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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 11-08-2011, 03:27 PM
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Hi, i am a soon to be retired 51 years old man and have been married to my wife for about 20 years (medical retirement date is already set ). We have a 16 years old daughter, the joy of my life. Unfortunatelly, my wife is very hard to live with. She is always upset at minor things and when i say upset, well she looses it and becomes very aggressive to the point where it is realy not healthy for my daughter and me. My daughter said few days ago that living with her mom the way she is is a "lifestyle". She also told me that if anything would happen between her mom and I that she would stay with me as she doesn't get along with her mom because of her mom's attitude etc...I just don't know what to do and how to begin the separation as I do not want to leave the house and leave my daughter alone with her mom. I am also very worried about our finances and if I will be able to pay for my daughter's education if I separate. I am making about 95K a year while my wife makes about 26K. I would realy appreciate if someone who has had such experience could tell me what to expect.

any help in this matter would be realy appreciated.
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Old 11-08-2011, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Northvetter View Post
Hi, i am a soon to be retired 51 years old man and have been married to my wife for about 20 years (medical retirement date is already set ). We have a 16 years old daughter, the joy of my life. Unfortunatelly, my wife is very hard to live with. She is always upset at minor things and when i say upset, well she looses it and becomes very aggressive to the point where it is realy not healthy for my daughter and me. My daughter said few days ago that living with her mom the way she is is a "lifestyle".
Prior to any discussion of divorce invite your partner to couples therapist. Research a good therapist who has a background in personality disorders. Let your partner rage in front of the therapist, project blame and generally scream at you. Let a professional gather the evidence to the accusations being made against you.


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Originally Posted by Northvetter View Post
She also told me that if anything would happen between her mom and I that she would stay with me as she doesn't get along with her mom because of her mom's attitude etc...I just don't know what to do and how to begin the separation as I do not want to leave the house and leave my daughter alone with her mom.
Do not involve the children, no matter what their ages are in the dispute. Your problem is with your partner. Seek therapeutic help and let a doctor determine if there is a true "danger" for your daughter to be exposed to an environment you are describing.


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Originally Posted by Northvetter View Post
I am also very worried about our finances and if I will be able to pay for my daughter's education if I separate. I am making about 95K a year while my wife makes about 26K. I would realy appreciate if someone who has had such experience could tell me what to expect.
any help in this matter would be realy appreciated.
1. Should your partner get custody of your daughter with majority access to her you will pay full table amount child support.

2. Should you separate from your wife you will owe spousal support for a very long time. Unfortunately, someone who has been married this long with this income difference is stuck with paying spousal support.

3. Litigation, divorce and separation are very expensive. More expensive than you can imagine. If you are doing this to retain your money, think again and work out the differences with the person you have been married to for 20 years.

Good Luck!
Tayken
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Old 11-08-2011, 07:02 PM
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Hi Northvetter:

Quick question...was your wife always this way behaviorally or is it relatively new?

The reason that I ask is because given your age, if she's around the same age, she could be menopausal. And without treatment, the mood swings associated with menopause...including irrational behavior and rages...can be extremely bad if left untreated and are often very fixable with simple hormone treatments.

This might not be the issue at all...just thought I'd ask.
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:44 PM
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Hi, thank you for the reply.

Well my wife has been the way she is now for at least 15 + years. I stayed because I love my daughter and was affraid to not see her grow up etc...my wife has three sisters and all three are the same way with their husbands.

We have been through marriage counseling. After meeting with the couseller on numerous occasions (alone and couple) my wife decided to stop because she thinks that the couseller was only there to help me not her and that the couseller did not understand her.

I am truly attempting not to involve my daughter but being 16 years old she knows what is going on and is tired of her mom being this way.

I know that a divorce is expensive and that I would have to pay a large monthly spousal support but I don't see any other alternatives and I don't know where to start.

By the way, my wife has never taken care of my daughter. I am the one who has and still is taking her to dances, dentists, doctors, friends etc...and my daughter knows that very much.

Thank you.
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Pursuinghappiness View Post
Hi Northvetter:

Quick question...was your wife always this way behaviorally or is it relatively new?

