Newest Member: old914

Divorce/Separation :
I am divorced!

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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 5:09 PM on Monday, October 11th, 2021

my own judge made a decision in violation of the rules of evidence which cost me $11,000 in an instant.

Yep, I had a similar problem. xWW took me to court for a temporary hearing and the judge's ruling at that time were ridiculously unfair and there was no opportunity for appeal at all. And then due to lawyer#2's incompetence/laziness in selecting a custody evaluator... trial was delayed a few months... and then COVID happened and... basically, I had to live under that unfair ruling for a year longer than I should have.

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8692659
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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 6:19 PM on Wednesday, October 13th, 2021

Some genuine good news...

As part of my mental health fiasco from 2016-2019, my blood pressure was taken regularly and it was regularly high (like 130-140 over 85-95). I was put on medication for awhile, but once I stopped taking my antidepressants (per doctor's instructions)... I got lazy and I stopped taking my blood pressure medication too.

I went to the dentist yesterday... my blood pressure was 115/71. This was the third or fourth time in a row that my blood pressure was "good" rather than "high."

I am starting to think that the stress of infidelity, depression/anxiety, and divorce was the primary cause of my high blood pressure.

So, WINNING! laugh

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8692959
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Tigersrule77 ( member #47339) posted at 12:32 PM on Friday, October 15th, 2021

Glad to hear you are doing well.

You point out something interesting. I often forget that along with the mental health trauma that BS's suffer, there is very often physical health trauma as well. I suppose it's because I didn't notice anything with my health, so it's easy for me to overlook.

posts: 1556   路   registered: Mar. 27th, 2015   路   location: Maryland
id 8693292
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WhoTheBleep ( member #49504) posted at 4:01 AM on Sunday, October 17th, 2021

Wonderful news! All kinds of good things happen when you cut a cheater out of your life 馃榿. All that toxicity, both mental and physical, poof! Gone...

I believe we have two lives: the one we learn with, and the one we live with after that. --The Natural

posts: 4373   路   registered: Sep. 6th, 2015   路   location: USA
id 8693671
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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 2:50 PM on Thursday, October 21st, 2021

More minor updates...

My attorney sent me an invoice yesterday for something, which afforded me the opportunity to request a copy of the brief that she submitted to the appellate court (I'm very tight on money right now and she charges me 0.1 hours for every email... so I might as well throw two stones with each email to save some $$$).

Wow. It's very well written. It's a little tricky because you're not allowed to introduce any new evidence and my lawyer handled that very well in part because she did such an excellent job at trial. Also, I had no idea how badly the judge screwed up my divorce ruling.

The main part of my appeal involves alimony and the fact that the judge awarded it at all. Basically, the prerequisite for alimony is that xWW needs to have a demonstrated financial need (i.e., her income is less than her budget). Her income, however, exceeds her budget by more than $800 per month. Although we had an expert witness testify to this (more or less), the judge did not provide any evidence of this in his ruling. This is the part of my appeal that my lawyer referred to as "the strongest case for appeal in my 20 years of practicing law" and the appellate mediator comments (offline) that "I don't see how opposing counsel believes they have any chance of prevailing." I mean, it's math and the math is not even close.

The second part of my appeal involves my salary, which we attempted to argue is about 25% overtime (overtime pay is not supposed to be counted towards alimony and child support decisions). I don't know the law here very well (it's confusing and I'm not a lawyer) but there are explicit statutes that define what is versus what is not overtime. Lucky for me, the judge literally cited pertinent facts as far as the statutes to classify my extra income as overtime and then made the opposite ruling anyway. This afforded my attorney to write basically "see, the judge admits that the underlying factors were properly established at trial to exclude this income but then he included overtime in his calculations anyway."

This part of my appeal is not financially very important (it's maybe worth ~$100 per month), but it would be really great for me to win this one for emotional reasons (i.e., beating my xWW in court). I've already decided that I'll most likely take any money that I get back from this and give it to my kids anyway (I'll put it in a savings account that I have for them that they don't really know about).

The bigger news is that I was given a timeline for how the appeal will proceed from here. Opposing counsel submits their brief in the next week and then we have two weeks to submit a rebuttal. After that, the court will schedule oral arguments (each side speaks for up to 30 minutes), which should be 30-90 days after we file our rebuttal (assuming the courts are not behind because of COVID). After that, the appeals court reaches its decision 30-90 days after oral arguments. So, I am probably looking at getting the decision on my appeal in March-July 2022.

