An open letter to the father who won’t pay child maintenance

Any child maintenance payments made by you to me do not pay for my holidays. I don’t use YOUR money pay for my clothes, and your payments certainly don’t fund my minor prosecco addiction.

Your hard-earned cash doesn’t help me pay my gym membership or go into my savings account. (Which doesn’t exist.)

So when you stalk my Instagram and Facebook and see me making the most of my child-free weekends with friends – rest assured I am funding this. In the words of Destiny’s Child, ‘The shoes on my feet, I bought em –  I depend on me, if I want it.’

Let me spell this out for you – any money you pay to help with the raising of our children goes directly to our children. I’ve got two jobs to fund my lifestyle and pay for our children. It’s a simple concept you don’t seem to be able to grasp.

So you’re barking up the wrong tree when you bitterly tell me I should maybe “go out less” when I challenge you over your child maintenance payments.


So what does child support cover? What do I use your money for?

I admit, it goes towards my mortgage – the house which puts a roof over our children’s heads for 11 nights in 14. Their home. It also helps with the associated costs of running that home. I hope you will agree, they need a home.

What are the consequences of you not contributing towards their home? Let me tell you, it could result in us needing to find a cheaper home, in a less desirable area, and without a doubt mean a change in school.

Your money helps to put clothes on their backs, it contributes towards the laundry powder used to wash said clothes. It pays towards their school uniform which is down to me to purchase, and the school trips which I fund.

The money pays towards their swimming lessons that I take them to, because I want them to have that life skill, it pays for our son’s football coaching and matches. (He’s doing amazing by the way, you really should take the time to come and watch him – he would be amazed if you turned up.)

It helps pay for their birthday parties with their friends which your wife won’t let you attend because even after all this time she’s still jealous of you and I being in contact. It also buys the birthday presents, and thank god I do, because on our daughter’s fifth birthday, despite having her for two hours after school, you didn’t give her yet one single present. Imagine if I’d done the same as you, she wouldn’t have got anything for her birthday.

Your money helps to keep our children in Clarks shoes, because their feet blister if I buy anything cheaper.

It pays towards childcare, or did you think nursery was free when I used it one day a week so I could work? Do you think after-school clubs are free?

You should take a walk in my shoes one day and you will see your cash is key to providing the lifestyle our children deserve.

The law requires a non-resident parent to pay 12 per cent of your gross weekly income if you have one child and 16 per cent of your gross weekly income to the resident parent if you have two children. All I ask for is what this Government says non-resident parents should pay.

That’s it, 16 per cent. So it’s not going to leave you short is it? It’s not going to de-home you from your five bedroomed house. I wish I could pay 16 per cent of what I earn and have it cover an all-inclusive rate for everything my children need and want – wow I’d be rich. You see I spend pretty much every penny I earn on our children.

All I’m asking is that you properly declare your full earnings to the CMS, so the toothless organisation can inform you of the correct amount to contribute, and that when they do, you pay that amount on time. Not difficult. If only you would even discuss this with me, that would be a start.

Unlike a credit card, you can continue to choose to not properly pay for our children a) Because nobody knows and B) because the Child Maintenance Service (CMS) are so useless they aren’t even worth bothering with.

It’s too easy to hide with the CMS, you either run your own business and hide your dividends or you work cash in hand so you can keep it all. You’re just so clever exploiting a loophole aren’t you?

The British Government gives our children more financial support then you do. Think about that for a moment.

Not paying, not paying on time, or not paying the correct amount is the very last bit of control you have over me. You must feel so powerful when you hold it back for five days, because you can and there’s nothing I can do about it. What man you are.

No matter what happened between you and the woman you once loved enough to father two children with, you still have a financial responsibility towards your children. Just because you hate me, don’t make them suffer.

Your children are yours, they are not only yours when they are taken to your house for three nights in 14. They are not only yours when you are showing them off and proud of how much they look like you.

They are yours when they are with me, for 11 nights in 14 when you are nowhere to be seen because you won’t engage with them unless it’s on your time.

Dear father who won’t pay child support, you’re useless and I don’t know how you live with yourself. All I know is that I am trying to provide a life which is similar to what they would have had if you and I had not split up. It’s not their fault we couldn’t live together.

You failing to pay is just another parenting fail. It’s just as bad as failing to turn up to our son’s Christmas play after promising him you would be there. It’s on a par with refusing to take our son to his much-loved football on YOUR weekends. The list goes on.

I don’t expect you to do the right thing. You are a rubbish father.  Luckily, they have me.


12 thoughts on “An open letter to the father who won’t pay child maintenance

  1. This is so true..this is my life. I get £77 per month for my 2 children while my ex earns £90k drives an Audi Q7 and lives in a 300k house with landscaped Gardens, hot tub and trans Atlantic holidays every year. I have 80 per month to use for clothes shoes etc left after house and food bills have been paid. This is all my incomes including the child benefit


  2. Standing ovation. So tired of reading bleating about poor men being screwed over by the dreadful women who are bringing up their children. Your post represents (in my opinion) the far more common situation. I have brought up my 12 year old alone since she was 14 months old. Haven’t had a bean from her father despite having an open case with CSA and now CMS since 2013. They won’t chase arrears and they won’t enforce. Not fit for purpose.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The reality is that I think you are all barking up the wrong tree. Everyone (including my mother), makes this about money and this is the part that puts husbands off (it did my dad too who hardly paid anything to my mother).

