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#1 of 24 Old 04-30-2009, 08:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#2 of 24 Old 04-30-2009, 08:54 PM
 
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Get a lawyer. File for divorce. Get a written custody plan. Now.

I understand you don't want to get into a court fight. I'm a big fan of DYI (even though I am less than three weeks from being a lawyer)...but this is one situation you can't do yourself. Your ex is trying to blackmail you into giving up your right to see your children for months at a time. He is emotionally abusive--yes, this is abuse, and yes, it is possible for an ex to be emotionally abusive even though you're no longer together. And it is impossible to negotiate successfully with your abuser.

Unless there is some sort of special need I'm missing--and even then--it is completely not in your kids' best interest to be separated from each other--even if they don't get along, they are brothers. My sister and I fought tooth and nail for years, but if we'd been separated, we would have assumed it's because Mom liked her better and Dad liked me better (or vice versa).

Best of luck to you.

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#3 of 24 Old 04-30-2009, 08:58 PM
 
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I definitely agree that he seems to be using the kids to control you (telling you that a condition is your DP getting fixed, or else, kind of clinches that!).
As the PP said, get a lawyer, file, and write up a custody plan. ASAP.
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#4 of 24 Old 04-30-2009, 09:11 PM
 
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I agree with the PPs. File now. In our experience and research (although every state is different), judges really do not like changing the status quo if the status quo is working. And something like splitting up the kids and moving halfway across the country is a big change to the status quo. In my state, the person moving has to "prove" that the move would somehow be beneficial to the children. Your ex would probably have a difficult time doing that.

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#5 of 24 Old 04-30-2009, 09:30 PM
 
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Divorce and get a custody/parenting plan in place now.

Stop paying his bills and use one of the online calculators to figure out how much support you need to pay. It shouldn't be much considering the 50/50 "custody" you already seem to share.

Even if you don't actually come out ahead financially, it will be worth it for piece of mind. Plus he won't be able to unilaterally move with the kids (which he could probably do right now) without a court approval- or without your approval.

Don't seperate the boys. Siblings should be raised together if at all possible IMO.
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#6 of 24 Old 04-30-2009, 09:38 PM
 
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Do NOT split up your boys! His requests are absurd. Get a custody agreement now, stop paying his bills and since he's threatened to take the boys, you might want to get something done ASAP.

Really, you have rights here and so do your boys. He can't just take your kids. I can't believe that you're even entertaining the idea of abiding by his rules. Do not split your kids up and don't get fixed just because your ex is threatening you. Get to court and do it now! If you file, you'll have the upper hand.

Why would you even think that you have to do what he says??? Why are you supporting him?? Save that money for a lawyer.

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#7 of 24 Old 04-30-2009, 09:42 PM
 
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He is being ridiculous and unrealistic. Don't get pulled into his irrationality. File for divorce and get a custody order preventing him from leaving the state with the kids.
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#8 of 24 Old 04-30-2009, 10:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#9 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 12:28 AM
 
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Everyone is saying get a divorce and custody agreement, and I agree with that, but if you can't do that until August, then at least get a legal separation, and custody agreement written out and filed with the court. It is the only way to keep him from moving with the kids (both of them). He has the right, just the same as you, while you're married to take them out of state and live there or whatever, and you have no recourse, until you have a written and filed custody agreement.

Take it from one who has been there...

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#10 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 12:31 AM
 
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You can stop him from moving but you need to go to court to do it. That is what I would do, get a custody agreement in place wherein he cannot up and leave the state with your boys. That is very standard, I have it in place for me, I cant leave the county with my child (well I can travel but couldn't up and move away). You need to protect yourself.
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#11 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 12:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#12 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 01:12 AM
 
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: so children are replacable commodity? since you could have more with DP then you can just let your kids go?

first of all why on earth do you feel he could take the children with him? HE is the moving parent. not you!!! right now he can because nothing is established in court.

btw look into custody first. i dont think you need to get divorced to file custody. you can file custody before that. i hope that's not different in your state.

after you have kids you have to give thought to your action. i mean how does he think this is going to affect your boys? his move. whether you keep the boys or he does - either way your sons will suffer the loss of a regular parent. with whom they have been in close contact. wonder how you can get him to look at it that way.

i am just shocked he feels its so easy to just move.

