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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
It's time to start looking at the big "D". If you want to see what led me to this point check out my post in this thread:

http://talkaboutmarriage.com/relationships-addiction/61362-i-feel-shattered-3.html

We've been separated for 2 years. My husband has gotten drunk, stop working, gotten sick, been detoxed, rehabed and gotten himself together and gone back to his drunken ways 3 times in those two years.

He's on his 3rd time. Maybe his 4th? Last spring he sold the house he inherited, went back to work, got an apartment and had our 15 year old son move in with him. I was supportive of this because it would be good for my son and my husband and I wanted to live alone on my own.

Worked good for the summer. I had a great summer being on my own and taking camping trips, kayaking, etc. But sure enough by fall I saw it starting to unravel. The drinking started again, his apartment started getting messier and I wasn't liking a lot of what I was seeing. But my son kept telling me everything was all right so it was easy enough to hope for the best.

By Thanksgiving I knew the end was near because my husband was totally unable to cook Thanksgiving dinner as he promised. I had to do it. He ruined the holiday for us. I haven't him since. I was just digusted by the whole thing. Then I talked to my son and he told me the apartment was a wreck and my husband wasn't "feeling well". I decided to go over there and see what was up. It wasn't good. The apartment was a wreck, my son was basically taking care of himself, as well as my husband, who was again drinking rum by the quart, wasn't showering and wasn't getting my son off to school.

I took my son home today and had a long talk with my husband. He told me had no money to give me, that he has gone through his inheritance. No kidding! He hasn't worked in 2 years, he's bought a fishing boat and every other toy known to man and has lived a rich man's life Now he tells me his father only left him 50k and he didn't get much out of the house either? I don't believe him but he's telling me that he's been paying the bills via his credit cards.

So now I've come to the decision that I have to divorce him. Why? Mainly to protect myself. If we remain married and he stops paying his bills then his debts become mine. I don't have ANY credit card debts, any loans and I've finally gotten a decent credit rating. I know he's got a loan on his boat and my daughter's car. I'm worried that my daughter is going to lose her car! I can't afford to pay it. If he starts defaulting on loans and credit card bills it's going to affect me.

So I told him that's it..I'm going to divorce him in order to protect myself financially. He says he won't fight me on it. He told me that "maybe I'll find a better man". I really don't have any intention of finding anyone else, I just want to ensure that I can take care of myself and my son.

So how does one get started? Can you have an amicable, cheap divorce that doesn't involve lawyers? I can't afford a lawyer. Basically I just want to separate myself from him financially and not be held responsible for the massive amount of debt that he has run up.

Can I do this? How do I do it quickly and with as little cost as possible?

We have no real property or investments. We both live in separate apartments and have separate bank accounts. The kids aren't an issue. My daughter is 18 and my 15 year old son is now glad to be living with me after his nightmare with my husband. I have no issues with my husband visiting with my son. I'm pretty much going to have custody of my son in any case.

I have no hatred or anger towards my husband...that's all in the past. This is all about being pragmatic and practical. I spent the night cleaning his apartment for him and am urging him to get rehab. He told me he'd do AA and he wants to get himself together. I told him I'd support him and help him but I need to protect myself and our son now. He has also told me he'd support the idea of a divorce and won't fight me on it.

So I might as well get started..where to start? :scratchhead: :confused:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
New Jersey. I'm actually considering a form of Legal Separation called "Divorce of Bed and Board". Which is basically a legal contract specifying who is responsible for whom and what. You don't have to go to court and it costs nothing. You just need to have it notarized after both parties sign.

The advantages are is that it preserves your family health care, which we have, but it separates you financially, which is my goal here. In many cases it's a step towards divorce, which it well might be but it sounds good now, provided that it is a legal and binding contract, which is what I need to check into. Just how legal and binding is it if his creditors decide to come after me?

Disadvantages is that you are still legally married, which is bad if you want to date or remarry but I have no plans for that right now. I have enough on my plate and the last thing I want is a serious relationship with anyone else.

I just have to research this and see what it involves. I want to get the process started ASAP because I don't know what my husband has been up to.

12 years ago we went bankrupt to get out of credit card debt. I have worked very hard to bring back my credit rating, pay off MY credit cards every month and own all my vehicles. Last thing I want is to have pay for the party he's thrown himself for the past 2 years. It was bad enough having to watch him throw it.

