Friday, September 2, 2011

Guest Post: Divorce

This is a guest post of a friend of mine who has been through hell and back in the last year. She has her own blog and has been about to boil over, keeping her story safe inside for fear her ex will find it and use it against her in court. I told her she just needed to get it out, and offered space here for her to vent.

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I didn’t hate the father of my children a year ago on this date. On this date in 2010, we were fine. Seriously dating other people, a year since our do-it-ourselves-friendly divorce (and three since we had separated), we were still the model of How To Co-Parent Correctly. I had believed for a long time that he agreed with me that our marriage was an unintentional, immature mistake; one made by two dumb kids unprepared to really know what forever and ever actually meant. After all, we spent more time choosing our majors in college than we did choosing each other as life partners, so as longtime friends I was confident we both wished each other happiness and peace in our future journeys.  

I was wrong. Because while I wished for him a future with someone who could appreciate the great qualities he had, he apparently didn’t reciprocate, and I am still learning this in a very expensive, immeasurably painful way. So mea culpa.

And $@& him. Because three weeks after he got engaged, I got hit with the first two court issues.

What I’ve learned since the divorce about that never-met-a-stranger easygoing fella, is that he is a man who had been lying to me about how much his new job was paying him, and when his salary and commission quadrupled, he decided to stop splitting the costs we had always shared. So despite that I had stayed home with our children for seven years, spending a year trying to find a job that still paid less than any before kids, and was receiving less financial support than I could have asked for initially - he informed me he was done. Perfectly logical. And I’m sure it had nothing to do with the fact his 24 year-old fiancee (let’s call her Other Mother*  from here on, shall we?) soon quit her job. Surely.

However, The Courts disagreed, and awarded me more. Lots more. But.. nearly a year later of games and appeals and overall legal asshattery, he still owes me tens (is twentys a word?) of thousands of dollars in back child support. Meanwhile my home has one working car currently, because we can’t quite shoulder the cost of a new car payment with childcare and full-day kindergarten expenses and kids’ therapy and autism specialists and medicine with no reimbursement. 
Last spring my boyfriend and I bought a house in the radius of the kids’ school, so they could be guaranteed placement, and a month ago we were told by a little birdie that it was going to be used against me in court that I wasn’t legally attached to the house (since I wasn’t on the title), so we called an ordained friend that Tuesday, and got married over pizza and wine on our Thursday lunch break.

The tiramisu was better than any wedding cake I’ve ever had, but I sure could use a honeymoon eventually.

I learned in the last year that this gem of a guy is more than willing to block me from doctor appointments, and authorize medical decisions without my consent. That he will go so far as to pull one paragraph out of a blog post I’d once written, twist the context, and have his Decepticon attorney try to obliterate my character in court; refusing to look me in the eye while I sat on the witness stand and cried from shock. And hurt. And humiliation. Because I literally didn’t understand what the hell would possess my once-best friend to be so cruel.

I know he supported Other Mother telling my sweet baby girl, my soul, my heart, my mini-me, that it’s a grand idea to call her Mommy, because she is her new Mommy, dontchaknow. Which makes perfect twisted sense if you hear that after the daycare provider and my daughter called me in May to tell me, giggling, that I’d need to pick up my Mother’s Day gift after work, Other Mother decided to take it home instead, saying there had been a mistake and it was actually for her.  

I’m going to let that

for just a bit.  

I learned that this man, this father who in theory was there to battle through the heartbreaking first couple years of our son’s autism diagnosis, would inexplicably, inexcusably,
unforgivably, wait until the end of summer to file a motion to try to move the kids to the school by his new house. I mean, we had to have visits and social stories and months of preparation for our son to transition from Kindy to first grade in the same school with the same people. Yet this Pile of Parenting Fail wanted to wait until there was one week to the beginning of school to announce a new educational galaxy.

There literally isn’t enough teeth-clenching-barely-controlled-rage-disguised-as-witty-sarcasm to explain how wrong that was. I had nightmares for weeks about it. Weeks.  

So that is why I recently found myself in court again: in the fourth motion on our docket, at the sixth hearing in nine months, not crying. This time I was pissed and totally ready to Chuck Norris him by pulling his heart out through his tear ducts. Because at this point I was done wishing him well or trying to understand what happened or what boundaries are being obliterated or why mediation didn’t work or what I could have done differently or how it was possible he could still


Because it doesn’t matter anymore. It is what it is what it is, and all I can do is keep trucking until it’s over.

So, because as sheer logic should follow, I won. Big. And my ex, my ulcer, my kids’ sperm donor, got a serious tongue lashing from the judge. Which was glorious. But not before I added another couple K to the eternal bill I owe my attorney.  Who as of now doesn’t seem as willing to call our deal done if I just name a future child after him. Hmph.

So as you think about your upcoming Labor Day weekend, have second thoughts if it includes an invite to a lavish Midtown wedding replete with trolleys and chocolate fountains and (apparently) a smallish orchestra: you may be friends with the peach I just told you about, and you never know if there might be a surprise guest. Because karma
surely is saving up a grandaddy of an event to visit these two, and I’ll give every mythical unicorn cent I’m supposedly owed if she unleashes it then. I have no doubt karma is a mamabear, too.

* Have you seen
Coraline? Yeah, it’s my life, totally. No joke. 

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After hearing all she's been going through over the past year, my heart hurts for her. So please give her some love.
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