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Noncustodial father wonders what to do after mother announced desire to move 2000 miles away

Your Question:
i am 23 years old male. I have a 4 year old son. i am unmarried and me and mom seperated. we live in the same town and we have a verbal agreement with our relationship with child. I see and keep him every other weekend and i pay her 200.00 permonth. i am attending college (just about to graduate) and i work. i am in another relationship/and have a newborn. about 2months old. We plan to get married next year. we live together and have a house.

My son's mom wants to move to out of state to go to graduate school and take my son with her. almost 2000 miles away. I want to do what is best for my son interest in this situation. what should i do. there is no one for him where she is going. no relatives or friends. all his relatives are here and friends. what should i do? I love him so much. He has no idea about distance and time yet. i am confused and hurting.

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My Answer:

Thanks for writing, and sorry for what you're going through.

Unless your son's mother is a bad mother, you have almost no chance to prevent her from moving with your son. You'll need to come to a new arrangement with her on how to stay connected with your son. Ideally, you'll be able to mediate the matter and come up with a parenting plan that can be made into court orders (your only protection in the future).

If you can't come to an arrangement with the mother, and if you want to stay involved with your son, you'll have to file a paternity action with the court. If you file before she moves, your local court will have jurisdiction, making it a bit easier on you.

You said that you want to do what is in your son's best interest. If both parents are good parents, it's in a child's best interest to have frequent contact with both parents, to nurure the parental bond with each.

Given that I think you have little luck of blocking the move (and it would be a waste of resources to hire an attorney to try to fight it), you're going to be a father from 2000 miles away. You won't have frequent contact, and your relationship with the child will largely be marginalized. So, I only see two options for the child's "best interest". Either the mother stays, or you move to her new city. It doesn't sound like the mother is willing to stay, so you really have to examine your ability to move.

Unfortunately, I think you've got only bad options from which to choose, and it's a very tough decision for you. Once additional kids and additional mothers revolve around you, it starts getting pretty complex and difficult.


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.

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