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Old 26 November 2015, 11:27 PM
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Flame The Ex-Rant

So I just found out my ex and her new husband are living it up in Vegas this week; I thought they were at his brother's house a couple of counties over. This comes after positively no child support has been paid in 10 months.

She really could not have handled leaving me and the kids any worse. One day, the very same month we were featured in Christianity Today as a couple that got along especially well, she just came home, asked for a word with me in our room, confessed an affair with the worship leader at church, then packed and told the kids she was leaving. They thought it was on a trip until she said it was "divorced leaving."

The kids dropped from straight-A's to failing almost everything, and the youngest took it so hard that he wound up requiring inpatient psychiatric care as a danger to himself. She told me outright that she would not take responsibility for the kids' psychiatric issues.

Now she has a book coming out that appears to be a white-washed life story. I've never done anything vindictive, even in the midst of all of this, but it's really hard to watch and not scream "she's not who she says she is" to anyone who will listen. She holds herself up as a model of humility and Christian grace, but in reality she is a very selfish person who wantonly wrecked two marriages and still tried to get her church job back after the affair rocked the congregation, and now she's gone off to Vegas on inheritance money with child support obligations unfulfilled. I can't make ends meet right now and I have idea how Christmas will even happen. Those payments had better be here soon.
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Old 26 November 2015, 11:46 PM
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Not much to say except that I'm so sorry this is happening. Infatuation does weird things to the brain.
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Old 26 November 2015, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Elwood View Post
*snip*. I've never done anything vindictive, even in the midst of all of this, but it's really hard to watch and not scream "she's not who she says she is" to anyone who will listen.
I'd like to say that were I in your position, I'd be doing just that (the screaming), but I'm finding it hard to imagine. So I'll just say that I'm very sorry it's what you and your family are going through.
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Old 27 November 2015, 12:07 AM
fitz1980 fitz1980 is offline
 
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If she is 10 months behind on child support obligations have you looked at what it would take to have her wages garnished?
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Old 27 November 2015, 12:19 AM
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Situations like yours, Elwood make me furious because in popular culture and in every men's right rant I've ever read they make it seem like the custodial parent (usually the woman) is bleeding the other parent (usually the man) dry and laughing all the way to the bank and I know that's just not true. In my personal life most of the people I know who've divorced are either constantly fighting to get even a fraction of the child support owed them or they've given up trying.

If you've managed to take the high road so far I have nothing but admiration for you but I wouldn't blame you a bit if you cracked and let loose eventually. It sounds though like at least some of the people in your circle aren't buying her version of her life (I gather this from your comments about your church).
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Old 27 November 2015, 12:48 AM
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Elwood, I'm so sorry you and your kids are going through this. The details of the situation were different, but I went through some of the same things with my ex, particularly his behavior toward our daughter.

Re: child support, I take it she pays you directly? That's how it was with me ex and me, and I had plenty of cause to regret it.
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Old 27 November 2015, 01:26 AM
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If she is 10 months behind on child support obligations have you looked at what it would take to have her wages garnished?
She's self-employed as a piano teacher. She quit her day-job when I started garnishing it.
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Old 27 November 2015, 01:28 AM
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Elwood, I'm so sorry you and your kids are going through this. The details of the situation were different, but I went through some of the same things with my ex, particularly his behavior toward our daughter.

Re: child support, I take it she pays you directly? That's how it was with me ex and me, and I had plenty of cause to regret it.
Child support is through the state Bureau of Child Support Enforcement. She pays them and then they pay me. Her husband pays his ex directly. My lawyer advised against any such arrangement. Ironically, he's current, so far as I know.
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Old 27 November 2015, 01:30 AM
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Aren't there consequences to her when she is behind like that? I certainly hope so!
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Old 27 November 2015, 01:54 AM
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Yeah. She'll lose her driver's license if I make the call to Bureau of Child Support Enforcement.
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Old 27 November 2015, 04:46 AM
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If she pays it through them, aren't they aware that she's that far behind?
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  #12  
Old 27 November 2015, 01:39 PM
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... in popular culture and in every men's right rant I've ever read they make it seem like the custodial parent (usually the woman) is bleeding the other parent (usually the man) dry and laughing all the way to the bank and I know that's just not true...
Well, there is range, of course. My ex-boss's son got arrested multiple times when the mother of his child reported him for missing child support, even though he had the cancelled checks every time showing that he had paid the money. The cops, of course, could only take him in, then my ex-boss would bail him out and they would go to court and show the cancelled checks. The complainant did this every time she wanted more money out of him, and several times the court awarded it, rather than tossing her lying carcass into jail for false swearing. I know, FOAF story. There is probably not any arrangement whereby someone can mess with someone else's life that is not abused to do so at times.

And Elwood, if she is promoting her book, maybe an 'anonymous' e-mail to the interviewers in advance of a session advising them to look into her child support delinquency would have a salutary effect.
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Old 27 November 2015, 10:56 PM
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I think I'm done being her doormat. I let her use my house to visit the kids after school and I've gone out of my way to pick the kids up from her place when it is really her responsibility to get them from me. I cried when she had a stillborn baby, even though he was the result of an affair, and I haven't pushed child support because I know that she doesn't make much from piano lessons, but then again she quit the only job I could ever garnish wages from. A cross-country jaunt with new hubby while being 10 months behind is really just beyond the pale, and I've let her know that. It's more than just the money, it's her whole attitude and outlook. I don't want my kids growing up to be like her. I don't want to second guess myself about how I could have loved her enough for her not to leave. Frankly, she's just not a good person. I have to remember to tell myself that, lest I get run over again.
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Old 29 November 2015, 04:40 AM
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Wait, so she's on marriage number three now? Damn. Elwood I'm so sorry. I can't imagine how difficult this is. She seemed like such a different person.

