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Tue 27th June 2006

What’s in the best interest of a child?

Filed under: General — Julie @ 10:24 pm

Our law say’s we should look at what’s in the best interest of a child when parent’s seperate as the main focus. Then the law is handed over to the judicial system to implement the law. Who are these judges who decide and implement what is in the best interest of the child? Well, they are people that have passed a law degree, served as full-time lawyers for a sufficient length of time and get basically voted in because of thier good behaviours when they were barristers which they earn’t as a promotion from a lawyer. Do we all know how to get a promotion? Sure, we do. We keep the best interest of the system we work in as number 1. The difference between the law system and a system that makes a business profit is showing initiative or thinking outside the square.

In a business, risk is something a person will take to show their greatness. It has a chance of failure and reward which if it works has worthwhile reward. In fact, in contempory business, one could find big rewards. You don’t find this in Government departments as the judicairy system is. It is supposed to be seperate but is it? Initiative and thinking outside the square is often frowned upon. It has it’s own politics going on within over who is king pin and who are the wipper-snappers rocking the boat. There is no profit, no real cause to aim for. It is a day-in-day-out mundane J.O.B. (Journey of Boredom)

Now, who are the parents that these full-time lawyers who become full-time barristers and then full-time judges decide the fate of?

Well they are the mums that spend nine months in and out of emotional chaos during pregnancy and a certain amount of pain (excrutiating) giving birth. They are the dads that have to put up with the mums 24-7 while pregnant, the confused fathers that do the most bizzare things when the baby is due and it is time to go to hospital and beside the mum when giving birth and accepting every abuse under the sun for getting her pregnant in the first place.

And then they look at this baby which is real. (no doll) Oh, the happiness, the tears, the understanding that this little baby is so defenceless and the decision to do whatever it takes to give that child unconditional love. (which is only everything)

So these parents as one unit decide if they haven’t already how they will be one family unit. They decide just like the animals, who will stay home and who will fetch the food, pay the bills, provide the finances for the home, clothing etc, etc.

And then sometimes (often these days) the family unit falls apart for one reason or another.

These judges, barristers and lawyers seem to think that the best interest of the child is to keep the family unit surviving as one is the answer. They seem to think that whoever decided to stay home and nurture the child, should continue to nurture the child. They seem to think tht the parent that went out and gathered the finances should continue the finances.

What they don’t consider is that these parents become a part of another family. These children don’t have one family unit anymore for they have two. Unfortunately, the courts and the government are stopping the financial gathering parent from having another family by forcing them to provide for the other family and leaving them with nothing to give to their next family.

Even more they don’t consider the unconditional love each parent has for the child. It is as if they decide which new family will get the child. If mum’s new family gets the child then the child gets a new dad. If the dad’s new family gets the child then the child has a new mother.

Why can’t the courts see that the child already has one mum and one dad. And that the biological mums and dads are the very best thing that is available for this child. Don’t they know that unconditional love starts from conception and from the moment that child is born?
Don’t they remember what it was like to look at that new born baby.

48 Responses to “What’s in the best interest of a child?”

  1. Stephen says:

    Wonderful post Julie.
    Perhaps many of the judges weren’t actually at the birth of thier children in person. Possibly they were outside in the waiting room awaiting the news.
    Our current Prime Minister certainly doesn’t know the experience of birth for herself. Perhaps why she’s apparently so silent and uninterested in femily caught matters; And how would you explain to a snake what it’s like to walk on legs or fly with wings. Forget it. So the person at the top table can say nice sounding platitudes, but will never have the wisdom that comes from becoming from being at the birth of thier child. What does that say about nz?

  2. Chrissy says:

    i’m sorry Julie but this annoyed me. firstly you are perpetuating the myth that childbirth is excrutiating and painful-mine wasn’t (no drugs, no screaming and performing), also my husband was long gone with his soul-mate before the birth so he missed all the so-called trauma. In fact he was rather keen that I aborted his child-no worries about the potential drama and pain in that situation. also the law is all about precedence and NOT thinking outside the square. it’s about people knowing what to expect when they go to court-not about surprising the clients. yes it looks very unfair in the family court but the Judge carries out the law, he/she doesn’t make it.they may be interpreting the law so it is unfair to one party or the other-I don’t know-it’s all too secret.I think it’s time to fully open up the court so we can all see what goes on-then public pressure will get the laws changed (hopefully) I believe it is vitally important that both parents are involved with their children. My ex-husband has full rights to see his daughter and I have made sure that he is always welcome and no bad comments are ever made about him in front of her. as you are aware, he has no custody rights due to not being around at the birth but we managed to work things out without using the family court. people choose to be vindictive and hostile, it only affects the children in the end. too often people are so concerned with winning that they forget the damage being done to the children. I have a boyfriend but he doesn’t live with us and my daughter is well aware that he isn’t her father and he doesn’t pretend to be.

  3. Cat says:

    Perhaps Julie would be better off writing for Mills and Boon. I found this article to be overly emotional and quite annoying.
    The law is written, the judges interpret it, it is what it is. No one is saying that the system is perfect. But its what we have.
    If possible it is better for all concerned to work the day to day care of children out without the court, but its not always possible. THe best person to care for the children is most often the one who has been doing so.
    It has nothing to do with any trauma during pregnancy or child birth for either of the parents, nor does it have anything to do with who loves the child more, its to do with the CHILD.

    I am a mother, of 7. I have been divorced and remarried, so has my first husband. He managed to go on and have a new family, as did I. We had five children together, and decided with the kids who they would live with.
    Three lived with me, two with him… we both have blended families now and it works well.
    Neither of us felt crippled financially– we get together for family birthdays, the children have always had unrestricted access to both families.
    Its not about judges its about responsible parenting, and communication, the courts are the LAST resort.

