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Author Topic: Divorce...  (Read 480 times)

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Offline crazygirl1

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Divorce...
« on: January 03, 2014, 11:48:06 AM »
 :( I usually post on the HA forum, so you know that's really where my anxiety lies. I am posting here this time as I have a few times in the past because I am in a terrible marriage. I have a 7 year old daughter who has seen a few pretty bad fights between my husband & me and I am at the end of my rope. I don't want her growing up this way. I don't want to be married to this man anymore.
I need advice.
I feel like i'm in a bad position: I work as an admin. asst. without much pay, time off. It is stable though & the people are mostly friendly. I am at about 33 hours /week so I do not have benefits available to me and I currently am on my husbands. I owe $8k on my vehicle and $4k on my credit card. I have excellent credit but was just turned down for a 0% balance transfer card i was going to use to pay off that 4k.
I don't want anything in the house except what I need-clothes and her clothes &^ our 2 dogs and my daughter of course first & foremost, my daughter. I don't know what to expect. Do I HAVE to see an atty? do I just go file for custody of my daughter?? How?? I plan on staying in the house until I find a place in the same school district to rent that allows dogs. I don't want my dd to have to switch schools.
I just feel like crying and I am at work.

Thoughts??
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Offline Cuchculan

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2014, 01:39:02 PM »
My thoughts would be to first seek out some citizens advise place. Nearly everywhere has them. They might be able to get you help from other groups within the community. More about using what is around you. To figure a way out of this. They will be able to help you with the legal side of things as well. I am sure they would have numbers for everybody. Just explain that you don't know where to start. But I would plan everything out well in advance before I began anything legal. In my eyes, legal just means you are making it official. Couples can split up and not divorce. But in situations like that they almost always have some agreement between them that doesn't mean involving anybody in the legal business. It is only when you go for a clean break and want away for good and want to move on that legal stuff comes into play. It depends how fast you want to do things. Throw legal in there straight away and things might get ugly straight away. So until you know you are all sorted and can manage I would leave things be for now. Act like nothing is going on. You still have to live there with him until you find a place of your own that meets your requirements. Best to keep things civil for now. Until you have that place and are ready to up and leave. He will always be the father of your daughter. He may apply for visits. It is well within his rights. Have to think of these things too. Your daughter is young. But she is not stupid. She will know what is going on. When the time is right a nice talk to her would be the right thing to do. Never easy to explain such things to kids. Just do the best you can. Others might know your laws better than I do. The law in Ireland is a bit odd at times. I am more just saying use common sense for now. Until you have a plan and things are in place. Then get all legal. Because that's when things can become heated.
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Offline Quetzal828

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2014, 02:48:29 PM »
Divorce is a big decision that has huge repercussions on everyone involved. Before doing anything drastic, I would recommend taking your time and deciding whether this is what you really want to do. I write legal articles about divorce for a living and I've seen over and over again how it destroys lives.

Disclaimer: Of course, I know nothing about your situation, so my advice is kind of general here. If you're in a situation where you're in danger, then definitely seek out help from a domestic violence organization or someone you trust.

The best thing you can do at this point is become fully informed about the process so you know exactly what you're getting into and whether it's worth it. Many divorce attorneys offer free consultations where they can give you an overview. Depending on your situation and how contested it gets, you could be looking at years of court battles that take an extreme financial and emotional toll. Custody issues alone will last until your daughter turns 18. Many states have a presumption in favor of joint custody, which means your daughter will be looking at a split household. And divorce almost always spells financial disaster for both parties.

Every married couple has problems; everyone has fights and conflict. Studies show that, even in high-conflict families where parents are always fighting in front of their kids, sticking it out is better for your kids in the long run than divorce. A friend of mine who is a divorce attorney frequently says that, except in rare circumstances such as physical or emotional abuse, most people who go through a divorce simply wind up replacing the old, familiar problems of their ex-spouse with new and equally bothersome problems of a new one.

Even if you divorce him, your husband will always be the father of your child. You will be a co-parent with him for life. You will have to address conflicts and learn to cooperate, for your daughter's sake.

