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Support thread for those going through divorce..?

(183 Posts)
ChangeAfoot Fri 04-Jan-13 18:04:59

It looks as though H and I are going to get divorced, have first appointments with lawyers booked over the next few days. I'm feeling horribly erratic - it was his decision but we've been miserable for ages and he's very difficult to live with. There's also been an affair (his), and his non-stop complaints and criticism, and in recent months his unemployment, to wear us down.

I was wondering if there was already a support thread for those going through these trials, because I'm so up and down and absolutely gutted about the end of "the dream" (albeit a shit one where you wake up in a cold sweat wink) and worrying about what lies ahead - social pariah-hood and destitution, if my worst fears were ever to be realised. I'm so tearful a lot of the time, although am already having flashes of feeling lighter and wondering whether I'll look back and thank my lucky stars.

If there isn't already a thread, and anyone else in a similar position fancies venting with me, then be my guest grin

<seethes in anticipation>

crazygracieuk Sun 06-Jan-13 01:56:55

I'm joining this thread too. Kicked Him out on 30 Dec and we are getting divorced too. He has made a generous financial settlement but I won't be secure until he's signed it. We agree on contact so are going down the DIY route.

I really hope he's not going to be difficult.

crazygracieuk Sun 06-Jan-13 01:58:15

I'm feeling up and down too.

Have tried to fill my social calendar with clubs and groups to try but they all start next week or the week after.

ChangeAfoot Sun 06-Jan-13 09:42:16

Hello crazygracie. That sounds good so far that you've reached a good financial agreement in theory (fingers crossed!) and re. contact too. The stuff divorce dreams are made of! wink

It's all so higgledy piggledy here, I am on a constant rollercoaster of emotions. Ended up having a couple of glasses of wine with H last night and talking about everything - it felt extremely dangerous to be trying to discuss the issues involved (merits of mediation/collaborative law/adversarial law; what we want re residency/parenting; selling the house or otherwise) and I'm not sure it was a good idea. He also went into great detail about how he wants 50 50 parenting and wants to totally scale back his career to do so. This is very frightening to me as I don't work at the moment (as I say intend to start looking for work but can't see me earning much for a while having been out of the market for 4 years and effectively having to start from scratch) and there's no way we can run two households if he does this. It feels like he is deliberately setting about coming up with the exact set of circumstances that would leave me worst off. He even suggested us both moving out of London to somewhere like Kent, which made me feel sick in that he thinks this kind of solution is viable - we almost moved out to Kent a year ago and opted not to in the end; as if I'm going to want to move to an entirely new area knowing nobody other than my bloody ex-husband! angry

TheSilveryTinsellyPussycat Sun 06-Jan-13 11:19:47

Amicable or not, think very clearly about what you want, and keep firmly to this as a baseline. You can negotiate, preferably with professional help, but don't tip your hand to OH.

Dillie Sun 06-Jan-13 12:08:11

Morning smile

My stbxh has thrown me a bit of a curve ball. We had a bit of a row last night and I said that he has forced me to move out and up root dd . (I had hoped he would move out when I asked him too)

Any way he then said to me "well I told the boss if it didn't work out between us over Christmas I would quit my job" I asked him who would pay for the mortgage (as he earns nearly 3 times the amount that I do) his reply "I don't care, without you,dd or this house I have nothing"

I think you would class him as an EA given what I have had to put up with over the past 14 years (taken me a long while to wake up!) but can he do this just to get back at me?

I am now worried that if he does quit, the house will get Repo'd and I will be up the creek without a paddle and dd will suffer!!! angry

HappyNewSkyebluesapphire Sun 06-Jan-13 13:27:58

Your ex can quit his job if he wants to, there is nothing to stop him, but if he quits, then he wont even get jobseekers for 6 weeks afaik.

He is trying to blackmail you, but you cant stand for it can you. If he quits his job, then he will have nothing to live on either...

