The system is much the same in our state.. child support office only helps the custodial parent. All while dragging the NCP thru the mud. Terrible.
WH and I are attempting r but I know it will be a slow and agonizing process especially with the possibility of the OC which means having some sort of contact with OW. We were in the same social group together so I have lots if memories of all of us together and looking back I had some suspicion but I didn't think my husband was capable of something like this. I don't know that he thought he was either. I was pregnant the entire time the affair was happening. I don't understand why people would choose to hurt another person in this way and how they could both watch the life inside me grow and still be so selfish.
Anyway, I had some questions that maybe someone could help with.
1. What is the best custody arrangement for a newborn? I figure more time will need to be with the mom initially.
2. What is the best schedule for 50/50 custody? My husband comes from a divorced family (his dad cheated on his mom too). He went between them every other day. I can't imagine having to see OW everyday or my husband either so I was wondering what other schedules are possible.
3. Does anyone have any examples of boundaries to set for contact with the OW when a child is involved? I know we will need them especially with their history but I'm not sure where to start. Until the baby is born there will be nc.
4. I know I will have to be civil and one day let some of my anger towards her go but at this point it is difficult considering she was supposed to be one if my friends and so far has not shown one ounce of guilt or apologized in any way. Any advice on how to move forward knowing she doesn't care that she has ruined my life ( at least for now)?
You will find that many of our OC situations are different--some of us have contact (C), some of us have no contact (NC). It's complicated to give full out answers because it's really based on individual situations.
Contact is hard but not impossible. Custody arrangements can greatly vary.
Although not an OC situation (but her EXh did cheat), I have a friend who has 50/50 and has certain days of the week that she has her kids and days of the week she doesn't--I can barely keep track but the kids can. It seems to be really complicated in my opinion. But she makes it work!
BMC usually posts a "handbook", and I went and found it for you to look at. It's a nice compilation of Q & A.
#1 is incredibly important! Get EVERYTHING official, and thru the courts! Never let money exchange hands until there is an official DNA test result.
I will also say a united front is very important. Although this is your H's child and responsibility, when she chose to sleep and get pg from a married man, she got you as part of the package by no fault of your own. Whatever boundaries you decide to set (like meeting at a 3rd party's home, a neutral location, etc.), stick with them. We don't have C, but if we ever did and had to do visitation, the OW is NOT allowed on my property. We would only allow a neutral location or 3rd party exchange point. Another example--for us all conversations must be written. This is because the cOW lied on us and said we threatened and degraded her on the 2 phone calls that took place.
Here you go! We are always here for you if you have other questions.
Thanks to Scooter 3377!
Below are some helpful starters for "newbies":
OC HANDBOOK (courtesy Me&My3)
1. Dna results must be established and your H should hire an atty immediately if he hasn't already done so. DO ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ON YOUR OWN ONLY THROUGH AN ATTORNEY SKILLED IN FAMILY LAW.
2. If you have children of your own with your h take steps to protect them and yourself by filing for a pseudo legal separation; because in the case of child support, he who files first gets the most (in most states). It doesn't matter one bit which child came first only who files for support first. So if she files first she gets an amount based on his entire income and if you then get separated/divorced your child support would be based on a percentage of his income less what he's already paying her. Makes sense to protect yourself by filing for a separation that way if you and your husband divorce you will benefit more and if you stay together it will keep more money in your household. Even if you're financially self-sufficient you should still consider setting up a child support order because in these uncertain times you never know what tomorrow will bring i.e. corporate downsizing, etc. It never hurts to have that order in place even if you don't need it now. Also consider having alimony set up in the separation papers as it can also reduce the ow's child support order.
3. Visitation with possible oc or sending money to the ow for the oc is a no-no until dna has been established and the courts are involved. Everything should be done legally as it's the only way to protect you and your family. Trust me on this one. There are couples out there who have been dealing with an oc for several years. Visitation, money, etc. only to discover that the child is NOT his. They are embroiled in a huge legal battle because the wayward husband "assumed" parental responsibility of the child.
4. Depending on which state you live in your h could be responsible for back child support, internment (costs of labor and delivery), the costs of the dna test if it's positive, current medical coverage and also a portion of child care costs. Any money that passes hands before a court order is made or before an attorney draws up a legal document signed by both parties may be considered a gift and may not be deducted from the back support amount owed. Some states base child support payments on both the husband and the wives income (another good reason to file for a legal separation). In other words the 'household income' is what they use to determine those payments not just the husbands income.
