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rumrunner
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Reged: 02/22/07
Posts: 3
continuing spousal support
      #202500 - 02/22/07 10:13 AM

Hi everyone. I have been a long-time lurker but have been too shy to post before. I hope I can get some advise for an issue that has been on my mind for a few months now. I was divorced in 2001 after 18 years of marriage. I did'nt want the divorce but my husband insisted that he did'nt love me anymore and that he wanted his freedom to "start his life over".
When my husband left I had been a SAHM for most of our marriage (our youngest was 6 yrs old when he left). At the divorce I was awarded child support and alimony. The alimony is due to end Sept. 07. I work full time now and bring home about $320 a week after taxes. I try to save a little money each week in a savings account and I also try to live frugally without making the kids feel like they are going without. The truth is that I am a little nervous about how we are going to get along without the alimony. I thought about getting a part-time job at night to supplement our income but I don't know how that would work out with me working during the day and then having to cook dinner, clean the house,help my youngest with his homework and take him to his activities. I thought about maybe trying to find a job at night cleaning offices but in my area there isn't very many oppurtunities.
I guess my question is- how could I approach my x-husband about asking him to help us out with money after the alimony ends? We don't really talk at all about anything. I have never asked anything extra of him for me and the kids. I pay for all their activities, lessons, doctor bills,tuition,etc. because he gets mad when I ask him for the money.( I'ts in our divorce papers that we are supposed to split these things.) I feel sick to my stomach thinking about even asking him, but I am nervous about paying the bills without that money every week. Anyone have any ideas about how I could bring this up to him? Thank you in advance!


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PhoenixRising
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Reged: 01/05/07
Posts: 3681
Loc: New York
Re: continuing spousal support [Re: rumrunner]
      #202577 - 02/22/07 11:43 AM

Bad news, spousal support is going to end. If he isnít paying for the things that he is supposed to be paying for now, there is little chance he is going to voluntarily continue your alimony. He has "started his life over", Iím pretty sure that is not going to include continuing to support you.

If he owes you money then your county support bureau might be able to collect for you. In some states, they will increase his garnishment for his portion of the extra-curricular expenses and/or go to court and collect for you; all at no cost to you.

I can relate to your fear. My spousal support hasnít even been awarded yet but I know it wonít be lifetime and I am already worrying about how I will make ends meet. The support will mainly go to paying off my legal fees.

It wonít help for you to hear that you knew this day was coming and should have planned for it. What you need to do now is educate yourself. Money management is not rocket science. You have income, you have expenses. You need to either increase your income to meet your expenses or reduce your expenses.

Have you considered additional education? Perhaps your employer will pay for courses to help increase your pay scale.

My children and I have decided to live without much now while I go to school so hopefully we will be able to afford a slightly better lifestyle later. We live on my student loans, which works out to about $1000/month. We get by most months, church and neighbors have been generous during the rare emergency. It has been hard, but worth it. I hope to graduate this year.

You didnít sign on for this. This isnít the way you pictured how your life was going to be and it probably feels unfair. Most of us here did not plan on being single parents and being alone so there are a lot of people here that can relate and feel for you.

You have a chance to redefine your life and chart a new course. I am 50 yrs old and it is the first time in my life that I get to be the one to make the decisions. It was scary and overwhelming at first but I wouldnít go back. I would rather be poor and independent than be taken care of but have no say in my life. BTDT.

Financial worries are scary and real but you must face them head on. You wasted those years that you had alimony not planning for this day. You must sit down and make some hard decisions NOW before you get in over your head. If you come here, you will find caring and support.


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Gecko
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Reged: 06/01/04
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Re: continuing spousal support [Re: rumrunner]
      #202580 - 02/22/07 11:45 AM

I guess my question is- how could I approach my x-husband about asking him to help us out with money after the alimony ends?

---> You don't...it is no longer his responsibility to support you and you'll only embarass yourself.

I have never asked anything extra of him for me and the kids. I pay for all their activities, lessons, doctor bills,tuition,etc. because he gets mad when I ask him for the money.( I'ts in our divorce papers that we are supposed to split these things.)

---> He can get mad all he wants...he has a legal obligation to share in these expenses and you have done yourself and the child a grave disservice by not insisting that he pay. I would start sending him the bills and ask for reimbursement of his share. If he gets angry...tell him TOUGH...he either pays you within 2 weeks or he can pay them AND your attorney's fees and court costs AND explain to the Judge why he is NOT following the courts orders.

---> I would also file for a modification of child support. Since alimony will end, his income will go up and yours will go down and the child will be entitled to more financial support from his father.

---> Do NOT let him bully you! Again, the child has a right to the financial support of BOTH parents. The money is NOT for you...YOU can support yourself...the money is for the support of the child.

--------------------
If you air your dirty linen in public, expect people to comment on the skid marks!


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rumrunner
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Reged: 02/22/07
Posts: 3
Re: continuing spousal support [Re: Gecko]
      #202643 - 02/22/07 12:41 PM

PhoenixRising and Gecko, thank you for the advise. I know you are both right about the alimony ending and that I will have to do more to try to make more money. I know it is the truth, but I am still a little nervous. I know I should have been insisting all these years that he pay his half for the kids extra expenses, but to be honest I took the cowards way out by not wanting to argue with him and confront him. If I had made him pay the money he owed and then socked it away, the kids and I would have a nice little nest egg right now. I have saved $30 from every alimony check because I knew it would'nt last forever but it always seemed that I had to dip into it for one thing or another.
After my husband left I finished my AA degree. The job I have now requires one, but to advance I really need a Bachelors degree. Going back to school might be something to consider, even though the thought of it paralizes me with anxiety!!!
Gecko, you mentioned filing for modification of child support. Do I need a lawyer for that? I have never gotten a raise in child support so I don't know how to go about doing that. Thank you for listening to me go on and on. I really appreciate it. It's hard for me to confide in anyone close to me about all this because no one really understands. Thanks again!


