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Her abuse narrative is par for the course. This comes up in one way or another in the vast, vast majority of WW-initiated separations. You are the one who is feeding this garbage by constantly bringing it up here, in counseling, in your head or wherever else. And talking about this in any way in front of a counselor is a monumentally stupid thing for you to do. You really need to never, ever entertain or discuss this topic again. Ever.

I can tell you something - she doesn't even believe this or else she would actually take action against you, but instead all she does is use this to beat you into a corner. I have seen WW do this same thing with wild accusations against their nice guy husbands when the WW is literally dating sex offenders. And I don't mean I saw this once, this happens so much its cliché! This abuse narrative is her best, most effective weapon against you. That is all it is, and you are the one who keeps sticking your nose on the barrel. If OM wanted to take her to Hawaii for 3 weeks she would happily drop the kids off at your place on the way to the airport.

I understand you have a lot of anxiety and fear. You can either tackle this fear head on, or hide. I don't think you are ready to face it, so I suggest you hide. I will tell you how, its really easy! Get a note card and write this down:

Message received:
1-logistic information
2-delete

Message sent:
A- "kid pickup will be at X:XX o clock at XXXXX location"
B- "noted"
C- "I will refer that to my lawyer"



Then, from now on you should not say a word to her, all communication in writing. When she sends you something, decide whether it is type 1 or type 2. If its type 1, then you can respond with either A, B or C.

I'm not even joking about this. I'm completely serious.

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Yes, many women will use the "abuse" cry to their advantage where there was no abuse. Like I said, nothing you described sounds remotely like abuse. I was just trying to see if SHE had some underlying reason (like being abused in childhood) that would make her more sensitive to normal conflict, or if you can be a grumpy guy (again, not abuse, but someone very sensitive might react to a critical grumpy person ). My boyfriend for example has Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder and when he's in a snit about something that's not right in the order of his universe he can be grouchy and irritable. Doesn't phase me but someone with a history of abuse might be triggered by it.

And I agree that you should NOT do anything that looks like an admission of guilt. Heck, I would have pulled over and grabbed my kid's leg too and said stop kicking your sister.

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kml - W has mentioned she had previously abusive BFs. I don't know what happened, although I know it wasn't physical abuse. I think she is sensitive to normal conflict, yes. And for many years in our marriage, I cratered and did not stand up for myself whenever a situation involving conflict arose.

I am not typically grumpy. I did get emotional at times when I felt she was not communicating with me, or she was shutting me out. By emotional I did sometimes cry, or express frustration. I spent a lot of time validating. I think she started mind-reading me and assuming the worst many times. When I pulled over the car in March, I was admittedly histrionic (crying), and desperate to talk with her. She says she was afraid for her life. I made mistakes, and I wish I handled this differently, but I do not regret making attempts to reach out and communicate and work on our marriage.

The whole "Is it abuse, or not?" question drives me nuts. I do think she believes it was, and I believe it wasn't. I'm not denying that I grabbed my son's leg, and that it was inappropriate. I don't think she is using it as a tactic, but at this point, we are getting down to brass tacks, and I need to stand up for myself. If she wanted to work on the MR, I would talk about what she considers abuse. As it stands, we are clearly done.

fade - I agree that talking about this ever again is a mistake. I am concerned she will start to raise it when we begin custody mediation.

Does anyone here have experience with facing abuse allegations in mediation? I don't know if I should shut down mediation immediately, or handle it differently? Does it matter if we are using a separate mediator for custody-only (in which case that person will be well-versed in what's best for children)?

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What you need to understand is that what she feels or she believes is no longer your concern unless she has some proof or evidence that you are an abuser. If you are being honest here, then you are not and she will have no such evidence.

And you should by now have plenty of evidence of you being a stable, good parent as you are already at 4/10 spending plenty of alone time with your kids, and hopefully you are meticulously documenting daily interactions and activities in a parenting journal.

