16 answers

My Child and Daycare Pick Up

Hi - my x wants to put his girlfriend on the pick up list at my child up at daycare. I am against this. I told him that if they were married or lived together we could discuss it but since they are only dating there is no reason for it. He told me that since he has 50/50 custody then during his time, he can have anyone who he disires pick up. I am not sure of this. I plan to talk to the daycare but I think they cant get involved since we only have a 50/50 court order and it does not specifiy anything about pick ups, etc. Does anyone have any experience with this? Thanks!

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Hi J. H,

I would look at the wellfare of your child and find ways to get along with your ex. It only makes things harder for your little one. If you find this women is harming your daughter in any way then it becomes a problem and I would do something about it then. This is not about you or your ex it is about your child.

Happy New Year.

N. Marie

Hi J.- It doesn't seem right to dictate who your husband has pick up his children during his custody time. Maybe you should figure out exactly why this bothers you. It's valid that you aren't crazy about the idea but that's as far as it should go. My kids go to a charter school without buses. Every feild trip is put together with parent drivers. The volunteers are screened for criminal & driving history, show their liscense & insurance. That's it, each parent must trust in eachother or volunteer to drive themselves. Knowing that someone else is picking up your kids isn't really the problem, it sounds like it's the fact that it's your husband's girlfirend. Maybe try to get to know her a little and let it go.

Greetings J.,
Welcome to the hard world of reality of children. I am a mother, and I have been a Day Care provider as have been several of my friends. So I asked them for some of their experiances as well to give you.
1. When you say x are we talking married or boyfriend? This can make a differance in some states.
2. What does the custody papers say? If you don't have them then get on the ball and get them -- again that can make all the differance as well for you-as this is your child and important. Who has the decision power on the regular basis for child care? Because this can make a differance.
3. As a Care Giver, I stayed out of the family dynamics as much as possible so the child was in a stress free place. The Caregivers job is the child. I do know of mothers that have it court ordered that only parents or grandparents can pick up the children. I also know of one mother who had it that her child was only able to be picked up 1 day a week by the child's father.
J., if you have concerns,or feel uncomfortable then you need to adress those things. To have someone do a life scan is not that expensive and you can ask for that to be done. In this day and age with so many things going on with children safety is a must. If this is about your x starting over and you aren't then maybe you need to address that as well.It's always best to have the new partner be friendly because they are in the child's life, even if only part time. I wish you lots of luck with your situation and really hope that it works out for you and your child.I am glad that you have MamaSource to turn to.
Nana Glenda

Dear J.,

Who ever you or your child’s father designate to pick up your child should have the following:

· A valid drivers license
· A good driving record
· Proof of insurance
· Properly installed child car seat

Hopefully you both can agree on the above.

It sounds like you are still stinging from the pain of divorce and it kind of urks you that another woman is going to be a part of your child’s life. I would be happy that they are NOT living together.

If you have a 50 – 50 custody order, your former husband must be a pretty good/loving/decent human being and dad??? Try to take the high road on this one unless you feel your child is in danger. The better you get along with dad, the happier your child will be.


I feel for you! I have been there and done that! A few times. As hard as it is to let someone else do your and your ex's job, it is going to happen at some point. I thought it was only fair to meet my ex's new girlfriend first so we all met for pizza and talked while my daughter played on the play structure.

I think there should definitely be an agreed upon set of time and some rules for the both of you going forward. Like you can first ask him to put the shoe on the other foot and then ask him what he thinks a reasonable amount of time is before a significant other starts taking over some of the parents responsiblilities.

I know the situation is a bit different when it comes to daycare and babysitting. You both have to agree on the sitter if the child is going to be with that person for more than 3 hours, otherwise, you have first rights to watch your child if the other parent plans on being away for 3 or more hours.

Good luck! It does get easier with time, believe me.

I'm pretty sure he is right. During his time of custody he can have any adult he thinks is responsible help him. Unless you stated this in your custody agreement. Sometimes you can request that BOTH parents approve childcare for all times. But unless you did that, I think it's his call during his time.

We had this same dilemma in dealing with my stepson's mom, and we ended up spending money for court only for the judge to rule that it was OK for me to pick him up. I was the girlfriend and now I am the wife. Unless you know for sure and can PROVE that this woman is negligent or has harmed your child, I would say let it go. I know there are lots of emotions involved, but since he is your ex and you have moved on, he does have a right to make wise choices about pick-ups, babysitters, etc. If she were not a girlfriend but just a good friend that he can count on would you still have the same issue? As long as he has the best interest of making sure that your child is picked up from daycare in a timely manner by a responsible person, let him make those decisions. If it would make you more comfortable, ask him if you can talk to and meet the girlfriend...she may not be that bad! Having someone who loves and cares for your child is what is really important. Good luck with it all and may God bless you.

I think that is true if your ex and his girlfriend were married then maybe. But your the mom you dont have to put his girlfriend on the pick up list. what happens if they break up then you have to keep changing the pick up list. You & him have the shared custody so he needs to figure out how to pick up his child when its his time not his girlfriend. It is about your child and hopefully you bith can work something out. Is the girlfriend good to your child.
best of luck


My advice is to look at girlfriends/boyfriends and their relationship to your child in a holistic way. Don't rush into anything, take time to sit down and think/talk things out so that you both feel you're doing the right thing. A good starting point is to make rules that you and your ex BOTH agree on and BOTH follow in the same way. This can range from how long you/he dates someone before the child meets the new friend to when/if the person can pick them up at daycare. You have to assess what's best for the child but also be realistic about adult relationships. I'm curious if you've asked your ex if he'd be ok if someone YOU were dating picked up your child from daycare... he may have his own concerns if it were the other way around. Also, does your child already spend time with this person and have you met her? I would think you most definitely would need to at least spend some time with her to judge whether she is someone your child is safe with and who cares for your child etc (not that you have to like her otherwise). Good luck and let us know how it goes!

