My brother was just left by his wife of 3 years. They have two children (4 yr old, and an 8 month old) and she has a 7 year old son from a previous marriage that she has primary custody for. Their marriage has been very up and down, and there has been physical abuse from her and mental anguish from him. Quite frankly they should have never been married to begin with. Everything began to end when he discovered she was cheating on him with an old boyfriend. He has the nude pictures she sent the old boyfriend and numerous emails / myspace messages between the two. She has admitted the affair and he forgave her. He wanted to keep the family together and move past it, but she never stopped her contact with the boyfriend even though she told my brother she did. A few days ago, he found a cell phone that he didn’t know she had and everything came to a head.
During the course of the marriage, my brother was the stay-at-home dad until she lost her high-paying job in early 2008, and he went to work in retail to make ends meet while she had the baby. She received unemployment during this time. At the beginning of 2009, he was laid off from his job and started receiving unemployment himself. She received a job offer in mid-January that was out of state and accepted the position. She has been working there a few weeks and has a high salary once again.
Yesterday, her best friend (who lived in the house with them, but didn’t pay rent) took the 8 month old for a “play date” and to take the family car for an oil change. (My brother doesn’t have a license.) It wasn’t unusual, so my brother didn’t think anything of it. At 3pm, the two oldest kids never got off the bus. My brother paniced and tried to call the cops and his wife- but the phone was shut off. They don’t have a home phone, and all the cell phones on their family plan were shut off when she closed the account at that exact same time. My brother went next door to call his wife and was told by her that the kids were on their way to her and that they were safe. Later on, he found out she took 80$ out of their joint account, leaving him with $20.
She has already filed for the temporary custody or whatever it is in Wisconsin (where her job is.) My brother receives unemployment, and has been told by Legal Aid that he qualifies for help, but that they don’t handle divorce cases. With his financial situation, he can’t pay for a lawyer and feels royally screwed over.
My brother doesn’t want to contest the divorce- if she wants out, then she’s entitled to go. I want to make sure he doesn’t get screwed over in custody issues.