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Trying to support partner through difficult divorce

(51 Posts)
Mrskeats Tue 16-Feb-16 17:42:16

I've posted before about my partners ex and her demands
We live together and her bad treatment of my partner is really awful to witness
She has now decided that it would be a good idea for him to move into her cleaners spare room as a lodger to be closer to the children! (Translation to be at my beck and call)
We live together which she doesn't know as she has already contacted his work and we don't want her turning up upsetting my kids
His kids are teens and aren't aware really if what's going on
During the marriage she was abusive and caused him to have a kind of breakdown and suicidal thoughts
Basically she doesn't think he should ever have a new partner or life and I'm wanting advice on how to best help him

Marchate Tue 16-Feb-16 18:12:10

Many of us will hear alarm bells ringing when we read of how she affected his mental health. So please forgive me if I ask you, have you only heard his side of the story?

Many men feel the break up was all the wife's fault. Does he accept half the blame?

How you support him rests on this. It would be helpful to know

goddessofsmallthings Tue 16-Feb-16 18:14:14

I've read your other thread and I'm not quite sure what you're asking as you can't do more than support him in what he wants to do.

Presumably he doesn't want, or intend, to move into his wife's cleaner's spare room as a lodger and he doesn't agree with her that he shouldn't ever have a new partner or life, but has he made this clear to her?

What stage is his divorce at and why have you described it as 'difficult' when the process itself is straightforward? Is it proposed that the marital home be sold and what the proposed childcare arrangements for his dc?

LineyReborn Tue 16-Feb-16 18:16:14

I think it was Lundy Bancroft who advised that it is wise to seek out and talk to others who can corroborate a partner's story of abuse at the hands of their former spouse.

kittybiscuits Tue 16-Feb-16 18:27:09

This is exactly the kind of bollocks my ex says about me. How long have you been together? How long have they been apart?

DontCareHowIWantItNow Tue 16-Feb-16 18:29:48

Many of us will hear alarm bells ringing when we read of how she affected his mental health

It does happen you know!

Marchate Tue 16-Feb-16 18:30:50

Yes LineyReborn, Lundy Bancroft amongst others

Always be sceptical of a single version of a marriage breakdown. No matter how much you care for your partner

Marchate Tue 16-Feb-16 18:33:37

DontCare - that's why I asked for clarification. I didn't suggest it was a false statement, only that the scenario related is used by abusive partners too

Doingmyheadin2016 Tue 16-Feb-16 19:27:40

Has he actually started divorce proceedings? How long have you been together?

And if she thinks he shouldn't have a new partner or a new life, then he needs to put her right.

LineyReborn Tue 16-Feb-16 19:36:12

May I ask, what parts of this are you 'witnessing' if his Ex doesn't even know that you and her Ex live together?

Mrskeats Tue 16-Feb-16 20:30:24

Yes divorce proceedings underway
Together a year
She doesn't know because we don't want her turning up.
She know he has a new partner but seems to think he should never have that
I know as he shows me the texts and emails
She got him out of a meeting today to ask about her iPad ffs.
They have been separated for years

Mrskeats Tue 16-Feb-16 20:33:09

His parents and sister back up all he has told me also
It's not just men who are abusive-plenty of stats to back that up

LineyReborn Tue 16-Feb-16 20:36:55

I guess then he just needs to get on with the divorce including the financial and child arrangements.

He needs to explain this to his teenage children asap.

TheDetective Tue 16-Feb-16 20:59:26

My ex's parent/sister would also cover up my ex's lies too. Because they want to pretend he isn't as bad as he actually is.

He gives a fluffed up story of how he cheated and tells people I stopped him seeing his children.

His new girlfriend told me his previous ex described me as a psycho. Except I never met her. The only person who told her about me was my ex.

People lie. All the time.

His new girlfriend was surprised at just how much he had lied. I could provide her with written proof of absolutely everything I told her.

If I were you, I'd stay well out of the divorce. You don't need to support him. He's a grown man. He needs to sort out the ending of his marriage with his wife.

HeddaGarbled Tue 16-Feb-16 21:13:33

It sounds like he is still finding it difficult saying no to her.

The appropriate response to move into my cleaner's spare room would be to laugh.

The appropriate response to being contacted during a meeting about her iPad would be to ignore.

Is it that he's worried that she'll stop him seeing the children? When and where does he see them now?

It will be difficult to hide the fact that you are living together long term.

My advice to him is to just crack on with the divorce asap and make sure that arrangements for him seeing the children are formalised as part of the divorce. Also to understand that he does not have to respond to her every attempt at contact.

