Understood. It's sad that the children have to go through this heavy handed behavior from the mother...I cannot imagine how any parent could keep a grandchild away from his/her grandparent, and I will do what I can to assist.
In Texas, a court can authorize grandparent visitation of a grandchild if visitation is in the child's best interest, and one of the following circumstances exists:
- The parents are divorced;
- The parent abused or neglected the child;
- The parent has been incarcerated, found incompetent, or died;
- A court-order terminated the parent-child relationship; or
- The child has lived with the grandparent for at least six months.
Visitation statutes do not give a grandparent an absolute right to visitation, but only if one of these factors exists. Also, a grandparent may not request visitation if the grandchild has been adopted by someone other than the child's step-parent. Now that being said, if the mother is not giving you access to the child, then you're going to have to file suit for visitation.
"Emotional harm" is a legal determination for the court to make. It's possible that it could rise to the level of emotional harm that the judge may act to give visitation rights, but ultimately that's a matter for the specific judge in the area where the children reside, and as judges vary from district to district and even court to court, I can't begin to give you an idea about the strength or weakness of your case given where the case would be filed.
That being said, you need to contact an attorney in the city of the child that deals with custody / visitation cases. Go to www.lawyers.com or www.legalmatch.com to find an attorney in the area. You should be able to find one that will give you a free initial consultation and better advise you of your rights, any problems with your case, likelihood of success, how courts are treating cases such as yours in the area, and what you should do next.
Hope that clears things up a bit. If you have any other questions, please let me know. If not, and you have not yet, please rate my answer AND press the "submit" button, if applicable. Please note that I don't get any credit for the time and effort that I spent on this answer unless and until you rate it positively (3 or more stars). Thank you, ***** ***** luck to you!