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Regarding religious conflicts Indiana

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  • Regarding religious conflicts Indiana

    I will try to make this as short as possible...

    My ex and I have a typical joint custody arrangement. I have physical custody and everything is standard guidelines, child support and so on. I know with this type of custody, typically both parents have say in the child's religious practices and such.

    My problem is that dad has never been a religious person, in fact he calls himself an atheist. I suppose that is a religion, no offense to anyone. I am a Christian and have been all of my life. My children have been raised with Christian beliefs and recently started attending a church with my sister. I do not go every week but try to go as often as possible. My ex, on the other hand, has not stepped foot in a church since he was a child and is very derogatory towards the Christian belief. The problem that we have run into is that he does not want to allow my children to participate in church functions or Sunday service when it is his visitation weekend. I would not have a problem with this if he was taking part in some kind of religion and had his own things to do. However, that is not the case. Also, I feel that this is just to spite my sister and my family, not for the best interest of the children. He also tries to bribe them and say that if they don't go then they can do something fun.

    My children are 12 & 10 and I feel are old enough to have an opinion and be heard. They are upset that their father is doing this. They don't want to go to see him if he is going to keep them from going to their church. My question is what can I do about this? Can he restrict them like that when he does not practice a religion at all? I just don't feel that this is fair to my daughters. My youngest asked me how she was supposed to be a member of this church if she was not allowed to go to the church functions. Please help me here! The only people hurt by this are my daughters.

  • #2
    You can't do a thing.

    You can not force someone to go to church.

    You knew he was not a church goer when you married and had children with him.

    If you couldn't change him during the marriage, you certainly aren't going to do it now.

    And, before you ask, no, you cannot allow the children to ignore visitations with Dad because he doesn't take them to church.
    Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

    I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

    Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.

    Comment


    • #3
      I am not asking him to go!

      I am not asking him to go, just allow my daughters to. I really never thought it would be this much of an issue.

      Comment


      • #4
        When the kids are with him, they follow his rules.

        How would you like it if he tried to force you to KEEP the girls from church?
        Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

        I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

        Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.

        Comment


        • #5
          Well...

          I just did some of my own research that says that in a disagreement in a custody situation like ours, I do have final say on religion and such. I noticed that your posts indicate that you are not and have never been an attorney. No offense but I came here for real legal advice. Thanks anyway!

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Jen7336 View Post
            I just did some of my own research that says that in a disagreement in a custody situation like ours, I do have final say on religion and such. I noticed that your posts indicate that you are not and have never been an attorney. No offense but I came here for real legal advice. Thanks anyway!
            Offense taken.

            Unless you have sole and full custody of the children, the NCP has rights as well as you do.

            You can say what religion the children practice... IN YOUR HOME... but cannot force your ex to take them to church against his wishes.

            Present your research.

            Lastly, lawyers typically charge (in 6 minute increments, no less) for their counsel. If you wanted a lawyer to answer your questions, pay one. Otherwise, feel free to ask for a refund on your way out.
            Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

            I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

            Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.

            Comment


            • #7
              K...look...

              I know how much a lawyer charges...hence why I am here. Notice my name has senior member under it too so I know that means nothing on here.

              Again, I am not asking him to go nor am I asking him to take them. I would provide the transportation to and from. His lazy *** has to do nothing other than not be a complete and total jerk! I am not here to argue with people and have come across many like you on this site. Please do not clog my thread with a bunch of arguing.

              Also, I THOUGHT that the sole purpose of the courts being involved was to make sure that things happened in the best interest of the child. If my children want to go to church then they should be able to. They have rights too!!

              I don't have to present anything to you. Now please leave me alone!

              Comment


              • #8
                One more thing...

                You don't know my situation, why or when I married him, so please don't judge. If you are going to respond on here it should not be based on your opinion but straight facts...you present me with your research....

                Comment


                • #9
                  I do not have a copy of your custody order. You do.

                  Look very carefully for the part where it says you get to 1) choose if the children go to church; 2) what church they go to; and 3) tell your ex to take the children to church during his visitation because you wish it to be so.

                  I am not trying to be difficult, but you don't seem to understand that yours is not the only opinion that matters here. Your ex's opinion has exactly as much weight in the children's raising as yours.

                  You apparently came here to find something legal to wave under your ex's nose that would make him take the children to church. There is nothing illegal about not going to church.

                  Therefore, the only binding legal governence here would be in your custody order... which you should show to an attorney.

                  I ask again, however. How would you feel if he thought you were indoctrinating his children and wanted to take YOU to court to PREVENT you from taking them to church?

                  He has made his postion clear. The children's wishes have, fortunately or unfortunately, nothing to do with this.
                  Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

                  I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

                  Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Before you say it... Yes, I know you are going to take them to church... however, he has a right to say "No, I don't want to lose my kids for X hours during my visitation time."
                    Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

                    I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

                    Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Here is a reference for you to show that it can be accomplised...

                      In Johns v. Johns, 53 Ark. App. 90, 918 S.W. 2d 728 (1996), an Arkansas court deferred to the custodial parent's wishes. In this case, the father complained that the mother, who had legal and physical custody of the children, was preventing him from visiting with his kids. The mother said she was refusing visits because he didn't take the kids to church and Sunday school. The trial court ordered Mr. Johns to bring the kids to church. The father appealed. The appellate court agreed with the trial court, holding that because the mother was the custodial parent, her desire that the kids attend church each week was paramount.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Arkansas rulings 10 years ago will not help.

                        The courts today will see only that the father will lose out on X hours during his visitation and suggest that you then offer him more visitation in return if you wish to take those hours from him.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          What if I have offered multiple solutions...

                          Such as extra time through the week or keeping them later but he is just being difficult? That is the situation here. I have offered solution after solution and he is not going to agree to anything...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            He really doesn't have to agree to anything. You admit yourself that the church is a new thing. The children weren't engrained in a specific ritual before the visitation order was drawn up.

                            I've only seen this issue work when the children have been attending a specific church since birth and have always taken part in that particular set of rituals.

                            His time is his time.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thank you.
                              Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

                              I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

                              Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.

                              Comment

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