  4. Chrissy says:

    Sorry Julie have a couple more things… All lawyers in this country are both solicitors and barristers once they have been admitted to the bar. Barrister is not a promotion. Becoming a judge IS.
    you talk of unconditional love and the joy of looking at a new baby-this is the ideal and the majority of parents will feel this way but there are plenty of examples where this does not happen and the child is neither a gift to a family already struggling emotionally or financially. in some situations it seems the new baby is viewed as the latest punching bag.
    not all separated parents go on to have new families. I didn’t even have a date for the first 5 years of my daughters life (by choice) I took a years maternity leave and then I went back to work so that I could provide for my family myself. Men shouldn’t be financially crippled by child support. there is a formula for working out what they should pay based on what they earn. if it is too much or the circumstances change then they can apply for review. too many men begrudge child support because they think this money goes to the ex. The child support I recieved went on child care and any surplus went into an account for her. it really worries me that so many couples end up at the family court fighting each other and not really giving a damn about the children. yes its hard to be rejected by your partner and often people play dirty but at the end of the day the child is made from both of you and both parents need to be involved in the raising of that child.

  5. starr says:

    Cart and Chrissy what you say appears to be an emotional “victim” mentality that you are promoting. Fathers don’t abandon their children- they are forced to… and it is likely you both would have done it too unscrupulously using the legal system just because you could. Fathers do not begrudge their kid support of anykind- what they are against is the misuse of the funds by mothers without any accountability.
    you allude to soley supporting your child however you bury the fact that you did claim child support to do this. If you could do it on your own and took efforts to alienise the father then why was the financial support important when the actual fatherly support (which is most important) was not?

    You then go on to say you allowed access to your ex- but how long did it take you to really do this- 1 minute?1 Hour? 1 day? 1 month? 1 year? 5 years? You think it is that important driving one parent away thru petty behaviour?

    When relationships breakup- studies have shown and even observations even that women tend to be the more vindictive and use any means whatsoever to “get even” and thru these actions propagate the reactions they recieve from their male counterparts. While males tend to react by walking away because they know its no use fighting a system continually aligned against them no matter how right they are.

    where the situation could have been solved maturely, it is this behaviour that causes a lot of unwanted emotions and issues. So be mature.

  6. Stephen says:

    Thanks Cat and Chrissy for reminding me what magnanimous angels so many Moms are.

    My God! Whilst knowing that the femily caught regime is so stacked against Dads some Moms actually allow thier Xs to maintain a slippery foothold on fathering!

    Ah, but wait a minute. Those lucky Dads so valued as free childsitters by Mom are on probation.
    Mom is the probation officer, Dad’s the probate, and he’s only one phone call away from being ripped out of his kids life.

    And you didn’t know this? Yeah right.

  7. star says:

    PS chrissy and Cat
    your comments on “Men shouldn’t be financially crippled by child support. there is a formula for working out what they should pay based on what they earn. ”

    Have you ever earned in your life or are just claiming DPB? if you have you would know that adding the child tax together with the income tax- a total of close to 45% of a persons wages is affected and taken away. 45% is a huge amount- as good as half a person pay he earns sweating out there- so do you still maintain it is not crippling?

    Do the sums compare a person earning $20/ hour to a person earning $10/hr.
    Simple factoring will give you an idea on what is left to a person to take home. Now add bills, food, travel, the basics… what are you left with? be honest.. give this some thought and a fair assessment- or is this something you would like to sweep under the carpet and not be prepared to face?

  8. julie says:

    Chrissy and Cat,

    I appreciate your views. I want to give you something to think about and would appreceiate your comment back.

    Throughout my life I have seen things go wrong like these poor defenceless twins being physically hurt and killed.

    Everytime something like this happens the laws are toughened up. And you are right in saying the judges do implement the law not make it.

    When we toughen the laws I have noticed that alot of innocent people get caught up in it. Now these so called innocent people that get caught up in it do something but not enough to be what society (you and I) would consider a criminal. They are the unfortunates caught up in the system.

    For example: Dogs have attacked children. I am not happy, you are not happy and I’d be sad to see anyone happy. But what have we done. Made it hard for good people to own dogs. The people that neglet their dogs will still have dogs and they won’t be following the new laws.

    Someone shoots another person. Gun laws are tightened. Who has a hard time getting a gun. Ordinary people. Who won’t have a hard time getting a gun. Gansters. Why, because they don’t respect the law let alone guns or other people.

    We have put laws to protect children but the cost has been loss of fathers. All men are not allowed to sit near a child on a plane that is without a guardian. Are all men responsible for what a few men have done. Basically, yes. The systems view is that it is best to upset fathers than risk a child. Do you think that is fair?

    As for child support. The allowance for the paying parent is $13,000 (ish) per year. That is the same as a sickness benefit. The difference is that the paying parent does not get community service cards or any other assistance for food, clothing etc. And somehow they are to continue working as hard as they did for it prior to seperation. Is that just?

    I am so glad you sorted things well with your ex’s regarding the children. Unfortunately, you are among few who actually have happiness between parents. Even parents that don’t go to court are having power struggles and many after years. The best way to get balance is to give both sides equal rights to the child. Then add parenting skills, relationship skills etc.