From the perspective of a daycare provider, I can tell you that about the only thing they can do is go along with his wishes unless you get some sort of court order against his girlfriend picking up your child. You would need to give the provider a copy of the court order. Even then it is difficult for the provider if the girlfriend does show up, but at least they have something in writing to back them up.
You need to think carefully about why you disagree with his girlfriend being able to pick up your daughter and decide if it's worth going to court and getting this denied. Also consider why he may think it is a good idea to have her on the list. It is good for parents to have several back-up people on their list to pick up a child in case of emergencies and his girlfriend my seem to him to be the most reasonable person for him to have on that list.
Since you have the 50/50 custody, I assume your child is around the girlfriend on a fairly regular basis when with the father. Unless you have some reason to think her picking up your child is going to be harmful, and have some information to back that up, you may have a difficult time getting a court to put a stop to it.
Consider whether you may have just a little bit of a jealousy problem with the girlfriend, or whether there is a rational reason for you to not want her picking up your child. If there isn't a good reason for you to object, you will be better off doing what you can to get along with her and your ex, in the best interest of your child. If there is a good reason to object, then do try to get the court order so that your child's provider will have the proper paperwork to back them up in denying the girlfriend picking up your child.

Don't do it! If it was your ex's new WIFE, then maybe you could make the exception, but don't do it for an ex's girlfriend, it's just wrong all the way around.

Hi J.,
Don't do it!

Hi J..
I've been through the whole custody thing too and I know it's hard.... especially when you feel the other parent isn't making wise choices for your child. The courts do everything they can to keep the child with BOTH parents. Believe me, I know!! I had proof of neglect, the father had no place to live, was living out of motels AND my son wasn't making to school...they (the court) still wanted to keep custody 50/50. After a very long battle (and proving the father was addicted to drugs), my son is with me and doing great. I mention this because someone said that if the father allows the girlfriend to pick up the kid that he may loose his 50%, I don't agree with this as a parent is allowed to do what they need to do to care for a child. Having a girlfriend pick up a child from daycare doesn't show that the father is an unfit father... in fact it shows that he's being responsible in making plans to have his child picked up on time and cared for until he can get home (I'm assuming, from work).
Okay, now on the daycare side. I am a licensed childcare provider and unless you have custody, we can not legally keep a child from his/her parent so make sure that you have your custody papers on file AT the daycare. Make sure that your provider knows when YOU have custody and when the father has custody. You can tell her that during YOUR custody that you only wish to have so and so pick up your child (this will reflect on the emergency card). During dad's custody, he could have whom ever he chooses pick up the child. The provider will likely have 2 contracts (one with you and one with dad). It does put the provider in a sticky situation (in between the two of you)and some providers would rather not be put in that situation and just ask you to find another provider, so be careful. I wish you luck and I hope that you and the father can come to an agreement.


I wanted to respond to you about this when I first saw this because I think it is such an important question and I have been on the side of the "girlfriend". When I met my husband (boyfriend at the time) I was young - 22 and my husband’s daughter was 3. Her mom basically did everything in her power to keep me from her daughter even though he had 50% custody. I can say in a nutshell that all it did was hurt everyone involved. Her argument was always that I was only the "girlfriend" and when I became the wife it would be different.....well 5 years later when we got married it NEVER changed and in all reality is never has (my daughter is 14 now). I don't know your situation but I know I wanted to be the girlfriend for a while to make sure I was being fair to everyone involved to make sure that my daughter (step) wouldn't have to go through another divorce. Even though I was the girlfriend I wanted my daughter to have a sense of normalcy in both homes. Her mom was already remarried with a baby on the way so she way. I was a teacher so I was done by the time she got out of school, so it made sense for me to pick her up. I like the fact that somebody asked you to think about why you don't want her to pick her up. If you have genuine concerns that is one thing, but if it is just difficult seeing your daughter with somebody else then this is the time to start to deal with those feelings. My step-daughters mom still 11 years later hasn't and it basically has caused horrible problems that greatly effect my daughter and all people involved. I am a mom now of 2 other children and I realize how difficult it would be, but (to be blunt) when you decided to get a divorce it was something you signed up for. I can tell you being on the other side that it is really hard to come into this situation and chances are the girlfriend truly cares about your daughter otherwise she wouldn't have signed up for this. I would be happy to talk to you more about other situations if you would like. I wish somebody would have talked to my step-daughters mom to let her know that I am not a threat, just another person in her daughter’s life who loves her.

Try to let it go. Unless she is an unstable or dangerous person then I see no reason why he can't have her pick up your child on his time, though I certainly understand having another woman in your daughter's life may be painful for you. I just think that after a divorce you should choose your battles very carefully and try to keep the peace as much as possible. It will be better for both you and your daughter.

I believe the 50/50 split is between you and your ex, and can't involve anyone else (until he is married to someone else). He's not allowed to out source his part of the %50. Talk to your lawyer to get the specifics, but he might lose his %50 if he's not going to take it seriously.

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