Looking Forward

Making a better life for me and my kids

About Me

I was married for 13 years. He was abusive. Like many people, I didn’t realize it until I was out.

I couldn’t do anything right. I couldn’t make any decision that wouldn’t be questioned. I couldn’t have an opinion that wasn’t wrong. I couldn’t go visit my friends or family without him – if I did, I put up with days of him sulking and would inevitably be coming home to our house more of a mess than it’d ever been.

He never wanted to do anything with our boys. He’d always say “I can’t wait until they’re older so I can do stuff with them.” When they got older, it didn’t seem to matter too much. Sometimes he’d favor our younger son, taking him fishing or hunting. He couldn’t be bothered with the older boy. “If he wants to spend time with me, he’ll figure out something for us to do.”

After our divorce was over with he decided to move to South Dakota to go to law school. During the 2.5 years he was there, he stopped contacting the children with any regularity. Anytime I had to have contact with him he was blaming me. Screaming at me. Belittling me. Telling me I was a whore. Saying I ruined our family. That I am the reason the kids won’t call him…over and over and over. I also found out that when he would talk to the kids, he would tell them “Mom made me move to South Dakota.”

I first realized he likely has some sort of personality disorder when he took my older son during a visit and refused to return him. Saying I’d locked my son out, I was a terrible person, my son didn’t want to see me ever again.
There were resources in the books “Divorce Poison” and Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline or Narcissistic Personality Disorder where I started being able to narrow down what exactly the symptoms were that my ex was exhibiting. After reading a LOT about what seemed to be happening here, I became aware that I had apparently married someone with a narcissistic personality disorder. This article could have been written about me: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-legacy-distorted-love/201102/help-im-divorcing-narcissist As much as it hurt to realize that I’d been fooled all along, it was a relief to realize that I wasn’t the crazy one.

I endured many, many years of feeling crazy. Inadequate. Sad. Lost. Confused. Hopeless. Trapped. It turns out, that’s what he was trying to do. I was relieved to understand what was happening, what HAD been happening all along, but no where have I found any concrete strategies for dealing with a person like that, other than to eliminate ALL contact. With kids, that’s impossible to do.

We are currently awaiting a trial date. He wants the kids the majority of the time. He doesn’t want to pay child support. He doesn’t think he should have to. I am, after all, the one who wanted the divorce. He also doesn’t think our youngest son should be medicated for his ADHD.

Writing helps. Getting it out of my head helps. Getting feedback from perfect strangers that remind me that I am NOT the crazy one helps. Knowing I’m not alone helps. To who ever is reading this, I hope knowing you’re not alone helps you too.

Winter

We are planning another trip to Florida with the kids. Its about a month away. We currently have about 60 inches of snow on the ground. Snowbanks are high enough that you have to pull out into the road to see if there is any oncoming traffic, and with reports of MORE SNOW coming this weekend, I’m tempted to just start walking to Florida at this point.

A and I went to look at another college yesterday. Its local, and his ‘back up’ school. He liked the place alright, the football staff is actively trying to recruit him, the whole visit was pretty overwhelming for both of us. At the end of the visit, it remains his back up school. I can’t say I’m not happy about that. The staff kept talking about how easy it would be for him to commute if he didn’t want to live on campus. No one HAS to live on campus, it would be up to him. Uh, Hello? Was anyone going to ask me what I thought about A living with me after he graduates from high school? Cause I’m not planning on that. I’m planning on him MOVING OUT! Of course, you can’t shout that out while you’re touring campus with your son and 3 football coaches…at least it didn’t seem like I should.

The conference meet was last Friday for the swim / dive team. Unfortunately, after 10 dives, D was disqualified. If you fail at two of your dives, you’re out…that’s what happened. I felt so bad for him, he was visibly upset. He got over it pretty quickly though, stating that he would just need to work on that dive (the one he just bombed, the other failed dive was that he did the wrong dive at the wrong time) during practice. I said I was glad he wasn’t thinking about quitting all together. “Quit dive because I dq’d at one meet? That would be a stupid reason to just quit, Mom.” Right, right. Of course. Cause you and your brother only make logical and sound decisions based on reason. I guess I forgot.
The state meet is on Monday, then dive will be over. We’re still not sure what we’re going to do with D and all his new free time. We did, however, find a dive team in Florida that he’ll practice with once or twice while we’re there. They have 3 meter boards, which he is super excited to try out.