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8694327
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Tigersrule77 ( member #47339) posted at 1:21 PM on Friday, October 22nd, 2021

I know I'm not a lawyer and I don't understand all of the reasoning for why things operate the way they do.

I can't understand why it would take a judge (an expert in the law) 1-3 MONTHS! to make a decision after listening to an hour of dialogue. The judge should have reviewed the briefs submitted to the court prior to the hearing so they can ask questions. Sure, take some time to look up any rulings you may need, but damn!

Regardless, I hope that knowing the timeline now helps a bit. I'm the type where I can deal with having that information, even if I don't like, a heck of a lot better than having a big unknown. That stuff drives me nuts.

Good luck to you sir! Many of us will be anxiously awaiting an update after the new year!

On a side note, how are your kids doing? Last time you mentioned them it sounded like things were improving. I hope that is continuing.

posts: 1556   路   registered: Mar. 27th, 2015   路   location: Maryland
id 8694502
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grubs ( member #77165) posted at 3:35 PM on Friday, October 22nd, 2021

I can't understand why it would take a judge (an expert in the law) 1-3 MONTHS! to make a decision after listening to an hour of dialogue.

Its the built in declaration/response/rebuttal in our judicial system. Each motion or filing goes through that process and there's typically a 30 day to respond window between each. Once all the motions are ruled on the actual court case goes quickly. The 30-90 day window is dependent on whether one of the parties files another motion or response.

[This message edited by grubs at 3:36 PM, Friday, October 22nd]

posts: 831   路   registered: Jan. 21st, 2021
id 8694564
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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 9:45 PM on Monday, October 25th, 2021

On a side note, how are your kids doing?

I think that they are doing really well... although you never know for sure.

We don't see much evidence that the parental alienation is working any more. I think all three of my kids have figured out that Mom is super bitter about the divorce and she says all sorts of awful/dishonest things about me... whereas I just plug along, being the best dad that I can be, and I never disparage their mother to them. They've started having their friends over to my new place, which really says that they're comfortable with my new situation.

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8695019
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gmc94 ( member #62810) posted at 9:55 PM on Monday, October 25th, 2021

Hey Barcher - I'm really glad to hear that about your kids.

Parental alienation is a real thing... yet SO many parents can't seem to get it through their skull that the antidote is being a good parent. Not the "nice" one, or the "cool" one, but the SOLID one, cuz being cool or nice, or a pushover only means that kids will figure out that BOTH parents aren't really solid/trustworthy/have their backs. Kids DO figure it out, and I'm thrilled that's happened for you - IMHO, it's a testament to you working to be the best Barcher you can be.

M >25yrs/grown kids
DD1 1994 ONS prostitute
DD2 2018 exGF1 10+yrEA & 10yrPA... + exGF2 EA forever & "made out" 2017
9/18 WH hung himself- died but revived

It's rude to say "I love you" with a mouthful of lies

posts: 3509   路   registered: Feb. 22nd, 2018
id 8695020
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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 10:40 PM on Monday, October 25th, 2021

Parental alienation is a real thing... yet SO many parents can't seem to get it through their skull that the antidote is being a good parent.

This is true but dealing with parental alienation is unimaginably difficult.

I spent a lot of time figuring out where to set my boundaries and how to enforce those boundaries. It's not a stretch to say that parental alienation was the most difficult challenge of my life. It was WAY WORSE than dealing with xWW's infidelity.

I can easily imagine that parental alienation could lead to numerous murders and/or suicides. As Chris Rock once said: I don't agree... but I understand.

I still live in fear of the alienation kicking in again. In fact, I genuinely expect the alienation to ratchet up if I win this appeal.

[This message edited by barcher144 at 10:41 PM, Monday, October 25th]

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8695028
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WhoTheBleep ( member #49504) posted at 3:21 AM on Wednesday, October 27th, 2021

Hey Barcher, I'm glad you have an end in sight. Spring 2022 will be here before you know it! And holy crap, was that judge thinking? Such a pain that you need to go through an appeal, but judges are human and they make human decisions (aka crappy!). I suppose we should be grateful that an appeal is available when those things happen.