The reason that I ask is because given your age, if she's around the same age, she could be menopausal. And without treatment, the mood swings associated with menopause...including irrational behavior and rages...can be extremely bad if left untreated and are often very fixable with simple hormone treatments.

This might not be the issue at all...just thought I'd ask.
To further on this point... No matter what medical reason your partner is acting this way (medical, chemical, etc...) what you have described is very close to the 30 rules of emotional abuse. You should seek therapy for yourself and have a qualified psychologist identify the impact this is having on your personal health. Do not attempt to solve your partner's problems.

It is the responsibility of the person who is experiencing the rage/anger no matter what condition may be inducing it. Major Depression with an Axis IV onset of post partum, a change of life, etc... is no excuse for any human being to emotionally abuse their partner.

If you are being abused contact your Family Practitioner for help and seek psychotherapy. Do not try to even suggest to the other parent to seek mental health. Do not be afraid to seek out help in dealing with the potential emotional abuse you are suffering.

Furthermore, don't let the other parent use some excuse for their mental health condition. Everyone has access to a doctor in this country and can seek proper help for their medical conditions. People who do not seek out this help are often avoidant and have underlying issues like "fear of being found out", "fear of being judged", and other self expressed fears often connected to Axis II personality disorders. Some times a major episode like a change in life turns up the volume on their disordered personalities.

Good Luck!
Tayken
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Old 11-09-2011, 12:13 AM
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can't argue with Tayken - he is giving better education than many Gp's are capable of..... they just do not have the expertise but other professionals do.

I sadly have a slightly different story but in the end my result will be mine yours will be yours. We are 50 and 51 and after fighting the 25 year battle following my accident my wife finally had enough and wants out. In the end it doesn't matter as to the why or when because we are no fault in our divoce laws. Your situation will be evaluated on its merits and family law act will spell out what will happen as far as the dividing your financial lives.

Nobody wins in divorce - nobody. If you can apply the energy and the money that will be spent on getting better and making your exe=isting relationship everything you both hoped it could be then you will be both further ahead. If you noted the two excellent posters that have responded - they didn't encourage you to split they are trying to get you to evaluate your situation to save it. Do everything you can to save it and then some. Go to the point of having the frank discussion with her, what immediate changes must happen and what the consequences will be if it doesn't happen. It is a harsh reality check for both of you.

After some initial ground rules are established...... I can't emphasize the statement try, try again, try something different and then try again. Exhaust everthing you can possibly think of including bringing in the professioanals that can help you. As far as getting help - yes I sought out my own help as I knew I ddin't have a choice. What i was doing was not working and unless i found a way - I would not be here today. Today I am 100 times better than I was. Today I thank those people who really went out of thier way to help me help myself. That is the key. Only you can help you and only she can help herself. Only after you both have come a long way at resolving your own demons can you even think of getting help as a couple. I am surprized that your marriage therapist didn't see this at the onset. I am aware of this because it is my experience - I was desperate to save my marriage, sinking quicker everydday before my eyes. They could see this as well and each time thier resolve was true - you can't get better as a couple until the foundations are sound. Both you and your wife are the foundations and if one is weak it doesn't matter - the bridge will still fall.

Your daughter has learned how to live in her environment. You IMHO (in my humble opinion) need to seek out personal help (therapy) and what you will get will stay with you married or not - it is like investing in yourself. Your daughter could probably benefit from some help as well. I must comment on this statement of yours:;
Quote:
soon to be retired 51 years old man and have been married to my wife for about 20 years (medical retirement date is already set
My retirement date (I still have a problem calling this day in question "retirement" as ending your working careeer for medical reasons is anything but "retirement") but my day in question came when over a period of maybe 6 months I degraded to the point that apon arriving home I could not get out of the car. My wife had a heck of a time getting me out and flopped onto the nearest couch - in full out tears I said to her "I just can't do this anymore". The next morning I had an emergency appointment with my GP who looked at me and commended me for my galliant effort to make it as long as i did.