I’ve gotten two calls in the last couple of weeks from bill collectors looking for Dummy. I don’t answer numbers I don’t recognize, but if they leave a message I’ll call them back and ask them to please remove my number from any association with him. Its a pain in the butt, but its also an interesting snapshot into his pathetic financial state.
Oh! and for the first year in many years I was able to e-file my taxes on the first try AND I got a refund back within 2 weeks!

School work is making me crazy. I took three classes last semester, and that was too many. I feel all burned out, and taking just two now is…blah. I’m just in the mood.

Overall, things are fine enough. The winter is making everyone a little edgy and cranky, but a vacation will be a nice escape I think.

Fafsa, taxes, and patience.

As you all know, A is preparing for college. At this point we’re working on the fafsa. I ran the numbers in the fafsa-4-caster to determine which situation would benefit A more, me claiming him or asshat claiming him.

I explained what I found to A, along with the standard “I am not an expert, this is just what I read, learned, found out, heard someone say one time, etc…” I also learned that private schools look at what constitutes ‘need’ differently than public schools, and we talked about what the averages are for need based aid for the schools he’s considering offer.

I’d like him to make some of these choices on his own, and to have as much information as I could give him. I told him if he wanted to use his dad’s info, he’d need to get with him ASAP and have him help with the form.

I received this email this afternoon:

From: Asshat
To: Me
FYI – A informed me that you plan on claiming him on taxes this year.  Kudos on telling him that in essence you are putting your taxes over your son’s best interest.  He will certainly receive considerably less aid based on EFC if you do this.  Your calculation of it only making a marginal difference in what type of aid he is awarded is indicative of your ignorance on the subject matter. 
Not that I care, but you will also receive significantly less in the form of my tax refund that is garnished as well.  But alas, your financial ignorance and indifference to your son’s future financial state is not my problem beyond the problems you create for him.

My guess is that he’s extra mad because now A has said, “mom is claiming me.” which means he can’t claim the kids on the sly like he normally does. And trying to tempt me with back support? Come on now – you owe me more than 5k, you’ll owe me that no matter how my taxes work out – so why would I get less back this year to get more money from you when I can get more back this year, and STILL get the money you owe me? I might just have to wait a little longer, but if I’ve learned anything from these last 4 years, it’s been patience.

 

Holidays

Things have been quiet. Well, quiet besides me taking too many classes this semester and being totally overwhelmed with school, work, kids and life in general.

A has been accepted to his first choice school, and is being schmoozed by the coaches, wanting him to play football. I’ve driven to the far end of Massachusetts twice now – but I guess they’d like him to come back again for an “official overnight visit”. Ugh, really?

Its been an interesting journey, trying to keep him on track with realistic expectations about how much work college actually is and how it will be VERY different than high school. But you all know how kids are – they know EVERYTHING already.

D has successfully joined the high school dive team. He’s participated in actual meets, and scored points for his team. He LOVES it! I am so happy that he’s found something like this. They practice 5 days a week, 2 hours per day. Its been very good for him!

Also, D has been discharged from counseling. I haven’t mentioned this to asshat. I don’t think it would even matter if I did. I suppose if he gave a shit, he could be contacting the counselor himself. Right?

Last night A went over to asshat’s girlfriend’s house for a small Christmas with them. I was annoyed when A brought home presents that they gave him – and D got nothing. Again. The thing is, the girlfriend has met D before. She knows he exists. She knows he and A live in the same house. But yet, it didn’t occur to her to get anything, even something small, for D? I’m not surprised, but I am irritated. Because you know, it’s totally healthy and normal for all adults to punish children by withholding gifts and love for non-compliance and disloyalty.

A will be going to his fathers this evening for a Christmas with that side of the family. I’m not going to hold my breath about A coming back with any gifts for D. Its sad though – D won’t say anything about it, and pretends he doesn’t notice , but I know that he does.