He still says "it was worth it". I told him that is a load of crap. All he has now is a really bad hangover as far I'm concerned.
 

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Go to or call the local court and ask for an annulment package, mine cost $250. As long as everything can be agreed on and the court see's the child/children are provided for it's a pretty simple process.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That's an option too. Basically it's an amicable divorce. You divide up your assets and make agreements about custody and go before a judge, pay around $200-300 and you are done.

I'm considering that as well, but I'm wondering how that will affect the health insurance, assuming he will still PAY it. Right now he is. I don't believe anything he tells me. He showed me his bank account with $1800 in it and said "That's all I have" but he still talks about keeping his boat, which is costing $500+ a month.

He's always been cagey and all over the place about his money and the numbers don't add up in my head, even if he has been living off his credit cards. I think he got a LOT more money from his father and selling all his property and his house and I think he's got more than he says he has squirreled away somewhere.

If he thinks he's going to dump everything on me and spend the summer hanging out on his boat, he should think again. I told him point blank that I'll sue him for support and it'll get nasty. If he just pays the health insurance, pays off my daughter's car and my son's bill for his braces we can walk away "amicable". My daughter is basically supporting herself and I can take care of myself and my son's living needs fine.

He told my son he'd buy him a new car like he did for my daughter but that's between him and my son. I can't afford to do that and before he bought my daughter the car she was going to buy one for herself. I do pay her car insurance for her and I'll do the same for him. Fortunately there's almost 4 years between them so I won't have double the costs because my daughter is practically supporting herself now so all I'll have to worry about is my son.

My son is already talking about getting a summer job. Smart boy. He's 15 so it's time. He seems to have grown up a lot in the past 6 months. I think living with his father gave him some perspective. Suddenly his father isn't this wonderful buddy that will take care of his every need. Suddenly his mother isn't this horrid, nagging beotch. He seems happy to be here, if only because there's an adult taking care of HIM, instead of the other way around.

I enjoyed my 6 months of single life but it's gonna be postponed for now. Today I'm going to get my son some decent clothes and a dresser to put his clothes in. I'm hoping my husband will be sober enough to come along and foot some of the bill. Then I gotta try and make the upcoming holiday season a decent one for the kids.

Yes, I'm venting now. But there's no anger here. It's not like it was 2 years ago. I'm just kinda doing like I would at work. It's gotta be done and I'm the one to do it. I'm not pissed at all at my husband. I expected it but was hoping that he'd come through this time. He didn't so now it's on me....again.

I really do want to end this cycle that keeps affecting me and my kids and just get on with life and not have a wave of debt crashing down on my head. It's all about protecting myself, not about getting back at my H. As far as custody goes, I'm obviously it for my son. I told my husband and my son that they can see each other whenever they want but my son will always be living with me.

My husband said "I failed him." I said "Yes you did". He can add that to the list but it's not me he has to answer to. Sad. :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Things might get nastier. Today I went over and he told me he wasn't giving me any money to buy my son clothes and food because he doesn't have any. He showed me his bank account which showed that has all of $1800 in it and said he'd spent all of his inheritance. Yet when I asked him about selling his boat he insisted that he would be keeping it, despite the fact that it's costing him over $500/month in loans and insurance.

I told him he IS going to pay the child support or ELSE. He said again that he has no money. He finally handed me around $75 in cash and said that was all he had. He only gave me that because he needed me to pick up his medication. That basically paid for my son's winter coat and boots, no other clothes..and he needs EVERYTHING since my husband has bought him practically nothing. My husband gave my son a bunch of old hand-me-downs that were sitting around his dead father's house!

Well, I checked on my bank accounts and saw he'd cashed a few checks recently that I'd paid him for our daughter's car insurance (it's in his name since he bought the car) and sure enough the account numbers are different, so he obviously has more than one account and is lying.

So I'm rethinking a legal separation and it might not even be an amicable divorce. If he thinks he can just walk away from his kids and responsibilities, he should think again.

But my mind is made up in any case. Up to this point I was content to hope and trust that he would do right, if not by me, then by the kids. Now it seems even they aren't important and he's looking to throw everything at me. Not going to happen.
 

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He is in denial. He is lashing out at you in any way he knows. But my gosh, you gave him chance after chance. As my dad told me years ago, 'wiggle easy until you get you head out of the lion's mouth'. Try to be reactive, he will always show his hand first.
 

