Separation/Divorce


#1

OK first off I have a few questions. Never thought I would be going through this. I am so lost. Any help would be great.
A little background. Married 9yrs and have 2 children 9 and 15. On Jan 19Th,2012 I the Husband moved out of our home and got my own place. I did not want to leave and I don’t want a Divorce but My wife had totally cut off all contact with me while living together for months prior to me leaving and said she wanted a Divorce. She had also been talking to and spending time with other men for a few months prior to me moving. Not the first time and the other reason for me leaving. I have now been living in my own place since January. Our kids are with me nightly. I provide transportation for her (she totaled the car I left her) so she can get to and from work, Pay her and our Kids health insurance and her auto Insurance. Under North Carolina Law should I be doing more?

As I said before, I moved out in January. No separation agreement has been made and now I find out that my wife has become serious with another man. So I have chosen to cut off all contact and not help her get to and from work. Am I in the wrong? If she were to loss her Income because of me?
What can I do about her being serious with another man. From my understanding In North Carolina you can not date or be Intimate with another person until the Divorce is final because we are still married. Am I wrong? What should I do?


#2

Under North Carolina law, the only things you are really liable for (until a court decides otherwise) is financial support and insurance for your children. If you can prove that she was intimate with another during the marriage or pursuing other men, it is a bar to her receiving post separation support and/or alimony. You do not need to pay her health insurance or auto insurance. You do not need to pay for anything for her.

I’d gather what proof you can of her activities, get copies of all your financials, keep proof that the kids are with you full time and thriving, and then I’d file for full custody of the children. If she attempts to countersuit for custody and post-separation support, I’d counter with the proof of adultery or pursuit/attempt of adultery and proof that the kids are already full-time with you and that her pattern of unstable relationships with other men may be detrimental to your children. (Do not be against visitation, as that also is unhealthy for the kids, but be interested in providing them with a more stable environment, which it sounds like you are.)

FWIW, any post-separation activity with other men doesn’t matter anymore, just pre-separation behaviours.

And, don’t feel so guilty. It sounds as though you’ve done nothing to feel guilty about. She is a big girl and should be able to care for herself. It is her responsibility alone to figure out how to get to/from work. If you feel like offering to help, that’s one thing, but you are under NO obligation to do so. Since she has chosen to go with other men, it would be disrespectful to you and your emotions to expect you to assist her…IMHO. She needs to take responsibility for her actions. I don’t mean that in a vindictive way, just that there are lessons to be learned from everyone’s individual choices.

You and your children will be fine when this is all over. (I know, I’m a child of divorce.) Continue treating the kids the same way you would when you were married. (i.e. don’t spoil them out of guilt…it’s unhealthy. Keep things as calm and as regular as possible.) Listen to them and allow them to express themselves because they are going to need to talk about the discomfort of their lives changing in a manner that they have no control over. The best lesson they can learn out of this all is that life changes in unexpected ways and that they are strong enough to adapt and succeed. You will all be OK in the end.

Be your own best friend…and what I mean by that is to advise yourself in the same manner that you would tell your best friend if he were in the same position as you. Be good to yourself. You are doing the best that you can.

NOT AN ATTORNEY


#3

WOW. Thank you so much for the advice and you are right and you are not the first person to tell me that. I also want to set the record straight. I am by no means perfect but I was faithful and stayed with her for 17yrs. My whole problem Is I didn’t want the Marriage to END. I didn’t want to move out but I was not going to stay with a women that has cheated before and was talking to and hanging out with other men again all while cutting off all contact with me other than when she needed something.

How do I prove my kids stay with me nightly while she Is working? How do I prove she was intimate with another during the marriage or pursuing other men?

What do you mean by financial support for my children?

I might beadle to get phone records from charter from before I moved out showing the months of phone calls but now It Is all done via cell and text that was given to her.

Also what about any legal problems she Is Involved In post separation? As I said before she totaled the car I left her. Was In my name. DUI. And she Is facing a felony charge separate from the DUI. Different case.


#4

No one is a perfect spouse…no one. The important thing is whether or not you’ve treated your spouse with the same respect that you’d want yourself to be treated with. And FWIW, children learn about romantic relationships and their roles from the first ones they see…their parents’. By leaving, you’ve taught them what is acceptable and what isn’t.

I don’t know how you prove that you are providing nightly support other than witnesses or documentations of time spent out doing activities (i.e. receipts from taking them to the movies, whatever).

If you have any access to admissions of guilt like emails she has sent you or she has sent from a joint account to another (therefore there is no expectation of privacy), that would be good. Excessive phone calls and/or texts to other guys, especially a single one, that she has no professional relationship with would help (although that in and of itself isn’t “proof” as arguments can be made for friendship). If she has had an affair with one guy and dropped him for another one, the first guy might be willing to testify against her…stuff like that. And, of course, pics of her seeing a guy in a romantic situation or spending the night at his house, would all help, but I gather that you don’t have those.

By financial support, I mean that you are obligated to pay child support for the provision of your child’s necessary living expenses. The amount is determined by gross income and altered by the amount of overnights spent at the various parent’s houses. There is a calculator on this site that can help. FWIW, there is a big difference in amounts paid/received between 122 and 123 overnights. The more overnights a parent takes, the less he/she will have to pay if they are the supporting spouse. Part of this is to encourage parental involvement by both parents.

Any legal problems she is involved in post-separation are her own responsibility, although as far as the car company is concerned, you are responsible for any debt owed on the vehicle since you were the owner. That debt can be used in negotiations during the divorce to offset equitable distribution. FWIW, any criminal activity or DUIs that she is involved in can be used to establish as a pattern of irresponsible behaviour which may not look so good for her when it comes time to debate custody. A single one in and of itself not so much, but the DUI along with staying out partying too much, any other separate arrest events, or having a string of romantic partners in a short period of time will lead a judge to believe that maybe she needs to get her act together before resuming full-time parenthood. Judges do tend to look with favour on the parent who wants to keep the other parent actively involved in the children’s lives though…as long as it isn’t harmful to the children’s emotional and physical well-being.


#5

Well I understand completely and thanks for the advice. I will put it to good use and I hope I can get through this with the least amount of stress on our children as possible.