A asked if I could print off 2 sets of extra pictures for him to give to his grandmother and uncle (asshat’s mother and brother). These are the same pictures that the kids gave to my parents, one of A holding the cat in front of the Christmas tree and one of D sitting with the dog in front of the tree. That side of the family has had NO contact with D for YEARS now. None at all. They aren’t going to recognize him in a picture…other than A telling them who it is. I was uncomfortable with giving them pictures of D without talking to him first – but then I thought that maybe this is A’s attempt at reminding that side of the family that they are brothers. Maybe I wont worry about dragging D into this. “A is going to give a picture of you to your grandparents and uncle that haven’t had anything to do with you for 4 years or so as a Christmas present.” I feel like if he knows about it, and they STILL ignore him and don’t send any gifts, cards, emails or phone calls, that it will make him feel shitty all over again.

But, even A isn’t safe from his father’s bullshit. Over dinner last night A told me that his father said that the graduation rate for the college A wants to go to is only 20%. A and I talked about how that didn’t seem possible, considering the retention rate from Freshman to sophomore was 85%. I looked it up later myself and found out that their graduation rate is actually 6% higher than the ‘average’ college’s graduation rate, which is about 43%

I don’t have any idea why asshat would say anything except “How can I help you pay for this?” when it comes to A’s college choices…

Blah.

Anyway…Christmas was lovely for all of us, we had a nice dinner on Christmas eve and a family game of monopoly afterwards. Christmas day was fun and we had a big breakfast and then a fancy dinner in the evening. It was nice to have things feel so much easier than last year!

Happy holidays to you all!

On to the post season

Last night was Senior Night. The last home football game for A and 8 other players, along with many of the varsity cheerleaders. It was scheduled to be played on Friday night. So, Friday morning  informed me that I would be required to wear his away jersey to the game, they’d call my name I’d I have to come down onto the field for the ceremony and pictures. Well. I’m not gonna lie. I was really excited to be chosen. But, due to the rain, the game got rescheduled to Saturday night. A informed me that I needed to be there early. So I was. Our normal spot on the bleachers was decorated with a big poster of A and black and orange balloons. It was very nice.
The announcer told all the senior parents to line up on the sidelines. So I did. Then I heard husband saying my name. I turned around and he was motioning the the line of parents to my right. I didn’t see what he was talking about, but I knew – asshat was there too…and in line with all the other parents.

My first thought was, “oh well, A must have invited us both. That was big of him to refuse to choose one parent over the other.” I was nervous about having to go out there and be within arms reach of someone who has just wreaked so much havoc on my life….but, it should just be a quick meeting on the 40 yard line, hug, smile for the camera, and that’s it. The announcer called A’s number and name. “And A would like to thank his mother…” And they said my name. Everyone clapped. A ran through the tunnel and we met on the 40 yard line. Asshat walked over too. His name was not called. He kept walking closer. A handed me a flower and said “this is for you.” A noticed his father standing there and said to the camera lady “Oh! i guess I’ll have one taken with each of them.” Asshat, scowling to beat all scowls, growled “YES”.

I gave A hug, I told him I was so proud of him. He put his arm around me. We smiled. Picture taken, and I walked away.

It was a big show. A big audience. Lots of people to impress. I should have known that asshat would need to insert himself like that. His name wasn’t called. He wasn’t invited. It was awkward. He was sure to get his picture taken with A too.

As the game wound down, (A’s team winning 42-8) husband and I took our poster and flower and blankets and made our way down the bleachers to leave. At the bottom we stopped to watch the play with 35 seconds left. An older man came up to us and said, “He had a great season. You should be very proud of him.” Husband said, “Oh! thank you, we are! He’s a really great kid!”
We made our way down the ramp behind the bleachers toward the end zone. Asshat and girlfriend were standing at the end zone. I watched the final 21 seconds of the game as we walked the length of the sidelines. I caught girlfriend looking at me. She looked angry. So. Angry. I said to husband, “Is she glaring at me?” Husband said, “Oh yes, she has been for a while now.” Seriously? What on earth does she have to be so pissed off about?