    If I were a single father, I would happily pay for my kids. But that’s it. I would FOR them. I would not pay the money to the mother. If she asked me to pay for something, I would do it because then I know my children are getting the benefit. There are too many mothers out there that claim they want more and the children never see it.

    Shame on the father for not buying clothes for his children or other costs which he can directly do without declaring any money to the CMS.

    This is just a small summarised version of my opinion. Speaks volumes to both people though since we have a mother complaining and a father who won’t look after his children. In all fairness, we haven’t heard his side of the story!


  4. His side…what could his side possibly be? How could he possibly justify his own lifestyle in comparison. He had the children 3 night out of 14. He needs to pay for half of have the kids half the time. It’s quite simple. You are missing point that he is also not paying for the upkeep of his country of contributing to the system we all pay for too. I’m in total Support of this being changed. Children are very expensive to keep. All my wages go on them and there is nothing left for me which is exactly the way my ex husband has engineered it and it’s wrong. We should get together and start a petition against the people in the tax avoidance bracket as it’s not fair to just walk away from responsibilities like this…


  5. This is a very interesting read….

    Just a few comments I have…..

    1. This is all well and good but there are two sides to every story

    2. You say he only has them 11 nights out of 14, have you ever considered asking if he would like them more frequently? I’m sure despite your portrayal of him here that he might snap your hand off to get to spend more time with them. The 11 out of 14 nights appears to be an agreed / consistent arrangement. Why not offer for him to have them more?? Although given that your ulterior motive is money you probably won’t want this as it means you will get less from the CSA. Money is not the be all and end all of everything. There’s a really good chance you alone with two jobs and the maintenance money have more money than many two parent families so be grateful for what you have got. Also remember your ex partner despite him not living with you anymore still has to live. He has a mortgage to pay, bills to pay etc etc and all of those still need paying for when he has the children. You can’t expect him to pay twice for everything.

    3. You don’t know how much he earns. You might think you do but you don’t. So unless you have evidence to prove he’s lying about his earnings I’d be careful making statements as such.

    4. Another question I have – have you ever stopped him having the children on his arranged days. I hear so many stories of mums stating their ex-partners saying they don’t have the children, they don’t do this etc, yet when the Mum wants a drama or feels that way inclined she just decides he can’t have them that weekend.

    5. Have you ever tried to contact his new wife in a nice, polite, grown up way? You again paint a picture of this woman, who you undoubtedly don’t actually know yet again perhaps if you tried to communicate with her and not be petty and critical of her you might get somewhere.

    I could go on all day in response to this but I just have one final thing to say. There are two young, innocent children at the heart of this. They do not need to hear from you or their dad comments or criticisms about the other parent. It is pathetic and horrendous parenting. He is still their dad, just like you will always be their Mum. Nothing at all is going to change that. So get over the fact your relationship broke down, get over your woe is me attitude and think about what’s important. What’s important is your children and ensuring that they have a happy, innocent and enjoyable childhood. Not a childhood filled with memories of mummy and daddy arguing and mummy slating daddy all the time. Neither of you are perfect, no one is but do the best for your children without slander or criticism of the other. If you carry on you run the risk of denying them the opportunity to grow up with a father, and nobody wants that. You also run the risk of producing two teenagers and later adults who are bitter, negative and have a completely tainted idea of family, men and relationships.


  6. Well I’m guessing it may have been a man writing the last rant. I do hope you are not a self employed dad hiding his earnings because it’s written as though defending this type of person.
    My ex husband who sounds a lot like this one in their case earns 90k and I can prove it. CMS are pathetically slow and spineless.
    He chops and changes and has the children as least as he can to tell just into the higher bracket of CMS.
    He pays nothing for half the kids clothes.
    He has them the same amount of time as this lady and refuses to have them more even in the kids holidays and bank holidays.
    I have NEVER refused to let the kids see him as sadly I need to work to stay in my home and I reply on the childcare he provides and he knows this.
    My ex husbands girlfriend is scared that me and my ex might actually get on and she goes wild when she hears when we converse. Have the proof of this.
    Her ex gave her the run around and she has taught my husband how to pay me as little as possible(well done sister- I hope it makes you feel good)
    From experienced if it has come to the point that this woman has shared her life publicly it’s out of desperation at the unfair situation.
    There is no excuse for not helping to support your children and to not support your country.
    All you tax avoiders will hopefully be irradiated in time if we have our way.


  7. On the other hand, there are fathers out there who pay Child Maintenance towards their child and that person is me.
    I pay £441 per month, struggle to do things I should, and because my sons mother prevents me from seeing my son I also pay for courts fees trying to see my son, to which I haven’t seen properly for some 2 1/2 years. Having paid out some £20k to the courts.
    Now where’s the justice in that..
    Also my sons mother earns £850 per month, but gets £550 tax credits; CMA from me at £440 per month and CMS from her eldest child from her first marraige of £180. Some £2000 per month.
    Now the system is wrong…


    1. Yes Martin. I totally agree with you. You are the easy target for CMS because you are employed and more action should be taken against evil people who refused contact for no reason other than to control and be bitter and mean. The whole system needs an overhaul and prevent people who don’t deserve it sapping our system.


  8. There should be a proven legitimate reason to prevent a parent from seeing their child. My poor brother is in the same position and has never met his son and he has 2 children now and is a proven brilliant dad. There can be many reasons to prevent some seeing a child. There was no reason for this woman other than her own selfishness and I bet this is a common case


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