I've been married nearly eight years. I have two kids, age 8 and 3. My husband ("Max") has been overly controlling about money since we got married. This is something that won't go away. He's disrespectful of me as a SAHM, in spite of agreeing to it before we TTC. It's just been an ongoing downhill mess from the start. Our third marital therapist told him he was abusive (not physically), which of course he felt was nonsense. I can't deal with it anymore. Our son has become just as disrespectful to me. Our kids shouldn't grow up thinking this is the way relationships should be.
The odd thing is...Max has no idea I'm moving in this direction. Just this morning, he wanted to continue talking about buying a house together. He's cheating on me (or trying to -- he has an online dating profile) and knows I know. He thinks he should stay married for the kids, get his sex outside the marriage, and everything will be hunky dory.
For a long time, I hoped we could separate, because I really didn't want a divorce (still don't) and thought a separation would jolt him into action. But I can't figure out any way to make that happen. I have some money, but I don't have any income. It's very possible he would cut me off from the limited money I currently have access to, and for all I know, he'd find a way to get rid of money in the savings account (if he hasn't already). So I guess a divorce from the start is going to be necessary (right?). The element of surprise is to my benefit, I think.
I've spoken with one attorney, to get an idea how much support I might get. It's not impressive, but it might work. I'm really hoping to not work for the next two years, while I finish a college certificate and DD is not yet in school. After that, while I'd love to remain at home,I assume I'll have to work.
The cost of living is rather high where I live. There are a lot of rentals, but they're expensive. I'm kind of hazy on the order things ought to happen. Should I file and get the support established, and then move out? Should I try to get a rental place, move some stuff there, and then get the paperwork done? I'm 99% certain that he will fight me when it comes to me having the kids anywhere else -- even away from him at all. I've tried to get him to move out of our rental house, just to somewhere nearby, and he won't do it. He expects to see them every day. He also expects to have whatever place is nicer or worth more. He wants to control everything.
Obviously I need to speak to more lawyers. But what do you think you would do, or what would you suggest based on your experience?