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Holy hell - addiction will make people do the stupidest and cruelest things, to their own children, no less.

Yeah, a divorce might be the way to go and if there is another account, then the judge can make him "spill the beans", no? I know you have to list all of your assests - whether you have an attorney or not. Now as far as lying, well, I guess you may need an attorney to prove that, I don't know. But if he is playing these kind of games with the finances then yes, I think getting a divorce is the smartest way to go. I am so sorry that you are going through this but in the end, you will feel better and be doing much better for yourself and your kids.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
He is in denial. He is lashing out at you in any way he knows. But my gosh, you gave him chance after chance. As my dad told me years ago, 'wiggle easy until you get you head out of the lion's mouth'. Try to be reactive, he will always show his hand first.
Ah yes, I did indeed give him chance after chance. If you want to read all about it go to my post here:

http://talkaboutmarriage.com/relationships-addiction/61362-i-feel-shattered-3.html

I have basically been playing the "wiggle easy" game for years now...Just trying to "yes" him while getting as much as I can for me and my kids. But I think it's time for a more proactive approach. Could get messy. :(
 

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Bless your heart. Tough love is not easy but I can clearly see why. It's not like you hadn't thrown lifelines. It's up to him, commit to recover and yes, I support but only as long as you are giving 110%. 100% won't get it, that extra 10% is what you will see.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Holy hell - addiction will make people do the stupidest and cruelest things, to their own children, no less.

Yeah, a divorce might be the way to go and if there is another account, then the judge can make him "spill the beans", no? I know you have to list all of your assests - whether you have an attorney or not. Now as far as lying, well, I guess you may need an attorney to prove that, I don't know. But if he is playing these kind of games with the finances then yes, I think getting a divorce is the smartest way to go. I am so sorry that you are going through this but in the end, you will feel better and be doing much better for yourself and your kids.
I KNOW it will be better. I'm convinced of it now, after today.

Today he called me to tell me he didn't drink all day. He took some sedatives the doctor gave him to get him to stop drinking. He went on and on about how he was going to beat this become "the man he was". I asked him about helping support the kids, the health insurance..all that mundane stuff.

Right away he said "I don't have any money". Then I told him that we have to talk and soon and began to lay out the various options that I was considering. I told him it was up to him as to whether or not it will be nice or nasty but that he can't walk away from his obligations to his kids. He told me he wasn't going to be any good to anyone if he doesn't get better. I said "True". And he started going on and on about how I didn't support him and he'd start drinking again if I kept beating on him.

So I told him that I loved him and would help him and we'd talk after he got himself straightened out.

He calls back a few hours later, obviously drunk and telling me how I made him drink again by yelling at him (I didn't yell) and by threatening him and beating him down and he was going to become the man he was and I shouldn't talk to him unless I had something "constructive" to say, blah blah..

So yes, the usual lashing out at me, denying everything, assigning blame to everyone but himself, etc, etc.

I don't really care about all that. I just said "So you think I'm the one who makes you drink?..Really?" and I let him rant and on about how horrible and unfeeling I was.

But what alarms me is that he says he doesn't care about anyone, doesn't have any money and won't/can't pay anything...

So that puts me on a course that isn't very "amicable" at all.

He'd be a lucky man if I was indeed angry. 2 years ago I was hurt, angry and going crazy. I'm not that at all now. Right now I'm being quite cold and calculating and methodical. I'm just looking to protect myself and my kids.

I think one reason he's reacting like this is because he knows that when I set my mind to doing something, it gets done. When I walk away from someone and am done with them, then I'm truly done. I haven't talked to my mother and sister in 10 years..I have no problems leaving people who make my life miserable and difficult behind. Yes, I'll give them a million and one chances but at a million and two you're toast.

I'm pretty much at that point with him now and he knows it.

I probably should've done this 2 years ago. A lot of my friends have told me to. But even if he gave me a hard time, he eventually paid what needed to be paid and I rather enjoyed his companionship and needed his help. Like I said, I don't like change and if things are going well enough I tend to stay the course but I see a dark cloud looming on the horizon now and only a fool drives straight into a hurricane with his convertible top down. ;)

He's convinced himself in some bizarre manner that he doesn't have to support his kids. He seems to expect that everyone should just sit back and let him pick himself up, dust himself off and support and love him for the FOURTH TIME IN TWO YEARS and just let him abandon his family and responsibilities, just as he blew off his customers in our business 3 times in the past 2 years.