  9. Chrissy says:

    I’m sorry for upsetting you Starr and Stephen. however I don’t think I necessarily deserve to have you insult me. My ex left me when I was 5 months pregnant and I was pretty pissed off. I chose not to hate him. I visited his parents 2 weeks after he left to ensure that we had continued relationships. we have never discussed or talked about the break-up. as you will realise, the law in its wisdom has deemed that a father who is not in a relationship with the mother at time of birth has no guardianship rights to that child. my husband, in his affidavit stated that he didn’t want the child. As part of the separation we had to go to relationship counselling ( a waste of time) and it was then that I stated that he was free to visit the child at any time and in any place that suited him. he first visited her at 6 weeks then again at 8 months. he has had regular contact with her ever since. I have made sure he gets fathers day cards and photos and this year he had her to stay for a week during the holidays. we were both in Wellington but he moved north and I moved south so the option to use him for free babysitting is not utilised in my case. why should he pay child support? why shouldn’t he? it costs $150-$200 per week for child care which is a reasonable chunk out of a paypacket. yes I could have stayed at home on DPB but I thought I could provide a better life for my daughter by going back to work.My ex got his child support reduced because he moved in with a woman (in fulltime work) with a child that was in shared custody with her and her ex.
    I married late in life and I would dearly have loved to have had more children and a good stabole family life. unfortunately this didn’t happen. I really believe that men should be a major part of their childrens lives and it upsets me that there are so many broken families. it wasn’t my intnention to be one of them.
    I know women can be vindictive and use unfair means to get their way. I also believe that men are daily being shafted in the family court. however I don’t hate all men because I didn’t marry a perfect one and I am proud that I behaved with dignity and fairness when it came to my child. At the end of the day I dont want my daughter to accuse me of keeping her away from her father. I loved him enough to marry him and I want my daughter to know that she has a great father. I don’t like putting people into boxes. there are good fathers and there are bad mothers and vice versa. I realise this is a site for men and therefore the views are going to be a bit one-sided but a lot of what I read on here is not a gender issue but one of humanity. We need to see that children are the issue in this battle not who can run down the other partner better.

  10. starr says:

    Hi Chrissy no offense taken. My style is pretty much like an approach to a group therapy session. you have to to confront yourself prior to confronting others. you have to be fairIt may not be pretty but it does not mean things are going to be accepted without ethical behaviour.

    Julie probably would be very familiar with my approach.

  11. Chrissy says:

    Sorry Starr, thank god I haven’t been in a group therapy session. though I do like a good argument and am prepared to change sides depending on the moment-fickle like all women. anyway I forgot to mention that I gave my ex the option of being on the birth certificate-if he had said no then he wouldn’t have paid any child support. I know the law is grossly unfair and weighted towards women in this area but it annoys me that we all get lumped into the same vindictive bitch category and I don’t think it is all one sided. We aren’t all sucked in by the feminist propaganda, we don’t all think men are rapists and abusers. i have been more disappointed by women than men in my life. It really upsets me that 2 people that loved each other can try and destroy each other and not even stop to think what effect this has on their children. When my husband left I would dearly have loved to have got ‘revenge’ in any way I could but I decided it would damage me more in the long run and that I wanted my child to believe she was wanted and loved by both her parents. She is only 6 and was very disappointed to find that we hadn’t fought over who had her!! I told her that since she was in my stomach at the time it was impossible for her father to have her. I am studying law at the moment so hope that by reading this site I can learn more about what happens in the family court. i don’t know if this is an area that I will practice in but it never hurts to see both sides.

  12. Bevan Berg says:

    What does “best interests of the child really mean”. You may perceive that it is what we as a mother and a father would consider best for our sons and daughters. In the family court system what you think, is really beside the point. The family court not only implements the law, but interprets it in a manner that it believes parliament intends. Once you are in the family court system, even if it is only talking to lawyers, you are still in the shadow of that interpretation, that says the state will determine through the courts the parents role in the child’s life. Best Interests of the child is always subject to an officer of the courts responsibility to the court and the courts responsibility to parliament. You can scratch your head at the nature of the beast all you like, and complain loudly, but you will not change these outcomes until you change the demands of a parliament that will hurt people for the sake of its ideology before it will ever help them. Quite simply best interests of the child means – states way, and do as we say.

  13. Stephen says:

    Chrissy,
    No need to be precious and play victim.
    He shouldn’t pay child support because he didn’t want a kid in the first place. But you obviously forged ahead and now he’s saddled with 19 years of subsidizing YOUR lifestyle choice WITHOUT ANY GUARDIANSHIP RIGHTS WHATSOEVER!
    Oh my God, You want my sympathy!

  14. Chrissy says:

    Stephen,
    nope I don’t want sympathy from you or anyone else. I am happy, my child is happy and my ex-husband is happy. How do you feel? You are very quick to jump to conclusions- I said my husband didn’t want the child-I didn’t mention that he agreed to me going off the pill and trying to get pregnant. perhaps he thought it wouldn’t happen. who knows? Is there anything else about my life that you feel needs more explanation and justification? It shouldn’t upset you that there are couples out there that can come to satisfactory arrangements. It can happen and it does. One day your child will turn on his mother and accuse her of keeping you out of his life and resent her for all he has missed out on and she will have no excuses for her behaviour. The biological urge to know your parents is a strong one-look how adopted children search for years to find theirs. Not much comfort now I guess but this was very much in my mind when I decided that I would do all I could for my daughter to know and like her father. Perhaps I wasn’t the ideal wife but I have done my best to be an ideal ex-wife – if you are determined to find more ammunition to shoot me down with just ask-I’ll let you know my faults as a wife/woman and you can match these against your pre-judgment of me

  15. starr says:

    Hey Chrissy
    your comment on adoptive kids searching out their biological parents is true. But here we are dealing with kids coming from a broken home.. kids brainwashed into thinking the contrary.. kids wanting approval of the brainwashing party hence acting in a manner to get their approval…

    now analyse the situation – these kids have been brought up to hate a parent.. do you think they will search that parent out?

