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Where to begin

(10 Posts)
Lizzy1975 Tue 16-Apr-13 21:14:31

My husband and I are separating - his choice, a bombshell. We have an 11 month old daughter and I have just returned to work full time. My husband started his own business last year, so has no income as such but supplements this with part time work, which pays the (his) mortgage. I pay for bills and childcare. As my salary is around the 40k mark I am pretty sure I am not entitled to any benefits. I have no idea what to do - we are in Central London so I am sure full time childcare + rent will be pretty much the whole of my salary, and I just don't know how I am going to manage it on my own, or where to start. I should add, I do own a studio flat which is tenanted, it's not at all practical for my daughter and I to move back there for a number of reasons, but am mentioning as this will also impact on any benefits I may have been entitled to, I would imagine. The rent covers the mortgage and there is a very small income from it.

Sorry for the long, factual post. I am devastated, but I feel like I have to be utterly practical for the sake of my daughter and to stop myself falling apart. I guess what I am asking for is any practical suggestions of where I go from here, please. Where do I start.

Piemother Tue 16-Apr-13 21:21:12

You need to look at a benefit calculator asap. You may be entitled to working tax credit toward Childcare.
You also need a solicitor asap.
Sorry I don't have more than that but couldn't read and run

foolonthehill Tue 16-Apr-13 21:53:59

You may also be entitled to either a share in the equity of your family home or to come to an arrangement by which you and your daughter can stay there. You do need to see a solicitor ASAP to find out what is possible/reasonable. i also suggest getting hold of the Which guide to divorce and splitting up which will make sense of the practicalities and help you work through the issues.

Sorry that you find yourself in this position.

Piemother Tue 16-Apr-13 22:08:48

And don't let your ex fob you off either. I don't see how it can end up with you being totally financially responsible for your dd.
meanwhile you need to research local Childcare options - a child minder might be cheaper and also can you get Childcare vouchers through your employer?

queenofthepirates Tue 16-Apr-13 22:11:45

I was in your shoes in London with a 4mo child. I decided to move to cheaper part of the UK, let out a deep breath and relaxed. Money worries disappeared and we could live on my income from a part time job plus tax credits. It may not be practical for you but if it is, it worked well for us.

CookieDoughKid Tue 16-Apr-13 22:41:42

Hello! smile I'm waving a big hi to you.
I'm a single mum with two under 5 and work in the city full time. I recently hired a live-in nanny/au-pair. From Italy. She is the BEST help ever and literally changed my life. I go to the gym, have a life, work my hours and live a little. And she costs just £80 a week (which saves a huge chunk in childcare fees although I have my kids part time in private nursery). Do you have room to make an au-pair a consideration?

Piemother Wed 17-Apr-13 03:18:17

Just come back and re read the op. if ex makes enough to pay the mortgage he will have to pay maintenance which is 15# if his income. I wouldn't move out until you see a solicitor for advice.

Lizzy1975 Wed 17-Apr-13 07:42:32

Thank you all - feeling very do-able this morning, will look into your suggestions x

lostdad Wed 17-Apr-13 10:54:02


As hard as it is - do your best to keep things amiable and hope your ex does the same. I appreciate that at the moment that may seem impossible but I promise you it will, in the long run, be better for you, your ex and most of all - your daughter.

In an ideal world children grow up with both parents together, but if that doesn't happen the next best thing is that a child's mum and dad work together to make sure they have the best childhood as possible.

Do not go down the (very) slippery slope of leaping into a court case that will ensure you and your ex end up loathing each other with an intensity you didn't think possible. Seriously.

Speak to a solicitor to find out what the situation is - what paperwork needs to be completed, etc. to achieve legal separation, divorce, finances, etc. but don't think you have to end up in court fighting over pretty much everything.

It's good your thinking practically and for the future (and I hope your ex is doing the same for your daughter's sake). One organisation that may give you practical advise is `Families Need Fathers' (I am a member). Despite the name it is a parenting organisation and not a `Father's Rights' group. There are a large number of female members - including mothers. It will give you practical tips on the day-to-day task of parenting a child with a partner you have separated with.

At the end of the day - it's not about `men's rights' or `women's rights' - it's about your daughter's rights. It is possible. There are people who manage to come out of the other side of the situation they are with their ex as an ally in bringing their children up and not an enemy.

Lizzy1975 Wed 17-Apr-13 11:38:28

Thanks Lostdad. Things are amicable between us and I will try to keep things that way, although I am obviously hurting I am trying not to be resentful, or to let my feelings get in the way. He doesn't love me as he once did, i suppose its the cliche of loving but not being in love with me, it is very sad but I understand where he's coming from. He is a great father and committed to doing what's right for our daughter - I know the decision to leave her is gut-wrenching for him and not one he has taken lightly. He is absolutely crap with money though, I foresee there could be problems there down the line but that aside I think we both feel we can keep things away from the courts. Thanks for the info on the organisation, I will look into it and will suggest he does too, in the hope that we can see things from the same page.

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