I suggest that if you havent already, that its time to look into tax credits, housing benefit etc, so that you know what money you will have if he really does do this.

She70 Sun 06-Jan-13 13:51:52

How horribly manipulative of both your husbands! Surely its not in the best interests of the children if either of them quit, or scale back their jobs! If a women suggested doing the same under the same circumstances, as emotional blackmail, can you imagine the choice names she would probably be called!

Dillie I would do as suggested and check out where you stand if he does this. Is the mortgage in both your names? Look on the benefits website on as it has a comprehensive benefits calculator which helps you see how much you could expect to get in benefits under different circumstances. Its a really good tool.

change your h is being so manipulative too. Is it your decision to split or his? I'm in Kent... Not such a bad place to live! Joking aside can totally understand why you wouldn't want to move somewhere you don't know anybody. Saying that I am contemplating doing just that if my h forces us to sell our house. I can't afford anything decent in this area with the money I would have but if I move out of the se I could afford something very nice. I'm looking on it as the chance of a fresh start and a new chapter in my life. Not sure how feasible it really is but it's nice to daydream!

ChangeAfoot Sun 06-Jan-13 13:53:01


Silvery - thanks for that support. I do need to keep reminding myself that things aren't necessarily going to go his way.

Dillie - hug to you. I'm in a similar-ish situation. Interestingly, I spoke to a family law barrister friend-of-friend when this all kicked off last week and she mentioned things about the court wanting to see H fulfilling his commitments, and that they don't look favourably on such manipulations. (My H has been out of work for 6 months which is very unlike him, and has barely bothered to look for work. He hasn't even signed on and we have now completely run out of money.) It wasn't really relevant at the time for us to pursue that line of thought so I didn't ask her more about it, but may contact her again to ask what she thinks should he decide to - very coincidentally - have a massive change of heart re. his career and salary expectations just at the time we split. I agree with Skye that it sounds as though he is out and out blackmailing you, last ditch attempt to frighten you into not following through. He will know that you want to stay in the home and will be terrified of losing it and is playing on that. Skye do you know how best to start looking into eligibility for tax credits/benefits? I am lost in all this.

ChangeAfoot Sun 06-Jan-13 13:57:44

Ah She thanks for that link, sounds silly that I don't know these things, H has popped out with the DC to the park and I'm going to spend the rare alone time looking at things like this (and photocopying documents mwahahaha).

Don't worry, I have nothing against Kent - it was me who wanted to go there! grin ... but I realised at the last minute how much harder it would have been for me to ever get a career going, as we were going to be living in a village. H would have been commuting up to the City and by definition I would have had to stay local unless I was earning enough to justify a nanny/etc. That's a good way to look at it re. new chapter in your life - trouble with me is that we've only just moved back to London (were living abroad for 2.5 yrs) and it's where all my friends are and most definitely feels like we've just got back home, if that makes sense. I really really don't want to leave, and finding work in my old profession would be near impossible.

ChangeAfoot Sun 06-Jan-13 14:01:07

Quick rant while I'm here then will stop carpet bombing the thread smile Both H and I had bad night's sleep last night - me because I was woken a lot by DD, he because he by choice didn't go to bed until 2.45, which I heard as DD had just woken up. We then had an emotional talk until about 4am (!) and then had disturbed sleep afterwards. So - cut to this morning. I get woken up at 7.15 by DD and get up with both DC, which I do singlehandedly while he stays in bed until almost midday angry Without negotiation, etc, he just does it. This is like EVERY SINGLE DAY. And then at about 11 he emails me to say that he'd like to take the DC to the park to "give me a break". I am so sick of me doing all the bloody drudge work with them, only for him to emerge from his selfish lie-in so that he can "relieve me" and go and have fun with them. THIS IS NOT 50 50 PARENTING YOU WANKER!