  16. julie says:

    I am enjoying being on the outside here and looking in.

    I told you Stephen that there are females who will admit to having their faults.

    Thank-you Chrissy.

  17. Chrissy says:

    Thanks Julie, I would invoke the sisterhood here but I daren’t go down that track!!! Starr, call me naive but I do believe that a child will only be brainwashed when they are small. once they get to teenage they will be questioning everything and if the mother overdoes the hate then there will be a backlash later. Adoptive children often think their parents gave them away because they didn’t want them but still go out to find out the answers for themselves. Don’t you think that if the mother behaves in this way with her ex-husb and child that she won’t continue the behaviour with other partners. don’t underestimate children, I believe most of them would desperately want to meet their fathers and make up their own minds. Perhaps I live in a fantasy world but I know that my cousin sought out his father that left him as a toddler(although he wasn’t brainwashed against him overtly) and established a relationship with him. I also know people who after years of being let down by their fathers not turning up when they said they would etc came to the conclusion that they weren’t interested all by themselves. I DO think the biological bond is that strong. as I said before my ex first visited his daughter when she was 6 weeks old and then again when she was 8or 9 months. when he came the 2nd time I put her on the floor and she immediately crawled over to him and sat on his knee-not something she did with others. What was it about him that she sensed that made her want to reach out to him? It shocked me at the time but reinforced my belief that they should always be able to see each other. anyway off to pick up little darling from school.

  18. Chrissy says:

    Hey Julie, your child support calculations worried me so I had a look at IRD site. According to that calc my ex will have minimum of $86k before tax to live off. after tax approx $4835 per month. I think he should survive on that plus his partners full time wage as well.

  19. starr says:

    good thing your ex is on a high salary…
    it just does not cut it for the low or average wage earner though.

  20. julie says:

    Hi Chrissy,

    I am glad you looked up th IRD to work things out. I had afterward realised I should have said Invalids benefit instead of Sickness benefit.

    I had also only yesterday picked up the actually act from a bookshop.

    I am confused with your calculation though. Since I am semi-studying child support let me have a go.

    The formula says CSA Section 29, ss (1)(b);

    (a-b)x c. x is times.

    a = income before tax
    b= living allowance
    S30, ss(3)(a) an amount equal to the gross married rate of unemployment benefit.
    (I didn’t include the child that his new girl has because there is shared custody in that relationship.)
    c = child support percentage

    86,000 – 17,286 = 68,714 x 18% = 12,368.52 (child support payments)

    Income tax rate, Income, Tax

    Income up to $38000 taxed at 19.5%, $38000.00, $7410.00

    Income over $38000 up to $60000 taxed at 33%, $22000.00, $7260.00

    Remaining income taxed at 39%, $26000.00, $10140.00

    Totals, $86000.00, $24810.00

    Conclusion:

    Income before tax 86,000
    Child Support 12,368.52
    Income Tax 24,810

    Income after tax and child support
    48,821.48
    Monthly = 4,068.46

    Not bad, eh?

    I am presuming your situation is at the topish incomes. I am presuming you realise that the majority of people don’t get that sort of income.

    And there are different circumstances. I wish you could hear of some of the situations I hear. It is a shame we calculate using % that are fixed. We really should be considering case by case.

  21. julie says:

    Chrissy,

    One of the problems I am looking at is the minimum payments of $663 per year and especially with liable parents that have zero income.

    By the way, alot of parents will dispute getting the amount you get from the liable parent’s income and for this reason they ask for more through IRD and if not satisfied they go to court for departure order. Some even go for lump sum payments when the liable parent collects from different sources. If the court agrees, the liable parents house could even have to be re-mortgaged or even sold.

    In cases where the liable parent recieves a certain income one year and the following year they cannot but earn less the system will make them pay the old amount if they are considered capable to work the same. This is unfair for those who have worked say 60 hours a week but cannot keep going at this rate or someone who got sacked and have a bad reference.

    Like I said, the law is made to protect from liable parents who want to screw the recieving parent over. And alot of innocent people get caught up in it.
    I am under the impression the % given is a minimum percentage. Not that I want to encourage you to go for more. That is your personal decision.

  22. PaulM says:

    Women, always arguing about money …

  23. julie says:

    Hi PaulM,

    I think that was unfair. (and that’s my nice words)

  24. PaulM says:

    True, but I couldn’t resist. I appreciated your organising the evening seminar on the child support act Julie. Your energy and initiative are a blessing. I learned a bit more, although I am doubtful that the dreadful ‘child tax’ will be made fairer anytime soon.

  25. Chrissy says:

    hi Julie,
    I was concerned with your earlier comment about child support cos it inferred that men were allowed the living allowance and lost the rest. you might want to check the ird site because it looks like the minimums and maximums have changed. maximum income is $100,157 and minimum payment is $730 per year. therefore my calcs on the maximum being taxable income minus living allowance multiply by 18% and then I just used a tax rate of 33% to make it easy.
    I didn’t know you could apply for more!!(and I wouldn’t) I know of a few men that have been badly treated especially when have lost jobs and not been given a reassessment and trying to find money for child support when not earning. As I’ve said before I have always taken the view that the money is for the child and have used it for child care and put the rest in an account for her.
    Even though I felt hurt and betrayed and humiliated by my husband leaving I never thought that it was a reason to try and ruin his life. I’m sure that if he was in financial difficulties then i would be agreeable to renegotiating the child support payments. I don’t understand the mindset of some of the women that screw their exs for everything and don’t let them see their children. How do they reconcile their behaviour to themselves? I like to have a clear conscience and I battle with myself to make sure that I am being reasonable. also I have some excellent girlfriends that tell me to pull my head in if required.