And say you were really abusive - does it really make sense that she decides to wait a year to bring it up to the police when mediation isn't going her way? After you have been spending days at a time watching them in the mutually agreed separation? Do you think the cops are going to trip over themselves to come arrest you on your way out of the mediators office? Again, this is nothing but bully tactics and you simply need to stop feeding this narrative. I have seen situations with genuinely abusive POS guys and I can tell you they arent spending any time worrying about whether women think they are abusive, and these women -who are actual victims- certainly aren't spending their time henpecking these guys in a counselors office.

She might as well be saying you cant have an increase in custody because the sky is green. Are you going to spin around in circles because maybe one time a year ago the sky could have been interpreted as green? Do you think you need to convince her that the sky is not green so that you can have fair time with your kids? No, you would dismiss it and get back to business. "The sky is not green, I repeat my proposal for Friday afternoon dropoffs". Or, you can say "I have never abused my children, I repeat my proposal for Friday afternoon drop-offs".

So let her raise this all she wants in mediation, and in court if it comes to that. If there is zero evidence of abuse, and plenty of evidence (especially in your journal) that you are and have been an awesome dad through a difficult time, who has already demonstrated a track record of keeping great care of his kids so far during the separation, then these allegations will only hurt herself.

Oh, and another thing. I would suggest you go to mediation with the mindset that you will not reach an agreement. The only way you are going to get an agreement is if she gets a lawyer who scares her straight, or you fold. Your only goal in mediation is not to fold - to not go past the midpoint of what your lawyer says is the customary, fair outcome in your area. For you, walking out of mediation empty handed is a win. You only lose if you walk out with empty pockets and child seats.

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U,

I'm in a no-fault state too, and in my state, even though it's no-fault, an A basically removes the responsibility of alimony. That's the one place where an A can make a difference. Find out if that's true in your state. If it is, I'd start digging to find some evidence. Why pay more than you legally have to....


M: 34 W:34
D:7 D:6 S:3

M: 9.5 years T: 12

OM found & BD (by me): 9/19/18
IHS begins
W informs me she's moving out: 11/28/18
W files: 12/21/18
D Final: 2/25/19
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Fade - I just want to say up front your post really resonated with me. Thank you for spending the time and energy to offer advice and support. I always read the responses quickly, but my work and kid schedules have become very busy and I often take a few days to respond.

Originally Posted by fade
What you need to understand is that what she feels or she believes is no longer your concern unless she has some proof or evidence that you are an abuser. If you are being honest here, then you are not and she will have no such evidence.

I wrote 3 apology letters back in April trying to win her back. You’ve seen the same script here on the forums before... I was overly apologetic and admitted that the one time I grabbed my son’s leg and didn’t hurt him or leave a mark that it was “abusive.” It is what it is. I will gladly face it in court if I have to.

Originally Posted by fade
And you should by now have plenty of evidence of you being a stable, good parent as you are already at 4/10 spending plenty of alone time with your kids, and hopefully you are meticulously documenting daily interactions and activities in a parenting journal.

I have journaled on and off. Thank you for reminded me to be more diligent. I take tons of pictures with the kids when I am with them as well.

I agree with your point that my solid time (even in a reduced 4/10 schedule) proves my worth as parent.

Originally Posted by fade
And say you were really abusive - does it really make sense that she decides to wait a year to bring it up to the police when mediation isn't going her way? After you have been spending days at a time watching them in the mutually agreed separation? Do you think the cops are going to trip over themselves to come arrest you on your way out of the mediators office? Again, this is nothing but bully tactics and you simply need to stop feeding this narrative. I have seen situations with genuinely abusive POS guys and I can tell you they arent spending any time worrying about whether women think they are abusive, and these women -who are actual victims- certainly aren't spending their time henpecking these guys in a counselors office.

Agreed - it took me a long time to feel confident in believing what you just wrote, but it is absolutely true.

Originally Posted by fade
She might as well be saying you cant have an increase in custody because the sky is green. Are you going to spin around in circles because maybe one time a year ago the sky could have been interpreted as green? Do you think you need to convince her that the sky is not green so that you can have fair time with your kids? No, you would dismiss it and get back to business. "The sky is not green, I repeat my proposal for Friday afternoon dropoffs". Or, you can say "I have never abused my children, I repeat my proposal for Friday afternoon drop-offs".

