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please help. I'm desperate.

(20 Posts)
Surreymumtotwoboys Fri 10-Jun-16 12:21:26

I don't know if you know anyone who can help me with this situation: I am desperate! I don't know which way to turn. As a woman I have been controlled by this southern italian family. When I started my business, this is when it all became clear! I needed to be brave and break free.

I just need a break in my personal life. I'm backed into a corner by a controlling Italian family which I have escaped.

Breaking free from my domineering Italian Family to be an Independent Working Woman once more.

How the law completely works against me and my two little boys.

This is my story:

I have been married to an Italian for 14 years and from attempting to start my own business in 2015, I have realised just how controlling my Husbands Italian family have been.

My husband has a successful career when we first met but after just a couple of years of marriage, little by little, he became involved in his families affairs, which was basically renting out around 15 empty properties which his Mother had just left uninhabited for years. In Italy if a property is not rented, you still pay tax as if it were. So basically, money down the drain.

I went on to have two sons in 2006 and 2010. My husband was still working for his Mother and our money came in from her. I didn't think anything of it, thinking and told by my husband that this was normal. Afterall, she was paying him all the time, she didn't need to. If she thought it was wrong, she would tell him to get an independent job right? My husband told me it was normal. All finances were dealt with by my husband. Everything going through his bank account.

But over the last 2 years things have changed. My husband changed. We sold our house as we wanted to move nearer to my sons schools. Our house had been on the market for several years, and when we finally found a buyer, we had to move quickly. We moved into a rented house, which the landlord agreed we could possibly purchase after 2 years. It was ideal.

My husband told me that his mother was paying the rent on our new home and I had no reason not to believe him, but I did feel as though something was not quite right, but I threw myself into setting up my business and encouraging him to do the same. I so wanted us to be independent of his Mama. It had, by this time been almost 10 years under her rule. And by rule I mean I was told by my husband not to mention if we were going on holiday as she would disapprove and not to say this or that. I used to go along with it, but now, standing back, I can see how weird and wrong this was. We were ruled by Italy. And not just by the Mama but also by his Sister who would do everything she could to try and cause trouble, including, at one point interviewing my two sons about photos on MY mobile phone! I was essentially being chipped away at for 10 years with all these scenarios. I hardly saw my husband's family. They have never been interested in me. I always got the feeling that they were annoyed that he had married me and stayed in the UK.

The head of this Italian family is a woman who has absolutely no interest in her only two grandchildren. A woman who, when told by her son that I was pregnant again had a row with her son telling him that it was disgusting I was having a second child! They cost too much money! (This is a wealthy woman saying this).

So here I am, finding my own wings again. My boys both at school. I was a successful Recruitment Consultant back in the days before I got married and I was hungry to regain that feeling of earning my own money and independence. I set up an online Italian Deli Store and from this I have discovered a great product that I'm now attempting to sell to retailers.. when I have somewhere for myself and children to live. We'll move onto that later.

I really felt that something was wrong back in December. My husband seemed very stressed and started to get very agitated and short tempered with us at home. His blood pressure was high and he mentioned that he had issues with his Mama. I caught him several times, at the top of our road on his mobile phone sitting in the car. He told me he was arguing with her. He lost an incredible amount of weight too. It was all very odd.

Move on to May this year and following another evening of my husband shouting at us all about nothing I decide at that point, that the chipping away has gone too far and I crumble. He has to leave. He has to leave now. I can no longer stand being ruled by his family. I need my independence. I need to fly. What happens next is not for linked-in. But it's not good. It's a terrible scene that myself and unfortunately my children will never forget. My husband also appears to be breaking.

And that was 5 weeks ago. Since then, as promised, my husband has kept to his word which has always been 'if you are not with me, then you will have nothing'. This statement must be the same from his Mama to him. 'Turn your back on me, be an independent man and your inheritance will be finished!'

My solicitor has basically told me that unless I have thousands of pounds to fight, then I might as well give up.

I have unraveled a whole two years of deceit. It appears from his bank statements that his Mama has not been paying the rent and the equity from the sale of our house has gone. Our landlord called me a couple of weeks ago to say that my husband had told him to not tell me that he hadn't paid the rent since December! Basically, my husband doesn't appear to have paid any bills since December and there is little I can do.

Because he was paid by his Mama for all those years this just leaves myself and two sons completely high and dry. My husband has disappeared off to a friends sofa and that was five weeks ago. We haven't seen a penny for food etc. This is a man who seems to be so dominated by his Mother that he is prepared to see his wife and children evicted and in a B&B rather than stand up to her. For him it is easy. At any point he can run back to Mama and get his hands on millions and a very comfortable life.

But for me and my boys, there's a very different story.

Because he pretends to be depressed and ill (even though there was a video posted on Facebook last week of him at my sons school tug-of-war), he gives us no money. My solicitor has said that there is nothing I can do. Even though there are assets in Italy in his name, there is nothing I can do as I have no money to fight him. How can the law work like this?

