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STBXH: He is a dick, I am an idiot. Support/an ear needed

(9 Posts)
SmellsLikeHorses Sat 10-Jan-15 21:58:34

My Cant Be Soon Enough XDH had sunk to a new low I discovered on Friday and I yet again kick myself with my trusting naive stupidity. This is long, sorry, I think I kind of need to get it out and be heard, I have tried to be the bigger person and not tell the whole village and county what a bastard he is. It's kind of lonely though.

We separated end of September, my thread, name changed again since then

That thread ended with me being again, too trusting, hopeful and naive.

Since then he has tried to make myself and his children homeless, when I didn't cave at that point and found a work around for the mess he had gotten me into he then tried bully boy tactics between himself and his evil Father tag teaming me trying to trick me into making myself and the children intensionally homeless. I finally pulled out of my shock, terror and emotional black hole long enough to get some professional housing advice (I love shelter, they are amazing, go donate to shelter!) and discovered that in fact it was me with the power and all I had to do was say no, I would not agree to changes on the tenancy. This has secured the home until September 2016 giving me much needed time. Yes it is still a joint tenancy, yes if he wanted to he could choose to move back in and refuse to leave (not at all likely and given times scales now I could probably get an occupation order) but it's my children's home, we have lived her over 8 years.
All this was so that CBSEXDH could get himself a new tenancy somewhere because he didn't fancy living with his parents much and he wants a fresh start and a clean break. How nice for him.

He left his job just over a month after the separation and has gone 'self employed' largely to avoid child support, he paid the first month (in a bank transfer marked as 'childcare'), he paid a bit of the next month and he hasn't paid a penny since. He believes he doesn't have any kind of obligation as I exist. He can not seem to understand that my income (I work a few hours a week and I am building more on my business that was started pre split but everything with me is a slow process around managing my disability so for the moment most of my income is benefits) has no relevance in regards to his child support obligations and thinks that because I get benefits this means that the government are taking care of the kids so he doesn't have to. I shouldn't have been as surprised as I first was when he started this given he was the man who wondered where a friend of ours (well mine now since he has cut out and blocked everybody who he had ever met since we where together because a good number told him he was being shit apparently, and these people knew only the tiniest amount of what he has been up to!) stood with child support when his ex wife re married.

He has not arranged a single bit of access with the children. The only reason they are seeing him regularly if because I have arranged it. It was the first thing I addressed after the split, our ds (6) has developmental disabilities (that are likely to be Aspergers Syndrome but it isn't set yet diagnostically) so it was really important that new routines and seeing his Dad where sorted quickly. I sent an opening email and outlines arrangements that would suit the children and asked him what his thinking was, did he have anything he wanted to change, etc etc he just replied with Okay. Thats the way it is, I try and open a dialogue and he just says Okay. I have had to chase him for extra contact in the school holidays. He has never asked how the children are, he has never handed over properly, won't even get out his car most of the time and won't come up to the house (but thats just irritating more than anything major). Thing is with contact is that it isn't contact with him, its contact with their Nan with him being the taxi driver. Since the split he has never done anything with them or taken them anywhere. On Christmas day, I handed them over to him at 12.30. At 4pm I was driving through his village to work (caused great happiness to people when I said I would do christmas day as I would rather be there then sitting home alone!) and saw my children walking back from the park with his parents. He was not with them. They had beed 'in his care' for 3.5 hours at that point. I wanted to snatch them back up, going to the park with your grandparents after christmas dinner is lovely but really? In this situation would you not be holding tight to every moment, I know I did in 'my' half of the day!.

I have decided that I am not chasing him for a single bit of contact now that isn't already in place. Contact will be the days and times it is now and if he wants to see the kids more in the holidays then he can come and tell me and I will tell him if they are available and if not offer an alternative. I won't have much of a chance to see what happens with that until Easter as I am taking the kids away in half term to go up north and see my family and friends.

And now, eventually to the point.