Mrskeats Tue 16-Feb-16 21:17:40

Yes I think he does worry what she could say to the children-poison them against him etc
He did laugh at lodger suggestion
He goes to hers and takes them out/to activities twice a week atm
I agree re formalising contact

LineyReborn Tue 16-Feb-16 21:21:45

And if his children are teenagers as you say, then seeing their dad is up to them.

He does have to pay child support though for his DC, till they leave full-time non-advanced education, which can be till they're 19.

How are your own DC coping with all this drama? And their dad? It does sound quite difficult and unstable tbh.

Mrskeats Tue 16-Feb-16 21:30:09

My eldest is at uni
The youngest is 17 so she is partly here and partly with her dad
He does pay full support to her and for the children
45 per cent of net salary

goddessofsmallthings Tue 16-Feb-16 22:08:07

You've given sound advice to others, Mrskeats, and I'm surprised that you've condoned a situation where this man is effectively hiding in your home.

Unless there is a history of dv perpetrated against him by his stbxw, I see no reason why he should withhold his address from her and his dc. You say that she 'contacted' his work, but that doesn't suggest she turned up and made a scene, nor does it indicate that she'd fetch up at your home and 'upset your kids' if she was made aware he's living with you.

From your other thread, his dds are 12 or 13 and 17 years old and it's unlikely that dc of this age can be 'poisoned' against one parent or the other, and more particularly as the stbxw has MS and he has presumably been the mainstay, if not the major carer, for his dc.

As you've been together a year and have at least one similar age dc of your own, I also find it surprising that he's not yet effected any meeting between you and his dc.

None of this is sitting right for me and i suggest you read your posts and give consideration to what you'd advise if you weren't the OP.

Mrskeats Tue 16-Feb-16 22:21:48

I think he wants to get the divorce out of the way before introducing me really
I think he's over worrying re their reaction tbh
The ex has contacted his sister on Facebook to try and find out about me and she does have form for calling people at his work
I think also he's worried about how she will react although I agree it's up to the kids what they want to do at their age

dilys4trevor Tue 16-Feb-16 22:45:32

At worst it sounds like the old 'my ex is mad' bollocks (and his family would indeed back it all up blindly - I have recent experience of H's family going on the attack against me when he was the wrongdoer); at best, he sounds weak as anything. The STBXW caused him to have 'suicidal thoughts' when they were together? She would have to be extremely abusive for that to be the case, like, life threateningly so, or preventing him from leaving, physically. For her to be the actual cause of him having had suicidal thoughts.

goddessofsmallthings Tue 16-Feb-16 22:46:49

What does 'form for calling people at his work mean'? I would imagine that many a dw has form for this if they were expecting to talk to their dh but found he was otherwise engaged and had to leave messages with his colleagues.

It seems to me that wanting to get the divorce out of the way before introducing you to the dc is misguided thinking as that gives ample opportunity for the dc to reach the wrong conclusion, namely that he left their dm for you, whereas being open with them now may even go some way to ease the divorce process, particularly where childcare arrangements are concerned.

As it is, I find it hard to believe that his teenage dc "aren't aware really of what's going on". They've surely noticed that their df is no longer in residence and, as they only get to see him twice a week, I would imagine that they have expressed some curiousity as to what he does with his spare time.

I don't find anything unusual about a stbx wanting to know about their successor and I take the view that, if there was anything sinister about this, there's as much chance of them turning up on the doorstep after divorce as there is before the law has called time on their marriage.

If I were you I'd be encouraging him to be a lot more open with his dc and with his stbxw as secrecy in these matters can give rise to needless suspicion which, in turn, can set the scene for misunderstandings and unnecessary hostility.

Mrskeats Tue 16-Feb-16 23:03:43

Calling people to find out travel plans etc even though she has his number email etc
no idea why really
He was treated for depression as he felt he carried the whole burden of a high pressie job as well as running the house etc

HandyWoman Tue 16-Feb-16 23:57:26

This is really bonkers. Adults coming out of 'abusive' or messy relationships with bonkers or otherwise people need to sort out their boundaries with their exes and their lives and their relationships with their dc before - I repeat - before shacking up with new people.

Really Mrskeats with teenage dc it sounds like you probably have lots of opportunties to keep this as a dating scenario rather than cohabiting in what is a messy, entangled, co-dependent, not-very-sorted situation (45% of net salary - is this spousal maintenance?) with the co-dependence spreading out and now applying to you and our dp.

Not your circus. Not your monkeys. But if you want the drama, then carry on. But posting here for a 'solution' seems a bit pointless. There is no solution other than everyone to act a bit more adult.

Mrskeats Wed 17-Feb-16 00:01:16

Spousal and child maintenance- ex has only worked for a few years in her life
If only life where as simple as leave your marriage then wait then find a new partner
Unfortunately life isn't life that

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