  26. Chrissy says:

    Hi again Julie, I really should go to bed!! Anyway just wanted to say that I would be interested in having a chat with you and hear what you are studying. I’m doing law but haven’t done family law yet so is interesting to find out what the ‘real’ story is before learning what the ‘official’ story is supposed to be. Are you able to email me through this site or do I need to put my email on here for all to see? Let me know if you interested in having a chat and how we can go about it if you are. thanks

  27. Stephen1302@gmail.com says:

    Chrissy,
    You’re right – I’m quick to draw conclusions about people’s character’s these days.

    However you missed the point about nz men including your X having no reproductive rights but only responsibilities completely.

    Your thesis on adolescent kids doesn’t match the reality of many of us guys.
    I would invoke the brotherhod here but lalalalalal…….

    Don’t hold your breath thinking my child or the children of other good nz men I know will be returning to thier Dad’s.
    I’m not holding my breath.
    Those other alienated Dad’s aren’t.
    We’ve grown, adjusted, Let go. Moved on.
    Call it a guy thing if you like.
    I’m resigned that I may never see my son again.
    The world works in strange ways.
    James K Baxter once said ‘the world is full of compensations, the trick is seeing them.’
    I’m now caring for about 100 kids a week. Pretty decent spiritual compensation for the shafting I got in nz.
    I lost a son, I’ve gained 100 kids.
    I feel very blessed indeed by the presence of those kids in my life, and I get to call nz’s defathering culture to account too.

    Julie,
    I agree. There are some females who admit there faults. Just not enough of them admitting the extent of thier faults (or even recognizing them in the first place) for some of us switched on guys to want to remain in nz. I’m blessed I got out. If I’d stayed I would have been a terribly miserable guy – like many of the guys are there right now from all accounts.

  28. julie says:

    Stephen,

    I know you are fair although when a female first meets you she may not think that. You mentioned about a male having no rights when a female is pregnant and if she has the baby against his wishes. And has to pay child support. That is of importance but I wonder if anyone has thought about him adopting the baby out?

    You are also right to think women are not seeing their faults. This feminist movement has screwed the males and females are encouraged to think of men as deadbeats through it all. (generalising)

    PualM,

    ha ha, I see the funny side.

    Chrissy,

    I had noticed that you have to add inflation to child support. Funny how our expenses go up for inflation but our incomes don\’t.
    I can get you e-mail without you posting it for all to see. It is nice to have another female on board.
    I too have to be challenged so that I don\’t get out of control. I think that males keep us females grounded. They are more realistic while we are more emotional. (generalising, here too)
    In saying that, I also have girlfriends to bounce things off who help me keep everything in perspective.

    I will e-mail you.

  29. Chrissy says:

    It has been fun actually getting involved on this site and be challenged by others. Fortunately I have had a really good life (possibly because I had both parents throughout) I try realise I have quite an optimistic view of how things should be and are based on my own experiences that perhaps aren’t the norm or not what men on this site have experienced. I don’t feel the need to apologise for how other women behave as I don’t feel the need to apologise for all the Treaty problems. What I can do is listen and try and understand what others feel and have experienced. And I can add my condemnation for unjust behaviour and my support for those trying to change it. I try hard to confront my prejudices but sometimes they are so ingrained that you don’t realise you actually have them. I also try not to use gender as a weapon. there are good and bad in both sexes. As I say I didn’t feel the need to hate my husband and all men because things didn’t turn out how i expected. He’s not a bad person, we just weren’t as suited as we thought. If there hadn’t been a child I wouldn’t have seen him again but as there was we have a lifetime tie and we might as well just get over our differences and get used to it. He’s comes down south regularly for work and we all go out for dinner (yes he pays but goes on expense account) and we have a nice time. far less stress than having to fight all the time.

  30. Stephen says:

    Julie,
    Thanks for due recognition.
    It gets tiresome and boring defending myself from the label of prejudicial anti-woman etc simply for standing up for guys. Too many guys I know fold when confronted by irrational female emotionality. They unwittingly reinforce females using emotional displays to get thier own way.

    In your womanly discussions about getting money you and Chrissy forgot some other important costs which men have to bear when Child tax is assessed.
    Namely GST!
    So in reality it’s –
    20% income tax.
    18% child tax.
    Then GST on top of that!

    Lots of guys there are working till lunchtime before they start earning discretionary income.

    Oh, I just remembered, there’s the whopping 75% tax on petrol plus there’s rates for homeowners too.

    So let’s see a summary –
    Woman can get herself pregnant and unilaterally go full term or destroy the child.
    Man has no reproductive rights whatsoever.
    Woman can exercise option to get child tax.
    Woman can retain option to make false allegations with impunity and/or move geographically beyond the reach of the child’s father at any time.

    Man pays 50% plus in taxes.
    Man lives with the constant possibility of being alienated by false allegations, moveaway, femily caught chaindragging with attendant abherant legal and emotional trauma (at least until child can accurately assess Mom’s hostility for what it is.

    Child taxes collected are spent by woman at her discretion – no accounting to anyone.
    No supervision of daily childcare activity. She’s her own boss.
    Man’s income is (most often)derived from employment – daily supervised for performance on the job.
    Man is continuously assessed for child tax and he must pay or be fined/imprisoned.

    Woman gets child, child tax income, rights to move geographically, state support (DPB, accomodation support, health support etc).
    Woman gets her agenda fullfilled.

