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any advice? stbx was secretly recording me during our conversation/row

(53 Posts)
todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 13:37:17

Any legal advice please? I spent 30mins in a queue on the phone to the cab yesterday and call got cut off. Waiting for a colleague to pass on some recommendations for solicitors.

H walked out on my a 2 dc at end of august. Later found out he had been having an EA with a mutual friend.
We have spent last 3 months being civil and having a routine set up for the dc. He see them a lot-daily. But that is because i would struggle to cope around my full time hours and the fact youngest dc is only 20mths and has ongoing medical issues (possible cf) after being born at 29 weeks.

We have a row usually every 3 or 4 weeks. Usually after i find out he has been decieving me. OW has a dc of same age as our eldest and i feel he is putting her dc before ours at various times. I have refused OW and access to our dc. I yhink she is an awful mother (doesn't strap her dc into car at age 5! Allows my stbx to stay over after only a few months of kicking her dc's father out. The list goes on).

on Saturday he came over as agreed. I thought it was strange that he kept trying to pick a fight by bringing things up about his new relationship. He then announced for the first time that he has been sleeping with her all along.
i got angry. Tried to get him out of house etc.
He then announces that i need to be careful as he is recording me and shows me his phone.
we have a big row during which he keeps saying that i am unstable and going to hurt rhe dc. At one point he even start screaming that i am hurting the dc. They weren't even in the room! It takes me over an hour to get him to delete it.

So what do i do? Legally? Do i have to keep him having access/contact like before? Friends are advising i change the locks etc and allow him not contact. But i am scared he has a plan and that if i do anything that will go against me legally, he will have more ammunition as it were.

I dont understand his motivation for this. He says it is because he is worried about the way i lose my temper in front of kids. But i feel he deliberately set me up. He pressed record before he came in the house and the goaded me into a row.

Sorry. Very long. Thanks if you are still reading.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 13:39:30

So many typos blush. I promise i am not as illiterate as that reads.

MrsPigling Tue 02-Dec-14 13:44:19

I think you're right, it sounds very much like he pressed record then goaded you. sad

Is there regular scheduled access? or is it more informal? and would it be possible for there to be a third party (friend? relative?) there at handover in the future?

Starlightbright1 Tue 02-Dec-14 13:50:24

There are certain things you can do.

You don't have to let him in your house. Remove yourself from discussions. Tell him if he wants to talk about the children communicate through email but you need to remember you will have a copy of any threats but read and reread anything you write before you reply. Make sure you are professional in terms of what you reply if that makes sense.

As for contact. The children have a right to see their Dad. If there on no safety issues denying contact will go against you. AS for OW sadly while I can understnad why you don't want her around your children you can't stop it. Your EX is responsible for your children during that time. If you find out your children are been driven around no seatbelt different matter

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 13:52:05

It's informal but he does have them overnight at his dad's ine day in the week. He also helps me get them off to their different childcare/school in the mornings as they both need to be in 2 places at once and i need to be at work on time (teacher-promise not English).

I live too far away from family. My friends aren't really in a position to do that.

I let him come to dc2's hospital appt today. I refused at first but so worried as to what he is up to! He says there is no plan and that he wouldn't want or be able to be the the rp.

I have it in my head it is OW's doing. She is a manipulative cow and i think had the whole 'relationship' in her radar from the moment she met our family. She was his shoulder to cry on when our lives were falling apart (mil died, dh had a stroke, dc2 very prem).

People keep telling me stories of mothers who have lost residency after the ex has set them up. sad. I just don't want to allow him the opportunity but at the same time don't want to do anything that will go against me.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 13:54:34

Star can i not insist that she isn't involves for a period of time? It's a long story but she is also involves in a criminal investigation for child abuse (where she is the apparent victim-but i have reason to believe it is all bollocks and made up at a time she thought she was losing my stbx).

I thought i could insist on 6mths to a year?

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 13:55:34

Oh. She also refuses a crb check at my ex's business (teaching children).
I don't want her anywhere near them.

titchy Tue 02-Dec-14 14:48:06

You have absolutely not right to dictate who he can introduce the children to. His 'rights' are the same as yours. How would you like it if he suddenly started dictating who you could have round when the dcs were there.

The only exception to that is where there is clear evidence of her abusing them in which case you have to safeguard them. But otherwise please bear in mind you and he are equals in the eyes of the law regarding the children.

Assuming the house is in your name only you do not have to allow him into your home. You DO have to let him see the children, regularly, at a place he deems suitable.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 15:41:37

Harsh titchy. I never said i wanted to stip him seeing the dcs. But i am concerned after the stunt he pulled on Saturday. I have done nothing wrong. I certainly don't think i deserve to be wary and anxious about his motives.

As for the OW. Like i said, i have lots of reasons to not want her near the dc. In fact, stbx has agreed (i actually think he too has doubts over some of the bullshit she is spouting). But i have read on tgreads on here, that i am actually allowed to ask for no contact between our dc and the OW. At least temporarily.

Is this not the case? Surely there is an argument for emotional wellbeing?