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Miranda
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Reged: 06/02/05
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Loc: North of Mexico
Re: continuing spousal support [Re: rumrunner]
      #202662 - 02/22/07 01:00 PM

You have had six years to get yourself together. Finish your education, get a trade, do something...what did you do for 6 years? An A.A. gives you $10.00 an hour, why did you not go for the B.A? You make roughly $10.00 an hour and thhere is no way you can support yourself plus children on that kind of money. (Well I guess you could but it won't be pretty.)

--------------------
13.1...because I am only half crazy!

Edited by Miranda (02/22/07 01:02 PM)


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Melody
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Reged: 06/02/04
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You could ask, [Re: rumrunner]
      #202677 - 02/22/07 01:09 PM

but I"m guessing he'd say no. You could take it to the courts, which would cost a fortune...and you'd likely lose. At the time your alimony was set, the duration was determined by the courts. Looks like you got only 6 years, which is only 1/3 of the duration of your marriage, but the time to argue that was during your divorce hearing...not now.

What you can do....is ask for a child support review. Since your income will be going down by virtue of losing alimony, and your ex's income will be increase by virtue of no longer paying alimony....you may qualify for an increase of child support. However, your income from your job will be considered if it wasn't before. You might want to get a consultation with your attorney to determine if there will be any significant change to the child support calculation. The other scenario is that you clearly need a better paying job. I can't see how anyone can live and support children on a $16K job. What did you do with your time? The idea of alimony is usually to help the lesser earning spouse get themselves retrained or re-educated so that they may obtain more lucrative employment and be self-supporting.

I really think your best bet is to see if your child support could go up, and get a new job.


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Susanf31
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Reged: 06/02/05
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Re: continuing spousal support [Re: Miranda]
      #202682 - 02/22/07 01:13 PM

You realize where you've gone wrong. You've shot yourself in the foot and now you will suffer the consequences. By not making him pay his fair share, you (and your child) won't have enough to live on. No one's fault but your own. Now you've got to get over your "anexiety" and do right by your children! You've got to file for modificatino of child support and you need to force your ex to paid his fair share of the bills, as court-ordered.

It's not fair that your kids are going to suffer from your lack of action....so stop putting these matters off!!!

If you were too afraid to ask him to pay what he OWES, I seriously doubt he's going to help you with money he isn't CO'd to pay you.


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Gecko
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Reged: 06/01/04
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Re: You could ask, [Re: Melody]
      #202806 - 02/22/07 04:28 PM

Looks like you got only 6 years, which is only 1/3 of the duration of your marriage, but the time to argue that was during your divorce hearing...not now.

---> Which would be about right since she was only a SAHP for that amount of time.

--------------------
If you air your dirty linen in public, expect people to comment on the skid marks!


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Gecko
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Re: continuing spousal support [Re: rumrunner]
      #202811 - 02/22/07 04:36 PM

Hindsight...you had six years. You could have taken you alimony, child support and with grants/loans...gotten your BS and you would be making more money.

You can still get grants/loans to enable you to support yourself and the child and get your BS. You're NOT a child...you're a grown woman (I'm guessing early 40s) who has been living on her own for the last 6 years and making ends meet very well so enough of the "fraidy cat-anxiety" crap...stuff a couple of balls in your pants and think "Gecko"!

Contact your local child support enforcement office and ask for a review...you are more than entitled to one since it's been six years (CS should be reviewed every 4). You can also contact Legal Aide...so if you qualify for assistance.

--------------------
If you air your dirty linen in public, expect people to comment on the skid marks!


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toniceaguy
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Reged: 02/21/07
Posts: 6
Re: continuing spousal support [Re: Gecko]
      #202939 - 02/23/07 07:27 AM

Okay, I have to put my two cents in...I am not divorced yet but in the process of it. I am all for the childsupport. I think every father has a responsibility to their children. And if it means he has to sacrifice well then tough sh**. But, as for alimony I see it differently. I have spent years trying to get my soon to be ex to further her education so she would not be dependent on me. I supported her and assured her we would do whatever we have to so that she could make herself more independent.....she kept making excuses and refused to do it. She makes about $11 an hour now and expects me to pay her a nice hunk of my salary for a very long time...NOT DOING IT. Unlike her, while still being a parent I worked full time and went to school full time so that I could give our family a better life. After I finished I tried to encourage her to do the same. She gets so mad at me when we talk about this subject but I feel she brought this on herself. The only difference is all her kids(I say her kids because the kids are hers from a previous marriage, I married her and helped her raise them for 16 years) are out of the house now but she cant seem to let them grow up. She wants to keep managing pretty much all of there affairs. I did not grow up like that and disagree with what she is doing. So rumrunner I am sorry for the situation you are in and yes you should go back to a lawyer and get the childsupport raised BUT you NEED to get your a** in gear and do whatever it take to make yourself more independent. You can get school loans, take online classes(so you are not away from the children) ect. There is a wealth of information on the internet. But dont ever forget to BE TRUE TO THY OWN SELF! I wish you luck and may you prosper.

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