    Man lives daily in the shadow of unjust feminist demonising regularly being portrayed in the feminist media and academia as oppressive and dangerous to society.
    Man can put brave face on having been duped and fleeced and continuously misrepresented as the oppressive sex.

    And many wonder why the switched on guys like Intrepid and I are leaving nz!

    Chrissy,
    Gotta go now to see my own little darlings. I’ve got a living to earn and 5% income tax to pay.

  31. Chrissy says:

    Hi Stephen,
    damn computers!!! just lost a nearly completed post so here goes for another try!!!(i take full responsibility for my incompetence and have only put a small curse on the computer industry-men and women)
    anyway, I was saying that I agreed with most of your rundown of the current situation as regards women having all the power as regards pregnancy etc. however I have a couple of issues….
    Firstly, I distinctly remember my husband being present when I got pregnant. there was no covert usage of a turkey-baster full of stolen sperm on the bathroom floor. Husband well aware that no contraception involved and of the consequences of continuing. Although I had the ability to pin him to the floor I did not employ this skill when trying to get pregnant.
    Yes there are some women who deliberately trick men into getting them pregnant but unless you believe that men are incapable of acting rationally when a sexual opportunity arises then I believe that a condom may dramatically reduce the incidence of unwanted pregnancy.
    And I don’t understand what you mean by fulfilling my agenda. On reflection the agenda i had was to have some children and settle into happy married life for the next 50 years. obviously I wasn’t clever enough to fulfill that. Yes I was smug at the time – I had it all, husband, nice house and baby on the way. I had earned my own way for 20 years, had my own house, had run my own business and was happy to share my remaining years in domestic bliss, children at my feet and warm slippers for hubby when he got home. obviously I was heavily influenced by American sitcoms of the 60s and the reality was that I ended up a solo mother trying to raise a child, work and have a happy life. Yes I was bitter that my life turned out differently from what I wanted but I didn’t turn this bitterness into hatred for all men or to destroy my husband emotionally or financially. I had enough things to keep me busy. I allowed myself to wallow in self-pity during my morning shower and then I would get myself together and go to work. I created some fantastic revenge plans and composed nasty letters in my head and didn’t carry any of them out. To me it was about pride. I didn’t want people to feel sorry for me because my husband left, I wanted people to think I was wonderful because I was so forgiving and tolerant. I thought if I screamed at my husband and made his life hell then he would be justified in his actions against me and I wanted to be the innocent party. So perhaps my motivation wasn’t honorable but the end result is that my child gets to be with her father and I don’t carry around a lot of guilt. Yes I feel I was a failure as a wife and I don’t think I would bother again with marriage but that is my problem and I don’t need to be putting the blame on others.
    I have no desire to see women run the world – the ones with the opportunity haven’t done much to admire. I don’t want men to be more like women – we are different lets enjoy that. When I met my boyfriend he asked me what I was looking for. I said I wanted a real man with a hairy back and an attitude and I got my wish.
    So in saying all that, what would you like me to do to help change the system?

  32. julie says:

    Wow, Stephen. Is that all you pay. 5% tax. It can’t be real. There has to be a catch. What is it?

    You have made some good points in your last comment. I do think child support is not solely for the child. It was mean’t for collecting money towards DPB payments but then got involved collecting for other parents who supposedbly don’t work it out for themselves. (for one reason or another)

    IRD has become the referee. And a very tough one who follows the child support act to the letter.

    I am aware you all know this but someone knew could read our comments.

    The child support act also speaks of ‘domestic maintenance?’

    However, I think one argument against the child support being available to the child only will be that the other parent puts effort into day-to-day care for the child.

    The rest I don’t know. (yet)

  33. Stephen says:

    Julie,
    Check it out for yourself.

  34. Stephen says:

    Chrissy,
    You could start to change your part in the system over there by dropping the defensive attitude and accepting that women have had an agenda for 30 odd years in nz which has resulted in huge fatherlessness there.
    But instead first you try labelling me as an insulting prejudicial oaf, then start asking me what I’d like you to do to change things in NZ. That seems very confused, insulting and discouraging of real dialogue to me.

  35. julie says:

    Chrissy,

    I cannot help but smile and have a little laugh when I read your comments. Your reactions are what I had expeceted from women yet only some are as open and honest as you. But don’t change that for it is something special. It makes you real.

    Anyhow, I can relate to you.

    My answer to the question you asked Stephen would be;

    Stay and learn more. (there’s heaps to learn) Keep commenting, ask questions, challenge and be challenged. Be part of the growing number of women figuring it out. If you go ahead and try to change things right now, you will crumble under pressure of the system. It is extremely powerful, right now. Relate things here to what you see around you, talk to the people.

    I will step back and let Stephen answer the rest.

