Fathers rights DV help

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Mommy2be19
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Joined: Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:37 pm

Fathers rights DV help

Post by Mommy2be19 » Sat Mar 09, 2019 6:30 pm

I had a girlfriend and we found out we were having a baby. We’re both really young (18) and there were incidents where her family thought I was emotionally abusive which I can now admit I was, not long after the police came to our flat as they heard us arguing when they were out and about. She broke up with me because of me emotionally abusing her. The social worker has asked her to not put me on the birth certificate and to ignore my calls and take me to court if I try and contact her or the baby, she’s also said I’m not to be at the birth. My ex now goes to domestic violence classes to help her get over what I put her through and I am trying to go on a Dv course to prevent me from repeating my emotionally abusive behaviours. Is there any way I can talk to the social worker and ask to be at the birth and be on the birth certificate (as ex has agreed to this as long as social workers agree). SW has also said I’m not to have any contact with the baby once she is born, not even contact. Is there anything I can do. I realise how abusive I was and how it’s best she left me but I still want the chance to be a father.
Thanks

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:57 pm

Re: Fathers rights DV help

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Tue Mar 19, 2019 3:28 pm

Dear Mommy2be19

Welcome to the Parents’ discussion board and thank you for posting. My name is Suzie and I am FRG’s online adviser.

Congratulations on the forthcoming birth of your baby.

You and the baby’s mother are no longer together. She separated from you because of your behaviour towards her which you now accept was abusive. I guess the police made the referral to children’s services when they visited because your partner was pregnant in order to make sure that the expectant mother and your unborn baby were safe.

It is really good that you are trying to get onto a specialist domestic violence perpetrators’ course to stop you behaving that way again. Have you been in touch with Respect or DVIP both of whom run these courses?

When the baby is born their mother will automatically have parental responsibility but you as the father will not, as you are not married to the mother and unless you are registered as the father on the baby’s birth certificate, with mother’s agreement. She has been advised by the social worker not to do this. The social worker has also suggested that you should not have any contact when the baby is born. If children’s services have given your child’s mother this advice then she will be expected to follow it if she does not want to jeopardise her care of your child.

However, you want to be an involved father, be present at the birth and be named on the baby’s birth certificate. You definitely should get in touch with the social worker and explain your situation to them as you have in this post and ask that they undertake an assessment of you. This should not only focus on the concerns but also look at what you are doing to address these concerns and what you could also offer to the baby.

The social worker is right to want to make sure that your partner and the baby are safe and well and not subjected to domestic violence. However, that does not necessarily mean that you cannot play a role or that the baby cannot have a relationship with her father – but it must be safe for both mother and child.

We have a range of advice materials for young parents and some tailored for young fathers as well as FAQS on domestic violence for fathers. I would suggest that you have a look at these as they deal with all of the issues you have raised.

You can find information for young fathers and on domestic violence here. There is an explanation of what you can do to show children’s services that you can be a ‘resource’ and are not only a risk to your child.

You can find specialist FAQs on domestic violence for fathers here. They explain what you can do if you want to be able to develop and maintain a relationship with your child when she is born. Here is a summary of the steps you can take:

You could contact children’s services directly to ask that they clarify to you in writing:
• Their recommendation that you should have no contact with your baby and their reasons for this recommendation.
• Your wish to become involved with your baby and to be a good father
• What you can do to address their concerns and have safe contact with the baby.

Depending on the seriousness of the concerns about the domestic violence you can ask for information about:
• Support to change violent behaviour
• How to develop your parenting skills
• How you can engage with your child safely
• Options for supervised contact or safe handovers
• Carrying out a risk assessment.

If you are not registered on the baby’s birth certificate you can apply for parental responsibility in a number of different ways which you can find out about on pages 8 and 9 of this advice sheet on parental responsibility.

I hope this helps.

You are welcome to post again if you have a further query or if you prefer you can ring our Freephone advice helpline on 0808 8010366 Mon-Fri 9.30 – 3.00 to speak to an adviser about the situation.

With best wishes

Suzie

Mommy2be19
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:37 pm

Re: Fathers rights DV help

Post by Mommy2be19 » Sat Mar 23, 2019 6:21 pm

Yes, I’ve been in contact with respect and the course is quite far away from me but there is a local course you can be referred to via. your social worker. I think I am now allowed to be on the birth and am going to be on the birth certifcate. Is there any way she can say no to doing an assessment and also how long does this take? I will contact the social worker and hope that she clears things up for me and says she will do assessments etc.

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:57 pm

Re: Fathers rights DV help

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Tue Mar 26, 2019 1:10 pm

Dear Mommy2be19

Thanks for your further post. It is good to hear that you have been pro-active and have already been in touch with Respect. As you need to be referred to the local course by a social worker this is a really good opportunity for you to contact them as discussed in my earlier response and to follow up your queries. Is the social worker now in agreement with you attending the baby’s birth and with you and your partner registering the birth together, as you did say earlier that they had advised your ex-partner against this? Has this advice changed? It is important for your partner and the baby too to be working with children’s services.

The best thing to do as you are planning is to get in touch with the social worker to put forward your suggestions and for them to clarify their expectations too. If the social worker is not going to involve or assess you then ask them to put the reasons for this in writing so that you can consider and get more advice if you need to.

You are doing the right thing by trying to work with a specialist domestic violence service and to work with children’s services to make changes so that you can try to be a good father to your baby even if you and the baby’s mother are no longer in a relationship. Have you seen this by a young father’s blog who was very motivated to address his behaviour when he became a dad and he was open to accepting support to change.

I hope this helps.

Best wishes

Mommy2be19
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:37 pm

Re: Fathers rights DV help

Post by Mommy2be19 » Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:59 pm

I am contacting the social worker on Monday. I think I’m not allowed at the birth etc.

The thing im worried about is that we will never be allowed to be back together. In the future if it’s something we want to do what are the options or is there not that option? Even not about gettin back together will we ever be able to go on family days out and things? I feel like I’m in the worst mess I regret everything I did so much

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