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Feeling guilty about financial support?

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NWfleur posted 8/25/2013 23:49 PM

This might be an odd question, but it's something that's been on my mind...

I did fairly well financially in the divorce. Nothing over the top, but I did get spousal and of course child support. I got to keep the house. I know I'm so lucky, compared to many, and I don't take it for granted at all. So much so, that I feel guilt at times. Maybe not exactly guilt, but I DON'T like feeling so financially dependent on him. And the reality is that I am.

He was the breadwinner, with a very high paying job. I am a teacher, but stayed home for several years. I went back to work last year, but it's only PT and pays much less than what I made in public school. My goal is to get a FT job at some point soon, but it's what I could find for now and allows me to be there for my kids after school. He just moved across the country to follow his big shot career (don't get me started...) so I have basically full responsibly of our two kids.
He was a terrible ass throughout his cheating, me finding out, leaving his family for the OW, and then bailing on his kids. During the divorce proceedings, I had no qualms asking for what I felt was fair and protecting myself financially.

I know his family thinks it's highway robbery and he's basically "paying our way." He made comments to hurt me in the past about me not contributing financially, even though I feel like being a SAHM was an important contribution even if it wasn't financial, and he always supported that, until the end.

Anyone else been in this situation? The spousal support is only five more years, so not forever. But I just don't like the feeling of dependence. I hate him seeing me as some kind of gold digger (a word the OW coined for me...)
It's weird being so put off by someone but also so dependent on them...

[This message edited by NWfleur at 11:52 PM, August 25th (Sunday)]

FaithFool posted 8/26/2013 00:05 AM

I got what my lawyer agreed was a fair settlement.

I believe I deserve every penny for pain and suffering and having someone put my life in jeopardy for 20 years.

Is it fair that he gave me everything?

Some probably don't think so, but I do, and that's all that really matters.

We never asked for any of this.

[This message edited by FaithFool at 12:07 AM, August 26th (Monday)]

movingforward13 posted 8/26/2013 06:00 AM

Honestly, I feel like if you two were still married, then you would be living even better since his money would be your money.

I understand how you feel though, my STBXH is paying a crazy amount in child support which will only go up once he starts making more. I may not make as much as him but I do make enough to support our son by myself so I intend to make a savings account for our son using most of the child support.

movingforward13 posted 8/26/2013 06:01 AM

Out of curiosity, is he and OW still together?

stronger08 posted 8/26/2013 06:04 AM

Divorce is a business settlement. It must be thought of as just that. If someone knowingly got into a car drunk and had an accident with you. Would be feel guilty for suing ?. I think not. Its the same with D. The settlement you are getting is compensation for all the years you were a SAHM. He was able to have the freedom to pursue his career and thrive. He decided to have an A and be single. So, he must pony up a percentage for the opportunities you gave him. Feelings and emotions have no place in a D settlement. Its business and that's all it is.

homewrecked2011 posted 8/26/2013 06:10 AM

You have to work the rest of your life, he could retire any time because his career advanced while you stayed home.

You are assuming you will be healthy enough to work the next few years.

What irks me is he is spending thousands a month on OW. I hate that,, it was almost time for US to get to travel.

persevere posted 8/26/2013 06:52 AM

Stronger08 nailed it. He entered into a marriage and started a family. Just because he chose to knowingly break that contract doesn't absolve him of responsibility to that union.

In my opinion, you actually received what is appropriate - it's very unfortunate that most don't.

Don't listen to him, his family or the OW. She's going to judge you? Seriously?

If I were you I be smiling all the way to the bank.

cmego posted 8/26/2013 07:10 AM

I also have a good settlement, but my ex makes a lot of money, and I was a SAHM for 10 years.

When I do stop and think about it, I pull up the memory of him having me sell my inheritance to purchase a huge house for us...all the while he was having a gay affair.

*poof* bye-bye, guilt.

Amazonia posted 8/26/2013 08:06 AM

Is it just that you feel guilty, or do you also resent relying on him, not being independent?

I think it would be good for your self esteem to get a full time job when you can. Not to reduce what he gives you, but to feel self sufficient. If you don't "need" his money, you can always put it away for your kids' college or weddings or future, things he probably won't help with.

My attorney told me I could probably get a few years spousal support because of some specifics in our situation, and I turned her down. No money in the world was worth having to deal with or being reminded of him to me. I'd rather be staying on a friend's couch than rely on him.