It definitely looks like things are improving kidwise. Kids do not hang out and invite friends to places where they are not comfortable. Well done, Dad! Keep being solid and safe.

I fully expect your ex to unravel a bit when you win the appeal. It is good that you expect it as well. You will be ready. Always keep some kind of recording device on you and be prepared to use it if you are ever in her presence. She may get desperate and do or accuse you of something ridiculous.

I totally get the wanting to beat her in court thing. That is not the motive, but it will feel good after what she has put you through. Nothing wrong with that.

Keep us updated!

I believe we have two lives: the one we learn with, and the one we live with after that. --The Natural

posts: 4373   路   registered: Sep. 6th, 2015   路   location: USA
id 8695227
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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 10:45 PM on Wednesday, October 27th, 2021

And holy crap, was that judge thinking? Such a pain that you need to go through an appeal, but judges are human and they make human decisions (aka crappy!)

My current theory is that xWW's lawyer was very successful in disparaging me in front the judge and the judge awarded her alimony (and some other stuff) because in his eyes... I am a wife-beater.

In fact, I didn't even know this until I read my lawyer's brief to the appeals court, but the judge actually calculated child support incorrectly. He was supposed to deduct my alimony payment from my income before computing child support. For this reason, my girlfriend's theory is that the judge awarded alimony at the last minute. That is, he looked at his draft ruling and thought... holy crap, I am agreeing with barcher144 on everything and he's a wife beater so I should awarded his xWW some alimony "just because." After that, he simply forgot to "fix" the child support.

Anyway, another minor update. xWW's lawyer submitted their response brief to the appeals court today. Their counter-arguments are the judge can do whatever he wants... they don't even directly respond to our legal arguments. My attorney literally said this via email to me:

Their brief makes me believe our position is even stronger as their argument was so weak!

In the world of REALLY MINOR victories, xWW's attorney literally conceded that the judge computed child support incorrectly even if the rest of the ruling is upheld. So, worst case, my child support payments are going to decrease by $13 per month! Woo hoo! I also have to pay a lower fraction of my kids' uninsured medical expenses, down to 67% from 69% (probably the most significant issue here is that the 14 year old boy in my head will stop snickering every time that I try to compute how much medical stuff that I have to pay for).

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8695320
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gmc94 ( member #62810) posted at 11:24 PM on Wednesday, October 27th, 2021

Just a quick thought about the parental alienation... when folks respond to alienation with their own forms of alienation or being Disneyland mom/dad, they really just screw their kids up more. I've seen it dozens (or more) in my career and it's heartbreaking. Every. damn. time.

Not saying it's easy. My eldest's bio dad was a real piece of work (like SERIOUS felony and all kids of emotional effd up piece of work). And there were SOOOOOO many ways I could have really laid it out to our kid (who was 10 when biodad could no longer have visitation w/o supervision). One of the hardest things for me (but NOTHING like dday - maybe bc biodad & I were not M) was to live with and parent a kid who IDOLIZED biodad/felon and saw me as a total b*tch. I somehow managed to keep my pie whole shut about all the ways biodad was a POS, find the grace & good humor to open my home to biodad and his family for bdays, Xmas, etc., and really focus on what was best for my KID. Not me. Not biodad. Not WH, or anyone else. It was best for my KID to see me being gracious, even to a felon (it's not my kid's fault I procreated with a jerk).

It's still heartbreaking to know my kid, seeing biodad as the jerk that he is, has zero relationship with biodad. I'm not mother of the year by any stretch, but on this subject, I did right by my child by allowing the kid to grow up and figure things out w/o my poisoning the well. So, kudos!

[This message edited by gmc94 at 5:25 PM, October 27th, 2021 (Wednesday)]

M >25yrs/grown kids
DD1 1994 ONS prostitute
DD2 2018 exGF1 10+yrEA & 10yrPA... + exGF2 EA forever & "made out" 2017
9/18 WH hung himself- died but revived

It's rude to say "I love you" with a mouthful of lies

posts: 3509   路   registered: Feb. 22nd, 2018
id 8695329
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Tigersrule77 ( member #47339) posted at 12:36 PM on Thursday, October 28th, 2021

Their counter-arguments are the judge can do whatever he wants

This is more evidence that your XWW's attorney is not very good. Judges cannot do whatever they want, they are bound by the law just as much as the rest of us. Hence, why judge's rulings are appealed and overturned.

