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Quick background in a nut-shell

1.) Married in the State of California for 12 years now
2.) I'm a 40 year old Caucasian, my wife is a 33 year old Asian from Laos
3.) Two children - one age 6 and the other 3. Both boys. My six year old is special needs (PDD-NOS: Autistic Spectrum)
4.) I am employed and make a decent salary (around $75k)
5.) My wife was regularly employed up until 2006 when she was fired from her job (she won't admit this - they pulled her from her position because of poor performance and disobedience and offered her a lesser role in another position that she turned down). During her last three years working, she brought in roughly $40K - $50K a year
6.) Recently filed bankruptcy (Chapter 7) to clean up a debt mess that has been developing since my wife lost her job
7.) Losing our home in this process...the mortgage just got to be too much without her income. Still in the house, and looking at attempting a short sale to avoid foreclosure. However, the house is a mess with stained carpets, filthy walls, broken doors...it's a disaster and selling it might prove difficult unless we move out.

Here is my dilemma. I simply cannot deal with my wife any longer. I should have realized the person I married a long time ago. But as we all know, I cannot go back and change the past.

I am what most would consider a rather organized and neat person. My wife, on the other hand, is a complete mess. I don't know if it's a cultural thing...but she simply does not care about her home or property. Having crap laying all over the house...laundry, food, newspapers...it means nothing to her. Damage to property that we've spent many years purchasing has no meaning...the kids have literally destroyed everything we own in one way or another.

She spends 70% of her day sitting on the computer chatting with people on social forums and listening to online spiritual guidance in "Paltalk" rooms - something related to Buddha and Dhamma that she says makes her life better. This sort of stuff is coming out of the speakers of her computer(s) around the house for what seems like 24 hours a day. It's driving me crazy. And when she is not on the computer, she's texting on her phone.

She does little more than make sure our kids are fed and clothed. Anything more than that just doesn't happen. They're generally free to roam and destroy the house when I am not home.

I work in a high stress job what amounts to an average of 50-60 hours a week. I come home to piles of dishes in the sink...clothes all over the house (both clean and dirty). She hates to put clothes away. She'll wash and dry them and they'll get piled up anywhere in the house (couches, beds, top of the washer dryer) and that's where they'll stay.

She's a total packrat. Holds on to anything. Doesn't matter how trivial...stuff that's clearly junk or trash to the average person she wants to keep.

About a year ago, she got involved in an online relationship with someone in Thailand to the point where she wanted to leave me for this guy. At the time, I was in a much different frame of mind. I still loved her and didn't want to lose her. So I fought and things got really bad for a while. Eventually, she had a change of mind and heart and decided is was in her best interest to stay in our marriage. But through all of that, I changed. I don't have the same feelings any longer. I try to care, but I don't have the same feelings I did even a year ago, and the stress of the relationship is killing me. She is a person who cannot change...and neither am I. I need a wife at home that is taking care of business...taking care of the home and ensuring our kids are taken care of. I need to be able to come home to a clean house and, on occasion, a cooked meal after a stressful day at work. I need to know my kids are safe and getting the care they deserve when I cannot be at home. I work many hours and also have a part time career in the US Naval Reserves that consumes my time.

If things keep going the way they are, I feel like I am going to break. I have all kinds of stress on my shoulders...a job I used to love that I now hate because I moved into management. Financial stress (slightly reduced as a result of Bankruptcy)and the upcoming stress of losing our home and having to move.

Divorce has always been a consideration. I simply feel that getting out into a little apartment somewhere would allow me to get back to a life of less stress and some organization where I control my environment.

More than likely, my oldest son would probably go with me. He's so attached to me, while my youngest is attached to my wife.

But my wife doesn't make this easy. She has commented on many occasions that if I file for divorce, that she want's the maximum she can get in child support AND spousal support. I fear this will reduce me to poverty level.

I've been doing some reading about how divorces go in the State of California. I hate the fact that the courts seem to favor the mothers and don't hold them responsible in any way if the father is working. In my mind, there should be some sort of calculation that estimates the monthly or yearly cost to provide for the needs of the children, and the father should simply be responsible for 50% of this cost while the mother needs to go out and get a job and cover the other 50%. That's only fair.

So there is my story. Certainly there are more details. But I won't bore anyone with anything more. Just looking for some advice. We're obviously not in good shape financially after just having come out of bankruptcy. So getting am expensive lawyer may not be an option.

I think my life would be so much better if I had an organized environment at home. But that's never going to happen due to my choice in a spouse. She's not a bad person. We simply are not compatible. Nothing in common in choices of music, entertainment, social and political ideology, hobbies, religion, and particularly culture. We have a huge gap in ideas on how to maintain a household.