5. Any decisions to have contact with the oc if it is indeed your H's should be made by both of you. He should not be imposing his wants upon you if you want no contact. ANY decisions made regarding the possible oc should be made jointly. Your H should not be having any contact with ow unless you are both completely involved. That means no phone calls, no text messages, no emails, no meetings, nothing and NO SECRETS! PERIOD! But if you're smart--DO ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ON YOUR OWN ONLY THROUGH AN ATTORNEY SKILLED IN FAMILY LAW.
6. Work on your marriage first and foremost before you even consider having contact. A weakened marriage will only be further weakened if you throw the tension of an oc into the mix. Get into marriage counseling and IC if possible. You can look around this board and see how difficult reconciliation is without an oc so take things slowly and think through them very carefully.
7. Contact with oc is a very personal choice. Many women are able to make the decision to go down that road while others are not. There is a lot of drama that goes along with contact, it's not an easy path to choose. Also consider that visitation can be started at any time down the road. If say in two years you are then open to the idea of contact the child won't have suffered if your husband wasn't involved for the first couple years. It won't even know the difference. ADDED: If you do decide to go for joint legal custody, do it in the beginning, it is harder and more expensive to get later on.
8. Remember that if the oc is indeed your husband's child the ow will no longer hold all the cards. If the two of you want contact she can't prevent it. She can't prevent you from being involved, etc. She can't call all the shots, only the courts can. Once she decides to attach paternity to your husband she is forfeiting a portion of her parental rights.
9. Make sure that you dot your i's and cross your t's in the form of legal documents. If you're adamant about no contact, have it in the papers. If you want to prevent her from making contact with your children or extended family put it in the paperwork. If your H is responsible for a portion of child care costs require ow to only use a licensed child care provider which will prevent her from having her momma watch and claim she's charging $250.00 a week when she's really charging nothing at all.
10. Protect your financial assets such as homes, etc. If you don't have a will get one now. If anything were to happen to your ws the ow would be able to fight you for a portion of everything if indeed the oc is his. Many people create a will that specifically excludes the oc or they leave the oc some small stipend such as a dollar so that the old "he forgot to include me" argument can't be used. If you intend to have a relationship with the oc should dna confirm that it's your H's then this is all a moot point.
11. If you and your spouse do decide to have contact document everything. Keep a notebook and list everything possible in it from the time the oc is picked up/ dropped off to whether or not they were dirty when you got them from the ow. This information has come in very handy for others in the same situation that ended up having to fight for custody, etc and it's one more way to protect yourself.
12. Consider removing your spouse from your joint bank accounts, stocks, bonds and removing them as a beneficiary of your life insurance policies, as OW/OC could try to attach an interest in any holding that has your spouse SS # on it.
13. If you are NC with OC but may consider a relationship later down the road or want to be prepared for when the OC gets older and may want to meet your family, some members have put together letters, cards, pictures for OC and held them until an appropiate time. Especially in situations where the OW has made it very difficult to have C.
FAQs wrt OW/OC:
Q: What if there is an OC? Submitted by PHOEBE
A: This complicates so many things in a marriage I cannot answer it all but will hit on the highlights. There are many questions that need to be answered when it comes to dealing with an other child. First you must find out if the child is the H with a DNA test? Seek out a family attorney to consult with. This is a must because a family must know their rights. Too many get empty threats from the OP involved and they do not know any better so tend to believe many things untrue. Try to protect yourself and your children of the marriage legally.
Does the married couple want contact or no contact? NC or C are not easy, keep in mind wait to make an informed decision. I want to make it clear it is usually easier to heal a marriage without contact with the OP/OC initially. Contact can always be established later on after the marriage is repaired or far along as it can be in the healing process to consider contact with the OC.
It is a personal decision to include OC in your household or not. Neither choice is good or bad. Consider that it may be great to have the OC involved in 2 separate families that are amicable or it may be detrimental to the OC to have to deal with 2 hostile environments. Many times the OC was not planned and the adults involved cannot get along, take a step back and think long and hard about the child's best interest.
