Desperate--Advice on divorce and ...Update


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My pcson is a unbelievable young man. He will be 25 in July. Two years ago girlfriend got pregnant---he manned up---bought the ring (1 1'2 carat platinum marquise cut because that's what she wanted)---proposed. My family threw a fabulous wedding--the wedding she wanted because her family couldn't "afford" to do it. He has worked since they got married while she finished school. The baby will be a year old in June.

She graduated this month. He got laid off from his first job---but had enough saved to live for about 3 months. The week after he got laid off he found out she had been in communication with an ex boyfriend. This guy has a child from a "previous" relationship, is a high school grad, and lives at home with his parents.

My son had just purchased a $200,000+ house in a nice neighborhood at the beach. He found another job within three weeks and has been with the new company for a month and has already been promoted--He is a project manager engineer for a large Industrial Construction Company.

He called today. He found out that she has had an affair with this guy. She had even used to cell phone that he bought her and took pictures of them together. He also has e-mails between her and friends and her and this guy talking about not being able to wait to "be together " forever. He forgave her and tried to make it work.

She continues to say she doesn't love him and is not happy. She wants to move back home---4 hours away---get a job (her hometown is a small place with about 3000 people) and a place and take JJ. easy child called a family friend who is an attorney today and he was advised to try to get her to go and leave the baby with him "until she is settled" In the meantime he can file divorce papers and papers for custody. He doesn't want to leave the mother out, but he wants to raise his son, and he is the one who has tried to make the marriage work. What are his chances of retaining custody of the child? Does he have a chance in hell? He has a residence, a job, a support system. He has supported them from the beginning because she refused to work.

Help please--this guy is hurting and needs some help.


Well-Known Member
Ugh...I so feel for you.

Personally if I were him and he can get her to do what that attorney said, I would do it. If she will leave the house and leave the baby behind he can run like his tail is on fire to the courthouse for temporary custody until something more permanent is in place.

Now whether or not he can get full custody is iffy. He may be able to get joint custody with the baby so young right now that they can split the time up fairly evenly. Or maybe she would be happy to only take the baby on weekends since it would mean she wouldnt have to deal with daycare if he looked the other way on child support for the time being. Maybe he could couch it in such a way as to make it seem he is doing something to make things easier for her.

"Ya know SusieQ, I will keep JJ with me and I can provide for his living expenses and daycare and insurance and you can come get him on the weekends. How does that sound to you?"


I don't know the answer, but a custody battle will be expensive - easily ten thousand dollars. And that in itself may stop her from going too far with a battle. If she hasn't been working and boyfriend lives at home, chances are she would have a hard time financing such a battle.

I would advise your son to follow the attorney friend's advice. I've heard that same advice several times over from people and attorneys.

Divorces in most states are no-fault, meaning it doesn't matter who ended the marriage or why. So I don't know how much, if any, effect her affair would have on custody. The courts are going to look at who can provide the most stable home and provide best for the child.


Well-Known Member
Do what is in the best interest of the child. Does he feel she will be an unfit mother? Just because she cheated on him, that does not mean she will be a bad mom.

I think it would be great if they could split custody - sounds as if location will be a problem. He can get something added to an agreement that neither parent can move out of the county with the child.

hearts and roses

Mind Reader
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: busywend</div><div class="ubbcode-body">He can get something added to an agreement that neither parent can move out of the county with the child. </div></div>

This is true - when I moved out of our home state, my exh had it written into our divorce and custody papers that I could only move to where I am now as long as the girls were minors. That was fine with me, as I had no intention of moving far far away, but we are 3 hours from him. Because it was agreed upon, there were no court battles, however, MANY people are putting this type of wording into their divorce and custody papers to ensure that BOTH parents can be involved in baby's life.

Definitely, he should seek immediate custody regardless if that's what he wants. But like another poster said, the courts seem to have a preference for joint custody first, then the mom. More and more dads are able to seek and win custody, but it is expensive.

