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Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 34911
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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Hello - my husband left me for another woman when I was 7 months

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Hello - my husband left me for another woman when I was 7 months pregnant with our second child. Since then, he has had regular contact with our two sons - the eldest almost 4 and the younger is now 13 months. We are formally separated.

He wants to take them regularly to Italy as that's where he grew up. The only family member who still lives there is a disabled brother but my ex feels that the children need to visit regularly as part of their heritage.

I have allowed them to go on one occasion to visit my ex's father who has subsequently passed away and I hoped this would mean an end to visits to Italy as I found it so upsetting and stressful them being so far away from me in another country.

Can I stop him taking them abroad while they are so little? Especially the baby? What can I do to stop this?

Am I being reasonable to stop him until they are old enough to appreciate their heritage?
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
What contact does your ex actually have with the children
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi Clare - thank you so much for getting back to me. He currently has them overnight on a Tues eve (picking them up from nursery and returning them on a Wed morning) plus he has them one overnight and the following day every weekend. He sometimes has them for other ad hoc occasions too.


He is half Italian and grew up in Italy. He's lived in UK since 1997 and his mother and sister also live in UK. Since we met (2005), the only family members residing in Italy have been his father and his elder, disabled brother. His father passed away in Jan and just prior to his death, I did allow my ex to take both our sons to Italy to see his father before he died. His father had never met our younger son. I found it incredibly stressful them being away from me in another country and was anxious the whole time until they returned. I feel I did the right thing however in allowing my children to see their paternal grandfather before he died and I hoped that with now only the brother living in Italy, the issue of going there would come to an end but it has not.


I feel that if I allow him to go this weekend with our sons, it will never end and before long, he will be taking them to Italy on a regular basis.


The other issues I have is that when he goes to Italy, my ex goes out to see his friends in the evenings and will leave our children in the care of his mother. This is not acceptable to me as my ex's mother is not robust or vigilant enough to look after the children alone. I have much evidence to support this.


My other concern is that currently, we have not explained to my elder son (3 and a half) that his grandfather is dead. There seemed no need to alarm him and raise the subject of death when he has no regular contact with his grandfather. However, by taking him on this trip, of course he will ask where his grandfather is. I don't feel comfortable with introducing the subject of death to my son if not necessary. He has already been through enough trauma with his father leaving us.


Your help and advise is much appreciated.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hello - the website keeps asking me for my email address so you can email me your answers. Every time I type it in, the site tells me the address is already registered to the website. This is because I used your service before. However, I cannot see how returning customers can indicate their email address without getting this error message.


My email address [email protected]


Thanks, Philippa

Does he have them every weekend?
How often doe he wish to take them to Italy?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi Clare


Yes, he has them for a part of every weekend so it's either Friday night and all day Saturday or Saturday night and all day Sunday alternating.


He has only said he wants to take them to Italy this weekend coming - flying out Friday and returning Monday. However, I suspect that this will not be the end of the matter and he is hoping to take them regularly. He has hinted that his mother may be moving back to Italy to be with the disabled brother but that is not confirmed.


He has also said he wants to take them away on holiday for a week in the summer to Sardinia which I would not want him to do. But can I stop any of this?


Many thanks, Philippa

That is a great deal of travelling in one weekend with two very small children - and frankly I would have said too much air travel (but then I am old....) - so is simply neither realistic - nor surely necessary
The trip to Sardinia is a little less unreasonable - although again the trip does not seem designed to be suitable as a holiday for small children and is not the same as a trip to relatives
In addition it appears that you do not have a weekend with your children ever - and this may need to be considered.
I am sorry but realistically there is a good chance that he will be able to take the children abroad - if not this year (your baby is still very young) the within the next two or three years
I hope that this is of some assistance - this website may also be
Please ask if you need further details
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 34911
Experience: I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
Clare and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
We received your customer service inquiry, however, we are unable to respond to you because we do not have your email address. Please contact customer support [email protected] and provide us with your email address and a link to this question page so that we can help you.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi, I've now logged on and given my email address. Thanks, Philippa