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About to start the Divorce Process

Old 03-07-2011, 11:44 AM
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About to start the Divorce Process

The time has come. I'm not going to bore you all with a story you've probably lived or are living. We all know what it's like. I just don't know what it's like to start the process of Divorcing my AW. While I haven't filed anything yet, I spoke with my lawyer today and have my first meeting scheduled this week. I'm looking to gain information on what will happen to me and how things will work out.
For those that did keep up with my story, the silence has ended. The binge abuse started again and the straw is bent so far that it's basically going to break. I think I need to get out now under some specific circumstances before things get any worse.
I've learned a few things already about shared parenting and in my case, it doesn't exactly look good for me. Why? My AW never, to my knowledge, got in trouble with the law for a Drinking/Drug related incident. All I have are my meek journal entries and a monstrous 30 minute digital camera recording where she admits to drinking Vodka at home alone with my son, while I was at work.

So please say hello, give me a tip, whatever. I just need a little support emotionally. I believe I'm hitting or at least hit rock bottom last night.
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:49 AM
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I have no experience with divorce.
I like hugs, though, so I will send some digital ones your way.
:ghug3 :ghug3

From seeing others post on this forum, custody may not be as difficult as you think. I would be honest with the lawyer regarding her drinking, and see what your lawyer can do to help.
Good luck.
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:50 AM
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((((Shellcrusher)))) I'm afraid my xH was not an A, and he divorced me during his affair......just wanted to stop by, say hello, and offer a hug.

Good luck, we're walking the walk with you!
HG
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:25 PM
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Sending you hugs Shellcrusher. Just one foot in front of the other.. cross over the street. :ghug3
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:34 PM
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Sorry to hear of this development Crusher. My states domestic law website had a lot of resources where I learned how things are normally settled as far as assets and minor children. Speaking from the other side I'm certain you can muster the strength to make it through even though it all looks so daunting right now.
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:34 PM
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All I have are my meek journal entries and a monstrous 30 minute digital camera recording where she admits to drinking Vodka at home alone with my son, while I was at work.
This is alot shellcrusher. And, if she is binging again, consequences will be coming.
When things got tough for me, I remembered my children.
The time for them to stop living with this chaos was now.
I might not have believed I deserved a better life, but my kids certainly did.

Keep journalling, keep the lawyer up to speed on her antics, this is no time to sugarcoat or lessen her severe alcohol abuse. You are no longer dealing with your wife or the mother of your child, you are dealing with an addiction that would just as soon run your son over to get more alcohol.

Keep focused and on target.

Ack! It sounds like a football pep rally.

I am in the stands, cheering you on!

Beth
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:35 PM
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Good luck, Shellcrusher. I don't have personal experience with this, but my instincts are telling me that the psychological and other ramifications YOU have experienced being the husband of an alcoholic will probably get you far in a custody case. Especially because you are consistently working toward the better good. And I don't know the details of your case, but I suppose that if a 3rd party were to take a very close LOOK at your home situation, maybe your wife wouldn't appear in such a pretty light? From the tidbits I have read, I know that you have always put your son and his needs first, maybe before even your own (which is what we need to do for children)... people WILL notice this. Again, good luck!
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Old 03-07-2011, 01:51 PM
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Shellcrusher,
I know what you are going thru. My wife was served papers Feb 17. I have read many of your threads, but has your wife ever sought any type of treatment? I had a ton of documents from our insurance company that helped establish she had issues. And don't downplay the significance a journal can have, it could prove to be important. Basically document everything you can. Your lawyer will be able to guide you and I think you will feel a lot better once you discuss things with your lawyer. Just know that eventually your life will be in a much better place. You are starting on a new journey now that will have a happy ending. Hang in there.
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Old 03-07-2011, 02:01 PM
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Your lawyer will have some advice. :nod:

If she is going to fight with you, do not sugar coat anything. That was the hardest part for me. My xah was blustering about so I felt like I had to put it all out there (didn't trust him) and so I did. I laid it all out there and he went ballistic when he saw the legal forms. It was a really hard thing for me to do.

I was petrified for the same reasons. I am the mother, but I worked full time and my kids stayed home with xah so for the kids, that was status quo. In the end he didn't even fight with me about it.

Keep doing the next right thing. The way I looked at it, I just had to keep doing that and let go of the outcomes. It was hard. Wishing you strength, courage, and a good lawyer.
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Old 03-07-2011, 02:31 PM
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I know that it

Takes alot of strength and courage to go where you have chosen.

Good for you!

Here I sit, rooting you on!



Read read read. Information is power.



I am on your side!!
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Old 03-07-2011, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Shellcrusher View Post
I've learned a few things already about shared parenting and in my case, it doesn't exactly look good for me. Why? My AW never, to my knowledge, got in trouble with the law for a Drinking/Drug related incident. All I have are my meek journal entries and a monstrous 30 minute digital camera recording where she admits to drinking Vodka at home alone with my son, while I was at work.
Sending, Hugs, Shellcrusher. I agree with Wicked. You have a lot. XAH never once got a DUI; I had never gotten the police involved when I was still with him; I didn't even journal while with XAH. The journalling is a lot. What helped the most with my case was XAH's testimony and responses to questions while in the courtroom.

I was reading the book "Snoop: What Your Stuff Says About You" last week (some one here at SR recommended it in a thread) and there's a section that discusses little clues about the differences between a tidy room and a room that has been tidied for the snoop research. The gist of it is, while some one may want to present an appearance of, say, being conscientious and tidy, their idea of what constitutes being conscientious and tidy only goes so far if they're not. They have a general idea of what it should look like, but they're not going to think of all the little things that make that appearance true.

