My husband and I shared 50/50 custody of his children for the past 4 years. His kids spent 1 week with us and the next with their mother. We also have primary custody of my 2 daughters.
Over a year ago we began the process of taking primary custody so that the kids could stay in one school. They had been enrolled in 4 different schools in 5 years. We won the right to designate their school at the beginning of last school year and two weeks ago we won primary custody. Their mother will have 1st, 3rd, and 5th weekends. She already gave up her Thursday visitation and today we were notified that she will not be taking them for her 1st weekend visit for November. She is very bitter! When the decision was made by the judge, she brought the kids to us that night (it would have been her Thursday). She (and her live-in boyfriend) told them that they were not part of their family anymore. She also told them that she probably would be moving out of the state and probably wouldn't take them on her weekends.
So, this weekend would be the 1st time for her weekend possession and they haven't seen her in 2 weeks. The youngest left her a message but she never returned her call. Now, she won't be coming to get them tomorrow and we are very worried about how this will affect the kids.
What should we tell them? We won't bash their mom but a 10 year old, a 9 year old, and a 7 year old will want some kind of reason?
Ultimately, I know this is a good decision for their emotional and physical well-being. Her household is extremely unstable and the kids were terribly neglected. But, she is still their mother and they love her. It’s gut-wrenching knowing this is the right decision for them but knowing that they will be even more emotionally damaged. They have just begun family therapy to help combat these issues but it’s still hard.