contact rights

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Joined: Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:53 pm

contact rights

Post by Hei72 » Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:03 pm

help I have become a SGO to my 2 great nephews who I love dearly but there mother is breaking my heart not attending contact for one of the boys he has just turned 2yr and is very knowing his younger brother is only 10months and had 2 visits , the 2yr has been with me longer and the mother has had 4 visit arranged cancelled 2 a day before and cancelled 2 when I had arrived, on the last visit I was completely blow away she said she was running later and that she was not sure how long she would be I told her I would wait 1/2 hour, she said I don't think I will be there by then . I don't know what to do she cant keep doing this to him or me its a 80mile round trip. I want the boys to be treated the same, I don't know what I should do … any advice is what im looking for please

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: contact rights

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Tue Sep 24, 2019 11:03 am

Dear Hei72

Welcome to the Family and Friends Carers’ discussion board and thank you for your post. My name is Suzie, FRG’s online adviser. I am sorry I was not able to respond to your query sooner and also to hear of the difficulties that you are having at the moment.

It sounds as if you have been very committed to promoting contact between your two young great nephews and their mother but unfortunately she seems to be having difficulties keeping to the plans, which is causing distress to both you and the older child in particular. It must also be time-consuming and quite frustrating.

You don’t say if there is a court order in place setting out the contact arrangements or if it has been left to your discretion. It would be a good idea to clarify this as a first step as it does make a difference.

Contact is always about the child’s needs and children should usually remain in contact with family members as long as this is in their best interests.

Have you been in touch with the children’s services department who were involved when you obtained the Special Guardianship Order? They can help support special guardians in this sort of situation, this help can include help with the costs of contact (this is not means tested) and most importantly mediation to help resolve difficulties which may arise such as those your family are having. I think as you are worried that the two boys are being treated differently by their mother when it comes to contact that it would be a good idea to speak to a social worker in the Special Guardianship Support Team (the team may be called something different in your local authority area) about this and to ask for their help in addressing it.

You are already keeping a record of how contact is going (and when it is not happening) which is a good idea. If the situation does not improve and the boys’ mother does not take on board your concerns or is not able to work with the arrangements and to keep in contact with them both this will be important evidence if you stop contact or it is taken back to court.

Perhaps some other Special Guardians who have had to manage similar situations would have some practical advice to offer?

You might find this publication on Managing Contact helpful too.

If you would like to discuss your situation with an adviser please do call our freephone advice line on 0808 801 0366 Mon – Fri between 9.30 and 3.00 or if you would like private law advice you could contact Child Law Advice.

With best wishes


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