Best of luck - I'll bet your heart's breaking as well as easy child. Hugs~


Well-Known Member
While easy child doesn't think she is a bad mother, he does see her need to get more mature as a downfall in her parenting skills. For example, last week he had to take a course out of state for his new job, so she went to visit her mom and dad. She left on Monday. They had plans for the weekend and she and the baby were to be back on Friday. She called Thursday and said there was a party she wanted to go to, she wouldn't be back until Sunday. (The guy she has been seeing lives in her parents hometown.) easy child took off to spend the weekend there and cancelled their other plans with some of his good friends. On Monday, they started back home. She stopped, said she had forgotten something, and told him to head home. She had the baby's bottles and other stuff in her car, he had j in his jeep. He got two hours away, and she called and said she wasn't ever coming back. He told her she had all the baby's stuff and she told him to go buy more. He called me 30 minutes before he got to my house to run to Walmart to get a few bottles and some formula and diapers so that he didn't have to take a hungry, wet child into Walmart.
I really feel for you and your son. I've been in his shoes myself. in my humble opinion he's getting good advice. I would just add: document everything -- keep a diary and note down every minute she is late picking up or dropping off, every call changing plans, how often she has left the baby with a sitter and for how long, etc., with times and dates. And stay squeaky clean himself, don't call any old flames, don't go out and leave jj with a sitter, and so on.

If he can get her to agree to joint custody the court will probably sign off on it. There are several factors that he can use as bargaining chips to persuade her to be reasonable:
- he is clearly the wronged party (even though divorce is no-fault);
- she put herself first while he dropped everything for the baby's sake;
- he has physical custody now;
- he has a good support network (you!);
- a full-blown custody fight will be horrendously expensive to her as well as to him.

Best of luck to your son, and my prayers go out to you both. He sounds like a very good man. I'm sure that eventually he will find happiness with a good woman. But I know the pain he's in now, and it is truly awful. There is a danger of bitterness setting in, to the baby's detriment; it was all I could do when the kids were with me not to run down their mother, but I managed.

Stella Johnson

Active Member
I live in Texas so it may be different where you are. Here, they do favor the mother over the father for custody even though they say they don't.

His best bet is to follow what the attorney said. Be very aware that this will get expensive. Mine was around 35k before it was over but we had a very bad divorce.

Not sure about where you live but in Texas any conversation in person or on the phone can legally be recorded as long as one person in the conversation knows it is being recorded. I haven't had a conversation with my ex in 8 years that wasn't recorded. :smile: It has helped tremendously in court.

It is a long road. Sounds like the mom may not want custody if she is living the baby with him already.



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I dont know about SC but VA has at fault divorce. Jamie got divorced when his first wife slept around on him so he got her for adultery.


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What childcare arrangements does he have in place? Did he and
his wife have a sitter or nanny that they both agreed was good?

Consistent care and stability is of crutial importance as the first three years really determine much of the childs future
behavioral and emotional attachment issues. It is really hard
to be objective when involved in a potentially ugly divorce. The
financial issues only matter in relation to safety and stability.
A child that grows up in an efficiency apartment can flourish for
a lifetime while a child in a million dollar mansion can end up a

As a formerly divorced Mom and an experienced GAL who had to adhere to the "best interests of the child" this is my advice:
1. Do NOT allow yourself to get sucked into the emotion. Your
daughter in law can, and most likely will, remember anything you say or do that is negative. IF they get back together you will be excluded
from their family. IF they get divorced she will not want you to
be near the child.
2. Do keep a record of what is going on and encourage your son to do so too.
3. Be supportive but keep your role in mind. During a time of crisis it is easy to revert to the Mom role, and that is only
partially appropriate.
4. Support your son in his choice of attorney and follow every
suggestion the attorney gives as he will be the lead player.

I am sorry your family has to face this pain. As someone else
posted, the insertion of a clause to prevent relocation at a distance is a good Ex threw that clause in at the last
minute for our divorce. I accepted reduced chid support just so
he couldn't control where I lived (even though I stayed in the
same community by choice).