<end of rant>

crazygracieuk Sun 06-Jan-13 14:34:20

My h has now said he doesn't want a divorce and he's coming round to talk later. (He's with the kids now) this is from a man who says he doesn't believe in marriage and married me for tax reasons because we were emigrating. Nice! confused [manic laughter]

crazygracieuk Sun 06-Jan-13 14:36:24

ChangeAFoot - I know what you mean. I'm now the only one who tells dc to tidy their mess, put their plates in dishwasher etc while h gets to take them to the cinema and watch The Hobbit [jealous cos I haven't seen it]

mowmi Sun 06-Jan-13 15:06:21

Hello ladies, just trying to catch up...Change your diot DH sounds a lot like mine! We have been separated but living together for 7 months now! Guess how many times he has got up in the night or in the morning even with DC? Zero! This is man who threatened going for full custody, then 50/50... It has all stopped now because he's a selfish prick who likes his freedom to come and go as he pleases too much!
DC and I returned from staying at a friends house, I spent literally all day cleaning before I went, returned to dirty toilet (really? Do you have no shame?) bacon fat all over the draining board (this is a man off sick with fat related health problems!) recycling all mixed up, jeans just dropped on the floor....ARGHHH.......!
Vent over.
Remember ladies, these men can say what the hell they like it doesn't mean it will happen...
I'm spending tonight finishing off my form e (we are going to court next month to sort finances (to hopefully get him out of the house) actually when I say we are going to court that's probably wishful thinking, I know he won't engage in the process so this will go on and on....

She70 Sun 06-Jan-13 15:17:36

Don't get me started on that whole "Disney Dad" syndrome. My ex is fast becoming an expert. My 5-yr old was so excited yesterday when he told me that Daddy had given them both Coke!! My little one is 2 ffs.

Ok I need to run something by people to get input. Will probably post elsewhere too so if you see it twice please ignore! My ex appears overnight to have had a change of heart regarding finances, the house etc etc. He is now agreeing the following :

I can stay in marital home until summer after youngest turns 18.

At this point we sell (always the intention as too big for us).

We both take out what we put in (my investment was substantially more than his). The amounts have been agreed.

We then split any further profit 50/50.

Maintenance: he will pay me half the household costs until youngest is 18. This will be regardless of what I earn in the future. At the moment I do not work. Until youngest is in school he will pay me same as he did before he left less the amount I get in child tax credit. He pays me this currently as I take care of all finances etc.

What do you all think? Do you think its reasonable? It seems so to me with pros and cons but I need some outside perspective!

TheSilveryTinsellyPussycat Sun 06-Jan-13 16:04:26

I would do a 5 year plan based on this - tax credits are changing for example. Ask advice from sol if poss as they will have seen all sorts of arrangements and what the pitfalls are. On the face of it, it looks promising though.

HappyNewSkyebluesapphire Sun 06-Jan-13 16:25:05

She70 - that sounds like a good deal, but obviously get your solicitor to check it over before you agree to anything.

mowmi Sun 06-Jan-13 16:27:48

I agree, you need to get your sol to go through it - good start though!
Wish mine would start thinking clearly....sigh!

carpetsw33per Sun 06-Jan-13 16:37:28

I'm in the same boat. Been divorcing for a year. Seems no closer to resolution. Solicitors take FOREVER to do anything.

I am finding it hard to see how I will live in the future. I miss the family home which dh refused to leave. We have 50-50 care so he doesn't pay me any maintenance. He won't agree on a price for the house and at our voluntary financial disclosure he refused to send details of several accounts!!! Now we are in a stalemate position, it seems. It's so exhausting and so hard to see a bright future. X

She70 Sun 06-Jan-13 16:38:12

Thanks! I am keen to get this on writing as quickly as I can as he tends to change his mind daily. However this proposal did come from him after I pointed out I could move away from the South East if he pushed me into selling and into some grotty house that I hated. I don't particularly want to move but I would if it meant affording a nicer house for me and the children.