I need somewhere to turn...the stress is simply too much. I need a change of life soon, which I think needs to start at home and eventually also needs to happen with my career since I'm miserable at work as well. More often than not, I feel like I'm lost with no where to turn and I sit at home with no motivation to do anything, knowing that it won't make a difference. I'm one person in this sea of despair and disorder, feeling like I am swimming upstream and going nowhere, with a waterfall not far behind waiting for me to fall over the edge.

Thanks for listening. Happy to hear any advice.

Sincerely,
Chris
:confused:
 

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Sorry for your misfortune.

A woman who stays at home, has tons of time, but doesn't do cleaning and organizing the house, is really a turn off. Sorry that your woman is like this. If a woman like this can keep a man long term, I suspect that she used a spell. Joking................

Your post is too long, if you don't get much response, don't feel bad. Not people here don't want to give you advice, they just don't have patience for long posts!

Please go to the Men's club, there are a lot of helpful threads about what a husband should do to get his wife's respect!
 

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Blaming your wife won't help her want to contribute more, since no people like to be forced into doing things, they do things because they want to. Positive encouragement and appreciation usually works better if you want people to do things for you!

Threatening her with a divorce will only make her resent you even more.

Is there still hope for two of you? Sounds like you are pretty bothered by her emotional affair!

If you divorce her, your life is shattered; if you don't, your life is miserable, what a dilemma!
 

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Detach from her, do what you can to get her employed somehow somewhere.

Then when she is, leave her.

Your spousal support will be less than it will be now.

You have proof that she can earn a wage.

Keep copies of the taxes you files before she stopped working.

I don't see this situation improving.
 

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On-Edge,

First off let me offer my sympathies to you and your situation. You deserve better from your partner.

It sounds to me that you could get custody of both children, if you can simply demonstrate to the courts that she does not upkeep the house in a sanitary manner while she is home all day, and does not properly tend to the well being of the children. Well being to me would mean more than simply dressing the kids, giving them some quick lunch and letting them run wild around an unkempt house all day. Especially with a special needs child.

I would suggest you start taking pictures or video of how you find the house and kids everyday when you come home. If you have a digital camera with a date and time on it even better.

Winning custody would make your life challenging with the hours you put in at work, but should eliminate the issue of child support and quite likely alimony, as she should be paying you child support based on her potential income. You may be able to afford decnt child care this way. I'm not sure what the legalities are in California vs other states. Each state kind of has their own rules and guidelines but in general most are fairly similar I want to believe.

I would try to find someone local (at work maybe) that has divorced recently and could give you a better feel of the local laws and perhaps an idea of the cost of legal fees. Or maybe there is a local support group or forum for divorced and separated persons.

Best of luck to you!
 

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Neatness is a requirement and household rule for us, coming home from work to a horrid home with trash everywhere will drive you insane. Having a clean house makes a huge difference - you have to be firm in this with your missus. She's not working, she has no excuse not to at least keep the house clean. Besides being messy is a poor example for the kids.
 

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Neatness is a requirement and household rule for us, coming home from work to a horrid home with trash everywhere will drive you insane. Having a clean house makes a huge difference - you have to be firm in this with your missus. She's not working, she has no excuse not to at least keep the house clean. Besides being messy is a poor example for the kids.


A clean apartment can really sooth a tired man's feeling.

No excuse for her to be lazy!

Some women just like to spoil themselves. It is very immature!
 

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Your post is too long, if you don't get much response, don't feel bad. Not people here don't want to give you advice, they just don't have patience for long posts!
California seems to definitely be a bad place for getting divorced. Sucks what you are going through. Have you tried counceling? Sounds like she isn't all that happy either. Maybe there can be some common ground, found.

As to your post...yes...it is long. BUT...at least you used paragraphs, and punctuation. I only get tired of reading, when there is no relief for the eye (ie. one continuous runon.) Good luck. I'm sure you'll get some more feedback.
 

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I do not know the laws in CA, but I would think you would have a fairly easy time of getting custody of the kids. Clothing and feeding kids, especially one that is special needs, is not enough. She should be keeping the house clean, interacting and playing with the kids, researching how to help your special needs child cope with his disability and gain skills and such.

Regardless of whether or not you can/will get custody, or might have to pay in child/spousal support, you can't let that stop you from leaving her if you really feel that's the best option. You need to really look at your situation and decide what is really best for everyone, and then, if you do decide to leave, you need to fight like hell for your kids. Even if the three of you are crammed in a tiny apartment for a while, that's better than the kids being raised in a dirty home by a mother who cares more about her computer than her kids.
 
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