The OC is no more important than the COM or the BS. You do not have to change your lives around to accept anyone. I know you may want to fix everything for your Spouse but you must let him take responsibility for his own actions. DS this is some of what I have to say about this if someone has already answered it you can add it. This is a complicated situation with too many variables
Q: How do I deal with continued contact with OW because of OC? Submitted by Bee-Trayed
A: The decision on how to handle an OW/OC situation is a deeply personal one. Some BS find that they have it in their hearts to make the OC a part of their lives; others do not. There is no right or wrong answer to this situation. However, when it is the WS's choice to have contact with the OC then certain "battle" lines must be drawn with the OW, to facilitate the re-establishment of trust in the marriage.
This is best accomplished by establishing a clear understanding between the BS and WS of what will and will not be acceptable or allowable boundaries. Here are some hypothetical:
NC whatsoever with OW/OC
Contact with OC possible but with BS present
Neutral zone for visitation; no visits at OW's home, etc.
Legally drawn up contract stating acceptable parameters for OW to contact WS.
These are just a few sample suggestions. Remember, once there is an OC involved, and paternity has been established, BOTH parents have rights. Make them work for you. It is unbalancing and counter-productive to find yourself on the defensive with the OW.
Establish, with the assistance of your spouse, what your "comfort zone" and rights are with the OW, then send a clear and UNIFIED message to the OW of what you will and will not tolerate. This helps the BS to re-establish some control over a situation that is tragic for all concerned, but in which they, along with the OC, are also a victim.
Q: What do we tell our kids about OC? Submitted by Bee-Trayed
A: Many BSs express concern over telling their children about the existence of the OW/OC. Fear of emotional trauma to the COM, damage to the parental relationship between the WS and COM, or other negative consequences relating to the A abound. How, or if, a BS decides to divulge this information is also highly individual and neither right nor wrong. Family dynamics, the ages of the COM, and other factors unique to the BS's family environment influence the decision.
Relying on one's instinct is probably a good place to start. If there is any uncertainty as to the affect disclosure may cause, then it is probably better to wait until a more opportune time arises. Children are resilient, but that does not mean they should be unnecessarily wounded or burdened with this knowledge.
Examining one's motives for exposing the OW/OC's existence may be one aspect to consider. Preparing them for a possibly unpleasant encounter with OW/OC at a future date might be another. Knowledge is power, but not if it creates a destabilizing environment for the COM. Consider all options and then take your time making the decision. Choosing the right time or place, and striving to neutralize the emotionally charged nature of the subject, can make the difference between a "successful" disclosure and a devastating one.
Hope this helps.
Things around my way have been pretty silent, which is refreshing and wonderful! I know it's short lived, but in the meantime it's really helped us to work on R. I know it doesn't mean the OW/OC sitch is gone for good (although one can be hopeful), but at least it's NC for now and I'll take it!
The holidays are coming up, and I'm a day away from my D-day when my fwh told me the cOW was pg. And I feel closer to indifference today than I thought I ever could. Not there yet, but closer. I still have anger, but not nearly as bad as before. The pain will probably always be there, but I will take whatever respite from the pain I can get.
I know the holidays can be especially difficult. Please know that we are here for each other during what could be a more difficult time.
He is gone from all social networking sites (and no, I'm not blocked, I have multiple avenues of checking), is no longer listed as her family's "family" on Facebook, etc.
No sign of him at any of the holiday events they had at Halloween.
We are hoping this is NOT the case or the following reasons;
1) This guy allegedly was going to adopt OC (according to her, as well as their "wedding website").
2) Every time OW goes through a breakup, she comes fishin'.
3) If OW is single, no marriage is safe. I fear for the future BSs in her wake.
So sorry And the fishing is incredibly annoying. I'm sure there will be a fishing expedition here soon because it's too quiet, I'm trying to brace myself for it. Keep your head up.
These people think that they can sleep with married folks, think they are invincible, think that it will last forever, etc. and then it blows up in their face.
Yep. I'm honestly not surprised. Her husband was 19 and engaged to his pregnant high school sweetheart when OW met him and started sleeping with him (he left his fiance when OW got pregnant with her newest OC). He is now only 21 or 22 (OW is 26).
Who's going to want to adopt TWO OCs?!
These dumb skanks.
I am trying to prepare myself for divorce and stomp on that hope in the back of my head that things will work out. I'm not even sure if I still want to be with him. Do I really want to be a part of this mess he's created? And what about OC? I feel C with OW would be a deal breaker, but how is NC possible with OC involved?
