granted full/sole custody. That was in 2007 and he hadn’t seen her since late 2005 early 2006. Now here we are and she is 12 and he has decided he made a mistake he wants to see her.

My questions are what do I do? Let him see her (because logically I know that is what she wants)? Get a lawyer involved?

He has said that he understand that everything is on my terms as far as when and how much he can see her so that he can re-gain some trust from both of us. Personally I have to remove myself from the situation. I can only focus on what is best for her. I don’t know what is the best to do from a legal stand point. Could he take me to court? Would a judge entertain this since he has chosen time and time again to not be in her life?

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11 Answers

trailsillustrated's avatar

He can take you to court and he will be granted the right to see her. Let him see her. It’s best for kids to know both their parents. You could get support payments, too.

marinelife's avatar

You probably want to let him see her on your own without getting the courts involved. Especially, since he has said that he will do it on your terms.

Your daughter is at an age where she would be starting to get curious about her father anyway.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

Parents should always have the right to see their children.
If there is risk of abuse or neglect, supervised visitation is available through the courts.

misstrikcy's avatar

Ok, so he hasn’t played a very big part in her life so far, which is entirely ‘his’ fault.
But other than that I see nothing in you’re question, to suggest he would be a terrible father, or that he’s a bad man.
Why on earth would you not want your daughter to have a relationship with her biological father?

Cruiser's avatar

You and her dad were kids when you had your daughter and 12 years can allow a boy to turn into a man. Having a dad you can identify with is a powerful force in a child’s life. I get sad when I read Jellies rip on their absent or awful parents. I was fortunate to have a great dad and if he is a good role model, I feel your daughter just might benefit in many positive ways from knowing her real dad.

WestRiverrat's avatar

I think you should let him see his child. I also think you should talk to your daughter before hand so she is mentally prepared. Start with short visits, supervised if you prefer.

BarnacleBill's avatar

I would let her meet him. (Note semantical difference there.) Talk to your daughter. Explain the concept of irresponsible to her, and that there are adults who, even though age-wise are adults, make excuses for not taking care of their responsibilities. Tell her as much as you remember about him and his family, if she doesn’t know it already. 12 is about the time you start to learn discernment.

As for him, perhaps something happened to give him a new sense of responsibility, perhaps not. If he waived his parental rights up to the point of adoption, and doesn’t know differently, it’s not something you have to voluntarily share with him. Did he pay child support up to the point where he waived parental rights? That issue needs to be cleared up first, as sort of a “put up or shut up” as far as his intentions to be a parent.

wundayatta's avatar

Let him see her. Supervised. Maybe you supervising.

He’ll probably get bored of it soon and disappear again.

Seaofclouds's avatar

I agree with the others about giving him a chance to see her.

Since you have sole custody at this time, things are in your favor. If you make him go to court to see her, you could lose sole custody. In my opinion, keeping him out of court is in your personal best interest.

Try things out. Start slowly, like maybe meeting for dinner. Stay with your daughter at first until she is comfortable (and you are comfortable) with giving him and her some time alone. After they have an opportunity to meet, play it by ear.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Your daughter has the right to see her father. And yes, he can legally fight for her right to do so.

This has nothing to do with his rights or yours.

Judi's avatar

My daughters bio father was not in her life either. I never said a bad word about him and I never kept him from her.
There were a couple of times in her life that she wanted to talk to him, and I hunted him down and got them connected.
Each time HE disappointed her by being a selfish ass.
When she was 16 she asked me, “Why didn’t you warn me?”
I was determined that I would never be one of those women who bad mouth my child’s father. I heard horror stories of teenagers who hated their mother for keeping them from their father. They were even more mad when they realized he wasn’t as bad as mom had said they were.
My advice would be to take your ques from your daughter. Ask her what she wants. Tell her you will support her in what ever she wants. Tell her that if he comes on to strong, all she has to do is tell you, and you will be the bad guy, putting on the brakes and he doesn’t have to know it’s because she wanted him to back off.
She’s 12. Old enough to have an opinion. Seek it and respect it and you will maintain her respect and trust in the process.
Today my daughter is 30. She contacted her dad when she had her first child to get medical history and let him know he was a grandpa. She has chosen not to have him in her life and I had absolutely nothing to do with her decision.

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