Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight - Page 3 - Talk About Marriage
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post #31 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-22-2017, 03:27 AM
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Mjs, have you started the new job? How is that going?
I think instead of playing games with your STBXW focus on yourself and your kids and what is best for them. Revenge may be sweet but what is the point, you can rise above all this and be the better man. You need to keep her somewhat sweet for your visits etc. When she sees you moving on, no regrets, no emotion (plotting revenge means u still care), happy with your new life, that will be the best revenge.

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post #32 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-22-2017, 03:43 AM
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Cool Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Get an attorney, file for divorce with no specific timeline, then let your lawyer manage the cases activity until such time that the wheels come off of your W's little red wagon with CPS and the like!

Sorry to see you going through all of this!

Please be assured that all of you will remain in my fervent prayers!

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post #33 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-22-2017, 11:07 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

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Originally Posted by aine View Post
Mjs, have you started the new job? How is that going?
I think instead of playing games with your STBXW focus on yourself and your kids and what is best for them. Revenge may be sweet but what is the point, you can rise above all this and be the better man. You need to keep her somewhat sweet for your visits etc. When she sees you moving on, no regrets, no emotion (plotting revenge means u still care), happy with your new life, that will be the best revenge.
Aine, Haven't started the job yet. I will in a month. I think it will really help because I'm kind of in limbo now with a lot of time to stew about things. I do agree that moving forward positively for myself is the most important part of the equation. Some of my recent posts have been reflective of a lot of anger I still have. I will stay respectful and maintain 100% compliance with the PFA. Thanks for your reminder to stay civil.

However, finding out that I can manipulate the potential divorce to be in my new state is a godsend that I will take full advantage of. I won't have to be nasty about it or hire an aggressive attorney or anything like that. I'll just calmly proceed with my life and my legal strategy. Since her PFA filing, everything has been on her terms so far, but the new state changes everything. It's not so much about revenge and spite as it is empowering myself in the situation. She is still dangerously unhinged and this can help me put the brakes on her destructive spiral.

As far as the kids go, that is the troubling part. I'm trying to hope that they will do well with the new situation, but I doubt they will. That is drama I can't really avoid and it could all blow up further even before a divorce is finalized.
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post #34 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-22-2017, 11:08 AM
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Sounds like filing in the new state makes sense. But ... be sure to consult with your atty on how all of this will work. Consider various situations such as her filing before you do. Or, her making worse allegations against you. How would things work if you file in your current state in order to put her in a holding pattern, but then withdrawing the divorce in a year and then filing in your new state?

Basically, be very strategic! Figure out what all the possible twists and turns might be, and then make sure you have a contingency for them all.

Sun Tzu. Read him if you haven't. Also read "The Prince" by Machiavelli. Show strength when you feel weak, show weakness where you are strong. Give out false information to your enemy. Gather as much intel as you can about her. Indicate an attack in one place when in fact you will attack in another. Lull the enemy to complacency. Make agreements which cost you nothing but gain you something.

She's playing hardball with you. You must be prepared and take the initiative.
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post #35 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-22-2017, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Thanks Thor. Your points are excellent and I will be sure to consult my lawyer. I also have a lawyer in my family I can consult to be sure I don't get a biased answer based on his desire to keep my business.

I think the biggest roll of the dice with the out of state filing concerns my wife's attorney situation. Having to travel for court appearances and losing her free lawyer might bring her to reality and reduce her litigiousness about everything. However, she might use joint funds/credit to pay for her legal case rather than ask her parents for help as I have. It still might be worth it to get out of the kangaroo court I'm in now.

The alimony differences in the states are potentially quite significant. In her state she can claim child custody, support during my grad school, and possibly even abuse as grounds for alimony. The first two factors don't apply in the new state and the abuse charge will be difficult to use if the PFA is expunged by then.

Your comment about new phony charges being brought up is also well taken. I do worry that might happen if she starts to lose on other fronts. I'm strictly following the PFA and documenting everything. Thinking rationally and strategically is difficult with all I've been through, but I'm getting there.
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post #36 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-22-2017, 02:10 PM
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

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Thanks Thor. Your points are excellent and I will be sure to consult my lawyer. I also have a lawyer in my family I can consult to be sure I don't get a biased answer based on his desire to keep my business.

I think the biggest roll of the dice with the out of state filing concerns my wife's attorney situation. Having to travel for court appearances and losing her free lawyer might bring her to reality and reduce her litigiousness about everything. However, she might use joint funds/credit to pay for her legal case rather than ask her parents for help as I have. It still might be worth it to get out of the kangaroo court I'm in now.

The alimony differences in the states are potentially quite significant. In her state she can claim child custody, support during my grad school, and possibly even abuse as grounds for alimony. The first two factors don't apply in the new state and the abuse charge will be difficult to use if the PFA is expunged by then.

Your comment about new phony charges being brought up is also well taken. I do worry that might happen if she starts to lose on other fronts. I'm strictly following the PFA and documenting everything. Thinking rationally and strategically is difficult with all I've been through, but I'm getting there.