Interesting is your medical retirement date is planned, for a period of time now and it is still in the future at your young age of 51. You obviously have a medical reason and this is a personal decision that only you and your doctor can make. Why I state this is if you do end up going the divorce route there will be a strong case for her lawyer to possibly work the angle that you can still work thus possibly providing a greater income for support purposes. My point is to make sure you have good documentation and strong support from your doctors.

Next is something for you to research yourself as part of your decision process for all this. Court decisions now take your type of case and look at your medical retirement at age 51 (especially if it is a work insurance assissted retirement) as no different than a retirement pension. Just like a regular retirement pension when you retire at 65, your disability pension at age 51 will be akin to an early retirement pension as it will be considered not a disability pension but a bridge retirement pension that once you do reach the age of 65 - will be converted to a regular retirement pension.

It may not make sense yet but pensions on divorce are split 50/50 and you both can decide to not touch your age 65 pension instead you will both collect your share of the pension (that was gained during the years of your marriage only - the pension before you married stays with you) when you do reach 65 so there will be no money exchanged on your divorce settlement.

THIS iS KEY - UNDERSTAND THIS!

Disability as a result of an accident or injury

Disability pensions that are a result of an accident or injury will be treated forever as an income source. Your monthly benefit will be treated no different than a paycheck from working 40 hours a week for support purposes. It

Disability as a result of an illness or disease

This type of disablity pension will be treated much differently than the previous. The Family Law Act details this clearly and court rulings are quite clear and consistant. A disability pension as a result of an illness or disease will be considered just like a regular retirement pension and be treated the same way. Your pension will be ruled as being property on the date of seperation and just like your house equity, your RRSP's and cash your disability pension will need to have an actuarial valuation done to convert your disability pension into a cash value. In essence it will be determined to how much it is worth in dollars today based on your age and from my understanding they use the typical life expectancy for a male who is today 51 years old (say today that is 78 years old).

So unlike a regular pension which will use the numbers from 65 to 78 as the payout years to determine its value today. Your disability pension will use the numbers from 51 to 78 years old and I can tell you with certainty your actuarial pension (considering your current income and if your pension is in anyway tied to your 95K income today) your actuarial pension value for your disability pension you begin to collect at age 51 will be so huge the number will drop you to your knees!

Expect a number like $500,000 - 6 or even $700,000 as a good guess? Whatever the value is......... understand this most important statement : You will need to pay your wife 1/2 its value on the date of seperation! You will in essence have half this value tacked onto your equalization payment which means you and your wife of 15 years by law will split your property 50/50, no matter what your house is 50/50 regardless of any situation you have, who paid for it. Disputable, but I have read that even if you have a pretty good pre marriage agreement in place and it doesn't detail the matramonial home as 50/50 the chancce of the courts over rulling your agreement is high, very high.

Back on point, you can expect your division of property to be crushed by the treatment of your at age 51 disability pension. If you end up with absolutely nothing (meaning the actuarial value of your disability pension (that is NOT a pension due to an accident or injury is worth more than all your monetary assets combined) as you can't have anegative net worth, but there is a chance that you will end up with nothing, your wife will have it all.

On top of your spouse getting a very larg portion of your property settlement you may still have to pay her spousal support for a very long time. A 20 year marriage is a cutoff point to which the court conciders your marriage to be of a long duration and as such spousal support can be granted without an end date - in otherwords it will go on forever barring any substantial changes to your circumstances. if your marriage is very, very close to 20 years there is a chance the judge may impute the non ending spousal support anyways. Your support will probably be based on your new income under the disability pension which could change your obligation if your incomes are similar.

Bad news? No - it is only information which you should fully investigate as part of your decision making process. You should conform things like this with a consultation from a lawyer. This is all the cost of divorce and it doesn't end there so you can see maney is not a good reason to divorce to save money - this may only work in the extreme cases where one spouse is bleeding out money faster thatn you can plant new money trees! this does not appear to be your situation. If you had any other questions regarding the disability pension I can try to help - just drop me a messge

Last edited by ddol1; 11-09-2011 at 12:15 AM.
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