ďI'm choosing happiness over suffering, I know I am. I'm making space for the unknown future to fill up my life with yet-to-come surprises.Ē
Yes this truly sucks.
I am still M. My H is truly remorseful and we are in R. It did take time. For us we have 3 small children and the OW was who I thought my BFF. So when OC was born I had no idea that my H and her were having a PA. I cared for the OC for almost a year babysitting and what not. 3 days after OC 1 st bday was my DDay my daughters 2 month birthday. This was the same day my H found out the OC could be his. It was a terrible day. He said if it was he doesn't see this OC as his. Sounds bad I know but the night OC was conceived he was so intoxicated he doesn't remember anything but make no doubt about it skanky OW can quote word for word what he said that night (she was unhappily married to a man who didn't want kids, she knew what she was doing) this OW my ex BFF turns out to have mental issues and is crazy. For the safety of my children and my H and I to R we went NC. My H is court ordered to pay CS but in our state there is a 3rd party agency. Who does this for us so in our court papers there is to be absolutely no contact between either party. So it is helping our R BUT my H is truly remorseful if yours doesn't seem to be than maybe D is best for you. I hope you find advice here. Not sure mine is advice. Good luck to you. My mess has been going on for 11 months now.
I don't think I ever fully explained my situation. My H exBF(OW) were all heavily drinking by the fire when this skank and my H had sex. He was so intoxicated he didn't know he even had sex with her until she brought it up a few days later. Well that one night got him his OC. She assumed the entire pregnancy through the 1st year it was her H child. Well H found out about her sleeping with my H filed for D and then did a DNA test. My H found out one year later that this kid I took care of and is even godmother to is actually biologically his. My H is an AMaZING father to my 3 beautiful children. He honestly doesn't see this kid as his, sounds terrible, but he has had nothing to do with this kid and has no emotional connection just a biological one. She has said once we all found out about this that she does not want my H or me and my kids part of her or the Child life, fine works best for us so we can repair our M. Well crazy broke out she still didn't want my H to be "daddy" but she wants his money of course. H NEVER once neglected giving her money once her found out it was his. The very next day DNA was confirmed she got a check and was getting them 2x a month until court was over and CS was passed. Well I just found out through the grape vine she is now engaged already only 5 months or so since her D was final. This kid is almost 2, and I know this man has been around for about 8 months. Well the OC I know calls him "daddy" OWwants this man to be the OC "daddy" but be damn sure she still wants my H money. It just sucks! She gets fucked has a baby and goes off finds some other guy who makes decent money and has a very stable job has his own house and has for a while. Has his own child from a previous relationship yet he is living off my H money too. She gets a good sum of money a month and me being her ExBF I knew a lot of her expenses and what she's getting could easily cover a mortgage payment or 2 car payments. I know she is not using all this money for just the child. While I have 3 children 2 of which called this woman "aunt" and were so close to her. She knows my middle one will be having major surgery for the next few years and knows the kid of pain he will go through because her brother went through something very similar. She said a few times that once she finds a man to love her and OC she wants him to adopt him. I think that's what should happen. The child knows him as daddy but has a different last name than daddy. I know I am sounding very selfish and sounds bad that this OC shouldn't get my H money and I know deep down he deserves to be supported but if there is a man who is willing to do it why does she continue to still get CS. I can only pray was really was once my friend and all the shit she has said over all the court stuff of how she thinks about me and my kids and "I never intend to screw you with CSfor the next 17+ years just until we get on our feet" we'll she's on her feet plus another mans feet. It's just so unfair. I cannot work due to the surgeries my child will go through so money is very tight. Please if God could ever answer my prayers and show me why I still have faith then please please have this man adopt this child so he has the father he deserves.
So sorry you are in this situation, but here is probably the safest place to talk about everything. The cOW in our sitch is batshit crazy, and we are NC for our safety. She makes up false allegations, she keeps trying to get more money (although she was mostly quiet this year, thank goodness), and she has promised to make our lives a living hell. NC sucks as my fwh is super remorseful and is an excellent father to our COM--it's never really true NC but it's NC enough. I know he harbors guilt over the OC but we don't see the OW becoming stable anytime soon to attempt C. It's open for discussion and attempt later (when the OC is older and there's less involvement with the cOW).
Your story makes me so angry! The cOW in my sitch didn't know me (she knew about me though) and I didn't know her, and that's painful enough. I can't imagine if she was a supposed friend.