If you actually were abusive, then your XWW could file a personal injury suit, and sue for damages related. As that was not part of your D case, that should not and cannot be considered.

I will keep my fingers crossed that it works out positively for you. I expect that the waiting is probably a little frustrating, but you seem to be handling it pretty well. I hope I can show patience like yours when I come up on hardships. I typically don't have much of it.

posts: 1556   路   registered: Mar. 27th, 2015   路   location: Maryland
id 8695385
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grubs ( member #77165) posted at 3:21 PM on Thursday, October 28th, 2021

This is more evidence that your XWW's attorney is not very good.

Lawyers have to play the hand they were dealt. In blackjack terms they are sitting on 16 with the dealer having a face or 10 showing. Since the formula was clearly misapplied with the evidence on record they can't argue against that. They can't bring new evidence to the appeal without compelling reason as appeals are argued on the cause for appeal. Not retrying the entire case. Our legal system can be a crap shoot and as Barcher144 found out doesn't always get it right. It's possible the judge on appeal may also have a strong dislike for Barcher144 or his attorneys and take the out the opposing counsel offered. The odds are still very much in his favor though.

[This message edited by grubs at 3:22 PM, Thursday, October 28th]

posts: 831   路   registered: Jan. 21st, 2021
id 8695396
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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 4:45 PM on Thursday, October 28th, 2021

It was best for my KID to see me being gracious, even to a felon (it's not my kid's fault I procreated with a jerk).

This is a really good quote for how to deal with parental alienation. YOU REFUSE TO PUT YOUR KID(S) IN THE MIDDLE EVEN WHEN THE OTHER PERSON IS DOING WHATEVER IT TAKES TO KEEP THE KID(S) IN THE MIDDLE.

You have to remember that it literally takes two to have an argument/disagreement... sometimes, you can refuse to engage with your ex... and sometimes you basically have to "forfeit" the argument/disagreement because that's what is best for your kid(s).

On a regular basis, I ask myself... what is best for my kids? And then I proceed accordingly.

And to be clear, I have taken a lot of damage in doing this. A lot. I have seriously struggled for the past three years (and I will continue to struggle for some time) because of my divorce and because of the abuse inflicted on me (and my kids) by xWW. And by "struggle", I mean that emotionally and financially. I have taken on this burden, intentionally, to protect my kids as much as I can.

At the same time, I have established firm boundaries with both my kids and with xWW. With xWW, it's pretty much: you have primary custody and everything that goes with it. With my kids, it's that they are allowed to have fun and I will do whatever I can within reason to help them have a normal childhood (meaning, I've done a lot of uber-ing for the older kids... and I rode a lot of roller coasters with my youngest). At the same time, they need to be respectful to me, to my girlfriend, to each other, and to their mother. I have good kids, luckily, so their biggest problem is being respectful to each other.

I am also keenly aware that I must lead by example, so they never hear me disparaging their mother and I do not allow others to disparage her in front of them either.

Meaning, the quote about fighting parental alienation by being a good parent... is spot on... but it's so difficult to do that.

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8695411
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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 5:19 PM on Thursday, October 28th, 2021

This is more evidence that your XWW's attorney is not very good.

I agree with the lone caveat that xWW's attorney has a really shitty client too. You have to remember that, prior to trial, they were asking for lifetime alimony and all three tax exemptions for our kids. xWW then testified that she was asking for 7 years of alimony (which literally handcuffed the judge to award alimony for a maximum of 7 years) and that we should split the three tax exemptions evenly. Admittedly, both of these positions by her attorney were stupid legal positions (e.g., my state has a firm statute that requires marriages to be at least 20 years in duration before lifetime alimony can be awarded)... but her client also sucks.

If you actually were abusive, then your XWW could file a personal injury suit, and sue for damages related. As that was not part of your D case, that should not and cannot be considered.

I haven't said this to my kids yet, but eventually I will. I might even show them the evidence against xWW's rape allegation. She LITERALLY texted me one day and accused me of raping her and told me that I "should check my mental health records." Meaning, xWW is claiming that I raped her not based on her personal knowledge but based on what my therapist wrote (also: there is one line in my therapy records that could be interpreted that I had sexually assault xWW... but trust me... it was just poorly written).