We got home, put A’s giant poster on the mantle and went to pick up take out for dinner. A joined us for dinner and we talked about the play off game that will be coming up next week. It was a pretty great night!

Football, pictures, and astounding obliviousness.

I had arranged to take A’s pictures myself at the request of A – since he decided the cost of senior pictures was better spent on car insurance. At some secret time and location he had asshat’s girlfriend do pictures for him also. I found out because he changed his FB profile picture to one she’d taken. Immediately I felt offended and angry. Who the fuck is she to be doing this with my kid? Then I felt disappointed that he, for whatever reason, didn’t tell me about this. He could have just said that he’d asked her to do it. I likely would have been ok with it since I found the whole process to be frustrating and time consuming, but it needed to be done. Then I felt sad. In my attempt at taking A’s pictures, he kept doing this weird forced smile. I told him that maybe it would be better if we could get him laughing. Anyone who has teenage boys knows how impossible it is for a mom to get her 17 year old to genuinely laugh. I pulled out my phone and started telling jokes. Finally, we got him laughing and smiling. None of girlfriends pictures have actual smiles. They are all forced. It occurred to me that perhaps she doesn’t know the difference between a fake smile and a genuine smile.

Football season is 1/2 over. A is killing it this year. Interceptions, tackles, touchdowns, he is playing amazingly well. It’s been awesome to watch him play. Last week at the game A was injured. To the point where his team had to carry him off the field. After talking to the trainers there (it was an away game), they were concerned that he’d done some real damage to his ACL. Home, ice, wrapped, elevated, his knee was in rough shape the next morning. A was still very worried about his ability to play the rest of the season since he couldn’t get to the bathroom from his bedroom without crutches. After an hour with the sports medicine staff at the high school that afternoon, he was told it was only an mcl sprain and he would be ok in 3-7 days as long as he takes it easy.

After asshat’s girlfriend sent A the link to the pictures she’d taken last night, she started questioning him about his knee. She said “How is your knee? I’ve heard lots of different things from different people.” He told her he was fine and it was just a sprain. Her having a reason to contact A through Facebook made me uneasy. I feel like she is an adult who validates his fathers crazy, and I don’t like that. Reading her questions this morning made me feel annoyed, I can’t help but think, 5 days later you’re now checking in with him? And you’d rather hear gossip from “lots of other people?” And have you talked to his father? Does he have any idea whats going on? Probably not. It was earlier on Tuesday that he had messaged A asking how his knee was, then giving him all sorts of instructions about how to handle it. To which A replied “I am aware.” Asshat kept going on about taking it easy on his knee and whether he plays or not he’ll be there to watch. Suddenly, now that A is having a massively successful season, asshat decides to show up to the games. Showing up to 2 or 3 or 4 football games in an 8 game season doesn’t make you a “football parent”. And lets not forget that he only managed to show up to 1/2 of a game ALL of last season. Girlfriend posted a picture of asshat after the last home game taking a picture of the game and wrote “Proud dad hogging the camera”. Proud dad? Really? Where was proud dad at all of last years games? Where is he during the away games? Where was he during jr prom? Where was he during A’s last three baseball seasons? Where is proud dad at all in D’s life? Yuck. Just yuck.

I’m bracing myself for Senior Night at the end of the season. The announcer says that this is the seniors opportunity to thank their parents for all their love and support throughout their time in high school sports. The kids get a flower and the parents are announced one set at a time and they come out onto the field. The kid gives a flower to their parents, thanks them, hugs them then the photographer takes a picture of the happy family. Asshat is setting himself up for A to pick him to participate in this event. Asshat always wants to be picked. Like last year I didn’t go to the football banquet to see A get his school letter because he’d picked asshat to go. Its important to asshat to be picked over me, so he makes a big deal about it and knows that if A wants his love and affection, then A will choose wisely. Its a big shit burger for me though – since I’d really like a thank you and a hug from A…

In other news, at the last home game D came along with us. This transition to high school seems to have been a tightrope walk for D. He seems to have lots of friends, he seems happy and adjusting to the larger number of kids, and the difficulty of the classes. He’s less than thrilled to hear on a daily basis, “Are you A’s brother?”. He also gets out of the car quickly when we drop him off, and refuses to acknowledge us when there are friends near by. Teenagers are great.