OP your wife is playing hardball...take no prisoners...do anything to win. you are playing appeasement. good luck with that.

you need a lawyer who is well versed in these type of tactics. she is your enemy, not your friend.
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post #37 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-22-2017, 11:33 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

It's not in my nature to think and act like I'm at war, but I'm realizing I have to. Marriage is really the opposite of that, and I was completely committed to it. It's hard to break that mindset.

What I'm thinking now is more or less a classic rope-a dope strategy. She's firing everything she can at me now in full fury, but I'm laying back and exposing her weaknesses as she overextends her case. I'll strike back hard and decisively when the time comes. Fighting back with equal or greater fury now would just prove her points about my "anger problems", "mental issues" etc.. Just standing up for myself with dignity is what's best in the short term. I need to get myself attuned to assessing the right time to strike back and what tactics to use. It's not all about money and revenge at this point. Its about vindication and accountability. Her insertion of the abuse card into this makes it so. Her mishandling of the children underscores this even more.
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post #38 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 04:51 PM
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

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Originally Posted by mjsquatch View Post
Everything with this situation is difficult and full of drama. As I mentioned before, my wife opened a CPS case on my daughter, with me wondering if it was to get my visits supervised. I met with them today. They were friendly and I cooperated. They assured me that there were no allegations against me, and that my wife just wanted the extra help from the social workers. However, the social worker also did say that I'd be expected to have them come along for a portion of my weekend visits
CPS may appear friendly and cooperative, however know this. CPS is not your friend. If they are going to be spending their valuable time supervising your visits then they suspect a problem and they will try to find it. Again that's their job and we're not talking about rocket scientists we're talking about 9-5 caseworkers of questionable intelligence that are known to make mistakes that destroy families and rip children from their parents. Anything you say or do during those CPS supervised visits can and probably will be used against you.
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post #39 of 90 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 11:42 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Today was the first day in 4 months i did not cry. It was the first time in about 3 years I did not feel anxious. It is unbelievable. I think the time of no contact has finally settled into emotional clarity. With the distance I also think I know what is wrong with my spouse, which is giving me a sense of power and relief. The answer to my "what the hell happened" question seems like it is finally being revealed to me after much research and reflection.

She is a covert narcissist, whose false projection is that of a dedicated, loving, and perfect parent. My therapist confirmed that I am likely correct about this. All of the crazy arguments we had about parenting differences were not coming from a place of mutual sincere concern about the children. They were happening because she was insisting on doing things that were for her own emotional gratification rather than teaching discipline, instilling values, correcting misguided behaviors, providing for normal emotional development, or any other legitimate needs of the children. Children learn to be highly manipulative under such conditions and all hell breaks lose.

Marriage therapists and others had told us that there was a difference in parenting philosophies and that we needed to learn to get together and work on the same page. Now I know better. Normal people settle differences with rational discourse and can compromise. That never happened for us at all.

The worst thing about a person like this is that they can fool people for years and years, as she did with me. The protective order was just narcissistic discard in its truest form. She needed to do it to protect her image as the virtuous and loving parent by painting me in the worst light possible. Her complete lack of empathy for all involved is further telling (leaving the kids at home to watch me be evicted by the sheriff).

She is a sick person, and now I really know and understand what the sickness is and how to rise above it. Other people know about it too. I think that one of our daughter's therapists has caught onto my wife's true nature, at least enough to blow her cover. The county workers and the therapists are all communicating and they are seeing the problems. Little by little more friends and acquaintances are showing support for me. She's not winning the battle to rewrite my history that she started with the protective order. My children still love me, many people still respect me, and most importantly I now have regained my self-respect. What a difference that makes. I feel like the 180 everyone talks about just magically happened in the span of about 24 hours. The no contact protective order may actually turn out to be the best gift my wife ever gave me. My sanity is back.
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post #40 of 90 (permalink) Old 03-05-2017, 07:03 PM
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Do you like yourself?

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post #41 of 90 (permalink) Old 03-06-2017, 01:03 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