  36. Chrissy says:

    Stephen,
    I have been away for a few days so apologise for not responding earlier. I have re-read my post and cannot see any indication that I called you names! In fact, I started by saying that I mostly agreed with you. I probably am being defensive-I am well aware that I am a woman on a site meant for men and am trying not to antagonise anyone nor am I trying to apologise for the nasty bitches out there giving women a bad name. They deserve all they get and they are not generally supported by other women. I have not yet run across these man-hating women but I will keep my eyes open for them and my big mouth will let them know what I disagree with. I am well known for my lack of tact. I also try hard not to be blind to my faults and prejudices – and I like to confront them when I spot them. No doubt you will assist me to find them.
    I don’t know what to think about this agenda though-noone has invited me to be a part of it. I’m all for families-fathers included. The agenda of equality was a huge rip-off for women too. we were expected to have careers, work fulltime, get married, run a house and look after the children. We were promised it all and yet it has caused nothing but stress and unhappiness to men and women. 20 years ago I went to a real-estate agent to talk about buying a house. at the time I was single and had my own business. the advise from the cigar smoking, middle aged man with his feet on the desk was 1. to find myself a husband and 2. to find a rich boyfriend to finance me. i was unimpressed. then my grandmother told me I couldn’t buy a house because i didn’t have a husband to mow the lawns!! My grandmother still thinks I should let a man win if I play a game with him. It is hard to change attitudes about what each sex should do and the roles they should have. Will it one day be normal for men to have custody of the children and women to see them on weekends? I don’t think so. It is so ingrained that women are the nurturers and better at looking after children – even though there are fantastic fathers out there and also bloody hopeless mothers. The main problem, I think, is the generalisations. each case needs to be looked at on its merits and the custody determined on who is better able to look after the child. there should be no presumption that the mother is the one.

  37. Stephen says:

    Chrissy,
    The labelling is inference coming from a one up position yet claiming to be fair
    It just doesn’t cut it with me.
    It’ simple really.
    First off all along you have the system stacked in your favour in terms of reproductive and family rights.

    You, (regardless of his carelessness over contraception) chose to get yourself pregnant.
    Subsequently your ex wanted an abortion to take place.
    You forged ahead unilaterally and had the kid.
    The father had no legal rights.
    Then you chose to get child support from him to fund your lifestyle choice.
    You had him pay child support under sanction of imprisonment.

    At every step of your way the father had no legal rights only responsibilities.

    You then to use your very own words -‘allowed access’.
    You got free childcare from a disempowered man.
    How magnanimous of you to let a child see thier own father.
    The child support he gave you, you claim to have used soley to support the child.
    However it’s common knowledge this took place in a system with no accountability.
    Did anyone ask you for a weekly rundown of where the money went.
    No.
    All the while your kid’s dad was a phonecall away from being yet another alienated dad.

    So all we have is your word that you’ve been fair inserted onto a website supposedly designated for the expression of men’s experience.
    In the process you call into question the experience of many wounded marginalised men by diluting thier experience with your ‘not all women are bitches pathos’ – like we need it explaining to us!.
    Then the cherry on the cake is you don’t think that’s treating us guys like we’re buffoons!

    One final thing Chrissy.
    Your so right on pro-male you reckon.
    What are you actually doing (aside from the above to bring about justice for men?
    Pounding the pavements? Collecting for battered men? Are you employed, thus not taking taxmoney mainly funded by male wageearners? Do you emotionally support any men currently facing the family court? Have you given to the Prostate Cancer fund? Are you active in women’s groups set up to deal with female violence? Have you signed Wayne’s petition / asked others to sign it?

    Now your all sweet and ‘let’s be egalitarian by giving fathers equal parenting rights’.

    Hmmmm. I see.

  38. JohnP says:

    Chrissy says:

    I don’t know what to think about this agenda though – noone has invited me to be a part of it.

    That’s because you sleep with the enemy!

  39. julie says:

    Chrissy,

    While you have been away TV1, ‘Sunday’ showed the effects for the men regarding the family court.

    It told society how it is, reality even with one of the lawyers the men protest against. Judith Surgenor said, when asked what she had to comment about the men saying they were screwed before they walk into the court, “If the cap fits, wear it.”

    The Australians have made some changes because they are aware of the suffering for men and their children.
    Males as dads, are powerless over the women through the system and through the women individually.

    Also, Wayne Pruden is at the moment walking from Hamilton to Wellington with an empty pram except for a tent which he is sleeping on the side of the road in. (Unless someone offers him to sleep at their house)

    If you are on his route to Wellington you could meet him in your area and offer him a shower, a meal or even a bed to rest his head on.

    If not, you can get copies of his protest and help get signatures from his website. Details are on this post.
    http://menz.org.nz/2006/851/

    Listen to the stories on the street, drop off petition at shops while you are at work so signing continues while you can’t. Even the women are supportive especially the ones who’s children have ‘daddy’

  40. Chrissy says:

    Stephen,
    it stuns me that you can rewrite my whole life to suit your views-what is your agenda by the way? You can apparently see mine. i see on another post that I apparently had an abortion. Disappointed though you may be with how family break-ups are handled I don’t think that gives you the right to fabricate situations to try and make me fit your ideal of the manipulating wife. yes the law says my ex has no legal rights and has to pay child support and yes I could stop him seeing his child. I have the same choices as any other woman in my situation. 100 years ago the child always went to the father with no rights to the mother. was that fairer? I guess it wasn’t because the mother didn’t have to pay child support.
    I’m not aligned to any groups female or otherwise. Next week I am starting voluntary work with the community law office – I’m pretty sure it gives advice to both men and women. If it doesn’t you are welcome to stand outside my house with a loudspeaker but i guess you wouldn’t want to make the journey. It seems to me that there are some people that want to work to make practical changes and there are others who just want to belittle others to make themselves look superior. Forgive me if I have put you in the wrong category.

  41. Stephen says:

    Chrissy,
    I believe I’ve simply written up the life journey you provided in pieces on threads here and there.
    I’m sorry you’re so pained by islands of information being connected into a continent, but so be it.
    Yes, I can agree you made the same choice many other women were able to.
    But I don’t need to agree with the choices. Nor be silent about my views either. Which brings me to answer one of your questions – I have the right that every free man has to say what I think of someones character, actions and beliefs. It’s what many of my ancestors in recent times died to defend. In this part of the world it’s called democracy.
    I see you haven’t really answered any of my questions. You do mention your going to do some voluntary work – but don’t say whether you’ll be supported by the nz taxpayer whilst doing so.
    My agenda? You’re welcome to read this site. I’ve been posting for years here. Nothing to hide there.