From one (former) single parent to another, push the child support. I never pushed it with my ex. I really wish I'd pursued him more. If I knew then what I know now I would have garnished every penny and put it in an account for her education. But I know how difficult it is to chase down jobs. Hang on and be as much of a rock for your kids as you can. I hope they can get through this.
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Old 29 November 2015, 05:25 AM
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No, I should have been more clear, it's still marriage number two. I meant she wrecked his marriage and ours. I just call him new hubby. She married the worship leader with whom she was having the affair after getting pregnant with his baby. They tied the knot as soon as both divorces went through. They tried to get his paid music-minister job back after getting married, claiming they had done the right thing in the end, but the pastor told them both to take a hike. It hasn't stopped them from leading worship elsewhere, though. Had the baby been live born, I would have had additional legal hurdles in proving that it wasn't mine. It's all been a big mess. Amicable until now, but messy to get through for me.

I sent an email about the child support and got a reply claiming it was overly materialistic to focus on money, along with a lengthy critique of my housekeeping skills, claiming I'm implicitly teaching the kids that it is okay to live in filth. What a winner. I was so blinded by love throughout the marriage that I never saw her true colors--not even in 16 years. I really think a big part of the current mess is the kids having learned from her. Hubby #2 told his ex that he had an affair because of her poor management of the finances and housekeeping, so all of a sudden she focuses on those two areas.

Both were disasters when she was with me. The house was always a mess and she drained the finances to zero on her way out and before that stopped paying the utilities for months. I was left in danger of every utility being cut-off in a matter of days. Plus, she ignored all the notices from our homeowners policy that certain repairs had to be completed within a certain timeframe, so the policy got canceled, which almost put the whole mortgage contract in danger. Had my grandma not co-signed for a $10k loan and a lawyer-friend not helped with the divorce on the cheap, I would have been completely snowed under. Then she still had to audacity to use a joint credit-card after leaving.

Yes, the house is a mess. I'm working diligently on it. I spent the whole day cleaning on Friday. But that is beside the point. She does not have the moral high ground in this relationship. She knows she owes the child support and she just blows it off. Under state law, she'll lose her driver's license if I call the Bureau of Child Support Enforcement until she's less than six month in arrears. She will face jail time is it reaches 12 months (it's 10 now).

Meanwhile, I'm charging groceries so that I can pay for kids' school trips, clothes and absolute essentials. I was letting it go because I know she does not make much, but this trip to Vegas has really set me off. It's just astonishingly irresponsible. None of her relatives can figure out how they could possibly have afforded it, and none of mine are happy about the child support (my brother is married to her sister, so that further complicates things). And now one of the four kids is moving in with her while the other three stay with me, so it's getting ever more complicated.

Last edited by Elwood; 29 November 2015 at 05:35 AM.
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Old 29 November 2015, 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Elwood View Post
I sent an email about the child support and got a reply claiming it was overly materialistic to focus on money, along with a lengthy critique of my housekeeping skills, claiming I'm implicitly teaching the kids that it is okay to live in filth.
If your response to this was not "as opposed to explicitly teaching them that it is okay to commit adultery and abandon one's children?" you are a better person than I am.
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Old 29 November 2015, 04:31 PM
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^ Sometimes I really wish there was a like button enable on this messageboard.

My sister's husband did the same kind of thing when they divorced, constantly deflecting any criticism of him for failing to pay child support, or, you know, actually pay any attention to his children at all, by trying to make any discussion all about her and where he thought she was screwing up. Problem is when someone is cheated on and has their spouse leave them they are usually feeling like they actually did screw up. It takes a pretty strong character not to question yourself and wonder what you could have done differently. It took her a long time to realize that his failings were not her fault.
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Old 29 November 2015, 05:01 PM
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good news is 0-00 if the book is successful -- another source to garnish --
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Old 29 November 2015, 05:03 PM
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(In response to Sue) I hate that tactic. It's classic deflection and has nothing to do with the real issue. It's just a passive aggressive way of saying, "I'm not sorry and I don't want to give you the money."
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Old 29 November 2015, 07:34 PM
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Sometimes I really wish there was a like button enable on this messageboard.
.

Me too. I didn't do that. I had one last meeting with her before the divorce was final where I did say pretty much just that. The Wednesday before she left, she told me she didn't love me anymore (after I brought home flowers and her favorite wine).We had made love the night before, but she seemed a little withdrawn, hence the gifts. I set up marriage counseling, but she wouldn't go. She slept on the couch for a few days, didn't come home Saturday night and then said she was leaving after pretending to have been at church on Sunday.

I can't believe she still thinks she was in the right on any part of this. I was faithful to the very end and even offered forgiveness, pleading with her to do right by the kids. She admitted that her initial plan was outright abandonment, like leaving the state with him and never looking back, but she ultimately settled locally and got an evening per week of visitation, plus Sunday afternoons. I so want to write to her current church and tell them all about her, as church music seems to be one of her greatest joys, but I'm not like that.. She was kicked out of the first one for having an affair, then a second one because two of our kids are LBGT and that didn't mesh with their theology (not her fault on that one). This new one seems to buy the BS that things just didn't work out.

FWIW, her family seems to think she's full of it. I have maintained a good relationship with ex-Father-in-law and plan to vacation with him annually into the indefinite future. He even gave me ex-MIL's car when she died.

Unfortunately, I've found the dating scene to be close to impossible as a single dad of four teenagers. I had one relationship go so far as plans for marriage within the year, but then she backed out saying that she couldn't transition from 40 years of no kids to suddenly having four. I haven't heard from her since the breakup. The woman before that also said my life was too complicated for her to commit to any more dates. Another one said flatly "I don't date guys with kids" when I finally mustered the courage to ask her out. But all of that is its own rant, really.
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