Helen of Troy posted 8/26/2013 08:57 AM

Ask yourself: Is this is a self worth issue?
Ask yourself: Am I still under his influence of mean words because he got busted cheating? Or is it what the legal realm has decided is fair and equitable?
Just because he says it (and his family too - where blood is thicker than water) does not make it true.

NWfleur posted 8/26/2013 09:20 AM

Is it just that you feel guilty, or do you also resent relying on him, not being independent?
Ask yourself: Is this is a self worth issue?

Amazonia and wgb nailed it on the head, I think. It's not that I don't feel I are all so right, it's a business deal, I gave up my career in some ways to follow his, stayed home for our family, and he will ALWAYS make hand over fist more money than me. He will retire like a king. I won't. But it's the dependence thing. That's just not my style, and it's strange for me. I'm a pretty independent mama!

Amazonia, I absolutely plan to work FT soon. This was more of a "recovery" year in which I wanted to ease back into things. I like what some of you mentioned about putting the extra money aside (not that there's a ton) for the kids. Also, for a just in case fund. He isn't the healthiest guy...took up smoking, drinks a ton, who knows would could happen.

And MF13...NOPE, he's NOT still with the OW!!! She dumped him about a year and a half into it. Not her first married man, and probably not her last. He was devastated, apparently. Big old karma bus. Although, she moved to NYC after the whole ordeal (they were coworkers) and guess were he "coincidentally" moved several months ago? Apparently they have no contact, and it was a career move and he wasn't following her. Right. Pathetic. But that's another topic altogether!!!

[This message edited by NWfleur at 9:21 AM, August 26th (Monday)]

stillstrong posted 8/26/2013 17:37 PM

I agree with all the others...
When X was deep in his first A, I cashed out my 401K to pay bills. So I have no problem taking half of his now.
I also was a SAHM for many years, and when sometimes I wonder if I should get a job to not look like a lazy SOB, I remember that the reason I don't work is to be there for my children. I don't feel that I should have to live a life that goes against my values just because I couldn't accept X's plea of, "I want to spend the rest of my life with you, just understand that I need to be with other women".
And you know what? When my DD turned 18 and there was no CS for her? I still have to provide for her. When my DS turns 18 and his CS stops, I still have to provide for him too. X gets to pop bottles of champagne and celebrate the end of that monthly obligation, while mine continues because my kids would rather be with me.

kernel posted 8/26/2013 18:36 PM

I hate him seeing me as some kind of gold digger (a word the OW coined for me...)

Let go of giving a flying fuck what he thinks. You earned that settlement. You say being a SAHM didn't contribute financially, but I beg to differ. You would have paid a fortune in daycare bills, and perhaps in hiring other services like cleaning, laundry, etc. You can put a price on that.

The settlement you are getting is compensation for all the years you were a SAHM. He was able to have the freedom to pursue his career and thrive. He decided to have an A and be single. So, he must pony up a percentage for the opportunities you gave him.

Stronger nailed it here.

homewrecked2011 posted 8/26/2013 21:43 PM

Also I have learned something this year. It doesnt matter who believes you, as long as you know it as the truth. you dont' have to convince anyone of anything (like why being a stay at home mom was important).

GrievingMommy posted 8/26/2013 21:51 PM

I've had 90-100% custody of our almost five yr old twins since they were 14 months old. XH checked out. I know for a fact he'd never even given them a bath until they were well into their 3's. XH lives 1,100 miles away with wife #3 (he moved 9 hrs away when they were 1 1/2 yrs old).

I pay everything out of my pocket. Food, clothes, insurance, etc. He contributes financially so the child support helps me be able to pay daycare so I can work and buy their clothes, shoes, occasional babysitter, etc. I don't feel bad one bit. He chose to cheat and move really far away. He chooses to not have contact (doesn't Skype, etc). His loss.

[This message edited by GrievingMommy at 9:52 PM, August 26th (Monday)]

click4it posted 8/27/2013 00:34 AM

I too ended up with the house, though he got some of a payout and I got child support - no spousal and none of his retirement - but I ended up financially ok. And you know what my thought on that is? That's what *I* diserve. I don't feel the least bit guilty. Why should I? I didn't end the marriage, I didn't walk out on my kids, so he can pay me for the rest of my life for all I care. Seriously. If there was a judgement where he would have to pay me till i'm 80 I would have taken it.

Did that stop me for getting a job and go forward with a career? No. I volunteered and worked hard to get where I'm at today. I still work pretty hard. I don't go overboard on things I don't need and live a pretty simple life style.