Sending supportive hugs. DDD


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DDD gives very good advice about never saying a word negative to or about the mother as you are the paternal grandparent.

This gets very very sticky.

Many states do not recognize grandparents rights and we can lose those grandchildren completely. It bites. We have to kiss up to the parents no matter what in order to maintain a relationship with the kids. I hate Keyanas mother with a passion but I paste a smile on my face and act like butter wouldnt melt in my mouth. I would throw Cory under the bus to keep Keyana in my life. I just agree with her and click my tongue alot and commiserate. I buy stuff for the baby. Yes, Im bribing my way into the kids life but so be it.

I have 11 more years until Keyana is old enough to tell a judge what she wants.


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Thanks fo r all the advice. She told him last night to see if the daycare will take j back full time starting next week. Maybe she plans on leaving the baby with him. I would never say anything negative about her in front of the child. I divorced easy child's dad when he was 4 and I have never said a bad word about the lousy husband and father he was---easy child got to find out all by himself :smile: which is why he is so adament that he wants to raise his son.


Well-Known Member
Want to laugh--
daughter in law asked easy child to print her cell phone bill at work because their computer monitor is broken---he has been lax at replacing because she was using the computer to communicate with boyfriend. He did. It was over 700.00. She had over 4000 minutes over to one #---boyfriend. easy child told her he would not pay the bill---it is in her name---She has called him crying twice because she doesn't know what to do---He told her she needed to call the cell phone company to see if it was a mistake or call her parents or call the boyfriend---but he would not pay for her to cheat on him after she told him she didn't love him and would never be happy with him---A little dose of reality, huh!
:nonono: I'm just speechless. daughter in law must have an astounding amount of gall, or stupidity, or both. Did she forget she was on the cell 24/7 with boyfriend last month? Or is she being especially vindictive by brazenly flaunting her infidelity and trying to get easy child to pay for it to boot?


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"daughter in law must have an astounding amount of gall, or stupidity, or both."

She graduated from the university with a 4.0 GPA---I just think she is immature and spoiled rotten--although her parents are not well off, I think she has always been able to pull the wool over their eyes and get what she wants. She has been able to get things past easy child in the past---those days are over.

hearts and roses

Mind Reader
Aw, my heart just goes out to easy child - what a terrible thing to have to deal with at such a young age, not that it's easier when you're older I guess.

It sounds like daughter in law is 'book smart' but doesn't have much common sense. Spoiled rotten was my first guess. That's too bad. Too bad for easy child and too bad for grandbaby.


Well-Known Member
Be cautious talking to easy child about his legal wife. My easy child son and I
were very close and although I never tossed in new info against
his almost former wife I did agree with him etc. Mistake! It has been years and I still don't know how she got him back but
he and his wife have been married twenty years. He had to make a
choice between wife and his family. We see him a few times a year
and he and I talk on the phone a few times a year. He and his family visit no more than three times although they travel to our
city to see DWs Mom far more often than that. Life is weird.


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3D, I would never say anything out of line about daughter in law to my son. I know he loves her. He told me last night if she is so unhappy that he realized that he needs to let her go find some happiness because he does love and care for her. She is going to her sister's graduation in hometown this weekend. She is taking baby, but is bringing him back Sunday and picking up some more belongings. He is no longer trying to make it work---he has finally reached a point where he can let her go---and that's what he needs to do. If she comes back, she comes back on his terms. He has been basically bending over backwards to please her the whole marriage. There's a great quote in Their Eyes Were Watching God--"He's kissing your feets, and that won't last. Mouf kissing is on the equal and no man is gonna kiss feets for two long." Well, feet kissing is done with! I just want some of the stress he has been facing with her attitude to go away for a while so he can get his own emotions straightened out.


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You are a wise woman. I'm glad that it seems to be going smoothly for your easy child. Hugs. DDD