It fits here, too. While I know XAH wanted to present like he was recovered / cured / never had a problem with alcohol and he knew generally what that would look like, he has absolutely no idea of the little things, the steps involved, the level of responsibility that show a person is working towards recovery. He certainly could not acurately portray that he doesn't have a problem with alcohol among other 'stuff.'

I really wanted to believe Coyote (or the others who backed him up) when he told me that the judges see it every day, but I was a little skeptical before the trial. But they were right: the judges really can see the alcoholic who is putting on a show of being parent of the year and see through the show to the un-involved, irresponsible alcoholic.

Hang in there, keep documenting and trust your HP. :ghug3
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Old 03-07-2011, 04:20 PM
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While I know XAH wanted to present like he was recovered / cured / never had a problem with alcohol and he knew generally what that would look like, he has absolutely no idea of the little things, the steps involved, the level of responsibility that show a person is working towards recovery. He certainly could not acurately portray that he doesn't have a problem with alcohol among other 'stuff.'

that's it, right there.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:09 PM
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Good Luck My Friend...

...you likely know I've been down this road, and it's a rough road. In retrospect, it was the right road for me to take.

I don't know about where you live, but I have a buddy who is an alcoholic drug addict. When he divorced his record was squeaky clean, but his wife claimed without proof he was exactly what he is and the court ordered random UIs (he was eventually busted and she got sole-custody). Maybe you'll have the same luck as she did.

I wish you the best in this,

Cyranoak

P.s. He did, eventually, find recovery. It took a lot of failed drug tests and his beautiful baby girl to get him there, but there he is. At least for now.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:49 PM
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Hey Shellcrusher -- as you probably know, I'm right there with ya. Papers served late January. That's as far as things have gone so far, but the earlier comment about "your lawyer will had advice" was true for me. If they have any experience, they will have represented mothers and fathers of addicted households on more than one occasion.

I can't speak for all states, but he shared a story with me that was somewhat reassuring. A husband of a recovered alcoholic wife went out of town for the weekend on a business trip...he's a doctor, she's a nurse. Two kids at home with the mom. He came home, found her drunk alone with the kids. Relapses can happen, as we know, and a bad one had happened to her. One week later, he had temporary sole custody of the kids and the house.

Doesn't mean anything is a guarantee, for you or for me, but a detailed journal is certainly difficult to argue with unless your AW tries to say the whole thing is made up. And that's when the addict's anger issues usually undermine them and prove your case for you.
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Old 03-08-2011, 07:55 AM
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I think, based on your story, that she will show her true colors. If it smells fishy, any judge will see though.

Please just keep staying clear and know that you are doing the right thing by you kids.

good luck
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Old 03-08-2011, 08:21 AM
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:31 AM
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Thanks everyone for the hugs, well wishes and advice.
Here's the update. I'm working on my plan. My lists are coming together and I have a big set of questions for the lawyer tomorrow.
I listened to the recordings the other day. They're pretty gnarly. If I were a judge, it would be quite clear what's going on.

I don't normally do this but yesterday I found another bottle stashed in the trash that wasn't there before I left work. It could be a bottle from that day which means she's now drinking at work, right before I get home or perhaps when I was gone over the weekend. She confirmed that it happened after I left. I wish I had my camera on me...God. Do I need to go undercover and wiretap my manpelt for these discussions?

Anyway, there's a new feeling I'm having. I'm actually happy when she screws up. It's making my decision that much easier to make/live with. Kinda sad too because she simply doesn't get it. I'm not telling her that I've lawyered up but jeez. when I say I've had it, I mean it and she's not getting it. Have I been quacking for too long that she's used to it and really doesn't care? Probably. I have a feeling though that I will keep working on my little plan every day but it will take a while. I knew this would happen but since I made the appointment to see a lawyer, every day I feel more comfortable and ready to just file the divorce. I mean, right now I'm doing it so I have knowledge and know what to do based on legal advise. Doesn't mean I'll file but my AW is simply making it soooo easy. I'll be journaling everyday now to review the previous events.

So now, once the lad is in bed, I'm in my man cave which is the entire partially finished basement. All my stuff is down there anyway. She lives in the rest of the house. I'm starting to sleep better. My son is safe. I'm taking action. If **** hits the fan, she's going to get one hell of a bomb dropped on her. I realize the real pain will begin if I do that but at least I'd be on my road to further recovery versus continually settling for less than normal.
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:52 AM
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I haven't had much to add so far, it sounds like you're doing just fine.

About the bottle in the trash. I wouldn't necessarily presume that that came from any particular drinking episode. I used to throw out my bottles at discreet times. Heck, if it was obvious I was drinking, I'd have some empties, right? So I'd throw out a "decoy" and secretly dump the other three or four someplace else.

We alcoholics are nothing if not creative!
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Old 03-08-2011, 01:17 PM
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Shell, I have followed your story, but the lines are blurring with another member. Has your wife gone to treatment at all in the past? Generally, ANY history of alcohol/drug abuse, whether the law was involved or not, gives the other parent a huge favor in the court. What about bank statements? I had months and months of statements that had check copies to liquor stores, daily, sometimes more than once per day. It's like he was hosting a party......who can spend that much on booze. Yikes.
Good luck, sounds like you are doing the right thing.
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Old 03-08-2011, 01:59 PM
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Journaling is the best all over.

Whether in the computer stashed away someplace safe
or in a book...

it serves so many purposes
as long as it's kept safe.
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