This is where I need to stick to my points. She will ask for reasons, argue that it doesn’t work logistically, blah blah blah.

Originally Posted by fade
So let her raise this all she wants in mediation, and in court if it comes to that. If there is zero evidence of abuse, and plenty of evidence (especially in your journal) that you are and have been an awesome dad through a difficult time, who has already demonstrated a track record of keeping great care of his kids so far during the separation, then these allegations will only hurt herself.

I know it’s going to be rough. And my instincts are to make things pleasant by caving in. I can’t allow that to happen.

Originally Posted by fade
Oh, and another thing. I would suggest you go to mediation with the mindset that you will not reach an agreement. The only way you are going to get an agreement is if she gets a lawyer who scares her straight, or you fold. Your only goal in mediation is not to fold - to not go past the midpoint of what your lawyer says is the customary, fair outcome in your area. For you, walking out of mediation empty handed is a win. You only lose if you walk out with empty pockets and child seats.

I like this. My W told me recently she would only accept 50/50 long-term if I allowed her to pick up the kids after school on my days if I was still at work. I haven’t decided what I would say in this case, but for awhile my mindset was “WOW! I can get 50/50 if I just give her that!” In this instance, she has been very intrusive during my parenting time and my kids sometimes say things that concern me, so I’m not sure I would agree to this in writing. If I’m not sure, then I shouldn’t offer it up front.

I know what’s fair and customary. 50/50. 3 years spousal, imputed income. I will gladly help her get on her feet in her private practice if that’s what she wants to do. She did stop working 2 years ago when we moved here, so I am flexible on some of the financial matters.

As far as what she will ask... I’m expecting anything. Sometimes she says things like “the kids are used to going to visit my friends K, L and M in cities X, Y, and Z every 2 years” and I think, “Yes that was a nice perk of married life.”

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Originally Posted by Wanted1
U,

I'm in a no-fault state too, and in my state, even though it's no-fault, an A basically removes the responsibility of alimony. That's the one place where an A can make a difference. Find out if that's true in your state. If it is, I'd start digging to find some evidence. Why pay more than you legally have to....


Hey Wanted - my state is no-fault and A doesn’t play into anything including alimony.

I should say for the record that I am one of those LBH’s who does still believe there is no OM in the picture. We moved 2 years ago away from my W’s family. Ever since she has seemed depressed and angry. I won’t move off this position without evidence, and I also don’t particularly care so I won’t go searching for evidence.

HOWEVER.. somebody (perhaps you) made a point on my thread to include a clause in the divorce settlement that spousal support is to stop if my W has a live-in partner. I don’t know if that is legally possible TBH but I will consider it. Long-term who knows where this will lead..

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What about child support? How will that work? Sometimes you can negotiate spousal - since
Person receiving would have to pay taxes on it and child support you don’t. I was dissuaded from seeking spousal because I too have an advanced degree and my attorneys said the judge would look at that and my potential and I figured it wouldn’t be worth the court costs to fight about it for only a few years.


M: 42
H: 43
Twins age 5
WAH in summer
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Quote
Sometimes you can negotiate spousal - since Person receiving would have to pay taxes on it


The tax laws have changed in 2019. Please consult with a tax accountant on this because I believe it is now the person responsible for paying the spousal support who is on the hook for paying the taxes.


1st BD December 26, 2008
PA admitted to by XW December 29, 2008

2nd BD May 23, 2019
Daughter confirms EA
Divorce Finalized July 18, 2019
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Originally Posted by rooskers
Quote
Sometimes you can negotiate spousal - since Person receiving would have to pay taxes on it


The tax laws have changed in 2019. Please consult with a tax accountant on this because I believe it is now the person responsible for paying the spousal support who is on the hook for paying the taxes.


I'm not an accountant and don't remember all of the particulars, BUT I do remember in my research that the new tax laws did remove the ability for the party paying alimony to use it as a deduction.


M: 34 W:34
D:7 D:6 S:3

M: 9.5 years T: 12

OM found & BD (by me): 9/19/18
IHS begins
W informs me she's moving out: 11/28/18
W files: 12/21/18
D Final: 2/25/19
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