My aim is to raise enough money to cover the costs of financing solicitors so that I may finally meet my daughter.
About the project
2 years ago, my fiance and I were in the midst of our perfect love story. My finace was heavily pregnant and with the due date immenent we were both excitedly planning for the next chapter of our lives together. I had been helping to raise her daughter from a previous relationship and was estatic at the prospect of having a little sister to complete the family. Unfortunately, there has yet to be a happy ending.
Skip forward to 2015 and I'm currently a university student working 3 jobs to get by. When my relationship broke down, my ex-fiance stopped all contact and did not inform me of the birth of our child. Christabella, my daughter, was three months old before I even found out the birth date. Losing a battle to get my ex to respond to my messages and with nothing left to my life, I decided to better myself by joining a university course. Having always worked with children, I wanted to be a role model and so chose to study early years education with the view to eventually become a primary school teacher. Furthermore, knowing my ex may take some time to come round and let me meet Christabella, I wanted to ensure I was working towards being a father she'd definitely be proud of.
November of my first term, my ex finally sent me a message. For 2 days she was civil and I learned my little girl was healthy and happy, having being born on the 24th of August weighing 8lb 2oz with no complications. Pictures were sent and I got my first glimpse of Christabella, smiling up at the camera. All too soon the messages stopped and I was told I'd never meet my daughter.
I feel that is important for a child to meet its biological father but also after 9 months of supporting my ex-fiance through pregnancy and picturing the rest of my life with my family, I want to ensure Christabella is safe and happy and be there to support her in every way possible.
As many a student will tell you, student loans barely covers living costs. Despite my minimal budget, I still sought the help of a solicitor. Letters were sent, five mediation meetings were arranged and silence was my only reply. Due to the financial strain of paying £4500 in solicitors fees, with no progress made, I can no longer continue to study my degree full time. In September I will be transferring to an open university course so I can balance it alongside my teaching assistant job Monday- Friday and my weekend and evening bar work.
Only just managing to make ends meet, I am unable to afford the next step in my battle. Due to the complete lack of response, I will have to go through the high courts to find my ex's current address in order to have her sign documents stating she will appear in court. From here there will be a long string of negotiations and supervised visitation and the cost is high. This is where crowd funder comes in. This is the final opportunity to be a part of Christabella's life before she gets too old to see me as nothing but a stranger. My solicitors have agreed that my best chances will be before my daughter turns two next month and that postponing my case will not be looked upon favourably in court.
A lot of people have suggested I move on, my ex married quickly and my daughter is not without a dad. However I'm not looking to replace him, just add to her life as someone who loves her. Christabella is a gap in my own life. Her birth, her first Christmas, first steps, her first words; these are all moments that I will never experience and I think about them often. But I'm determined that I won't miss out on anymore, that I'll be another person to wish her good luck on her first day of school, that I can be there to help fill her life with happy memories as I take her to the park to feed the ducks and read her bedtime stories with all the voices and surprise her with presents just to make her smile. I want to be there as someone who understands her, as someone that loved her from the moment that she existed. It frustrates constantly that I am denied the right to be in my little girls life. That my ex can't see past our differences to allow me to be a role that is unique to me. I didn't know that you could miss someone you hadn't met until my ex left me with my unborn child. But I do miss her, and as she gets older and begins to figure out who she is, I hope that I'll be there to give her feeling of belonging, an understanding of half her family history. I never want Christabella to feel like she doesn't fit in, when her older sister visits her dad and Christabella begins to ask about hers. I never want her to feel abandoned because I wasn't allowed to love her and when she's old enough to understand, I want to be there to complete her life just as she will complete mine.
The money raised through crowd funder will be used to pay for my legal fees to continue my fight. Any help would be appreciated, thankyou for taking the time to read about my project.