So, D comes to the games to participate in the social aspect of it. Random kids milling around the out of bounds laughing, running, talking, rough-housing, etc. At one point in the game, we notice asshat has decided to grace us all with his presence. He’s standing on the sidelines with this girlfriend like a big dummy wearing shorts and a sweatshirt when everyone else is wearing winter coats. I wonder if D will stumble upon him while he’s socializing, but I doubt it since asshat is watching the game, and the game is the last thing on D’s mind.
At the end of the game we’re looking for D. We see him and he’s walking with a group of friends. Directly towards his father. That he hasn’t seen or spoken to in almost a year. Asshat is standing there alone, texting and doesn’t look up, not even when I start hollering to get D’s attention. I get to D when he is about 3 feet from his father and I grabbed his arm to get his attention. “Are you ready to go?” He was not, he argued that he wanted to stay and hang out with his friends. I told him the game was over, that everyone was leaving. Asshat, close enough to reach out and touch, never looked up. He walked away to his car never noticing that his son (and the whore who ruined his life) was standing RIGHT BESIDE HIM. We didn’t say anything to D about it. I wasn’t sure it would have mattered. Plus, if he finds out his dad is at the games, he may not want to go anymore. I’m sure he’d be offended that dad didn’t look for him to see if he was there. Or notice him, standing right next to him.

Four football games to go. Year book to order. Progress reports come home today. A is flailing with the task of making a short list of colleges, but D likes to read all the literature and talk about the school HE’D like to go to. I’m overwhelmed with the three classes I’m taking. I have high 90s in all of them, but I’m working my ass off! Time is passing and I’m trying my best to be enjoying it – but frankly, I’m ready for it to be over!

PSA

On August 18th there was a story in our local paper about a pregnant woman was beaten by her boyfriend. It happened in a house that I drive by every day on my way to and from work. The original article is here:  https://bangordailynews.com/2014/08/18/news/bangor/report-woman-badly-injured-man-in-custody-after-early-morning-assault-in-bangor/

The follow up story indicated that her injuries were too severe to handle at the hospital here, so she was sent to Boston.  http://bangordailynews.com/2014/08/19/news/bangor/pregnant-woman-attacked-in-bangor-undergoes-3-surgeries-according-to-police/

During the attack, neighbors tried to help her. They were attacked as well.  https://bangordailynews.com/2014/08/20/news/bangor/he-was-possessed-says-neighbor-of-bangor-man-charged-with-beating-pregnant-woman/?ref=moreInbangorThumb

Today the article indicates that she’ll survive her injuries. However, she is blind now. She’ll never get to see her new baby. She’ll need relearn her every day living skills without the aid of sight. http://bangordailynews.com/2014/09/04/news/bangor/support-network-emerges-for-pregnant-woman-blinded-in-bangor-attack/

Her church and her employer and looking for donations to help with her care now. If you can give, you should. The gofundme.com page is here:  http://www.gofundme.com/dg1fzk

 

August is almost over

Man, that was a quick month!

Today was freshman orientation at the boy’s high school. Today D went to school while A slept in. D was very excited and nervous. He ended up having a great day. I noticed on the paper work when he got home that he’d started to fill some of it out himself. 

“Who do you live with?  ____Mom   _____Dad   ______Both” 

D checked “mom”

Legal Guardian: D wrote in husband’s name, then my name.

School paper work always brings up a lot of shit. Every year this happens. I end up debating about whether or not to put asshats phone number or address on any of the paperwork. What would be the point? To make him feel included? He won’t know if I do it or not, and do I really want to take the chance that the school will ever call him for anything either of the kids need? Not really. Apparently, D feels the same way.

