Scandal/sin or not? involves children


#1

Question: Am I contributing to scandalizing my children, or giving the appearance of approval, if I drop off my 4 young kids (ages 6 and younger) for visitation with their dad at his house while he is cohabitating with another woman?

Background: Husband and I are still married but beginning divorce process, he is currently -or will be in the near future- living with his girlfriend, who is also married but starting her divorce.

I am wondering if I should insist on the “exchange” happening in a neutral place like a store parking lot. Not sure if I can insist on this, he probably won’t agree to it.

But I want to know if there is any sin in me dropping them off at their dad’s house even though he’s cohabitating.

Thanks in advance–


#2

You should talk to your priest. But, IMHO you are not committing a sin at all.

Remember, sin involves free will. And, in a divorce case you may be ordered by the court to adhere to specific guidelines. If that is the case, you do not have free will.

Of course it is your husband who is giving scandal and committing adultery, not you. He is the one with the sin on his soul.

Do what you can to protect yourself and your kids. Talk to your lawyer before doing anything drastic.

If you do not feel comfortable taking your kids to his home, insist that HE come get them or that he meet you at the designated spot of your choice. If he doesn’t “go for it” then that’s too bad. * If it were me*, until the court **ordered **me to I would not take them to his den of iniquity. How hurtful that must be for you to have to go there!


#3

OP, you need to be very careful about this. Even if it isn’t in a court order and your STBXH doesn’t agree with meeting in a neutral place or picking them up by you, you may face visitation interferrance charges, and depending on the state, that charge and conviction usually comes with mandatory jail time.


#4

As has already been posted, you are not in sin. The children deserve their daddy no matter how sinful he is unless he is abusive to them. You will have to look at it from their perspective and not how hurt you are by his leaving you for another (married) woman!

My only question to you is does he return the favor and bring them back to you at your house? If he does then in the end he can accuse you of obstructing his visitation rights.

This is a difficult situation to be sure my prayers are with you as this goes on.

Brenda V.


#5

Absolutely. She would not want to do anything to jeopardize things as the divorce/custody hearings proceed.

That’s why I suggested talking to her lawyer first!


#6

For the first part: See, that’s part of the dilemma. Not saying that this is what you were doing :), but it seems like anytime I bring up a real concern, I have to walk on thin ice so it won’t make me appear as an interferer or religious fanatic (from husband or his lawyer). I want the kids to have a good relationship with their dad, and I am thankful that the o.w. will at least be good to my kids. I’m just trying to figure out how to form my children’s consciences through all this.

And yes, he does volunteer to bring the kids back, but I usually choose a grocery store parking lot instead of having him come to the house (personal preference of mine…the house feels unsettled with him here for any length of time).

Thank you for your advice! :slight_smile:


#7

Yes, that’s a concern…I am very careful not to interfere, especially because in my state it tips the custody to the other party.

Thanks for the advice—at least the cruddy things I have to do, it is because I have no choice in the matter.


#8

Thanks for the advice. I will wait until my lawyer comes back from vacation and see if there’s a way the Court will approve of a neutral place for the exchanges.
The only benefit to dropping them off at his house is that there is a perpetual adoration chapel a mile up the road. How many wives get to go straight into His Presence after having to turn over the children in a situation like this!


#9

If I were you, I’d have a long talk to your lawyer. You should be able to protect your children from witnessing this cohabitation. I know people who have had the visitation custody agreement state that the children will not sleep over if there is an unrelated adult of the opposite sex in the house.


#10

This isn’t possible in my area. :frowning: The most the Courts will do is run a background check on the other person. If it comes back clean, they get the green light to do whatever. As long as the children aren’t being abused these Courts couldn’t care less.

Would have been nice, though.


#11

I am so sorry you have to go through this. I will keep you in my daily prayers and also my rosary.

I have a thought, even though it would be very painful to drop your children off at his house, and would be easier emotionally not to go there…perhaps it would make sense to go anyway?

I am only suggesting this so you can have a look at where your children will be staying. Is it sanitary? Are there other people hanging out? Are there drugs or alcohol within reach of your children? Are there r-rated movies or pornographic magazines sitting out on the counter? Maybe he would hide these things.

I am sure you have thought of this already but I am just offering it in case you hadn’t. I know it would be painful, but as a mother you probably want to be thorough and make sure your children are in a safe environment (even though it is sad situation morally).

Not sure if this helps at all, probably not. I sure wish I could do something. So sorry.


#12

Sarah,

Ouch! What a terrible decision for you to have to make, and with four little ones!

This is a side note, but the first thought that came to my mind is, how in the world does one man take care of four children under the age of seven?! My husband is a terrific dad, but when he’s got our 5 and 2 year old, it’s all he can handle and then some! Maybe your husband is really amazing with juggling the needs of young kids, but if I were in your shoes, I would say there’s no way I’m leaving all four of them there (and I sure wouldn’t rely on the Mistress to help look after them!).

I’m just wondering how he manages … or is it only for very short periods of time?

Courage to you, sister.

mary


#13

Thank you so much for the prayers:) and advice.

He has been living with an unmarried guy friend (buddy from high school) since January. Much to my surprise, he invited me in two times while I was transporting the kids. It was bachelor-pad sloppy, but in general my husband is a tidy guy, so when he and girlfriend get their new house I don’t doubt it will be clean. I don’t think alcohol/drugs/pornography around kids will be an issue.

In a lot of ways he is a secularly “decent” guy, the other woman probably is too (I do give thanks to God for that). They are both in jobs where they need to have a good public image. I am very grateful to God that I don’t have reason to be concerned for the kids’ physical well-being. I read some other people’s stories and I realize how fortunate I am.

Thanks again for the prayers.


#14

Hubby doesn’t take care of all the kids at once…hubby and girlfriend take care of the kids. She has 2 preschool aged kids as well, so it probably raises some eyebrows when they go out with 6 kids ages 6 and younger.

The Courts here are backlogged, so for the next few months he has every legal right to the kids as I do–I have no legal grounds for NOT letting him have the kids as much as he wants (up to 50%). Any interference on my part would be used against me when this goes before a judge.

I guess the plus side to girlfriend wanting to be the new mommy is that at least she will be nice to my kids. I give thanks to God that my children seem to be treated well by her.

Thank you for your words!


#15

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