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Petitioner or Respondent? Which were you and do you care?

(33 Posts)
WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Mon 06-Mar-17 06:55:51

My unreasonable behaviours are detailed and tell the facts as seen from my perspective: he was incompetent, the housework and childcare were not divided equally, there was no discussion of finances or of his future plans, he offered little emotional support and he has not made any attempt to retrieve the marriage since counselling.

His: she won't go on holiday, she won't go on walks with me, she won't have sex.

He thinks mine are too blaming and not factual enough.

Are there any implications of letting him be the Petitioner? (Apart from looking like a fuckwit?)

reapercrew Mon 06-Mar-17 07:05:42

I was in a similar situation, his reason were not only untrue but embarrassing but he got to the solicitor first, I just agreed tbh it just takes longer to be sorted & costs more if you disagree & argue it out. I found it was better for me to just agree & get it over with sooner. Nothing else comes of it in the long run

WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Mon 06-Mar-17 07:11:51

Thank you reapercrew It helps to have some perspective.

I'm cross about him being the Petitioner, because I have been the driving force in all of this, whilst he was happy to lie stagnant. OTOH might be quicker to let him get on with it.

Just read something which says - nobody is going to read the UBs and say "Yeah! You know what? I really was the frigid, humourless fuckwit you portrayed me to be"...

Hoping to stay "amicable" but I am learning there are many shades of that.

Does it really make much difference who instigates, I wonder?

Thank you for the quick response. I get obsessed with this sort of stuff.

blackteasplease Mon 06-Mar-17 09:22:05

As of a few days ago I am a petitioner!

It doesn't matter which you are but really just posting to remind myself I'm actually doing something about the EA fuck fuckwit.

MadameCholetsDirtySecret Mon 06-Mar-17 09:23:49

I was petitioner, but in reality it make no difference. Just be happy you are on the way to be rid of him.

WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Mon 06-Mar-17 09:24:16

Ha ha, blacktea I love your style and need to remind myself the same.
Do you think all Petitioners say that it doesn't matter which you are?
I wonder if being a Petitioner introduces a certain sense of control, which feels lost if you are the Respondent.

Argh getting hung up on it. Do I want it to be (a) my behaviours in response to his crap, that caused the divorce, or (b) his crap?

YES YES, at least we are doing something to start our lovely, fresh, free, new lives. flowers well done!

WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Mon 06-Mar-17 09:24:56

MadameCholet Thank you. I know I should be happy to be on the way but his petty nature is making me question the power balance.

nonameinspiration Mon 06-Mar-17 12:39:34

I originally petitioned then realised the petitioner pays so I let exh do it. He wrote vile mostly untrue things in the petition and I just accepted them. I really didn't care

cookiemon666 Mon 06-Mar-17 14:40:58

My stbxh is the petitioner, he wrote a complete load of bollocks as examples of my UB. My solicitor advised me just to let him get on with it as no-one else will see it. He has to pay the court costs now, so happy days really. Just waiting for decree nisi to arrive!!

BlueBlueSkies Mon 06-Mar-17 15:44:53

Ext was the petitioner, he would not let me divorce him as according to him he had done nothing wrong. I admitted to adultery with an unnamed person on an undisclosed date. I did not really care what I signed as I doubted anyone would ever know what was in those documents and did not think it mattered. We agreed to split the additional cost that a petitioner has.

The only downside of him being petitioner is that he let it drag on and on, did not sign and return documents etc. It took 18 months when it could have been over in 3.

That was all 10 years ago now and I happily remarried to a wonderful man.

TheLegendOfBeans Mon 06-Mar-17 15:57:58

The petitioner to a certain degree controls the timeframe of the divorce.

I was super speedy in my side of things and in turn XH was as he miraculously learned the ability to form-fill once I'd called his fecking bluff and hit him with the papers.

I was Petitioner as a) I was the higher earner and wanted to spend my hard earned cash on getting shot of him pronto
b) I wanted to list his nasty behaviour in black and white to show him that when he was accusing me of "crying over nothing" it was actually something and stood legally (as UB)
c) I met my now DH when I'd just started the process and thank my lucky stars that I was the Petitioner so I could just move on with my life promptly as a free woman and enjoy life for the first time not only myself but also with someone who loved me for just who I was, and not someone to be "improved".

What helped me the most though was keeping him fully sighted on every part of it though. He complained about my list of his UBs but I just listed them on the official document anyway.

nonameinspiration Mon 06-Mar-17 16:32:31

Cookie this exactly!

WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Mon 06-Mar-17 19:45:44

Thank you for these replies! I've told him he can be the petitioner. He said it doesn't matter too much. So I said that it clearly matters to him! Less to me. I warned him that he will have to fill in the forms and get things moving quickly.

He has shared the UBs and they are silly, really - as I said upthread, that I don't want to have sex with him, that I have withdrawn from family activities (might get him to change it to 'family activities involving the petitioner [i.e. DH]) and that I don't wish to holiday with him (in truth, we have a bursary which means it does not look good to be spending ££ on hols).

He is an idiot.