mowmi Sun 06-Jan-13 16:44:39

It is carpet... He's just burying his head in the sand, he's off sick, has been for months - it's amazing how he is well enough to date ( get to rugby meets all over the country etc but too Ill to work! Must be nice to have an wife ( who can't stand the sight of you) subsidising your life, looking after your kid... I'm really peeved today!

wiseoldowl Sun 06-Jan-13 16:46:44

just an observation from a cynical divorcee (divorced in february - no financial settlement yet!!)
just protect yourself. Do NOT trust anything your stbxh says, its all well and good he can promise to pay this that and the other but the reality is when he moves on & has bills to pay, women to spend it on etc that they dont want to know you and seem to lose all obligation.
Whatever you agree to, it MUST be in a consent order in writing from the court so that if he defaults you have comeback. Remember this is the rest of YOUR & DCs life that hangs in the balance - you can ask for more now but you can never go back and ask for more later.
sorry to be so negative but they all turn when they face the cold hard facts and divorce is never pleasant IMHO

wiseoldowl Sun 06-Jan-13 16:48:09

oh...& as for benefits - to to the website , you can input your earnings etc & get an estimate of what you can get. need to phone them & give details, is relatively easy x

TheSilveryTinsellyPussycat Sun 06-Jan-13 16:50:12

Well, if this is an offer he wants to make, get him to submit it to your solicitor in a letter without prejudice (ie making the offer does not commit him to anything), with help from his own if he has one. Then have it checked out, while having a long deep think - you can sometimes overlook problems at first glance, this gives time for any such problems to occur to you.

You can then progress to having a proper settlement drawn up to be approved by the Family Court.

ChangeAfoot Sun 06-Jan-13 18:58:01

mowmi - your situation sounds utterly dreadful; you have my utmost sympathies. I feel guilty sometimes complaining about H, because in some ways he knows how to switch on the 'Perfect Dad' routine. He loves them to bits and as I say is now talking about gearing down his work just so he can look after them. I wouldn't mind but I think I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of meals he's prepared for them (including breakfast) over the past six months whilst he's been out of work and therefore at home 24/7. Good luck with your Form E and let's hope your H wakes up soon and starts playing ball with it all. Does he talk to anyone about it? What about mutual friends of yours? Is anyone able to get through to him?

She - I have to say, that sounds VERY similar to what I am hoping to achieve. I'm no expert re. the longer term implications (and others have raised issues I wouldn't have thought of, as a complete novice to tax credits and the like) but on first glance I'd say WELL DONE and yes, get it in writing asap! I'm already wondering if I should start innocently mentioning something about moving to Scotland to be with my mother, should H not play ball.... wink That would put the fear of God up him! grin

carpets - you poor thing. My H is also wanting 50 50 care. Did you fight against it or were you in agreement? I am already painfully aware that if he gets that, then I'll lose the house and we'll all be uprooted. I am terrified of the prospect. Is your H now playing ball re. financial disclosure?

wiseoldowl - very apt name; I like it smile Thanks for the tips 'from the future' - keep 'em coming, I say. It's really good to be reminded of that, I find it hard because there's always a nagging voice in my head wondering if I'm being overly greedy by wanting what I want (majority residence of the DC and to stay in the marital home; primarily...)

She70 Sun 06-Jan-13 18:59:45

Yes you are all right. I need to go through this with a solicitor and see what they say. Its not as cut and dry as just the house as we have other assets and I want to make sure I don't become liable for his current and future gambling debts!

Sorry to all those with idiots of ex's. Just makes the process so much harder doesn't it. I find I get so frustrated and cross I literally feel like exploding. Not a good state to get into.

We have yet to even broach the subject of custody and visitation etc. I'm scared to even go there as that could get really nasty. I hope not. I so so want the children to have a good relationship with their daddy but I'm so scared of entrusting them to him as he is just unsafe. He drinks too much. Disregards drink limits when driving and I would be totally freaked out about how keeping them safe while in his care. I suspect I'm not going to have a leg to stand on though.

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