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I am trying to decide whether or not to return to Australia so my 4 year old daughter can be with her father, who has just offered me a settlement to return. I have lived in Colorado where I was raised, for the past 2 years. I am a U.S. citizen/Aussie Permanent resident. My daughter was born in Australia, so has dual citizenship in Australia and U.S.
My child’s father abandoned me whilst 5 months pregnant in Australia and moved to Germany, his native country for 2 years, while I went through pregnancy and the first years of motherhood on my own.
He completely neglected his responsibilities as a father and only managed 2 short visits of two weeks each, during that time. And so I returned home to the States where I would have family support. From Germany, he filed international kidnapping charges against me via the Hague Convention, in Federal Court! He lied to the court and child support about where he was living and his income.
I spent the first 2 years raising my daughter completely alone, far from family, and the past two years, raising her while her dad took ME to court! It was a very awful custody battle and after two years I was awarded full custody. He flew back to Australia (finally got his Australian visa, while living in Germany) the day after the verdict, with no plan moving forward. He refuses to live in the U.S.
He is begging us to come to Australia so he can help raise her. He has a lot of energy and love for his daughter; despite the severe hardship he has caused us (she is in therapy for separation anxiety and abandonment, and I am in therapy for PTSD related to all the stress I’ve been through). I have collapsed with pneumonia and chronic fatigue this past month, because of stress.
Is his settlement offer an 'indecent proposal' at this stage, and am I only entertaining it because I am vulnerable and weak right now?
Do I take the path of least resistance, return to an easier Australian lifestyle, where I have good work offers and great friends and much less stress, and get help with shared custody and parenting from her father? No doubt he will certainly pose difficulty co-parenting with his 'autocratic and imperialistic control issues', as defined by the court psychologist. Or, do I do it hard for a bit longer, knowing she is getting older and easier in many ways, and hope and manifest a partner in the U.S, near family, who may adopt us both and create a good life here? What a conundrum.
June 16, 2015
Thank-you for your question
Firstly I am really sorry that you have experienced such hardship, what you have been through feels very traumatic. And it is quite amazing that you are doing so well considering the stress.
I agree that the Australian lifestyle would suit you and in time you would probably regain full health.
However be under no illusion if you make that decision to return that the father of your child will be able to maintain his role in the ways you want him to.
He is still unpredictable and potentially unreliable and no amount of begging from his part determines positive or permanent change in his personality or his behavior.
I realize you are a very good person and it would be very sad to deprive your child of the opportunity to have a relationship with him. However if you do return it would have to be conditional to him having counseling and perhaps the both of you having counseling together to work out the boundaries necessary to have some sort of ongoing and stable friendship as you co-parent.
If you return with no expectations your life could flow very well here.
But before you make a final decision you do need to get well, as moving is very stressful and moving countries is even more stressful. Your return to health could take at least another 6 months, take the time you need, do not be bullied or coerced by this man. Your health and well being, determines the overall health of your child and her feelings of being safe.
If you decide to stay where you are there is no question that in time you will meet another man and certainly as your child gets older you will be freer to also establish yourself in a bigger circle of friends, in work and also it feels in business.
Essentially what I am saying is that you will not miss out- so don’t worry.
I would also highly recommend to speak with your family. I say this because you mentioned your family had not been that helpful. While you are recovering perhaps you can meet with them and ask what you need in terms of support. Maybe they won’t be able to help, but the clearer you are about your needs the more likely it is that people can step in and do something. Anything towards your recovery would be extremely helpful.
Perhaps take the time to ask friends as well.
The Angels are also reminding me to tell you that your life is about relationships, which probably comes as no surprise. However you also have a relationship to fulfill with success, financial, personal, and vocational and in a future marriage. Although your recent experiences over the past 4 years have been turbulent they do not have to determine the rest of your life. The Angels are asking you to have faith and trust that in time you can put the past behind you, and move gracefully into the next stage of your journey; your soul’s path, to develop a higher consciousness and to express your new awareness through service and compassion.