However much you fell out with your spouse, it can still be hard to see them in someone else’s arms. It can hurt to feel that you were not irreplaceable.
It can be even more painful to think that someone else will replace you as a parent. If your ex has a new love, you might wonder if you can limit the partner’s role in your child’s life.
Divorce means your ex is free to have the relationships they choose
Once you divorce someone, you have no say in their personal life. If they want to couple up with your best friend or your grandma, they can. Yet, the person they choose to spend time with also gets to spend time with your child. Can you control that?
Courts will take new partners into consideration when awarding or modifying custody, but only when that person could harm the child. If you have evidence that the new partner could endanger your child, you may be able to seek restrictions. There are several ways to classify danger:
- A violent history: Previous charges of domestic violence give cause for concern.
- Addiction problems: Being an addict does not make someone a bad person, but they may need to overcome their issues before spending time with your child.
- Suspicions of abuse: If your child’s behavior changes, you may suspect someone is abusing them. Even if you are sure it is the new partner, your ex may refuse to believe you.
- A criminal past: Let’s say your partner’s new boyfriend is a well-known convict who, despite his propensity for armed robbery, is well-liked in the community. You know he would never touch your child, but a court may agree they are not a good role model for your 16-year-old son, who has already been in trouble with the police.
You will always be your child’s parent. If your ex finds happiness with someone else who cares for your child, that does not alter. Accepting that can be difficult, yet is it typically for the best unless you need to act to protect your child’s safety.