First and foremost, the big news- my divorce is final.
Longtime readers of my blog know just how big this news is. This has been nothing short of a war for over a year and a half now. Luckily the kids have for the majority of it been kept in the dark, but the process has taken an emotional toll on all of us, so there was a huge sigh of relief just calling the courthouse and hearing that yes, the divorce decree had been processed yesterday.
The relief was somewhat short lived as I got and read the papers. The terms of my divorce are somewhat unusual- the ex got custody of the kids, and I continue to have supervised visitation pending the results of another psych evaluation, and if I am deemed not to be a threat to anyone, then I will be allowed normal, every-other-weekend unsupervised visitation.
For all of the hassle and concern, you’d think I’d put a gun to my kids heads rather than tried to overdose myself in a hotel room alone in a moment of extreme stress.
I’m not overly concerned about that part, just curious why a second evaluation is needed when the court already has a copy of the first one I undertook voluntarily. The interesting part about it is that visitation has now been ordered at a family center here who charges $45 an hour, at his expense. Ouch. Considering how often I haven’t been able to see the kids because no one was free to be here to supervise, this arrangement is actually something of an improvement over what it was, and is clearly very temporary. The thought of him having custody of our kids kills me, but the fact is right now he is the one with a stable job, and when I am able to look at things objectively I know this is a good opportunity for me to get myself settled and in a better place financially to equalize things more in the future. It’s a very bitter pill to swallow though to even think about that.
As for the rest…When we were in court the ex was asked about his plan for things financially. At that point he said there was nothing in the house worth fighting over as far as assets, and that he had a company lined up and willing to give him an equity loan on the house (which we long ago agreed he’d keep) and he would use that that to give me a settlement check when the divorce was over. Said all this on the stand, under oath.
Clearly the judge took all this to heart, and since the ex felt there was nothing worth fighting over, awarded me everything in the house, aside from the kids bedroom furniture. Yes, everything. ( Alabama- equitable distribution state FTW!)
Guess who has suddenly decided, despite testifying otherwise, that maybe he can’t give me that lump sum after all? The papers say he has the ‘option’ to pay the settlement in $120 a month installments, starting in January.
Guess who is saying that if I want him to pay the lump sum so I can, after being locked out of the checking account for the last 18 months and given only enough money to barely get by on, start over and get a place to live, must now make him an offer on the property the court awarded to me in the divorce.
In short, if I want the money up front as he has agreed to multiple times both in and out of court, I basically must agree ahead of time to give up some of what the court gave me as part of the settlement.
Worse yet, he won’t even tell me what it is he is after, he just keeps telling me to ‘make him an offer’. I’m not stupid, nothing I even tried to offer would be enough, and I’d likely be considerably better off selling what I don’t need rather than trying to bargain with him.
He is even now arguing that things that he bought and paid for himself are ‘gifts’ (to himself apparently) and that they ‘don’t count’ in what the court awarded me. I’m sorry, what part of everything but the kids bedroom furniture is so hard to understand?
Icing on the cake? He’s making comments about the time I have left in the house running out and how I will be living in my van if I don’t get the money, so I need to hurry up and make him an offer.
So rather than going and signing papers on a cute rental house I found tomorrow, I get to go back to the courthouse and start filing more crap to get this all dealt with. More time, more headaches, more delays.
I just want this done. I want it over so I can get out of this house and move on, but as usual his wallet is more important than trying to make a stable life for his kids, and a smooth transition for all of us.
I don’t know why I expected any better from him. 18+ months of being fucked over at every opportunity should have taught me better.