Hi, I've been separated from my ex partner for roughly 4 or 5 years now, I have two kids to her 10 and 12, currently I live 3 hours away from them, I drive 1200ks every second weekend to pick them up and bring them to my house and then back home again, I have been offered an awesome job opportunity, problem is it's 12 hours away from them, which means I wouldn't see them on the weekends anymore, I know I can Skype etc and I would get them school holidays. I've talked to them about it, understandably they're upset.
I guess I'm just after some advice from people that may have been through something similar, I really just want to take them with me and start a new life, is that selfish? Custody has only ever been decided privately, nothing in court, nothing in writing.
I don't want to leave them, but on the other hand I don't want to be 10 years down the track regretting never taking the chance, everything I do in my life is for them and that will never change.
I just feel like a selfish prick for even considering the idea.
Sorry if this thread doesn't make sense, I've never asked advice before. Thankyou.
If you were my Dad and so passionate about me and my sibling this way, would advice you take the new job and be fulfilled in your career and achievements in life. That would be unselfish of me your child. Plus they could get to come spend the holidays with you and you all could go on a vacation sometimes with the money you save from your new job.
Bottom line is you can't give what you don't have. If you want to stay because of the happiness of seeing them every 2nd weekend, what now compensates you for the regrets you may feel when you someday think of why you didn't take the job?
In life, we all like progress. This new job is a step. Take it and be better in your career. Your kids would always be there with you in life. What would be your value to them when you can't be able to support them substantially financially someday?
Clearly you love your kids and they know that. You just seek a better life for them. Plus if you separated from their mom, won't you consider remarrying someday again?
Am not yet a dad or married yet, just speaking from the point of been a loving child to a caring father that puts me first even before his personal goals and lives ambition.
All the best in your final resolution.
I do think it's asking too much of ones so young to have that amount of self-sacrificial-based insight and altruism, really. Saying that, however, the 'rule' in life is, if you're taking something or a certain size or weight away from someone(s) with the left hand, put in something of equal or, better yet, GREATER value with the right, in order to compensate at worst or make entirely worth their while at best by leaving them better off than ever (psychologically) (kids need love and attention more than "things"). HOWEVER, can 10 and 12 year-olds *really* know what's worth their while as opposed to not?
You said 'awesome' but does that automatically mean a significant - repeat, significant - increase in salary, even when considering potentially increased outgoings as a result?
I'd have thought this were the perfect catalyst for applying to the court regarding custody-share that takes into account your personal situation or situation-to-be. I know Mr Soulmate is French, but his family courts saw no problem in proposing a structure that allows him to fly out and have his child for 2 weeks or more at a time (and an alternating month-long period during the school Summer holidays...Europeans get a whole month off, usually August), instead of his prior set-up of alternate weekends (when he similarly had a sum total/there-and-back driving time of 5 hours). It's in any family court's interest to ensure that the KIDS first and foremost remain happiest and healthiest, meaning, they're willing to cooperate over any extenuating circumstances of either parent, rather than impose the one system.
His ex-wife liked the sound of that non-typical arrangement, as well, hence agreed to it without any fuss, having worked out on-the-spot how she'd have *proper* kid-free periods, regularly (and absence makes the heart grow fonder), which could only improve her relationship with her child (which it indeed did).
See if any solicitors in your area offer a free initial consultation so that you can have all the information you need on which to base your decision and ensure it's one that leaves *everybody* happy.
Being a parent, however, is ALL ABOUT self-sacrifice so, IF there are any disadvantages to be had from this proposed new situation, it should definitely be you who bears them. Not that I'm saying you forego your own chances for happiness. Nay, that just produces spoiled little brats. It's about finding that balance, as features you taking the lion's share of inconvenience and hardship.
A family solicitor will be able to go into more detail about all of this as well as any other potential pitfalls versus advantages for all, anyway. But remember: kids grow up *very* fast. So, at 10 and 12 already, be VERY AWARE that they're already approaching that stage where you'll suddenly go from cool to "uncool" and will start hearing this: "Aw, dad, listen, do you mind if we give this next time a miss?...only, my friend Jack/Beverley's parents have offered to have me stay at theirs/go on holiday with them to Greece?" or "[feelings-protecting excuse-excuse]". So you don't actually have a lot of childhood time left as it is.
Again is this truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity AND offers life-altering increase in disposable income? I imagine you'd rather in a couple of years be all, 'Noooon, je rrrregrrrette rrrien', than, 'Waaah-haaaaaaa!!!...', yes?
See a family law solicitor, quick-sharpish.