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It does feel like this is starting to drag out, and it's only to her benefit. So I may start needing to press the schedule on getting mediation rolling. Otherwise, I'm just missing more and more time with the kids, and spending more and more money, while she does little (as far as I can see) to prepare for the next phase of her life (getting back to work, finding living accommodations, etc.)


You've moved out right? If so you're in a bad status quo. i get it though as LBS's we agree to things thinking it will change our WAS's mind. I almost moved out and I'm the mom (what the heck was I thinking?) I just hit send yesterday on an email to my attorney and I hate it. I hate that it's come to this. I'm not filing but I am pushing for a separation agreement STAT.

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unchien,

Where is the OM in all of this mess? Oh yeah, there is no OM. Riiiiight...there is no OM. A true WAW is about as rare as a billionaire in a soup line.

Why is the OM important? Because if you're not in a no-fault state, then it gives you some leverage.

If you're paying all of the bills, like for cell phones and internet connections, you might might want to have a look-see at what you're paying for (you know, text messages, email and the like). If your paycheck is going into a joint bank account, then open your own account and have the paycheck deposited in your account. Continue paying the bills and supporting your family, but it's time to protect yourself.

Go interview several divorce attorneys and find one that you like. You don't necessarily have to retain one immediately, but go ahead and get things started. You can even drop some hints about what you're doing. The key is that you need to be in the driver's seat. She's not going to respect you of you continue the status quo. The probability is that you are going to be divorced, so you might as well get out ahead of this right now because the longer you wait the deeper the hole is going to get.

You don't have to be mean or nasty; you do need to be firm, direct and very clear in your communication that it's not acceptable to continue living the way things are.

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Thanks kas for your feedback.

We are aiming to try mediation, with a separate mediator for custody, and one for financial items. I will retain a lawyer for advisory purposes. If things go south, then I will have to escalate from mediation.

Right now I'm in a highly emotional state. Four months into separation, doing 4-10 with the kids, and this is going to drag out. I am fearful, frustrated, scared. I feel like I am drifting apart from my kids, spending money unnecessarily, and my W is not showing much drive towards pulling her life together. I need to spend a couple days calming down before making decisions.

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Originally Posted by doodler
unchien,

Where is the OM in all of this mess? Oh yeah, there is no OM. Riiiiight...there is no OM. A true WAW is about as rare as a billionaire in a soup line.

Why is the OM important? Because if you're not in a no-fault state, then it gives you some leverage.

If you're paying all of the bills, like for cell phones and internet connections, you might might want to have a look-see at what you're paying for (you know, text messages, email and the like). If your paycheck is going into a joint bank account, then open your own account and have the paycheck deposited in your account. Continue paying the bills and supporting your family, but it's time to protect yourself.

Go interview several divorce attorneys and find one that you like. You don't necessarily have to retain one immediately, but go ahead and get things started. You can even drop some hints about what you're doing. The key is that you need to be in the driver's seat. She's not going to respect you of you continue the status quo. The probability is that you are going to be divorced, so you might as well get out ahead of this right now because the longer you wait the deeper the hole is going to get.

You don't have to be mean or nasty; you do need to be firm, direct and very clear in your communication that it's not acceptable to continue living the way things are.


Hey doodler -

I am in a no-fault state.

I consulted a few attorneys several months ago. They all told me no point in retaining until things start moving along. I am definitely going to get divorced, there is no doubt at this point.

The OM issue is not a concern of mine. I don't think there is an OM. If there is, well, so be it. Maybe I'm gullible. She hurt me far worse accusing me of being a violent and abusive person, then essentially withholding the kids from me. Best of luck to the OM.

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Yes - you need to be calm, cool and collected when it comes to the negotiations.

One goal is to make things seem like "win-win" - or at least, equal losing. If you "win" 50:50 but she "wins" first right of refusal for after-school care, that's a good start. The sooner the better in terms of getting that nailed down because once she realizes what she's giving up in terms of child support she may fight for more custody.

Also the sooner alimony or at least official support payments (based on what alimony will be) get started the closer she will be to being able to rent a place.

So, although it seems counter-intuitive, since you don't want the divorce, you are still better off if you move it along. The longer it drags on the less generous she will become - and the more precedent will be set.