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#13 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 07:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#14 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 07:28 PM
 
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Protect yourself and the kids. Get a custody plan in place ASAP. I really can't fathom why it would be at all ok with you to separate the kids- I mean- really?! You're willing to go to any length to keep them with their father and homeschooled, but you're willing to consider separting them?

This guy is all over the place.

Additionally, it's not really seen (at least by courts around here) as a good thing if people are still married (without at least a separation) and are involved with someone else. It also isn't seen as a good thing when you aren't proactive about getting a custody plan in place to protect them.

I imagine your ex will have greater self-worth if he finds a job and outside interests- I certainly wouldn't expect him to have to have a girlried to be happy.

Find a lawyer.
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#15 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 07:31 PM
 
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Oh. My. God.

You need a lawyer. You need one YESTERDAY. You also probably need a job with a predictable schedule so that you can arrange childcare and you need to put the kids in school.

Like PPs have said, judges are loathe to change the status quo. So establish a status quo NOW where your ex has as little power and influence over you and the kids as humanly possible. Not because dads are disposable, but because you are enmeshed in an abusive dynamic with this guy and you desperately need to cut all ties between you and him (NOT between him and the kids).

The arrangement right now makes him look like the custodial parent. You must, must, must change this, or you might end up watching him leave the state with one or both of your kids. Your lawyer will know better how these things typically shake out in your state, and can help you strategist.

You might also see if you can get him to make these crazy threats and suggestions via email, so that you will have some evidence later on that he has his own, incredibly inappropriate agenda that has nothing to do with the best interests of his kids!
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#16 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 07:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by pinksprklybarefoot View Post
I agree with the PPs. File now. In our experience and research (although every state is different), judges really do not like changing the status quo if the status quo is working. And something like splitting up the kids and moving halfway across the country is a big change to the status quo. In my state, the person moving has to "prove" that the move would somehow be beneficial to the children. Your ex would probably have a difficult time doing that.
Kansas City was my home for four years and my closest friend can attest to how difficult it is to get approval to leave the state, moving away from the other parent. I suspect that he is trying to work this to his advantage now (while also getting the pleasure of controlling you) before the divorce occurs.

I am amazed at your willingness to do what's right for the kids. He is not willing to do what's right for the kids as evidenced by your post. I agree with everyone before me who said get a lawyer and do this now. Also, if you have written proof of his demands, all the better.

Momma to DS 1, age 8 and rainbow baby DS2 4-21-11.
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#17 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 07:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#18 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 08:57 PM
 
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I would STOP discussing these issues and start discussing them with a lawyer. Communicate via email, and limit it to necessary logistics, re: the kids (like, I'm going to drop them off 1/2 hour late today, not long term custody arrangements and you and your partner's fertility status).

ETA: I"m not in a blended family, so I hope you don't mind the intrusion, but have BTDT with an X threatening to move, split the kids, etc. I totally stopped discussing anything but absolute essentials, channeled all legal/custodial discussion through the lawyers, and did almost all communication w/X via email so there was as "written," time-stamped record.
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#19 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 09:28 PM
 
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If you put them into school, you can proceed with the divorce more easily and not be a prisoner to him. You can always pull them back out, but you need your ducks in a row before he talks you into one of his crazy ideas. If homeschooling is making you support him, then stop that for awhile.

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#20 of 24 Old 05-01-2009, 11:39 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Sharlla View Post

I don't want this to get nasty, I was just trying to find some compromise somewhere.
and this right here is why good mothers get SCREWED into crappy divorce/custody/support situations

Stop it. Stop it RIGHT THIS SECOND. It IS nasty. It WILL BE nasty. As of right now..you are the uber-witch. He is trying to control you, and he WILL. *HE* isn't looking to be reasonable, or to comprmoise..he will take everything and then some. He has proven he is willing to stoop to manipulation, emotional abuse, threats about taking your kids and more. Unless you are willing to play just as dirty as he is - you are going to LOSE, and lose big time.

Get the absolute best lawyer you can right this second, and get a temporary custody order in place....fight.

CPST
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#21 of 24 Old 05-02-2009, 10:43 AM
 
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Whoa, everyone here needs to calm down. OP seems to have a mostly decent relationship with her X, but he's still hurting, still saying hurtful things & needs to figure things out. He cannot possibly follow through with his threats, and is completely reliant on her money. This is not (yet) a dangerous situation.