Lawyers have to play the hand they were dealt. In blackjack terms they are sitting on 16 with the dealer having a face or 10 showing.

This quote is sort of correct. However, the analogy falls apart because xWW's lawyer could effectively call a time out and ask for a settlement.

So, instead of going through the appeal (which will cost me ~$15,000 and xWW about $8,000 -- just guesses; the total alimony award was about $35,000), her attorney could have encouraged her client to settle.

We had mediation. Neither xWW or her attorney disputed one iota of the merits of our case. Their "final offer" to settle was about $21,000 ($20,000 in cash and I had to cover about $1,000 of associated legal fees to transfer the funds).

And the above is just one example of the ridiculous positions that xWW and her attorney have taken throughout this divorce.

Here are two others: (1) In December 2018, I offered her $2350 per month in some combination of alimony and child support for 7.5 years. She wanted as much custody as possible and I wanted 50-50% custody. So, this offer was... we would do a parenting evaluation and I'll pay the appropriate child support as determined by the parenting evaluation and then I'll make up the difference in alimony after that, and (2) In February 2020, I did the math and basically knew then that she would not qualify for alimony unless the judge made two really bad rulings (and it had to be BOTH). So, at that time, I offered her the highest possible child support given the fact that we had an agreement for her to get 70% physical custody of the kids. This was about $2100 per month in child support, no alimony.

Using a Monday-morning quarterback perspective, the judge awarded her $2350 per month in combined alimony and child support.

This is almost exactly what I offered her in December 2018 and she could have saved herself about $25,000 in legal fees and a lot of headache. In fact, she could have accepted 50% physical custody of the kids at that time... and saved herself about $32,500 in legal feeds (the parenting evaluation cost her about $7500) and she would have had less responsibility than she has right now.

Alternatively, she could have accepted our offer from February 2020 and she would be getting $2100 in child support (with no alimony). Right now, she is getting a little bit more than that... but if she loses part 1 of my appeal (which seems VERY LIKELY)... she will only be getting $1900 per month in child support. And it cost her about $15,000 in legal fees to go to trial and lose. Then, if I win on part 2 of my appeal (which my lawyer feels really confident about... but I am not as confident), then she will be getting about $1800 per month.

That is, her lawyer has billed my ex-wife for tens of thousands of dollars to get less money and more parenting responsibility than what I was offering to settle.

I completely agree that xWW's attorney is terrible.

p.s. Part 1 of my appeal is straight-up math. It's not arguable. xWW's attorney tried like hell to make it seem like she deserved alimony in their brief to the appeals court. They listed some crazy-high value for my income (which is not accurate) and some crazy-low value for her income (which is not accurate) and they still didn't do the math!

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8695420
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DragnHeart ( member #32122) posted at 6:49 PM on Thursday, October 28th, 2021

barcher144

I dont post on your threads but i check this almost daily. You have handled yourself so well through so much hell. You rock!

Me: BS 44 nowWH: 35 almost 36 (BrokenHeart911)Four little dragons.Met 2006. Married 2008. Dday of LTPA with co worker October 19th 2010. Knew about EA with ow1 before that.Full disclosure March 8th 2019 four AP's.

posts: 22354   路   registered: May. 10th, 2011   路   location: Canada
id 8695437
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 barcher144 (original poster member #54935) posted at 6:07 PM on Friday, October 29th, 2021

You have handled yourself so well through so much hell.

Thank you.

But I have also made plenty of mistakes.

Me: BH, age 48
Her: WS, age 45 (multiple EAs and PAs)
D-Day: August 30, 2016

Diagnosed with depression in December 2016, which was primarily caused by my xWW's affair and associated emotional abuse.

posts: 5142   路   registered: Aug. 31st, 2016
id 8695722
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DragnHeart ( member #32122) posted at 8:46 PM on Friday, October 29th, 2021

But I have also made plenty of mistakes

Yeah well i think you've done an amazing job considering the ex you have to deal with.

Me: BS 44 nowWH: 35 almost 36 (BrokenHeart911)Four little dragons.Met 2006. Married 2008. Dday of LTPA with co worker October 19th 2010. Knew about EA with ow1 before that.Full disclosure March 8th 2019 four AP's.

posts: 22354   路   registered: May. 10th, 2011   路   location: Canada
id 8695763
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