The joint bank account.
At the time of the split he had run up the OD on the joint account and had locked me out of it and had it so I had no way of finding out what was going on with it (small village, no public transport, I had no car and my driving licence wasn't valid anyway. If I wanted to get to the bank of even a cash point, he had to take me).
After the split I opened a new bank account in my name for my income and expenses to come out of. I agreed for some rebates from the council tax to be paid into the joint bank account to get it into the 'free' part of the OD so it at least would not collect any more charges, just the £10 a month fee for the account. He agreed to clear the rest and manage the account until it was in the black and I would get soon be able to either close the account of take my name off. I never got that so knew the account hadn't had the rest of the balance paid off but given his new 'self employed' status and all the rest I could understand he may need some more time, fine, I had ensured it was in the best state possible and we had agreement that the account would not be used, he had also set up a new account for his day to day needs.
My big, huge, massive and stupid, idiotic mistake was thinking he would stick to the agreement and his word.
I guess it will be a surprise to no one who has made it this far through my self indulgent rant/whine that ever since the rebate money hit the account he had been spending a bit here and a bit there, paying his mobile phone top up every month, bit of petrol and the like. Then on boxing day he took out via cash point a sum of around £80. The children where in his 'care' but they didn't do anything, I know he bought the expensive gift for ds 4 days before christmas (he was sure to send the gift receipt home) and his gift for dd cost less than half that so he sure didn't spend it on the kids. Then on 29th of December he cleared every penny he could through cash point withdrawal. He took a staggering (to me!) £240 and left the OD once again maxed out. He has spent over all £400. He only needed to put £100 in and it would have been gone.
I found out because I got a letter to tell me that the account had gone over into unauthorised OD. I have spoken and seen in branch lovely people who want to help but I can't get the account frozen without his consent unless it goes to collections and I can't afford for my sake for it to get to the state in which it would. I am painfully aware that I am liable, my name is on the account and it matters not what agreements we had in place among ourselves or who ran up the OD.
I have transferred enough money to the joint account to get it 1p inside the OD limit to avoid any more unauthorised overdraft charges and I may be able to get the pending charges removed but there is little else I can do (thankfully it was a small amount I needed to pay in).
I have arranged to see a family law solicitor but the next time I can get to one due to work and their availability is next Friday. I looked for a 'free half hour' one but they all said that they only offered info not advice in those appointments so have gone for a 1 hour 'first steps' type thing that is going to cost me £120 all in but I really need to start getting things properly straight. I would LOVE to divorce him right now but I don't think I can afford to, even doing DIY the cost of the petition are too much but we shall see.
At this point I am just avoiding having any contact with him, I don't think it is wise for me to let him know I have found out about the bank until after I have seen solicitor and know where I stand and where i need to go. He probably thinks I am still locked out of the account because he seems to take me for even more of a fool than I am. I have had access to the account for some time now (ohh why, ohh why did I not check on it regularly!) and I now have my driving licence renewed and have even got a little car. His habits around contact drop off and pick up are helping with this. I am just so angry at both him and myself.
I should have opened my eyes and seen what was around me years ago. I found a thread of mine from 2010 in which he turned up and started posting, I read through it and thought what a bloody idiot I have been, why did I put up with it all for so long. He had me pushed down, no money, no control of the no money, made to think I had no options. Turns out he was wrong. I can do it on my own and I am doing it better. He is still doing all the same old tricks and sabotaging me every way he can though, thats not changed.
If you want to see both what a fool I am and what a dick he is, have fun (a different user name again but started by me) -

Sorry for the length, I hope somebody gets to the end. TL:DR - My CBSEXH is a massive, massive cock and a lier and thief to boot!

p.s - sorry for the poor typing, bad spelling and lack of proof reading, my disability makes typing hard and my eyes struggle with screens. I apologise if it is hard to read and thank you for taking the time to try.

Cabrinha Sat 10-Jan-15 22:16:43

What a nightmare!

Sounds like you are really turning things round though - well done grin flowers

You need to get that account sorted. Are you sure they can't freeze it? Push push push on that. At the very least, have they withdrawn the overdraft facility?