I thought I was getting over it but I was wrong. Crazy happened again. It always does in this family and I always feel responsible. Just before a week long visit with my children, I hear from the social workers. My daughter is in deeper trouble. She is getting into seriously bad stuff on the internet. She ran out of the house and the police had to track her down. Same stuff as before I left, but worse. The daughter now has another serious county services report on her. It's all proving that I'm right about everything, but it doesn't make me feel good. Concerns for the children always rope me back into everything with my wife emotionally. I could let it all go if it wasn't for them.
They are here with me now and I feel a little better, but they will have to go back to that hell hole next week. I know things are probably progressing toward me getting custody and my wife being exposed as the narcissistic sociopath that she is, but that is going to take time. Divorcing her will take time and money, and getting those kids will too. It will also take tremendous emotional energy. Every week I see new and different twists on the dysfunction. Every week I have to see her to transfer custody, I get acute physical anxiety symptoms, not just a racing heartbeat, but intense sore throats, coughing, headaches, and skin rashes.
RtZ-As far as the question of liking myself. Yes, I do, but you have no idea of the levels of trauma that have been inflicted on me by trying to stay with this woman for the sake of my children. If I didn't have any self respect at all I would still be there, because I would have put up with it all silently. I did have many moments when I confronted her and stood up for myself, but this was met not with respect, but with cowardly acts of aggression on her part (spurious calls to police, an attempt to have me put in a psychiatric hospital, and eventually the restraining order). This was a problem I could do nothing to solve or prevent. She is pathological. Its as simple as that. Chaos and emotional destruction follow her at every turn. I just didn't recognize it until it was too late. The crazy stuff started when the youngest was 2 years old and had been progressing in the 8 years since, until it really exploded in the last year. I'm living with the constant fear that my daughter will turn up missing or dead because she also can't take living in that house, but has no choice. That is the crux of my pain. No amount of self-empowerment or improvement can change that.
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post #42 of 90 (permalink) Old 03-13-2017, 04:11 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Still terrified of my wife and the state of my children, but there have been some interesting revelations and interactions this week while I had my children. Not sure what to make of them. Given the whole protective order situation, everything was heard second hand through my mother, but I assume it was all meant to be heard by me .

I'm still not hopeful for a reconciliation, but I'm trying to figure out what is going through her head to anticipate the future crazy crap that will be hurled my way. Among the things I heard.

1) She can't sleep at night. She's up until 5 every night and/or taking sleep medication. She was like this even the past week with the kids out of the house and having a break from the stress.
2) She asked why I never got an apartment near the house after the separation (I'm now with my parents hours away, working remotely). Why would I go to all that hassle to do that for 4 months before my new job starts when I couldn't see my children anyway because of the protective order?
3) She offered to send stuff from the house to me for my move to my new job. My mother explained that I will have a furnished place and didn't need anything. My wife offered to send towels. Unbelievable. She filed a restraining order, triggered thousands of dollars of legal expenses, and now she offers to generously send me off to my new life with f'n threadbare old towels.
4) She mentioned that she thinks she might have problems and is considering going to seek therapy.
5) She's still sticking to a lot of crazy talk and thinking about the parenting problems, so definitely there is much to be wary of.

What I'm wondering is what her motivation might be. Is she mostly scared to death about the stuff going on with my daughter and the possibility that she might lose her? Is she just trying to suck my mother in to her narcissistic web by appearing nice and caring? Is it possible that there is some crack in the wall with me and that there are regrets?

I'm committed to standing steadfast and keeping my boundaries. I'm sticking to 100% no contact. I won't even pass her any indirect messages through third parties about my feelings about our relationship, or how I'm doing emotionally. I simply won't do it while under the duress of the protective order. It was filed as a manipulative power play, and I refuse to even acknowledge her existence while it is in place. I'm only addressing the very basic parenting and financial issues. I also don't want any crap from the house unless there is a divorce settlement, after which I will be able to afford an apartment large enough to have a few things.
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post #43 of 90 (permalink) Old 03-13-2017, 08:07 AM
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Guilt.
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post #44 of 90 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 12:37 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

Had another custody hearing today. My weekend visits were upped from 4 hours to 8 hours which I guess is good, but the judge seemed to have an over-excessive need for it to be a compromise. (I wanted 10 hours, and my wife wanted 6). It made no difference to the court that the family is completely falling apart otherwise, with my daughter having failing academic marks, running away from home, and a fresh CYS reports. They are still hung up on resolving the issue of whether or not I, the big bad abuser, who had the PFA filed on him, is worthy of time with my kids.

It's completely pathetic. My daughter will have to wind up in serious trouble or dead before anything is done about her situation, yet the system lives in fear that maybe there is an outside chance that I will be that abuser that kills someone. I am so disgusted. Granted I didn't ask for primary custody because of my new job situation, but I think I will once I get settled in. My wife is ruining my children.

I truly believe things will get worse in the home and that eventually there will be no other option for me to take custody. It's just horrible to see this happening to my kids and have no other recourse. I will have to let my wife bottom out and pick up the pieces. It's coming. This is the most painful thing I've ever had to witness.

I also am believing more and more that she doesn't want a divorce. I really think she wants to use this legal process to prove to me that her messed up way of conducting family affairs is how it needs to go down. There have been a lot of conciliatory gestures behind the scenes via my mother that seem to contradict the hardball legal crap. In her twisted mind, I think she feels like she is rescuing the family and trying to get us all "psychologically well", although it's clear to me now who the nut job is.

I'm just feeling so done with this. I brought up the subject of dating before, and I think I'm going to go ahead and do it now. I don't think I'll become sexually active, or develop another serious relationship, but I do need to start to have some fun in my life and get my mind off this crap. Only 2 weeks away from my move for my job. Living with my parents and dealing with this has been horrendous.
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post #45 of 90 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 06:19 AM
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Re: Family fell apart, but no end to drama in sight

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Guilt.
I think crazy.
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