Another disclaimer: If you do decide to pursue divorce, definitely seek help from an attorney. Do-it-yourself divorces often end in disaster.
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Offline AncientMelody

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2014, 03:55:59 PM »
I don't have any advice to offer, just wanted to offer some support and good luck navigating this. Have you two considered couples counseling?
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Online tinam7

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2014, 09:24:11 AM »
Thank you, Q, for sharing all these very important matters that I have always believed.

CG, know you've felt this way a long time and yet here you are, still together, still struggling. We must be super psychologists to figure out how we can do the best for our children and preserve the father for them. You can vent here and maybe we can help. Very hard, no doubt, but for our children.......short of violence or danger, just about anything.
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Offline GenSec

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2014, 09:52:19 AM »
Studies show that, even in high-conflict families where parents are always fighting in front of their kids, sticking it out is better for your kids in the long run than divorce.

Not so sure about this assertion.

My own personal view is that the only people fit to decide whether your marriage is worth salvaging is you and your husband. If the love is gone, its gone. Sticking it out will only breed resentment and bitterness, which is not a healthy environment for any child to grow up in. One can talk about finances and what have you, but at the end of the day is it worth living the rest of your life trapped in an unhappy relationship that can do just as much - if not more damage - to a child than divorce and building a new life? Plenty of children have been left with serious issues after being brought up in a loveless, unhappy, volatile marriage. In fact i remember seeing a documentary study which showed that when mother's settle for unhappy marriages then their daughters often end up settling for them too, because its all they ever seen growing up. The sad cycle repeats itself. Your husband can still be a father (if he wishes to, that is - sadly plenty of men talk nobly yet fail to make the effort once the relationship with their partner is over) even if the pair of you are no longer together.


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Online tinam7

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2014, 12:06:59 PM »
Oh, we've been around this block a few times, GS, and you even came up with the name of the Dept. of Love a couple had to visit before they went through the portals of divorce.

A child is a change in life for all time. Why can't both parents moderate expectations and do the best each can to shield the child from the pain and sorrow of a shattered home? Put the child first.
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Offline crazygirl1

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2014, 11:25:38 AM »
Thanks to all of you who offer support. It means so much to me at this time.
My daughter is the single most important priority. I have passed up going back into my prior field of work which meant much more $ so that I could be here ( locally) for her when she needs to be picked up from school due to illness ( she's only 6-the littles go home sick sometimes) to be here to support her during homework after school, to get her home at a decent time after school ( some parents need to work late and far away so children need to be in aftercare sometimes until 6 pm) I like to get her home, homework done, time spent together etc, bedtime at a good time ensuring her a good nights rest. My salary is 1/2 what I could be making but I choose this for her. Yes children must come first.
We have not gone to counseling. I haven't even suggested it honestly because the love is gone, though I have tried tried tried every possible avenue but things work when 2 people make them work. We are not good parents together. Just this morning I was trying to discuss with him why he was yelling at me the other day in the street....story: he is currently laid off from work ( due to winter construction halts at times) We had significant snow the other day so he plowed the driveway. I had to work still so I went out to see how much longer he'd be because I didn't want our daughter inside alone for more than say 20 minutes while he took care of that stuff outside. He yelled at me, because I said he couldn't leave her alone inside. I went late to work because I didn't want her alone inside. This morning I'm trying to discuss why he shouldn't leave her alone for more than 15 minutes like that, that he shouldn't do it repeatedly...in to check on her back out to work, in to check...he says I'm just being a B*(^%. Doesn't see things the way I see them-that our child comes 1st. Clearing off the walk needs to wait. Driveway needs to be done but the rest-wait. She woke up while we were talking about this. While we weren't even shouting or yelling-she was upset: kids know. It breaks my heart & I as her mother have to stop this, for all the reasons GS mentioned. I am responsible for her future decisions regarding how people treat her. She is learning by my example and my allowing him to talk to me the way he does, to leave the room while I am in mid-sentence, to completely disregard what I say...this is teaching her that it's ok for a man to do that to her. So my decision is made. It is a matter of how to proceed now. With my low salary...things to pay off...I have to wait until those are taken care of I guess.....
I am not sure how he will be with her when the dust settles: maybe he will be a better father with me out of his picture, as I know I will be a better mother with him out of my picture. Yes he will always be her father and there will be visitation and such. I am prepared to offer as much time for them to spend together but with no overnights until she is ready. She has never been a sleepover kind of child-she is still very much in need of her bedtime routine.
The way I see it is that with us apart-there will be no fighting, no scariness for her in how he gets when he gets mad at me.
A week before Christmas we had an argument. He had other things to do rather than bring down the decorations from the attic so she could decorate the tree. He yelled at me, cursed at me, scared our dogs so bad they could hardly stand. And our daughter. He said to her "Bye - have a nice Christmas" and left while she clung to me screaming and crying out of fear because his yelling & cursing scared her so badly. I called his sister because frankly I didn't know of anyone who could make him see what he did to his child...how wrong his behavior was...I do not like ppl to see our drama, but I needed help. She was floored by his behavior in front of a child-his own child.  After that he apparently felt badly (days later) but said it was my fault. With us apart-there will be no more of that. There is nothing a mother wont do for her child.
Its a matter of how to go about this. How to quickly save the $ I need and to tell him.
I wish there was an atty here.....
I just keep looking forward to the future-a time where I can take her to pick out her Christmas tree, to decorate it, to make the childhood memories she deserves. A time where she feels safe & secure & has a good relationship with both of us.

