I have two children with a man I was never married to. Our custody agreement is that they live with me but see him on weekends. Due to a change in my work & living situations I need to change this arrangement and move out of state, pretty far away (3 hour plane ride). This is in the best interest for my children, certainly and also for myself. I need and want to provide them with a good place to live, and the father isnt helping with at all. Do you have any advice for me?
If you've spent any time on my website, you know that I'm a huge advocate of both parents living in the same location, so long as both parents are healthy for the children.
Believe me, I understand the sacrifice that sometimes requires. I dislike the city in which I live, it's one of the costliest cities in the United States, the average home costs three times more than the national average, and the traffic is horrible. However, moving is not an option-- to keep both parents in the same city for my child.
If the father isn't helping to support the children, then file for child support or come to an agreement on it with him. If he's not paying child support, then file for contempt. But if he's paying child support per court orders, and you aren't happy with that amount, that is your issue - not his.
You didn't state that he's a bad father, so that isn't the issue for you.
The kids have seen their father every weekend. That is significant. This has been their life. You want to completely rip that apart.
To do this move in a way that is best for the children, I recommend that you offer to pay the father's moving expenses and the cost of his rent (in the new city) until he finds a full-time job there.
This would keep both parents in the same city. If the father refuses your offer (as I outlined), that would be his choice, and you would be able to show the court that you bent over backwards to try to make this work.
This website gives common sense advice that is not intended to act as legal guidance nor psychological guidance. The author is neither an attorney nor licensed psychologist. For specific legal guidance or specific psychological guidance, consult with a licensed professional.