The money part irks me to death. She gets a fat CS check from my fwh (thru state agency so NC, with the exception of a % of his performance/bonus pay he has to pay as additional support--my fwh had the book thrown at him), and chooses to stay home and not work. We pretty much pay for everything and she pays for nothing. I try not to think about it--because it drives me crazy. I especially get heated around the holidays, because obvsiously the CS takes away from our family, and she asks for Xmas presents every year. Every year my fwh says no, he has to pay the additional support that covers any birthdays or xmas. Luckily I usually pick up some extra shifts, so I can cover what we have lost for the holidays. It makes me a little bitter but there's nothing I can do. Don't try to control what you can't--it will eat you alive. I had to learn that the hard way because I can be a control freak sometimes!
(((everyone))) Thinking of all of us this holiday season.
I truly understand about the $$ thing. It is really hard to see that money go out of our household when you know you have things you need to use it for. We have recently paid off our vehicle that was the same amount as CS. Having that extra amount of money has been so wonderful - to think that we could have twice that is crazy making. We have been pretty lucky in that CS hasn't been unreasonable, especially when I see what many others are paying. But at the same time it seems a bit unfair to have to deal with it at all.
OW has had a BF for the past year or so. We don't know much about him, but I truly hope it works out for them. Her happiness equates to more peace in our lives.
OW has another child that doesn't have a father or receive CS - she knows who it is, but he was able to avoid CS because she signed a paper saying he wasn't the father when the child was a baby because someone else had taken responsibility who only did so until he did a DNA test and learned he wasn't the father.
Anyway, OW and BF have discussed adopting both OC and her other child. I do believe this is what would be best for EVERYONE, not just us. OC would have a father that wanted to be her father, and they could be a whole family unit. I worry that she would feel left out in a way if her brother was adopted and she was not. We could focus on our family as well. And he makes plenty of money to support them all along with her promotion.
But my H has decided that he is going to tell his mom about the A and OC at the first of the year. I understand his reasoning, but I struggle since it has been 6 years. We have NO idea how she will react. He isn't sure if he then wants to bring OC into our lives or not. I just am concerned with how this will affect COM. And once he introduces her to COM, I don't feel it would be appropriate to sign off on the adoption. We have discussed many different options - it is just difficult because ultimately, this is his decision, not mine. And i will support him, but this will most definitely bring chaos into our world. So for now, I am going to enjoy the holidays and make the most of them. I would appreciate prayers though.
Things have been insanely quiet on our end. Too quiet. Not that I'm not enjoying it LOL! Either she got the hint or she found someone else to torture--she's out of our hair so I'm cool with that!!!
Been working on R. I told my fwh that I still didn't trust him the other day at MC. I haven't had a reason to...he hasn't done anything wrong. I think what worried me is that I am getting "comfortable". I'm letting my guard down and I feel it, and I'm scared to death to. I'm so afraid to put my 100% back into it, because I did before and look what happened. Trying to find the strength to--I know it hurt him to hear that but he did say he understood.
I know the holidays can be a little more tough on us, especially with the child support taking away from our families. I just tell myself it's just another bill to pay, and there is an "end" date because this is not forever. I hate to say it that way, but it makes the situation more...palatable. At least the arrears will be paid off soon! Should only be about 6 months left and then DONE! My fwh only pays what is court ordered, in installments. The CS is high enough, and we have adjusted our lifestyle. It will be nice to have the extra almost $300 a month once it's done, though!
I hope everyone is able to find some peace during the holidays.
WH wants OC to go back and forth every 3 months. 3 months here, 3 months there.
OMG!!! Do you have any idea what type of abandonment issues this will cause! And most likely not to mention a world of other emotional issues.
What will happen is this child will get emotionally attached to one person...you at this point...and then will be taken from you to live with another person...the OW...where he will grieve at the loss of you and have to learn to become emotionally attached to the OW. Then he will be taken away from the OW where he will have to grieve again and learn to become emotionally attached to you again.
Over time, this child will begin to distance himself from all of you because he will come to realize just how unstable his attachment is to both you and the OW. He will learn to do this so that he will not experience so much grief or loss of love.
This is a horrible idea!!! And you are right...your WH and the OW are not thinking of this child at all...only themselves.
[This message edited by coastofsomewhere at 11:36 AM, December 20th (Thursday)]