A has been at football practices most of the afternoons this week. With the delay of school starting (the renovations weren’t done in time for school to start on the 28th as planned, so they kept orientation day on the 27th and officially school will start on 9/2) Husband and I have been carpooling in order to leave A my car so that he can get himself to practices and I don’t have to miss work to play taxi. It’s worked out very well so far. I like having a teenager who is useful in some way, even if it’s something as simple as getting himself to where he needs to be and I don’t need to be involved. Also the football team mom sent out an email looking for donations of food to pack the kids all lunches for their ‘away game’ on Friday. I replied with what I’d be donating. Then, I put money on A’s debit card and told him to go to the grocery store, pick this stuff up, then deliver it to the team mom’s house. Magically, it all just worked out without me needing to do anything other than transfer money. There may be hope for that boy yet! 

In asshat land, his world is closing in, slowly but surely. He went 105 days past due on the HELOC, then made a $440.00 payment, bringing him current. The banks collection department actually called me looking for a payment. I told them that I’d already spoken to a number of people at the bank, this isn’t my loan, and I’m sorry he’s 102 days past due, but you’re not getting any money from me. She was sure to point out that the bank did not care what my divorce decree states. I told her I was aware of the banks position and their refusal to assist me in this situation. And don’t call me again. I’m not responsible for this debt.
I’m just going to believe that it hurts my credit less for these late payments to continue to occur as opposed to a default (which I hear will happen after being past due 120 days). 

Also, A informed me today that asshat is out of oil AND propane now. Which means he has no hot water AND no stove or oven. Everything he cooks needs to be in the microwave. Seriously. 

Child support told me that they are trying to collect the balance due from week I was short on support because of his National Lampoon’s European Vacation. No word on arrears though.  I’m trying not to get too frustrated.

Classes for me start next week. I always do fine, I don’t know why I get so nervous that I’m going to completely fail. Oh, by the way, I got a letter that I made the Dean’s List last semester. Yay! 

Otherwise all is well here, everyone is happy and healthy!

Trash

There has been no contact between Asshat and I since the email exchange where he gave me dates for his trip to Europe. So, imagine my surprise when I got this email (from his old email address that he told me not to use anymore) this evening, with the subject line being “Trash”.

Trash

From: Asshat

To: Me

Today at 7:05 PM

You are some kind of piece of trailer park trash to tell A your going to give him only 125 for school clothes.   Maybe you should get your priorities straight and use some of the money you mooch off of me each week and put your child ahead of your own personal interests.   I know this is not the same thing as drugging up your own child cause you two can’t handle kids without a drink,  so please feel free this one time to pretend to be a responsible parent.  PS try letting him shop somewhere other than target or Wal-Mart too as I think he would prefer that. 

 

I’m not sure the projection could be any more evident if he labeled each sentence “this is projection”.

Not that it really matters, but I’ll just point out a few things:

  1. While it’s a rental, I live in a huge and beautiful house, not a trailer. Not in a trailer park. Also, unlike Asshat, we do have cold AND hot running water here.
  2. I budgeted $500.00 for each kid for back to school shopping. I only gave A $125.00 over the weekend so he could do a little shopping on his own while he is in Boston with his friend.
  3. ADHD meds are not “drugging up your kid” when they are serving the intended purpose of treating the ADHD symptoms so that your kid can actually function effectively.
  4. I only ever drank to deal with my abusive asshole husband, never to deal with my kids. Needless to say, I don’t drink anymore. Not even a little.
  5. The only time the kids buy clothes at Walmart is when they need an orange sweatshirt for tomorrow, or a dress shirt and a tie for the concert tonight. Walmart is awful and as a general rule, we avoid it at all costs. I do love Target though.
  6. I have not had any ‘personal interests’ that have come before my children’s interests for the last 17 years. A texted me tonight to say “dad doesn’t have any money to pitch in for school clothes”. So, if I wanted to know what it was like to put my own interests first, I could ask the asshole that just got back from a month in Europe and now has no money to buy any clothes for the kids.

Another Monday.

I’m frustrated. I know I shouldn’t be…but I am.