The future for my boys and I is rather bleak. These two little boys don't know that in a few weeks time, their lives will come crumbling down because I wanted to become independent of the family money. A woman in my own right. Because I wanted to teach them that they need to work for themselves and not be dominated by the family inheritance. I want them to feel that excitement of working for yourself. The entrepreneurial spirit.

They have to leave their schools and friends, their home and many of their possessions. I am forced to put things onto eBay daily to raise little bits of cash for day to day living and there is nothing anyone can suggest. My husband has me backed into a corner. He knows that I cannot get a financial settlement in the divorce because he has left me with no money to fight that case. It is bizarre that because I have nothing I can not fight to get enough to put a roof over our heads.

Because the properties are in Italy no UK lawyers want to use them as payment upon settlement. And don't say Legal Aid. I don't qualify for that either.

Isn't being in Europe great! I thought that in cases like this, a good relationship between UK and Italy existed. Apparently not. My husband can just tell the authorities he has nothing as he has been paid by Mama for 10 years. This leaves my sons and I with nothing. My boys don't see their Father. He has not asked me to see them. He says he cannot help me with anything financial moving forward. By acting in this way, although he is hurting his sons, he gets to keep his family inheritance safe and that seems the most important factor for this Southern Italian Family.

My husband doesn't have keys to the house we are in until evicted. But last Saturday I found him at the property with the alarm company. They had let him into the house and ironically he was loading his family coat of arms into a van. No photos of his boys. Just the antique coat of arms. The demise of his immediate family. How sad is that? He didn't care about me or his sons. He just wanted to save a piece of wood. Maybe that's what this Italian noble family have for hearts? Wood.

For me, catch 22 is very much prominent. He gives me no money, therefore I have no money to fight for the money my sons and I are due.

Tiggeryoubastard Fri 10-Jun-16 12:27:30

You'll need to be a bit clearer - what nationality are this family?

Surreymumtotwoboys Fri 10-Jun-16 13:37:58

I'm english and my husband is Italian and his family are Italian

Tiggeryoubastard Fri 10-Jun-16 13:38:33

Ah Italian. Why didn't you mention that?

firesidechat Fri 10-Jun-16 13:44:22

So what do you want us to do again?

ninenicknames Fri 10-Jun-16 13:52:07

Tigger wine

purplefox Fri 10-Jun-16 13:55:11

Can you summarise?

CrazyDuchess Fri 10-Jun-16 13:55:39

Are you in England OP??

CrazyDuchess Fri 10-Jun-16 13:56:20

Ahhh sorry- yes I see that you are.

What exactly is the problem?? Is it the money??

gingerboy1912 Fri 10-Jun-16 14:02:41

I'm confused, what a massive headache it all sounds I would say you need legal advice op.

gingerboy1912 Fri 10-Jun-16 14:04:01

Oh I see your already have a solicitor. What is it you are asking Mumsnet?

nauticant Fri 10-Jun-16 14:08:32

OP is recently separated from her husband. He has no (visible) income or assets* and so she is unable to get any financial support from him or any settlement (without real difficulty). There are unpaid bills and it looks like the OP will have to move.

I suppose the answer is that the OP will need to build a life independent of her husband and his family.

* in the UK but has some in Italy but they are effectively out of reach

Fidelia Fri 10-Jun-16 14:24:00

Op, are you claiming tax credits? And have you checked to see if you qualify for housing benefit?

helpitsmyfirst Fri 10-Jun-16 14:24:51

Just a question but why are you so obsessed about blaming it on the fact him and his family are from southern Italy?

SittingAround1 Fri 10-Jun-16 14:31:24

OP I think you need to forget about your husband's (mother's) assets in Italy for the moment and concentrate on building your life with your two sons - this is what you wanted to do anyway.
Question : did your husband register your marriage and your son's births in Italy?
You need to be strong and independent at the moment. I'm sure you can do it.

purplefox Fri 10-Jun-16 14:45:01

What happens next is not for linked-in. But it's not good. It's a terrible scene that myself and unfortunately my children will never forget. Did you post this on Linkedin? hmm

SantasLittleMonkeyButler Fri 10-Jun-16 14:54:55

It sounds as though you need as much professional advice as you can obtain. Have you spoken to the CAB? Have you applied for any sort of benefits?

Does the business you started in 2015 make money? If not, or if it only makes a small amount, I'm sure you will be eligible for at least tax credits & some level of housing benefit.

Have a look at the government "entitled to" website (you can find it by typing that into Google) for some guidance.

Footle Fri 10-Jun-16 15:08:04

If you haven't changed any details of your circumstances, you are very easily identifiable from this post if it's read by anyone who knows you.

Pigeonpost Fri 10-Jun-16 16:35:35

grinat Tigger. I'm not following the LinkedIn bit either...

firesidechat Fri 10-Jun-16 16:41:55

I think the linked in thing is the op forgetting where she is posting and she meant mn.

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