He hasn't considered that he will have to pay but he has his eyes closed to anything financial anyway.

nonameinspiration Sounds similar to my situation

cookiemon666 I suspect it is normal for them to write a load of crap. Denial! Yes, at least they pay the costs. Let's hope these multiple decree nisi arrive soon.

BlueBlueSkies They have to keep control to the very end, don't they? They are never the ones doing anything wrong. Ditto here. It's "mummy's plan" apparently. He's left saying "Who? Me?" Yes, you, you fool. Ah well. Very pleased you have found happiness.

TheLegendOfBeans This concerns me - the timeframe of the divorce. Hopefully he will see a vested interest in getting the funds divided up. Arghhhhh....

TheLegendOfBeans Mon 06-Mar-17 20:01:44


What worked for me was absolute transparency. I was desperate not to antagonise but please bear in mind we had no joint assets and no children; it's the financial order part that can drag.

If that part of the process looks like it could get sticky consult a solicitor asap. A friend of mine didn't and he thought he could do it himself (he was respondent).

After 21 months of both sides being dicks he finally got a solicitor. His XW calmed her demands immediately and it was all done three months later.

Mine took six months to the day.

blackteasplease Mon 06-Mar-17 21:28:13

I'm having to use UB because even though both of us have technically committed adultery (both of us after the decision to split) it's been dragging on so bloody long that more than 6 months have gone by!

Also who wants to bring another person into it unnecessarily?

Hermonie2016 Tue 07-Mar-17 23:23:35

I agreed to be respondent as ex threatened to unleash hell if I tried to divorce him.He agreed to move out on this basis so it was a means to an end.

I think the downside is he owns the timeframe and I don't know when I will receive documents so he had the "control".
He also listed awful behaviour on a draft which I challenged as was so destructive.

A few months down the line I am OK with it.He will feel happier that he can blame me but his next victim will soon learn the truth.

WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Wed 08-Mar-17 14:57:03

He has sent off the papers! I waver between feeling very excited about my new future and scared for what it holds. I didn't quite mean for the divorce to start so quickly, but it seems to be the reasonable thing to do.

TheLegendOfBeans Agree with absolute transparency. It has been tough - kind of ego massage and also a process of 'let it go' from my part. Best to approach with maturity and dignity. If he wants to divorce me for no sex, no holidays and no walks together, then so be it. Those things are important to him. Best not to antagonise, as you say, especially given the DCs.

It seems straightforward so far, and he seems to be taking my comments on board with how he should be with the children. He had started issuing sides and little hints about 'this is Mummy's plan' but in some ways letting him be the Petitioner demonstrates he is equal to the plan. I have a solicitor lined up, should it get messy. Gawd 21 months. I hope it is done quickly. Six months sounds more like it.

blackteasplease Sounds difficult! 6 months! Gah! Yes, exactly, who wants to bring another person into it, for the sake of it? I am done with relationships for the time being!

Hermonie2016 Thanks - sounds like you did it to keep the peace, too. Yeah. A means to an end. Sounds right!

Thank you for support, everyone. Very valuable. flowers

WayWithWords Wed 08-Mar-17 17:14:42

I'm the petitioner. Ultimately, it doesn't matter. For me the main thing is moving on with separation, getting finances sorted, and moving on with my life. Good luck OP!

TreeTop7 Wed 08-Mar-17 22:48:09

I am not the petitioner. Saves me a few bob!

appledumpling74 Thu 09-Mar-17 17:37:48

Ex was the petitioner, I was the respondent. I agreed to let him divorce me because in his head he could do no wrong and it just made life easier. It hurt to read what he said about me but it was the best thing in the long run.

WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Thu 09-Mar-17 19:42:17

Thanks everyone. Yeah, Waywithwords it doesn't matter as much as getting on with life. Yay to the single life ahead smile
Treetop There is that, too!
Appledumpling you must have been my husband's first wife grin

Was explaining to him earlier that just cos he is the petitioner doesn't make my unreasonable behaviours less valid grin In fact, never have they been more true! He is an idiot. A selfish idiot who puts himself before his children, even. He is an idiot in response to my behaviours. Which are in response to his idiocy. They are unreasonable behaviours, not personality traits.

Properjob Wed 15-Mar-17 00:06:41

Just wanted to say thanks this is a really useful thread flowers

WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Wed 15-Mar-17 08:01:53

Glad you found it helpful, Properjob, me too.
I am so angry at the moment, I can barely type. It's a shit process dealing with an incompetent arsehole. Hope you are doing better.

Properjob Wed 15-Mar-17 13:38:21

I'm only 5 days in and still reeling. Quite hard to find a solicitor isn't it? I'm waiting for people to call me back...have had some good advice though.
Not looking forward to angry phase of this cycle as stbxh thinks any of my anger is unreasonable behaviour whereas constant verbal put downs are apparently OK.confused

WeAreNotInKansasAnymore Sat 18-Mar-17 05:21:43

Properjob Did you find a solicitor? I picked one through word of mouth: find the most successful divorced person you know and ask them who they used. See a few until you find the most supportive.

I didn't think I would feel as angry as this but I suppose the husband you marry will be the one you divorce, I.e. his personality won't suddenly transform just because of the split. Mine is still an incompetent wanker.

Good luck with the next bit. flowers

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