Don't let visitation issues ruin weekend.


            Posted on Jul 16,2006   

            Don't let visitation issues ruin weekend.

Q.    My ex-wife isn't cooperating with me on visitation with our 8-year son, Rick and 9-year old daughter, Rita. After our divorce, without asking me, my ex enrolled Rick in youth hockey. By the time I found out, he wanted to keep going. I said O.K. knowing this would create visitation problems.

Now, most weekends Rick has to be at the arena for games, often at 5 a.m. If Rita got up and went with us, we'd be able to go to my house, about an hour away, after the games. Instead, we have to go back to my ex's house to get Rita, at which point Rick goes in for a shower. By then, half the day can be gone.

I don't have money to eat out and go to movies, etc. So, we have to go back to my place, which I share with my mother, so we can both save money.

Do you have any ideas on what to do to make this better for all of us?

B.L, Bolton

A.     Here are some options to consider: 1) Visit separately with each child, so each child gets your full attention. 2) Ask your ex to share half the driving - a common thing for courts to order. 3) Expand your visitation by keeping the kids at your house overnight and returning them to your ex's house or to school the next morning.

If you're still having problems, try a mediator. That's far less expensive than going to court on a complaint for modification. But, in your case, I'd recommend you not waste money you don't have and instead, just grin and bear it. The kids will be grown up and out on there own before you know it.