My name is John I'm 28 years old and from Nottingham in the U.K my son Dillan was born in August 2003 so I dis not get the automatic parental responsibility that started getting granted in late 2006 even though I am on the birth certificate and he has my Surname.
me and his mum lived together for 3 years and we split in febuary 2006 and immediatley contact was very difficult to arrange due to her getting a solicitor involved.
I did not get any legal advice as I was working and couldnt get legal aid so I contacted Families Need Fathersand they gave me advice on responding to theletters from Catherine's solicitors.
Eventually Catherine started letting me see Dillan twice a week and this was fine and I even used to stay over at her house and baby sit him if she went away for the night.
In october 2006 i was violently Assaulted and suffered a Traumatic brain injury resulting in me being in a coma for nearly a fortnight and being in hospital for two months. When I came out of my coma I didnt even recognise pictures of Dillan or know who Dillan was, this was due to post traumatic amnesia
when released from hospital catherine asked me if she could sell a story to a magazine telling the story about brain injuries as we still got on for the sake of Dillan even though I made it clear to her we shouldn't really get back together dueee to me still recovering .
she sold a story headlined My boyfriend forgot how to love to NEW magazine. the story basically made out we had split in 2006 but had got back together and now things were great between us.
the magazine story was published in april 2007
in december 2007 my contact with Dillan was stopped by Catherine and had become very difficult in the months leading up to that.
her solicitor at Tallents in mansfield threw every obstacle at me and my Solicitor at Andersons in Notingham I had to fight for my parental responsibilty and as it was alleged I had been violent in our intial relationship and pre injury also it was alleged that after my head injury I had become unpredictable and Violent as some brain injury patients do, but in the 12 months of out patient care which cognitive therapists, occupationa therapist etc this had never been an issue with me.
my solicitor found a Pyscho therapist that specialised in domestic abuse aswell as brain injuries and he did an assesment on me that stated that in his opinion though I had slight brain damage it was not noticable and caused no problems for me and that I posed no risk for unsupervised contact with Dillan.
My solicitor then got me a barrister that put us in Touch with Carter Browns Associates who offered suervised contact at their center so tehy could make an assesment on my suitability to see dillan unsupervised. I did the 6 weeks and they reported taht I should see Dillan unsupervised while undergoing mediation with catherine so we can buil the contact up together and adress any issues we may have with each other.
this has worked out amazingly and I can still rerember how apprehensive Dillan was when he first saw me at the contact center and this saturday when I ropped him off at his mums he ran off to another room and came back all sheepish and stuck something in my back pocket, when I looked at what it was I saw that it was a smily face with "TO DAD LOVE FROM DILLAN"