No way will I ever feel guilty for the decisions he made. And the aftermath of what he put me and his boys through - oh hell no, he can pay up the nose.

So, that's my $.02. Don't feel guilty in the least!

Embers2Fire posted 8/27/2013 00:36 AM

I do not feel guilty in the least. I receive spousal which will end only when I begin to receive half his retirement pay when he retires. So technically I will always receive spousal pay and I have no guilt whatsoever. He vowed to be with me till death do us part, which meant that I was entitled to share his earnings for the rest of our lives. I did not choose to change the program, he did. He changed so much in my life and took so much from me emotionally, mentally and physically. In truth he does not make enough money to pay me for the things he robbed me of. As far as I am concerned the spousal support I receive has been paid for in blood sweat and tears by me. He is not giving me anything I have not earned.

Dadtryingtocope posted 8/28/2013 08:57 AM

None of you SAHMs should feel guilty. You didn't ask for this. As the working breadwinner I was on the other side of the fence. I was forced to turn over 50% of everything that was built. She always had an option to work or not work. She continues to be able to work part time while we split custody 50/50. She is getting ready to marry the OM after we have only been divorced since April. I will continue to pay the same amount for the next 5 years based on our signed deal. She doesn't need my money, but she gladly takes it every month and uses it how she sees fit (like an upcoming trip to the Carribean to get married). I just try to numbly write that check every month. Don't feel bad about the money you are getting. It is for you and your kids. And just remember for every one of you who are getting what you are entitled to and probably less than you really deserve, there is a SAHM getting nothing from a deadbeat or a greedy, lying, cheater who is taking more than she ever deserves only because she was entitled to it.

[This message edited by Dadtryingtocope at 4:25 PM, August 28th (Wednesday)]

SeanFLA posted 8/29/2013 10:17 AM

I'm probably one of the few men here that actually collects alimony from exWW. Here is my view on the subject. The recession the last 5+ years destroyed my income. Not only me but many of my close friends who were tied to the same industry as well. In fact two of my five friends had to file for bankruptcy. We never had a household income problem. My exWW asked me to continue holding on to my business because she told me once we come out of the recovery I will be in a good spot. I told her at the time that if in 6 months things don't begin to recover I will be back looking to re-enter the corporate world. She said that was a great plan. Just let her continue to bring in the cash (her company was exploding) and take care of our son so she could travel, etc. Four months later I caught her. I gave up my corporate banking career ten years ago because we both were traveling and we decided it wasn't going to work with a toddler. I took the career hit for the family. This is how I'm repaid.

She on the other hand was gang busters about getting her promotion she wanted. I helped her work towards that. Same month she got her promotion she was having an affair. Coincidence?...I doubt it. I know most of it had to do with her ego and lack of self esteem (FOO issues). She figured if I found out she had the income she needed and I would just go away. She turned into someone I didn't know and did what she could do to kick me out and leave me destitute. that was until I got a shark of a lawyer who explained the law to me.

My lawyer argued (very easily in fact) that despite her being a woman, the courts do not care anymore. You were home taking your son as a committed spouse taking him to school, doing homework and getting him to his activities while she traveled building her career. You were keeping your business afloat at HER request. My lawyer couldn't wait to take her to court if it came to that.

In a nutshell she folded at mediation and lost almost everything that was liquid. Her 401K, IRAs, savings, stocks, etc. My feeling was if she ever lost her job I would never see an additional dime of that alimony. I elected to take as much in cash upfront just in case. She was so gung ho on keeping the house that she refinanced a $300K mortgage. Could never understand what a single woman with a child half the time needed with a 4000 sq ft home, pool and huge utility bills. I took her payout and paid cash for a small but really nice place I could manage. I left her with 20% equity in the home and $3K in the bank. She also floats me five years alimony because my lawyer and I were guessing a judge would rake her over the coals given the timeframe of her bad behavior. In Florida it's considered a long term marriage over 18 years. She filed at 18 years and 3 months...opps joke's on her! At 18 years all bets are off and there is the potential for lifetime alimony. I also pay zero child support given the years I put in.

I have guilt sometimes as a man receiving alimony from her. Yes it does hit my self esteem many times but at that time it was about survival. She treated me so badly when I found out about her affair (zero remorse) that I feel she had what was coming. As someone on here once told me, it's my..."Fuck you very much money"

[This message edited by SeanFLA at 10:18 AM, August 29th (Thursday)]

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