So I'm going to consult an attorney. Most give a free consultation. I'm going to see what my options are and I think I'm going to have to for a divorce. I want him legally bound by a court of law to support his kids. I have a 15 year old son and an 18 year old daughter in college that still need support. I can support most of their needs but there are things that I need help on and damn it, he's going to help me.

I was hoping it wouldn't come to this but I guess it will. I guess he'll be getting served a set of divorce papers for Christmas. :(

Shame, because he really isnt a bad man a. He certainly seemed amenable and rationale the other night, but that's the nature of the beast. One minute he's nice and telling me how great I am and how much he loves me and the next he's a raging lunatic who goes on to verbally and emotionally abuse me.

I used to take this to heart and cry and beg him to stop. I took a razor to myself as a result at one time. I used to drink myself to dull the pain. Now I just nod and shake my head and say "well, I guess that's that." I feel almost relieved because now there's NO DOUBT about what it is I have to do

I was hoping we could do this and keep it friendly but I have no choice and I'm tired of the blame game, the antics and having my weekends and holidays ruined. I just want my kids and I to live peacefully.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Bless your heart. Tough love is not easy but I can clearly see why. It's not like you hadn't thrown lifelines. It's up to him, commit to recover and yes, I support but only as long as you are giving 110%. 100% won't get it, that extra 10% is what you will see.
I don't even want to live with him anymore. We have't lived together in 2 years and I haven't missed him. At one time I was hoping we could put the relationship back together. When we first separated I was hoping we'd be able to date and do some fun and romantic things together, esp since he got some money. For awhile we did but it soon went bad again.

This is a yearly ritual and every year I am less emotionally tied to him. I care less and less about him and I am to the point where I don't even need or want to see him and have been avoiding him.

I LIKE living on my own. The last 6 months, when he had my son, was AWESOME. A taste of what I could have and want.
But I can't get it just yet. I have my son to look after and my daughter still needs me too, just not as much.

As for him, if it wasn't for my kids I'd just turn and walk away. I don't need money for myself. I can support myself just fine...and one day I will.

But while those kids are under my care he's going to support them and when a judge tells him that he has to, he will. My husband has always respected the law. He won't be a deadbeat dad.

But then again..who knows? But I have to give it my best shot for my kids sake.
 

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Off course here, but may I ask why:

I haven't talked to my mother and sister in 10 years
I have people in my life that are toxic and I find it difficult to really cut the cord. :eek:

Also, I think you need to unleash the freak ;) on that drunk husband. He had kids with you; he needs to own up to it. The court can make him pay child support!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Off course here, but may I ask why:

I have people in my life that are toxic and I find it difficult to really cut the cord. :eek:
Why have I not talked to my mother and sister in 10 years?

Because they were toxic and I have no difficulty in cutting the cord. It was a long time in the making but once made, it was one of the best decisions I'd ever made. I think the same situation is going to happen with my husband.

Also, I think you need to unleash the freak ;) on that drunk husband. He had kids with you; he needs to own up to it. The court can make him pay child support!!
On Thursday I have an appointment to consult with a lawyer about starting the filing process.

So the Freak is definitely off the leash...
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
He's a real piece of work. Today I made the mistake of sending my son over there after school to wait for me until I got off work. BIG mistake. :slap: He calls up and starts going on about how he wants his desk chair back. When I moved my son out, I took the chair that he supposedly bought for my son. My son asked for it, my husband was home when I took it and said nothing. Now he wants it back.

Plus, the PC gaming computer my husband bought my son for his birthday last year is broken so he's been letting my son use his laptop. When I moved him out we took it. Again, he knew we took it and had no problem with it.

Today he called up saying he needs his chair and his laptop. I told him I'd come over after work to pick our son up and he could drive back to my apartment and bring the computer and we'd give him the laptop and his chair.

Then my son called me and tells me that my husband is acting strangely, slurring his words and has been sitting out in his car drinking and smoking for hours. I told my son to walk down to the corner and I'd pick him up.

It was getting late and I was in no mood to deal with this crap. I just wanted to get my son out of there and was kicking myself in the butt for letting him go there in the first place. I figure if my husband wants his stuff so bad he can come over and get it.

