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practical advice for SAHM wanting to move out with 3 kids

(8 Posts)
sportify Mon 13-Jul-15 22:23:44

Long story short. I've decided I need to walk away from my 6 year marriage. It's been hard for a long time. Nothing sudden but just getting worse. Am growing increasingly stressed, lonely and lost.
DH has a good job, Mortgage on our house and another rental property. We've lived fairly comfortably. My children are still young (5,3,1)
We are past talking. We don't talk at all.
We are in separate rooms.
We are basically playmates.
Tried to leave last summer but he convinced us he'd change and wanted us back. (stayed at my mums)
DH is a workaholic I think and goes out 5.30am, comes in 9/10 pm and continues working.
He has always been this way but am finding it intolerable that he does not have 2 mins to spend with the kids, let alone myself.
At weekends, he sits in his room working. We don't have meals together either.
My youngest has severe eczema and is not sleeping atm and it's taking it's toll. I don't think I can manage it on my own any more. I'm getting about 4 hours sleep a night and I'm exhausted. H never helps out and I'm desperate for a break.
I don't have any friends or family here where we live really. (moved for his work a few years ago)

I know it won't be easy. I've not taken this decision lightly. I've spent night after night worrying and thinking how I can get out of this horrible atmosphere.

I'm trying to get myself to realise that I'm not staying for the kids, but actually, it's hurting them because he never has time to spend with them. He never baths, changes, puts them to bed ect....

I'd have to go and stay at my mums again but I know I can't stay there long.
I want to try to get a private rent, but I think that is going to be hard with 3 kids and not actually working myself?

I'm pretty sure we won't get anywhere on a housing list.

What are my options?

Financially, H puts in around £1000 a month in my bank account, other than that, I have nothing atm.

I know we'll have to talk it through but I don't think he'll just let us walk away.
I don't want to stay here either really. So I wouldn't be asking him to move out or anything.

Where do I start?
Is this possible?

sportify Mon 13-Jul-15 22:24:42

Gash!!! I mean 'house' mates.....!!

foolonthehill Mon 13-Jul-15 22:33:48

Sorry i am posting and running: I hope the following is of use to you.

Don't forget you also need to look after yourself emotionally as well as sorting the practicals.

Back later

MONEY
1) Get a bank account in your sole name if you don't already have one ditto credit card and take his name off any joint cards where you are the primary card holder.

You should see if you can convince DH to go as you will be voluntarily homeless and not entitled to help with housing from council. Is there any way he could be persuaded to go to the rental? If you reside at your mum's and you know it will be temporary you need to cost and work out finances for a local rental. Doable but tricky.

2) If you stay in the house tell the council that you are a single adult occupancy home, they will reduce your council tax immediately.
3) if staying go through bills and change them to your name only
4) Change Child benefit to go into your sole account
5) tell tax credit helpline that you are now a single parent and get them to reassess your entitlements and pay into your sole account
6) Go to www.entitledto.com or money saving expert online and check you are in receipt of any and all benefits that you are entitled to. Or visit CAB but this might be more useful down the line to check housing issues too wherever you want to end up.

CHILDREN
Contact is for the benefit of the children. If you think you can work out an amicable plan and that you will be able to abide by it, do it. If he is/was an involved father and can keep the adult stuff out of his relationship with the children so much the better (ditto you). Depending on the age of the DC and their needs he can take them out or to relatives or round ot his new home. Don't be tempted to have contact in your home...it will mess with your head and the children's. If you need to talk together then do it somewhere neutral, with no DC.
Consider mediation if no abuse in the relationship

LAWYER UP...when you are ready
Read everything you can get your hands on. Get familiar with the language of family law and procedure and try to get an understanding of your rights BEFORE you see a solicitor. There is a good little book published by Which...it saved me hundreds of pounds as I went in prepared. Get word of mouth recommendations for family lawyers in your area if possible.

A divorce will not be granted where children are involved unless there are agreed arrangements for finance, and care of the children (“Statement of Arrangements for Children”). It is obviously quicker and cheaper if this can be agreed but if there is no agreement, the Court will make an Order (“Residence and Contact” regarding children, “Financial Order” or “Ancillary Relief” in the case of Finance)

Many family lawyers will offer the first half hour consultation free. Make use of this. Don’t just stick with the first lawyer you find – shop around and find someone you feel comfortable with. You may be in for a long haul, so it helps if you can find a solicitor you’re happy with.

If you can’t find any local recommendations, always see a solicitor who specialises in Family Law. You can search by area here:
www.resolution.org.uk/

Mediation
You will be encouraged to attend mediation to agree finances and child contact arrangements if you can't do this between yourselves. It's cheaper than lawyers or courts battling it out and effective where there is no abuse in the relationship

DirectGov advice on divorce, separation and relationship breakdown:
www.direct.gov.uk/en/Governmentcitizensandrights/Divorceseparationandrelationshipbreakdown/index.htm

Legal Rights
www.rightsofwomen.org.uk/legal.php#children_relationship_breakdown

Handy 5 Minute benefit check, tax and housing benefit calculators:
www.moneysavingexpert.com/family/

Child Maintenance Calculator: www.gov.uk/calculate-your-child-maintenance

Support and information.www.gingerbread.org.uk/

I am sorry this has happened, i hope you will find your way through the mess, both emotional and practical and will be able to come out the other side ready for a new and better life.

DragonsCanHop Mon 13-Jul-15 22:34:01

Wouldn't it be more beneficially to tell him it's over, you and the Dc stay in the house whilst he finds somewhere (much easier for one adult than an adult with 3 Dc in tow)

And once you have had time to think, start from there?

Frecklesandspecs Mon 13-Jul-15 22:51:50

Thank you !
Would I be entitled to housing benefit if I could muster up money for a deposit?

Silly as it sounds, I don't think I have the guts to ask him to move out. I'm not even on the mortgage. I don't know how I would pay it on my own.

Still sifting through all that info foolonthehill !

foolonthehill Tue 14-Jul-15 20:48:50

Possibly...as your youngest is so young. Depends on local rules sometimes.

WRT house...it is a marital asset and whether you are on the mortgage or not you could still arrange to remain. however I can see how that might feel just too difficult. Your H does not seem like he will just walk away.However once you know where you stand financially you could at least ask him...have plan B ready.

pocketsaviour Tue 14-Jul-15 22:09:22

Is the rental property nearby, would it work for you and the DCs to live there? You might have to hang on for a bit while giving the tenants notice, of course.

I would probably book a few free half hour appts with local solicitors so you know exactly where you stand legally. You have two properties between the two of you and they are both marital assets, so you having one and him keeping the other would be an obvious division, but it does depend on the amount of equity in each.

heyday Tue 14-Jul-15 23:23:49

Housing benefit is not always easy to get and does not always cover the cost of the whole rent. It is often extremely difficult to find landlords or agencies who will even consider a tenant on housing benefit.
I can understand your frustration at the moment but as you are not at risk of any physical or immediate mental harm then I would suggest that you take some time to really seriously look into your options. There are many cuts to welfare payments due to come into effect soon and these could make your life very difficult.
If you are looking for a break you certainly won't be getting any anytime soon with 3 children and suddenly becoming a single parent.
I think you need to get lots of advice; CAB, Shelter etc before you jump ship.
Could you start to train for some sort of future employment, even if it means the kids have to have childcare during the day?
It can't be easy for you, but you are going to have to talk to your H at some stage fairly soon. Take your time to ensure that somehow you will have the means to cope financially.

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