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 15:45:45

And the house is in both of our names. But our bank statements show that for years he hasn't contributed anywhere near half of anything.

I do realise that legally he is entitled to half. But surely he can't demand this now?

Him recording me secretly. Is this not something that would disturb anyone? It's really shook me up. He was lying to make me look bad and recording it. He then denied anything i bought up (whilst recording). Do i have no legal protection confused ?

FrauHelgaMissMarpleandaChuckle Tue 02-Dec-14 15:46:43

Go to a solicitor and get proper legal advice.

Do all handovers on the doorstep with a cheery wave.

Do not engage, do not let him in your house.

You can't put restrictions on who he can see or where he can take them and what he can do with them. The thing is, if he's a good enough father for you to trust with the kids, then you have to trust he will do the right things when he has them. Otherwise, yes you can go to court and try to get restrictions put on his access - but unless you have really strong evidence, then the court will most likely allow him access.

And as to asking for no contact between your kids and the OW - unlikely. As I said, if you trust him to have access to the kids, the assumption is he's trustworthy in what he does with them.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 15:59:05

Oh this has really depressed me sad. I honestly thought i had read on here that i could insist on 6mths to a year with OW having no contact.

Yes he is a good dad. But at the same time has always had rose tinted glasses when it comes to some of the idiots he has had friendships with over the 17 years we have been together. He has lost £1000s in the past as he can't see what everyone else does. There have been many 'I told you so' moments. Unfortunately, i can't think of a single time i didn't call it right. He is a terrible judge of character and easily swayed by a sob story.

Thank you all for your responses. All so very different from most of the rl ones! I was really hoping to keep things amicable and friendly for the dc. I just can't see past what he did at the weekend.

WannaBe Tue 02-Dec-14 16:05:19

Some people ask that their children not have any initial contact with a new partner but this will generally only happen if the ex is agreeable. Otherwise you have no rights to tell him your dc can't have contact with her.

With regard to recordings, iirc recordings aren't admissible in court. But your best bet is to keep communications that are likely to become emotive to text/email, that way you have a written record of all that has been said.

I appreciate that you are bitter about the ow, but making statements such as that you suspect she is lying about being a victim of child abuse etc will not paint you in a good light. Yes she may have been an ow in your marriage but to accuse someone of lying about being abused esp if they are part of a criminal investigation is pretty low and most women on here would take a very dim view of that.

Focus on your children and their relationship with you and their father and leave the ow out of it.

WannaBe Tue 02-Dec-14 16:08:36

". I honestly thought i had read on here that i could insist on 6mths to a year with OW having no contact." why should you though? when you start a new relationship will you be happy with your xh insisting on the timescale before your children can have contact with a new dp? The fact you are no longer together means you have both moved on and are free to introduce new partners to your children. Enabling an ex to dictate how and when that can happen just takes away from the fact that you have moved on and in many cases allows ex partners to retain control. No good can ever come of that.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 17:37:28

Actually, afyer 17 years together, it's going to take more than a few weeks for me to properly 'move on'. He is doing a very good job of making sure he speeds up the process though.

I have reread what i have said, as i am a bit disappointed by the slating i am getting here. I wish i had never bought up her disclosure to him (which i still strongly believe will 'disappear' after a few more months. Apparently no one in her life knows anything about this. In fact, he has admitted after lying and saying her went to the police for her, that he knows absolutely nithing more than what i have stated here).

I can see i am bitter. Does that not make me human? And as for the waiting until she actually puts them in the car without the proper restraints-wft? She has already transported my dc (at the time 4) around a city without even a booster seat. This was before the affair was admitted. I made my wishes known at the time. He agreed back then.

I am going to back off now. I was directed here for advice via fellow mnetters who thought someone may be able to offer some guidance as to where i stand legally after he secretly recorded my reaction to him baiting me. I honestly thought there may be a legal issue with him doing this. I guess i was wrong.

All i am now is a little confused and hurt. But i guess that's what happens when a third party is honest.

The kids will NOT be having contact with her. Not until my concerns are addressed (or more hopefully she falls off the face of the planet). And as for the comments about if the situation was reversed-firstly, i think the fact he cheated and decieved me with this woman for over a year whilst my dc was in icu is a major factor. Secondly, there is no way i would introduce another man into their lives for months and months. They have been through enough.

Thanks for your honesty.

FrauHelgaMissMarpleandaChuckle Tue 02-Dec-14 17:40:27

Unfortunately, the law doesn't care that he cheated on you.

Seriously, get to a solicitor and get some proper legal advice.

Get everything tied up legally and dot every i and cross every t so he cannot hold anything against you.