SmellsLikeHorses Sat 10-Jan-15 23:09:20

Thanks for reading Cabrinha
I am hopefully turning my future around... I have one again, biggest step I guess.
The children, they are happier. They have started to not want to go to their Dad though. I'm not surprised. I started writing out al the reasons but I do have a habit of going on and on and on and I realise that I can just say, Their Dad is a dick who pays them no attention and their Nan is controlling and they are both terrified of asking for anything from anybody in that house. I suggested to ds that he ask his Dad if he could take a bath rather than a shower (ds due to his disability struggles with water from above, something is Dad know) and ds's response was 'That would be worse!'. sad

They can only freeze it with his consent, I am hoping that I will be able to get him to do that and then get him to set up a repayment plan for him to pay it off. Bonus point in that is who ever sets up a repayment plan is legally taking responsibility for the debt. This is the reason I didn't do that myself yesterday even though my instincts where screaming at me to make arrangements and deal with my responsibilities. Interestingly the lady at the bank indicated it would not be a wise move to do so and it's her job to get people into repayment plans!
After not being able to sort anything on the phone I went into branch and had a sit down with an advisor there and she scoured the system to try and find a way for me but there was non. I did get some great peer support with ds's condition though, turns out the advisor is a single Mum with a dead beat ex and has a son a couple of years older than mine who has Aspergers. Our boys had many of the same struggles, was nice to compare notes and know i'm not alone. She also pointed me towards a local programme for children like our that helps the children and offers group support for parents so it wasn't a wasted visit!
The only way it seems to get it frozen is through collections, cancelling the OD would certainly get it to collections and that maybe a way forward but a very risky one in regards to the debt.

I have gone on again. So much stuff, so much shit.
Thanks for your responce

divetastic Sun 11-Jan-15 09:26:32

If you're in the UK your bank really should cancel the mandate at your request (which would effectively freeze the account).

I went through something similar (ex running up large debts on joint account within days of our split) and as soon as I asked to freeze it they did, no questions asked, which is why I looked up the above, as it sounds like your bank isn't doing the right thing here...

Oh and you're doing amazingly dealing with your ex, sounds like you're well shot!

Jengnr Sun 11-Jan-15 09:34:27

If the account is back in the black take your name off it. They can do that.

Holdthepage Sun 11-Jan-15 09:42:13

If you are in the UK the advice about only being able to freeze the account with his consent is wrong. The account is now in dispute because you want to cancel the joint mandate. The bank should freeze the joint account & both of you should have opened sole accounts. This should have been done at the time of the split.

Write to the bank telling them that you want to cancel the joint account mandate. State in writing that from the date of the letter that you will no longer be responsible for any debts incurred by exh. Send the letter by recorded delivery, do it now.

Cabrinha Sun 11-Jan-15 09:43:18

My bank - Natwest - required both signatures to take my name off our joint account.
I suppose they have two individually liable for debt, they're not going to halve their chances of recovery by taking one off.

OP is not in the black so can't take her name off.

From what I've read, it is all at the discretion of the bank. But honestly I would get a strongly worded letter to them, keeping a copy, to say that you want them not to allow unauthorised OD withdrawals. Say in the letter that you will not take any responsibility for repaying withdrawals because you have told them that the account is being used without your consent.

You don't need to freeze the account - you need them to not go beyond the authorised overdraft.

Keep pushing on this. It may be discretionary but it is very normal practise to put an account into "dispute" in divorce.

Holdthepage Sun 11-Jan-15 09:50:02

Accounts that are overdrawn do need to be frozen ASAP, to stop either party increasing the debt any further. Taking names off joint accounts needs consent of both but the first step towards that is to get the account frozen, I can't stress this strongly enough.

Holdthepage Sun 11-Jan-15 09:54:03

Just to add, this is not at the discretion of the bank, it is standard procedure when a mandate is in dispute. It doesn't matter which bank it is either.

The OP would have a good case to backdate her liability to the joint account debt to the date she first advised them about their split.

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