Up until March 27th 2011, I shared a wonderful strong and happy bond with my then 7 year old boy, since the day he was born.
I was never married to his mother, I am 9 years younger than her and our relationship ended prior to her pregnancy.
Without moving into too much detail, the mother and I had a telephone dispute over horseplay games my son and I played. In particular, our routine little wrestling games on the bed each morning and night.
On March after drop off she called me to say there were bite marks on my son's arm. She was yelling, I was a little confused, but narrowed it down to perhaps part of our game where he and I would see how long we could hold. I tried to calm her down, instead she said she was taking photos and said that 'this was abuse'.
This became a screaming match as I would never, ever do anything to harm my son. The last time I saw him, he was singing in the car and said, "I love you Dad".
Even that night in question, "He did not complain to his mother of anything". But, the worst when she began yelling on the phone in his presence and from there on, she was about to emotionally and psychologically abuse my son forever...
1. Day 1: She rang Docs to complain - They found no grounds to investigate
2. Day 2: She took him to the doctor to complain - Doctor said, there was a slight mark, no break of skin, no treatment required
3. Day 3: She took him to the police station at 10:30pm for 3 hours, to make statements against his father
4. Police (without making any inquiries) placed an URGENT ADVO against me on my son and his mother.
5. Day 4: She took my son to another police station to be interviewed for 1 hour and 30min on DVD ERISP.
6. She would not let me see my son and quoted, "I am seeking legal advice on that".
7. She made an application in the Family court, to allow me to have visits based on strict supervision and that she wanted full parental rights. She included countless amounts of false allegations in an attempt to bring me to disrepute.
8. The Police after 2 months, CHARGED me with common assault and assault causing occasional bodily harm against my own son. Noting: They did not interview or investigate the 7 witnesses that would have avoided this issue and that my son was influenced by his mother for 3 days, prior giving his ERISP (interview). The Police also charged me for breach of AVO against the mother, where she claims I called her names over the PHONE....
9. I attended Family Court twice with a barrister and my funds were depleting on both ends, as the criminal matter was running in the background. The Family Court, initially listened to the mother's case and made orders based on caution not Fact - the fact being, I am defending all charges, I have no criminal record or history of violence, I have been involved in my son's life since birth, consistently.
10. The court ordered supervised time on a weekly basis until the criminal matter was finalised, that is each Sunday. By this time, I was representing myself, as I have on the last 3 occasions at the Federal Magistrates Court of Australia. It seemed to fare better for me as the Magistrate could see that (despite the mother's allegations of mental disorder) that I was a reasonable person who had maintained control and the intelligence to present himself calmly and without any sign of the mother's allegations.
11. The mother's solicitor began to attack me in what seems like a personal vendetta to defeat a self-represented litigant, to the point where it was clear that my son's best interests were of no concern to her or the mother.
12. The court ordered a family consultant report to view the child with the Father. That report was the best thing that has come from the court so far, it showed clearly that the child has a "safe, secure and happy relationship with the Father". "The consultant recommendation was that contact commence - immediately. The mother was furious with this and tried to discredit the Family Consultant and now - The Independent Children's Lawyer!
13. The mother still... after 9 months did not let me spend time with my son.
14. The mother tried to appeal the interim orders of each Sunday visits and a stay in the orders. The Magistrate, did not fair to this at all and applied a 16 pages judgement as to why the stay of orders was Rejected and dismissed to the mother. It raised a question on the mothers bonafides as well...
15. On 4 occasions, the mother simply did not send my son. I was advised by legal reps that if I wanted the matter dealt with quickly, not to file a contravention but - an Application in a Case, to have it heard urgently. Still, this did not deliver my son to me in time.
16. By the time the mother had actually delivered my son to my sister's home, my son had now changed. He did not want to get out of the car, he said he didn't love me, he was angry with me for an unknown reason, he was not the little boy I knew months earlier. I don't know what she said or convinced my son to think, but he seemed more reluctant than ever to acknowledge me as his Father or want to spend time with me.... It seemed like a calculated formula, that the mother had succeeded in her plan... To alienate my son from me to the point where her allegations could appear true and that he would not like his own Father or his extended Family which included young children he grew up with.
The Courts have no power at all to protect children. It seems clear that a Court order itself has as much weight as a parking fine, but even traffic offences can be enforced with punishment faster than a family matter - of course though, the government benefit financially, why WOULDN'T they act faster?
Here I am, a Father with no child and lost dreams, lost feeling of love and worth... I missed Easter, I missed his schooling, I missed Father's Day, I missed his Birthday, I missed Christmas... I am missing - his life. And God help all Fathers in this situation, does it hurt or what?... I continue to battle on, to fight for my son to be back home with his Dad and to spend time with his family, grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins that he grew up with.
Soon I will finalise the criminal matter of the unjust charges against my little boy (who was dragged to court for cross examination by the police in Octobers hearings). I am more disappointed in the NSW Police who found nothing better to do than to attempt to manufacture a case against a loving father and his son...
Moreso, against this Federal Government that has no law to protect our children and parents who are being alienated from each other by vengeful parties, who use children as weapons... What is the point in seeking orders if orders cannot be enforced Immediately and cannot be Punished - Immediately for blatant breaches?
We can punish swiftly for everything else such as tickets and fines but not something so important as children and families? No, of course not, not until the Federal Government find themselves in the same situation where their kids have been taken away from them, and law can do nothing about it...
I am losing my son's last years as an infant, he is now 8 years old... I send him gifts, I try to talk to him on the phone... I even pray for my boy each night and hold all videos and pictures close to my heart of how we once were... I only hope he is happy, safe and knows that I love him.
Until Justice is served (if any), I am doing everything in my personal power to remain patient and positive in my life. However I can see, (going through this pain) how some men cannot be as patient and take their tragic course of action. I do not blame them at all, I blame the government and I blame any person that denies a parent their children for no reason other than their own selfish needs...
I do not know the purpose of writing this, as I assume it will fall on empty ears or may never reach its destination. Nonetheless, I send a message to anyone in a similar situation, "You are not alone... Stay strong, and have faith in God, not the Government".
A single father.