Good day, My name is Megan.I would like to share my current predicament with you.In the hopes that …
Good day, My name is Megan.
I would like to share my current predicament with you.In the hopes that you can assist me and guide me with regards to the legislation in South Africa, concerning custody of minors.In 2008, I gave birth to my son. I was at the time residing with my exes mother. She has been so wonderful over the years towards my son and I.Together we raised my son (Brooklyn) for his formative years. His father relocated shortly after his birth to Johannesburg. The reasons for the termination of the relationship I feel are irrelevant to mention as it is so many years ago. I would like to focus on the present day. I will hereafter refer to the characters involved by name. Brooklyn is our 11 year old son. Evelyn Murphy is his grandmother. Kevin is his father.Evelyn has had primary care over Brooklyn, since birth (11 years) I have been present and actively involved for all of those years. Including living on her property untilBrooklyn was about 5. Thereafter I moved back into my mothers house to try
restart my life again in a personal regard. That said, I have not taken any absence of leaveuntil September 2017 when I worked in China until January 2018. I also traveled to Vietnam and Cambodia for 11 months for work. I have returned to South Africa three times for extended periods of time during September 2017 to present. I am currently in Cambodia since June 2019, I am returning in December 2019. Last year December myself and Evelyn decided to give Brooklyn’s father the opportunity to bond with him and possibly take on a bigger responsibility. They relocated to Johannesburg with the prospect of them bonding, Sadly this is not the case. The relocation in itself has affected Brooklyn, at one time he called me from his room in tears. (This does happen often enough on voice call with Evelyn present too) And my son is completely against the idea of what my ex is now doing. He is assuming the role of sole custodian and minimizing any right to our child that his grandmother/or
myself have. He plans to remove my son from her care and move into his pregnant girlfriends home.They have only been dating a mere 4 months or so. This woman is also threatening the grandmother with access to the unborn child. As well as assuming responsibility over my son, that she has no place doing. He has a mother. They have no idea how to conduct themselves around young children. She refused to speak to my son for 3 days because he told me something. A) That is encouraging a child to lie/ keep secrets. (that is not how we have raised him) B) I feel that this is emotional abuse. (as my son was left sad and confused about it) furthermore my ex told him that he has been on the phone with attorneys and lawyers regarding this situation. I know that my emotions should not be brought into this, but I certainly was saddened by this as Brooklyn has his own stresses over school work and his current living situation that is at times “havoc / chaos” these are his terms. To this day, myself
and Evelyn continue to encourage Brooklyn to act and feel differently towards his dad. Allowing Kevin a fair chance. His dad plays cat and mouse games with him. ” OK, go live with your mother. I wont buy you toys, or pay for your education or house” “let your mother pay for it”One day its OK to return to Port Elizabeth, the next it is not. (what he doesn’t seem to understand is that you should never break your word to a child. Rather sleep on your thoughts and never react in anger or frustration) Especially since these are the words my son has been waiting hear for a long time. My son was schooled up until grade 3 at Theodore Herzl in Port Elizabeth and lived his entire life in Port Elizabeth. He so desperately desires to resume his life there with me and Evelyn. The courts take into consideration her age, and we have agreed that she will assist me for 1 year while I prepare to take full responsibility of Brooklyn. This transition period is exactly what was offered and extended to
Kevin, but the relationship between Brooklyn and his father has not integrated. Brooklyn is currently seeing a therapist. But he still expresses his true feelings only to those whom he trusts the most. He has said;”deciding to come to Johannesburg was the biggest mistake of our lives” ”I don’t want to live with my father” “I miss my life” “I choose my mother and granny”He is often distressed, sad and emotional about it all. I will be terminating all travels in the future. I plan to get a job in South Africa that doesn’t require any overseas traveling.My main concern is that I have had a tough time in my personal life, coming from a single parent family, with consent financial struggles its been hard for me to get proper access to education and advances in life. I have paid maintenance, but at times not consistently and Kevin has kept record of that. I do have a record of EFT payments from 2015 to present day, including western union slips from the months that I was out of
South Africa. I have not always had the means to provide the lifestyle (private education etc.) But I certainly have tried my best. I have always been there for my son. My question is, Can Kevin do this? Can he take Brooklyn against his will from us? without any legal steps in place? Does it really come down to payment records? If he has a very large record of absenteeism? To a degree that our son doesn’t want to even try. Its continuous conflict and that in my opinion is not a healthy safe environment for a child.All of this said, I will always want Kevin to have an open door to Brooklyn. I encourage that he builds a relationship. If anything I want to share custody and have our son reside with myself and Evelyn as this is all he knows his whole life. We all love Brooklyn.We all want the very best for him.
I have since found a legal document stating that brooklyns primary residence shall be with me. And i plan to return in december and take him back to port elizabeth to resume life as he knows it. Can i do this? Please tell me our rights