I know I’m supposed to wait patiently for the universe to balance out asshats bullshit with some sort of consequence, but seriously, how long is this going to take? I know, I know, I’m supposed to be so involved with my own life and the kids that I’m not supposed to have time to worry about him and the chaos he leaves in his wake. However, today that is not the case. He has been running all over Europe with the GF, which, I purposefully went to her page to take screen shots to show the Child Support Enforcement people in the event he tries to tell them that “No no, I was never in Europe.”

I can’t tell if they’re having fun – the pictures don’t show that much. It’s more pictures of where they are and what they’re doing…which, is exactly what I need for evidence. The thing that’s getting me is the comments people are making: “Enjoy this once in a life time trip!” I guess they don’t realize that this is the 3rd time he’s traveled in that direction, twice to Europe, once to China. “I’m so glad you guys found each other!” Right, two people who share the same indifference towards their children that they can just leave for a month – nbd. The obliviousness people have towards this situation is mind-boggling. Again. I know. Not my deal. While its likely he’s duped them all into thinking he’s soooo fortunate to have a GF who has paid for the entire trip, its more likely, they’re just as sick of him and her as I am….they’re just being polite and would gag if they realized that he wanders around on all these trips while he also continues to attempt to wiggle out of paying child support.

Meanwhile, both kids birthdays have come and gone. A got a whole $20.00 from his father. He left it taped underneath the coffee table at his house. D got nothing. But, I’m sure the kids totally understand that this thrice in a lifetime trip is super important to their dad and his gf and they would be be selfish to expect him to be thinking of them during such an important trip like this.

Digging a hole

When we last left off on the child support / arrears story, asshat was doomed to meet with a process server in order to be served with a notice of debt…

Since I hadn’t heard anything lately, I filled out the form online to find out what was happening with the arrears last week. A woman named Michelle called me today to talk to me about the status.

She told me that asshat had spoken with an agent and they had come to the agreement and they would not be collecting any more money from him due to his severe financial hardship. She told me that the agent had made this decision, and  that she was just relaying the information to me. She said that asshat had talked about filing for bankruptcy, and has another small child he’s supporting.

I said, “another child? He doesn’t have any other children.”
Michelle said, “He doesn’t have another child with another woman?”
I said, “No, he doesn’t. His girlfriend has a daughter….”
Michelle interjected and said, “Well that must be the child he’s supporting.”
I said, “The girlfriend, her ex-husband and their daughter all live together. That’s how she’s being supported, by both her parents living together.”
Michelle said “The girlfriend and her ex husband live together? That’s weird.”
I agreed and pointed out the asshat had a vasectomy 13 years ago, there’s no way he has other children.

MIchelle asked twice more, “he doesn’t have any other children?” then she took this information down with a surprising amount of disbelief. “I’ll be sure to get this information to the agent to see if he’d like to reconsider the decision. This isn’t right.”

I agreed that it wasn’t right and then mentioned that he and the girlfriend were currently in Europe, and would be there for 3-4 weeks. “Europe?! how is he able to do that?” I said I didn’t know. She asked what they were doing there, I said I didn’t know, but the email he sent me said they would be traveling around Europe. “Well that doesn’t sound like financial hardship to me.”
I agreed. Michelle wanted to know when they left. I told her on Sunday. “He emailed you this?” she asked, her disbelief was becoming comical.
I said, “Yes he did.” I opened the email and read it to her.
“I don’t normally give people my email address, but can you send that email to me?”
I said, “of course.” and forwarded it along.
“Oh! i got it!” she said. “I’ll send all of this information along to the agent and we’ll see about getting him to reconsider this agreement. We’ll see what we can do to get him to pay you that five thousand dollars.”
I told her that I really appreciated her help.

She asked about his legal studies, as asshat had given that sob story about needing to study for the bar exam to the agent. I told her that he’d graduated a few Januarys ago – and had taken the bar exam twice and failed it twice. “So he’s been graduated for more than a year?” Oh yes, he has.

She clarified with me where he worked and what he did there. She seemed quite flustered by the end of the phone call. I don’t know if it was the first time a State of Maine employee realized they’d been duped by a deadbeat trying to get out of paying child support – but that is what it seemed like. She was clearly angry and frustrated, but hopefully that will work to my benefit.

 

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