Sharlla - BECAUSE you make more money & X is seen as a SAHD, you could very well LOSE 50/50 custody if you get nasty, and ALSO wind up paying ALL of his legal bills. A nasty fight will also hurt your children. The cheaper, better option (if you can calmly discuss stuff) is to have a divorce mediator help you hammer out a *reasonable* custody and child support plan before the divorce. The mediator will NOT advise either of you to split up the children or move out of state. Mediation is not free, but will save you quite a lot of money and heartache over the traditional, contentious divorce model.

When I left my XH, we were in a similar situation (I made all the money, he was a SAHD), and he was initially full of pain and hurtful rhetoric. The things he said were far, FAR worse than anything in this thread (ever have someone scream "whore," at you loud enough to wake up the neighbors? fun), but we worked it out after a couple of years, and now we're pretty awesome co-parents.

My XH & I have exactly 50/50 physical, joint legal, and total trust. He takes my son out of state 2-3 times a year to visit family & I don't stress. I'm taking DS to Korea next year to visit DP's family, and XH is totally cool. I know exactly what my payments to him are, how long I'll have to pay, how taxes work, etc.

Good luck - I'm sure you'll be able to keep your kids in homeschool, keep your kids close, and keep your kids together... but you may have to shell out for that eHarmony subscription to shut DX up...
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#22 of 24 Old 05-02-2009, 07:07 PM
 
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IMO, screaming "whore" at your ex during a breakup is hurtful but sometimes forgivable. Telling your ex to get "fixed" or you'll take the kids away from her is abusive. The former comes from a place of rage. The latter is pretty much sociopathic. The former expresses anguish. The latter expresses a desire to exert an extreme degree of control over a person who is not under your control in any legitimate way.

That said, I think your suggestion of a mediator might be a good one to try. Maybe the OP's ex is the kind of person who will pull it together when a neutral third party is in the room, and I agree that no sane mediator would support his idea about moving out of state and splitting up the kids.

But OP, I really think you need to prepare for the possibility of a court fight, in consultation with a lawyer who knows the system in your state. The best possible position you can be in at the start of a court fight is to have the kids residing with you on weekdays and going to school. This is what's "normal" to a traditionally-minded judge (of which there are plenty throughout the South!). Also, not incidentally, this would give your ex the chance to go out and get a job and get a life, which might reduce the extent to which he attempts to insinuate himself into YOUR life.

You've got to remember that he's not your ally any more and you can't trust him, but I don't think anybody was suggesting that screaming at him was a good first step. Make it seem like you are helping him by arranging things so that he can get a job. Do it all over email and/or with the mediator, so that if it comes to a court case, you can honestly say "Your Honor, I don't know what to do. I am desperate. I arranged everything so that my ex could go out and get a job and move on with his life. Instead, he has chosen to stay home, not earn a living, keep our kids isolated from their peer group (I know, it's bullshit, I homeschool too, but you say what you need to say), and constantly harass and threaten me. He is trying to force me to sterilize myself. That's why we're here today." Then present your carefully laid out parenting plan.
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#23 of 24 Old 05-02-2009, 09:58 PM
 
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I have to say, I agree with the PPs that are saying that now is the time to look mainstream. It might be a little difficult because it is almost the end of the school year, but at least get them enrolled for next year and start getting your custody plan worked out. Maybe consider enrolling them in day camp on the weekdays over the summer, so you can start the schedule then?

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#24 of 24 Old 05-04-2009, 12:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by ProtoLawyer View Post
Get a lawyer. File for divorce. Get a written custody plan. Now.

I understand you don't want to get into a court fight. I'm a big fan of DYI (even though I am less than three weeks from being a lawyer)...but this is one situation you can't do yourself. Your ex is trying to blackmail you into giving up your right to see your children for months at a time. He is emotionally abusive--yes, this is abuse, and yes, it is possible for an ex to be emotionally abusive even though you're no longer together. And it is impossible to negotiate successfully with your abuser.

Unless there is some sort of special need I'm missing--and even then--it is completely not in your kids' best interest to be separated from each other--even if they don't get along, they are brothers. My sister and I fought tooth and nail for years, but if we'd been separated, we would have assumed it's because Mom liked her better and Dad liked me better (or vice versa).

Best of luck to you.
I agree, I agree, I agree! Do it now! No tax money is worth losing kids!
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