I read that what GD said about how some say its better for kids even if parents fight-to stay together. I read that. I do not believe it is true. I feel the lesser of the 2 evils here ( us together with horrible fighting or apart) is us apart. I believe she may never be as secure as children who come from happy marriages, but there inst anything I can do about that. I can only do my best. My best is to make sure she knows she deserves to be treated respectfully in relationships, to be with someone who supports her not tears her down.

So now that I've written a book here....what is the next step-after paying down what I need...do I file for custody or see a lawyer 1st? Do I offer him mediation so that we can save $ ?
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Revelation 7:17
 ... and God will wipe every tear from their eyes."

Offline Quetzal828

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2014, 01:09:04 PM »
Quote
what is the next step-after paying down what I need...do I file for custody or see a lawyer 1st? Do I offer him mediation so that we can save $ ?

The first step is definitely to see a lawyer. Find someone who offers a free initial consultation. Also, if you're looking to save money, find a lawyer who focuses on collaborative law or alternative dispute resolution in family law. Mediation is good way to keep costs down, but it may not work if your husband decides to launch into battle against you.

The lawyer will also be able to advise you on how to make things work, money-wise. If your husband's got a lot of income, there's a good chance he'll have to pay for a big portion of the attorney fees at the end.

In all likelihood, you'll either have to file for divorce or pursue a separation agreement before you can do much else. Again, a lawyer can walk you through this.

Message me if you want more help on finding divorce lawyers. I'm familiar with a number of good directories that might be helpful.
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Offline crazygirl1

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Re: Divorce...
« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2014, 01:34:10 PM »
Well I am about a year out from having these things paid off or down..I'm thinking. The more $ I have saved during this time the better as well because I plan to just give it all to my husband-furniture, house, etc. I plan to have put away what I will need for new furniture & household necessities. I need very little. My dd and dogs.
I am of course concerned about custody of my daughter. Normally the mother gets custody. Husbands sometimes threaten taking the kids I have seen that (my sisters ex husband threatened her that he would take their children, in the end she got full custody)and my husband once said to me that he would get custody of my dd.
He works in construction and during good weather works more than 40 hours/week and those jobs are about an hour commute at the least. I can't see any judge giving custody of a 7/8 year old ( she will be 7 soon) to a father when the mother clearly has more time to keep the child out of after care. In NJ-- I was under the impression that unless a mother is proven unfit, she will most likely get custody if she wants it. I am obviously not unfit, though he knows that is where to hit to hurt me-to threaten taking her away from me...This is why custody if my #1 priority.
So no my husband does not have a lot of $, good weather he does well, bad weather like now he is on unemployment. Until the weather breaks.
I thought atty's required retainers? I was hoping to avoid that but I think in mediation as well I'd need a few thousand...
What is collaborative law?
I don't see much to fight if I say take the house & everything in it, as well as the small savings in our joint accounts. I just want the child ( & dogs) and I will agree to a very flexible visitation  schedule ( as his schedule changes drastically at different time of the year) providing he does not pursue overnights until she is ready.
Losing my health benefits when we split is going to do wonders for my HA :(
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Revelation 7:17
 ... and God will wipe every tear from their eyes."

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