Ex is "unassessed risk"

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Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2022 11:44 pm

Ex is "unassessed risk"

Post by Fluppy » Wed Jun 29, 2022 1:51 am

Please help

There was an incident with my ex and child where he hit once. Child told school and school made referral to police and social services. Police said they would take no further action. Child said other things in school - some true some false. Living situation was toxic though as relationship had broken down and elements of controlling/coercive behaviour from Ex towards myself. SS wanted to make an assessment. I cooperated with them. My ex refused to talk to them. I moved out with my child and they deemed him an unassessed risk and said contact should only be in community and supervised - put this into report. Deemed child Child in need. I am getting support from Early Help as child has behaviour issues that have worsened. I was facilitating contact with childs father and supervising. Ex was hostile to this and maintained I could ignore social services and allow him full unsupervised access. Visitations ended up with arguments between myself and ex which further upset child, SS said they were concerned I couldn't safeguard Child as I did allow contact with me in the family home when I had been told this shouldn't happen. Ended up with ex assaulting me in front of child. We have reached a stalemate I applied for child arrangement order I want ex to be able to resume normal relationship with his child but feel unable to do this without assessment and judge wanted ex to cooperate with assessment from Cafcass. Ex refused and maintains court, Cafcass and social services have no power. Ex is refusing to see child while supervised by his own family. I have concerns about ex mental health. Child is becoming more upset as time goes on. Court said they could not proceed with child arrangement as ex refuses to cooperate, and that he would have to make another application if he wants unsupervised access ( which would lead back to need for assessment) Ex is adamant he doesn't have to do anything court or SS says. I feel like I have exhausted all my options. Is there anything that can be done?

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

Re: Ex is "unassessed risk"

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Wed Jun 29, 2022 1:48 pm

Dear Fluppy,

Welcome to the parents’ forum and thank you for your post. I am sorry to hear about the difficulties that you have been experiencing and I hope that the following is helpful to you.

You say that your ex-partner has been physically abusive to you on several occasions (and your child has witnessed this), as well as being emotionally abusive and demonstrating controlling and coercive behaviour. You have worked with children’s services and have gone through the family courts to try and get safe and appropriate contact established between your ex-partner and your child. However your ex-partner has consistently refused to work with children’s services, CAFCASS and the court.

I am sorry to hear that your ex-partner has refused to work with any of these professional bodies. This demonstrates that he is unable to consider your child’s best interests and has no insight into the concerns that you and the professionals have regarding his previous violent behaviour.

Ultimately it is your responsibility to keep your child safe, and given the information that you have shared, it would not be safe to allow unsupervised contact. When you did allow your ex-partner to have contact in your house he ended up assaulting you. The courts and children’s services have given you very clear recommendations, and I would advise you to continue only offering supervised contact in the way that they suggest. If your ex-partner is not willing to co-operate then unfortunately your child will not be able to have contact with him for the time being. Your ex-partner is correct to say that children’s services have no legal jurisdiction to enforce contact to be supervised, however if you go against their recommendations then they may escalate their involvement to the child protection process or possibly even to care proceedings.

I am sorry to hear that your child is finding this so difficult. You say that you have a support worker involved from the Early Help service and I hope that you are finding their involvement helpful. We have information on our website here about Early Help involvement – you may find it helpful to have a look. Are the school providing additional support to your child? And do you feel that any other support being offered is helpful? If not it would be a good idea to discuss this further with the professional network to identify any additional support that could be helpful (for both your child and yourself).

Family Lives have a free confidential helpline for parents who need support and also have resources on their website which you might find helpful.

I hope that the advice I have given is useful. If you would like any further advice then you can either post here again or call our free, confidential helpline on 0808 801 0366 (Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 3pm) to speak with an adviser.

Best wishes,

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