Belfast Telegraph

Ex won’t allow me to see our daughter

Fiona Caine is here to help if you have a relationship, sexual, marriage or family problem

I moved in with my partner when she got pregnant, but we’ve now separated after three years together.

Our daughter is now two years old but my ex only allows me to see her when she needs a babysitter.

A friend told me I have a legal right to access but my ex-girlfriend says that’s only if the mother agrees, and that she’s checked with a solicitor.

Can you tell me if my friend is right and if so, what do I have to do? KC

FIONA SAYS: SEEK FAMILY MEDIATION

In almost every case of contact between a child and its absent parent, the rights of the child are considered above everything else. It's rarely referred to as “access” these days because of the change in emphasis.

I don't know your circumstances, but unless there is a good reason why you shouldn't see your child, then you should be doing so.

You and your partner should work out a schedule together. Do what is best for your daughter and if you need help, seek family mediation.

The Family Mediation Council|(familymediationcouncil.org.uk) has a list of providers on its website.

If you still can't reach agreement, then you can ask the courts to decide.

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