A few minutes later my husband called and asks where my son is. I told him I picked him up. He goes ballistic and says "we had a plan". I don't know what plan he had in mind but he seemed to think that I was stopping back at my house to pick up his laptop before coming over to pick up my son. I was doing no such thing. He was supposed to come to MY apartment to pick it up after I came over to get my son.

He says "I'm coming over to pick up the laptop." I told him, "Don't come over without our son's PC computer". He says "No way, I'm coming for my laptop." He comes without the computer. I wouldn't open the door and told him, no PC computer, no laptop."

He says he's calling the cops to tell them I stole his stuff. I told him "Just bring the PC and you'll get the laptop and chair, what's the big deal?"

Now he's calling me up, drunk of course, threatening to call the police and tell them that I "stole" his laptop. But he won't bring my son HIS computer in return!

I'm half tempted to call the police in his town and tell them I've seen a car swerving down the street, obviously wit being driven by a drunk driver and give them his plate #. Guaranteed he IS drunk and THEN he'll know just what a real nightmare is.

But I'm not up to that point yet. If he keeps it up, I will be. :gun::gun:
 

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Freak, I'm so sorry you're going through this. Please do not let your son go over there without sober adult supervision. Him seeing his father in that condition certainly is not healthy for him. :(
 

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It's impossible to go NC when you have children. As for the M, you pretty much have said, it is no more. But for your child's sake......offer support if he admits he has a drinking problem and seeks help.
 

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I think a divorce would give you more stability in regards to child support, division of assets/debts and health insurance. They can put health insurance as a part of the divorce decree. The problem is..he has to pay it or you will need to go to court and make him. But....that may happen regardless if you are divorced or not (lack of payment).

He will attempt to make excuses and promises as he always has....he's a drunk. He hasn't hit his bottom yet...maybe soon? Who knows. You are smart in protecting yourself and getting on with life.

Sorry for the hardship but being in limbo sucks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Freak, I'm so sorry you're going through this. Please do not let your son go over there without sober adult supervision. Him seeing his father in that condition certainly is not healthy for him. :(
I'm kicking myself HARD in the butt for having my son go over there. REALLY bad idea. :banghead: He was awful to my son. He wouldn't let him sleep on the couch "because he would mess it up". WTF? The place was a PIGSTY!! My son was so out of sorts that he called and asked if I could just come and get him ASAP and that his father was sitting outside smoking (and probably drinking) in the car.

So I told my son to just go downstairs and go to the corner and I'd pick him up. We just left..and my husband lost his mind as a result. For what? "Because we had a 'plan' and didn't stick with it. WHAT plan? For him to come over and pick up his computer and chair? I told him to do just that and he refused to give my son back his computer! WTF?

The night I picked my son up my husband was telling me how horrible he is and seemed touched that I was helping him out and even told me to go ahead and divorce him. This is why I thought we could work things out. He honestly seemed to feel badly. He told me he failed our son and that he was a POS.

But when I told him flat out that he couldn't just walk away from his financial obligations he started losing it. I think he realized that this time I was serious, I was really going to divorce him, because that's when he started talking about how horrible I was for "threatening him".

Sending my son over was plain stupid. I told my son when we got back that I would arrange for cab service to pick him up. Should've done that from the start. Sometimes I just don't THINK and am too damn trusting. :( :slap:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
But for your child's sake......offer support if he admits he has a drinking problem and seeks help.
For my children's sake I stuck by him when he pulled this same crap 3 times before in the last 2 years. It's over. He's on his own. He's treating my son horribly. He won't give him back the computer he bought him for his birthday!

If he just needed my help but was still paying for the things he said he would I'd be right with him. But he uses these things as WEAPONS. He has threatened to take the car away from my daughter that he bought her on her 16th birthday at least 7 times. Every time we have a disagreement he threatens to cancel our health insurance. Now he's treating my son like dirt.

I'm going to file ASAP and get him out of my life. My husband has always been law abiding so I'm assuming that if a judge says he has to pay support that he will..at least I'm hoping he will. I don't believe for a minute that he doesn't have any more money left.

I'm tired of the games, the begging, pleading and the bullying.

He is on his own as far as his "disease" goes. Three times and he's out. :mad: You want to treat me like crap? Go ahead, but do that to my kids and it's war.
 
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