SA Grandparent rights? vic/sa

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11 June 2021
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Hi,

im not sure how to pose this without a bit of backstory. mum was incredibly narcissistic and emotionally/mentally abusive when i was a child. she had me convinced she was sick and needed help ect so this went into adulthood. she would 'get better' or worse as a means for control which worked until i became pregnant when i made it clear i could no longer live with her/ care for her and be under her thumb for the sake of my child. i managed to move and thankfully because of friends and family helping us, my husband was able to get stable work in adf and we are living currently in SA. (we are from Vic originally and my mother still lives in Vic). My daughter, husband and i live alone in an DHA home.

Ive allowed her to have access to my daughter (phone calls/ video calls, sporadic visits while we were still in vic) while the relationship was/is still healthy between the two (her and i do not have a good relationship, though if you were to ask her she would say we are 'best friends' or something similar) my daughter is 2years old. My mother has recently started to guilt my child which is freaking me out because it reminds me of what she started out like with me and i do not want that for my girl. (Eg. 1 when she visited in april she would guild my daughter for a hug/kiss by pouting and fake crying ect. - we are teaching consent of body and my daughter has a right to say no. Eg. 2 phone calls if my daughter gets a time out, she will call out for her and fake cry -making the time out more difficult. or after the fact tell her she would never do that, mummys mean, come live with nanna ect. ) i know these things seem small but it is starting to get worse and i see a pattern forming.

i am also pregnant, a boy this time and my mother is mentioning how, oh daughter will always be your favourite, she came first (not how i feel) and that ''sorry, your daughter will always be my favorite''. also things like if my boy will kick or i feel movement ect. she would say it was annoying or ''what a horrid little boy''. (which is the opposite of ''what an angel'' ''miracle baby'' with my daughter) so i know my mum will treat my children differently and that would absolutely affect both negatively.

so based on the quick run down and more things that shes been saying i have been considering going no communication to protect my children (i am giving her until my son is born to see this behaviour cool down and hopefully she will be kind to my son) and while i would prefer she be allowed a relationship, it may not be in my children's best interests, especially with the manipulation of my daughter starting so young, or my son not even being born yet already being treated with contempt. I am however scared that she will use 'grandparent rights' to force me to let her see my daughter and possibly son.

What do grandparent rights entail? could she use the courts to force access? are there things i can do now to prepare in the event i go NC for our mental health and she does try to use the courts? broad spectrum of states would be good because we will move through the years because of husbands job.

As a added after thought, this only applies to her, we have good communication with the rest of the family (both husbands side and mine) and husband and i have a healthy happy relationship.) brother went NC years ago (about 10years) and the rest of the family is low communication except for when they basically have no choice but to interact with her (like my wedding day, or when i would allow visits) most of the family understands she is toxic and were surprised i kept trying for so long.

Thank you in advance for any advice.
 

sammy01

Well-Known Member
27 September 2015
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so the right of the child to have a meaningful relationship with extended family is enshrined in the legislation. But it would be a stretch from here to a point where a court would order contact.

My advice. block her. Go no contact.
Sure she could do the court thing. But with you guys living interstate and with family history etc you might find that she doesn't even bother with court. So go no contact if that is what you want to do. BUT realise that the best thing to do with nutters is to put the blockers up and leave them. Don't give an inch. Get back to us when you get letters from solicitors.
 

Atticus

Well-Known Member
6 February 2019
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Grandma woulf need to fulfill pre action requirements before filing, ie, meeting parents to discuss the issues with an accredited mediator present... If that fails then she gets a certificate to file for orders if she wishes. If it comes to mediation, just agree to whatever suits you & pull the pin on it if she starts acting up.
 

sammy01

Well-Known Member
27 September 2015
4,703
673
2,894
I agree with Atticus as far as the legal stuff goes.
Actually, you want to think about looking into getting mental health support, rather than legal advice. WHY? Well, things get tough when you first start to remove a nutter from your life. You can expect two things:
1. a degree of grief. Sure she hasn't died, but you're removing a person from your life. No doubt, you wish you could have a more normal relationship with your mum, but you can't. Dealing with that can bring some tough times.
2. The process of removing someone from your life requires strategies. You can expect your will power to waiver but you have to be resolute because one phone call means you have to start again AND sadly, you can expect mum's antics to get worse before they get better.
I wish you well.