  42. Chrissy says:

    Stephen,
    I’m waiting for the post where you say ‘and now you know how it feels to be unfairly represented and this is how men are treated in family court’ and I will fall at your feet thanking you profusely for showing me the error of my ways.
    The continent I have created from your bits of info (I’m sure my ancestors fought for freedom of thought as well) is of a man that abandoned his children and skipped the country rather than pay child support. However I presume that there is a whole heap more to what happened that I am not privy too and you are probably completely justified in your actions. however it is disappointing that you don’t afford me the same presumption.
    Yes I am currently studying at the taxpayers expense. Do I feel guilty about that? actually I do but the opportunity was too fantastic to pass up and having been a taxpayer for the past 20years and intending to pay tax for another 20 after I graduate I am hoping that it will not be a wasted investment by the taxpayer.
    I think that if you want to effect change in the way custody etc is handled then it would be wise to include women as well as men in your support groups. There will be greater numbers if you can get the support of some of the total population rather than the support of some of half the population. Yes you should be suspicious that women with anti-man agendas will try and infiltrate this site but you should also be careful that you don’t drive away those that are genuinely interested in finding out what goes on and could possibly help you in the struggle.

  43. Stephen says:

    Chrissy,
    Fall at my feet. What a joke!
    I don’t expect you or any woman to know how it feels to go through the family court. Unless by some strange fate it morphs into an institution riddled with misogynists. I hope you never get to experience anything remotely as evil as the femily caught many of us guys know of.

    Don’t fret yourself about child tax either.
    I actually paid child tax up for the lengthiest period possible – right up until my son’s 19th birthday. I even paid nz child whilst here in Korea. I paid a lump sum up until his 19th birthday, then went out for a drink to celebrate my release. If I’d come here and tried to skip paying I risked being deported back to nz, heavy fines and even imprisonment!

    Meanwhile his Mom was living in a million dollar manse and jetting globally in chiffon with her new hubby (I kid ye not).
    I’m sure my child tax contribution helped her to live in the lifestyle to which she’s become accustomed.

    I’ve continued over the years to send birhday and Xmas cards with any change of address details and of course expressions of availability to him too.
    Whether he got those cards, I can’t be certain though. His Mom has shown over the years a distinct proclivity to blocking access of all kinds.
    However I sleep well at nights in the knowlege I’ve done everything I reasonably could in harrowing circumstances.
    I’m therefore not a deadbeat or runaway dad.
    Although I’ll continue to admit I was a hair’s breadth away from being a suicide dad in what has been my life’s most painful experience.

    I’m not involved in support groups these days.
    I did do alot of work over the years in such places – giving support to men – new fathers, disabled, newly divorced etc.
    But now my focus is much more political. Hence I’m sure I come accross as much more challenging than supportive these days.

    I agree with your last statement. The infiltration / inclusion issue is a thorny one at times. I say that because sometimes people aren’t aware of how anti-male they are. They come to this site and post horrendous misandric shit which must be challenged, yet conceivably once they get more educated could become allies in our struggle for men’s rights.

    I hope my challenging you and your studies help you understand where many men are coming from and develop the empathy to support Men’s rights more.
    God knows men need an aweful lot of support given the level of misandry in nz.

  44. Chrissy says:

    thanks Stephen,
    I am here to learn and hopefully will be a better person/lawyer by looking at what peoples experiences have been. Learning the theory of law and how it should work is obviously far removed from what actually happens in real life. so many domestic cases don’t go to court at all-it seems to me that often the man just gives up everything to get it over with. There always seems to be a pendulum swinging from one extreme to the other with the happy medium never being achieved. Should your ex get child support when she doesn’t need it? No. Of course it should be means tested. One system for all never works. Should we ensure that child support gets used for the child only? yes-but how to monitor that? Should both parents get access to their children? of course unless there are truely exceptional(proven) reasons why they shouldn’t. Should proper evidential rules be used in family court? looks like it from the comments I read on here. I don’t have a cunning plan to put it all right. But I’m sure that the more people become suspicious of the tactics used in family break-ups the more likely that a backlash will occur. We really need to get the process into the open.

  45. p says:

    quote – Fall at my feet. What a joke!
    I don’t expect you or any woman to know how it feels to go through the family court. Unless by some strange fate it morphs into an institution riddled with misogynists. I hope you never get to experience anything remotely as evil as the femily caught many of us guys know of. – end quote.

    Frankly, Stephen, I’m disgusted, and disappointed. I totally know the family court system as you do – and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. And last time I looked, I’m definitely a woman. Please don’t make such unhelpful and generalising statements. They don’t help anyone.

    Best Regards.

  46. Stephen says:

    p,
    I don’t think you’ve read me correctly, hence got yourself in a stew over nothing.

  47. Gwen says:

    To Stephen
    only one comment to your ‘He shouldn’t pay child support because he didn’t want a kid in the first place.’ Umm its the 21st century, did HE not know about contraception!!!??? How ignorant!
    I advise you to refrain from copulating for everyones benefit!

  48. Stephen says:

    Gwen,
    If it were in a different context I’d agree with you. In today’s world however men have NO reproductive rights but only reproductive responsibilities, which I see your attitude only underscores.
    You may want to google for then try reading some Phyllis Schaefly to see how she empathises with modern men. Or if your really brave you could dive right into Esther Villa. She will tell you a sisterly thing or two about female reproductive rights.
    Toodlepip ‘ol gal.

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