But be aware. Some of the advice you read on here, or some of what you think is how it should be, is wrong. The only advice you should take is that of your solicitor.

prh47bridge Tue 02-Dec-14 17:47:38

The kids will NOT be having contact with her

Unless there are child protection issues (and at the moment you don't appear to have any evidence of that) the courts will not support you. If he goes to court over contact this could make you look unreasonable which will not help you.

where i stand legally after he secretly recorded my reaction to him baiting me

He hasn't broken any laws by doing so. However, that doesn't mean he would be able to use it as evidence. And if the recording shows him baiting you deliberately that certainly won't help him.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 18:02:59

If he agrees now, can i get it 'official' that i want temporary non-contact from her? I just can't see in any way how it would be of any benefit to my dc. They are going through an awful time and seeing their dad shacked up with a woman they saw as a family friend is only going to make things worse. I know he will agree on this. At least now. Until she gets on the case. She already described her dc and my dc as siblings to my dc. This was a few days before he came clean. My poor dc was really upset by this. Morally-she is a cunt.

I would feel a lot happier knowing we had an agreememt that was 'official' in place. Is that even a thing?

And i have been more than reasonable when it comes to him seeing his dc. He sees them daily and i try to let him be involved in all 'family' events like the run up to xmas and our past traditions. I feel like it is him that has jeopardised that with his secret recording.

Really? Legally you can record people without them knowing? confused. I made him delete it. I was worried sick as to what his plan and motivation to do it was. Now I'm wondering if i should have left it. He was very probing with his questions and kept insisting i was hurting the dc. Threatening to take them away etc etc.

How is this the allowed?! It doesn't matter if it isn't admissible in court. He could have done a lot of damage with that?

Thanks again for all your honesty and advice. Been an awful 5 years and it just keeps getting worse. I just wanted to keep things stable for the dc.

FrauHelgaMissMarpleandaChuckle Tue 02-Dec-14 18:06:41

You're calling her a cunt? Really?

WannaBe Tue 02-Dec-14 18:10:41

you haven't had a slating on here op, but reality is that some of what you're suggesting is based on ((understandable) emotional reaction to your xh's affair. Not wanting the children to be introduced to another woman before a certain time is understandable but all people are trying to point out is that this is a two way situation in that if you start dictating how your children should be dealt with when they are with their father then you will also be creating a situation where he will be free to do the same if and when you find a new partner.

with regard to the recording I can sympathise because I have been there, not quite the same situation but certainly one where I was recorded and the revellation does leave you feeling violated. But given that you made him delete the recordings you wouldn't have any case legally, but legally any recordings wouldn't be admissable in court.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 18:32:26

Frau? Really? Really? You are going there?

I can call her what i want. But yes, the woman that broke up two marriages (i realise it wasn't just her-but she left her dh first whilst his dad went through terminal cancer), upset 3 dc under 5 and started all this off whilst my youngest spent 2 months in hospital is most definitely a cunt.

Now i am really pissed off. Or maybe thats the 3 days with no sleep as the dc are ill. And I'm on my own dealing with it.

But thanks for your concern over the CUNT!

FrauHelgaMissMarpleandaChuckle Tue 02-Dec-14 18:43:24

He's the cunt.

But if you continue to be this angry, having big rows every 3-4 weeks, for hours at a time - you're playing right slap bang into his hands.

Waltermittythesequel Tue 02-Dec-14 18:46:08

Ok, taking the emotions out of it, which we as strangers can do and it's understandable that you can't;

You absolutely, categorically cannot stop him from spending time with her while he has dc, that means that she will spend time with the dc.

But i have read on tgreads on here, that i am actually allowed to ask for no contact between our dc and the OW. At least temporarily

If you read this I'm fairly certain that it would have been corrected immediately. It's completely untrue.

The recording - what is it that you want to happen about it? He can't 'use' it unless he is going through a legal process for access/full PR and even then it's shaky. Courts generally don't like this sort of thing.

Call her a cunt until you're blue in the face! smile I can't imagine you feeling any differently about her but, unfortunately, her being a cunt doesn't mean that there's a safeguarding issue for your dc.

And by that I mean danger of abuse etc. not lack of seatbelts.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 19:06:06

Seriously?! So she can endanger their lives and I can't legally do anything about it?!

I'm sorry, but this has to be wrong. Surely!

Btw. He hasn't insisted that the dc see her. He has as far as i know respected this. I can't remember why i brought all that up now. It isn't relevant? Not directly.

It was the secret recording and baiting i was posting about. I think you've answered my questions on this. I'm a bit surprised that this wouldn't be frowned upon more tbh. My the courts and people in general. I feel completely uneasy about the whole thing. Reactions from people that know us are all shock even his own dad. Their next question is why? Has he a plan? Be wary, don't let him in etc etc. I thought there would be some protection from this, but i guess just the fact it can't be used in court is enough. I still feel he could do a lot of damage with the lies on there if he had got away with it.

todayiamfat Tue 02-Dec-14 19:10:42

Frau-we don't normally have rows for hours at a time. I normally kick him out if he is here.
The last one was when he had stopped our dc from attending something she loves so that OW's dc could attend instead.
Another was when i received email receipts from itunes that he was using my account to pay for things for her and her dc! Yes-my money!

Never has it been unjustified imo. It has only been 3 months. I think I'm doing pretty well actually. I took 3 days off work over the whole thing and have to work with the tosser!

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