I just learned my ex-husband’s nanny just left for a vacation in Florida. During the summer, we operate on a week-on, week-off rotation — we each have nannies for our weeks on. Next week is my week while his nanny is away. He fully expects, on her return, she will resume caring for our girls. I am not OK with this and told him she cannot watch the kids until she has been back and is symptom free for two weeks. He is angry and unwilling to take a week off (which was my first suggestion).
I told him I will not send the girls back to him given the increasing infection rates in Florida unless he either stays home or makes alternative arrangements. He of course threatened to call his lawyer. While I don’t want to spend money on legal fees, more than that, I don’t want our kids to get sick.
What will happen if I don’t send them back to him until she has been back for two weeks?
The short answer is people are being told not to withhold parenting time. However, there are always exceptions. If he is unwilling to acknowledge his nanny is putting all of you at risk, he is not acting reasonably.
If he files a complaint for contempt, it will likely be weeks before a summons is even issued and even longer before a hearing is held. You have not said he cannot see your children, you have drawn the line at having his nanny, who has chosen to take risks, caring for your kids. In these times, it is hard to know what the judge will ultimately do. So, make as many reasonable suggestions of alternatives as you can.
Offer to keep the girls for three weeks in a row (two of which are yours anyway) so she has her vacation and has time to quarantine on her return and then he can have them for the following two weeks (one of which would be yours and one his). Offer him the weekends during the three weeks you keep them, so he still gets to spend time with them. Offer him the use of your nanny during the week you are unwilling to allow his nanny to care for them. Offer to have the girls Facetime him each night. Be sure to put all of your suggestions in writing so that, if need be, you can show the judge that you tried to effectively co-parent with him and problem-solve in a way that kept your kids safe.
One of two things will happen, he will either accept one of your very reasonable suggestions, or he will file a complaint for contempt. If he chooses the second route, it is time for you to consider whether he can put their best interests first and maybe your summer schedule needs to be modified.