Also - since you bought the house so recently, will you be upside down in the house? Would moving into it yourself and getting a roommate to help pay the bills be a feasible alternative?

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Originally Posted by kml

Also the sooner alimony or at least official support payments (based on what alimony will be) get started the closer she will be to being able to rent a place.

I should already know the answer to this, but:

Is it normal to separate financially at the beginning of the divorce process, under some temporary arrangement, with the understanding it would be negotiated/finalized during the process?

Originally Posted by kml
So, although it seems counter-intuitive, since you don't want the divorce, you are still better off if you move it along. The longer it drags on the less generous she will become - and the more precedent will be set.

"Precedent" is a fear word for me. But yes I agree dragging this out is getting me nowhere at best.

Originally Posted by kml
Also - since you bought the house so recently, will you be upside down in the house? Would moving into it yourself and getting a roommate to help pay the bills be a feasible alternative?

We put >20% down on the house, and it has appreciated slightly.

My support payments if my W makes zero income would not even cover MIPI on the home. In other words, she's not even close to having a viable financial option to staying there. And that assumes she buys me out on half my equity (or trades me something else).

The home has a separate guest area which could be rented out. My W wants to explore that option. I don't think it will be enough for her to stay, not even close. I wish she could understand this, but I also feel it is not my place in any way to inform her of her financial situation. She needs to do that on her own.

I definitely won't move back, not an option for me (even if it was the guest area).

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This stuff makes my blood boil...

Move back into your house - now. There's no need for you to pay for two places to live. Be there for your kids.

Move back into the master bedroom. Yes, she'll resist, but too bad. She's the one that wants the divorce, she can sleep somewhere else or move out. Take control of the finances. She's dependent on you. Take a stand. She's playing a game and you're playing it with her. Stop it. You can stand up to the nonsense she's handing you. You will survive and you'll be fine. When you really decide to get in the driver's seat things will get better. If you don't take the bull by the horns you'll just meander along and slide into a deep depression.

Tap into your inner tough guy and make things happen. Suffering has a good side; it allows you to grow. Take this opportunity to grow.

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Is it normal to separate financially at the beginning of the divorce process, under some temporary arrangement, with the understanding it would be negotiated/finalized during the process?


In my state there was something called an Order for Temporary Support. It might be more than what alimony and/or child support would dictate. But at least it would be official and hopefully count toward her being able to show consistent income (they are generally interested in whether you are a deadbeat or if you pay consistently on time, as that would affect her ability to pay rent.)

AS for the house, I didn't mean you move back in with her; I meant you taking over the house after she moves out. IF you could afford to buy her out of her half of the down payment and increased value, would you be able to rent out the guest quarters and afford the house yourself? Would you want to?

How much are the mortgage payments and how much would the guest quarters rent for? Depending on rents where you live, she might not be wrong about trying to stay - the biggest problem being she wouldn't have the money to buy you out and wouldn't have the work history to refinance.

And I agree with Doodler's comment - although on RARE occasions WAWs sometimes don't have an OM, most still do (and virtually ALL WAHs have an OW). Phone records will usually reveal a suspicious pattern of numerous texts and phone calls. In fact, if she DOES have an OM, that might be why she wants to hold onto the house - she might be thinking he could move in and help with that. I don't know about your state, but in mine, I had a common clause in my divorce that I couldn't have a man living with me while I was receiving alimony. Ask your lawyer about it.

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Also -be VERY CAREFUL about anything you say in writing (text or email). Don't say ANYTHING that could be interpreted as angry or she may try to pin this whole abuse thing on you. (From what you described I don't hear any abuse - but were you generally a crabby angry sort of guy? Or is she just trying to set you up? Does she have any history of being abused in her past?)

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I consulted a few attorneys several months ago. They all told me no point in retaining until things start moving along.


I retained an attorney 3 weeks after WAH moved out. I've paid the retainer, filled out paperwork, gathered all the financial records, and had her on speed dial for when/if he filed (he hasn't - 7 months now). We don't have young kids so I was okay waiting until I got my own place now I want/need a temporary support agreement.

Please protect yourself.

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