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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 02-29-2012, 06:38 PM
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Default Support groups for dads going through divorce. Do they exist?

I'm living separately in the same marital home, and have been for the last 5 months. My STBX is a successful lawyer (not in family law) and being very difficult, and quite frankly being evil during this whole process.

I am a small biz owner. We have a prenup and have been married under 4 yrs, so she isn't entitled to alimony or any assets, the issue is of custody and child support. Our daughter is just under 3

Right now we aren't making much progress. She only wants me to see my daughter every other weekend and weds night dinners. I'd like to see my little girl half the week or every other week. I'm willing to buy a house within a couple of blocks so she can grow up in the same schools and have the same friends etc.

I've suggested collaborative law as a remedy to preserve our relationship and resources, and she is opposed to it, she is all about getting her way and feels like family law works for her needs.

She is ticked off about asking me for a prenup, her logic at the time was that 9/10 biz owners fail, and didn't want to pay alimony or divide her assets with someone if the marriage broke down. Well that backfired on her, and thankfully is the only good thing I have right now. I hate to say its about money, but it seems like she is trying to backdoor her way to it now by keeping me under the 40% mark.

There is no basis I can see to limiting the amount of time I spend with my daughter to every other weekend and weds dinners. She is even arguing that I wont get that till 8 months from now because our daughter is too young to spend overnights with me. I am a good dad, I am more than capable of taking care of her and being a parent and role model. I love her and really enjoy the time I spend with her.

I also have the advantage of a more flexible schedule where my STBX works downtown TO on bay st and cant respond to "our child is sick and needs to be picked up from daycare"... she has never taken time off to pick up our daughter from day care when sick, where I have or she instructs her retired parents to respond on her behalf. I also work less hours.

Her treatment of me is based purely out of spite and hatred because I am leaving her. I am the bad guy for breaking up the family. The constant controlling, judging and criticizing she inflicted has nothing to do with it. I am selfish. I am the bad guy. I am the ass in her eyes. blah blah blah.

She was all about arguing her will upon me during the marriage so I'm honestly not surprised she is still doing it to an increased degree now. I just wasn't expecting the divorce process to be so adversarial and for my x to use every opportunity to hurt and punish me.

I'm losing my mind. Being a biz owner I've dealt with legal issues and lawyers in the past. And good/truth almost always prevails over evil/lies. But in family law it seems different, my lawyer has warned me that in court, whoever has the lady parts will usually get her way. It actually makes me sick to my stomach.

I've been trolling the forums for a bit and learn quite a lot.

Are there any support groups in the GTA that can help that might be facilitated by a family lawyer and/or shrink? What advice or experiences can you share with me?
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Old 02-29-2012, 06:52 PM
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But in family law it seems different, my lawyer has warned me that in court, whoever has the lady parts will usually get her way.
Seriously, I am sooooo sick of this nonsense.

As a female in the middle of a custody dispute, I can tell you that that argument is full of crap. Women do not have an advantage in family court aside from the fact that more women do more of the childrearing DURING marriage and have an established status quo which helps during divorce.

If you have been an involved father...and can prove it fairly and reasonably in court...the court will try to give equal access to parents if they can do so. The court strives to maintain each parents relationship with the child in a shared way.

Stop with the gender nonsense. If you HAVE read this forum, you'll see just as many women struggling their way through the family court system as men...no one...NO ONE...has an easy time of it. I find it outrageous when anyone spouts this nonsense.
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Old 02-29-2012, 07:13 PM
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Try: www.fathers-resources.com
Fathers Resources International, Toronto Chapter
Single Parent Network | Single Parenting Advice | Children and Divorce

Those are just some - not sure if they're even in your geographic area, or maybe just online is okay for you. Anyways, just google divorced father's resources and you'll get a slew of hits.

BTW, it is my very personal opinion (based on my experiences as I'm almost through this process), that there is DEFINITELY a gender bias. No question in my mind - just based on judges' comments and what not.

Rick
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Old 02-29-2012, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Pursuinghappiness View Post
Women do not have an advantage in family court aside from the fact that more women do more of the childrearing DURING marriage and have an established status quo which helps during divorce.

If you have been an involved father...and can prove it fairly and reasonably in court...the court will try to give equal access to parents if they can do so.

Bingo. Our daughter is about 3, my x is also arguing that she has done more child-rearing. My x took mat leave for a year, so for 1/3 of our daughters life she has spent more time raising and caring for our daughter and has a better bond than I as a result. After my x went back to work, I would say we spent equal time caring for our daughter together.

That is the angle she is trying to play off, and that's why she prefers to go to court rather than work in a collaborative fashion.

I respectfully disagree with you, based on what I have read, and what lawyers have told me. Mothers, provided they aren't degenerate, have the advantage in court on the matters of child custody.

Anyway, the gender bias is what it is. I am hoping people can share some useful experiences, as this is a very stressful and depressing time.
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Old 02-29-2012, 08:29 PM
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I know that people won't agree with me - and that's fine, but this is all just opinion and conjecture and I absolutely do think that there is an inherent bias. As I mentioned in my previous message, it's primarily based on my experiences with judge's and their responses to my arguments. It's also based on my research of cases and I've looked through 100's on CanLii (literally) and I swear that I can see judge's making somewhat different rulings where the roles are reversed.

I can say this..and it's difficult for me to be able to articulate why I feel this way, but a clear example - to me - is a discussion that I had with a judge that she needed to prove entitlement to spousal support. His reaction was "yeah, well from the guidelines, I can understand your position, but understand on the other hand that the ruling is typically that there is entitlement". That's not verbatim, nor is it necessarily accurate but that's definitely the sense that I got from the judge - be I right or be I wrong. I'm certain that if the roles were reversed and she was making more money than me, he wouldn't have been granting me the same latitude.

That having been said, as the sole custodian of my two teenagers, I am sure that I have a bias as well lol. I'm not very objective and this is just my opinion, so if I have offended anyone, I apologize.
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Old 02-29-2012, 08:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pursuinghappiness View Post
Seriously, I am sooooo sick of this nonsense.

As a female in the middle of a custody dispute, I can tell you that that argument is full of crap. Women do not have an advantage in family court aside from the fact that more women do more of the childrearing DURING marriage and have an established status quo which helps during divorce.

If you have been an involved father...and can prove it fairly and reasonably in court...the court will try to give equal access to parents if they can do so. The court strives to maintain each parents relationship with the child in a shared way.

Stop with the gender nonsense. If you HAVE read this forum, you'll see just as many women struggling their way through the family court system as men...no one...NO ONE...has an easy time of it. I find it outrageous when anyone spouts this nonsense.
My very first selfrep court appearence, I spoke at length with Duty counsel. One of the very first things he impressed upon me was that women do have an advantage in Family Court.

I can see why you don't want to admit it. But its true lady.

Now maybe in your case, it's actually not. Because maybe you're sane enough not to pull the 'poor little women' routine that many fall into. You know, where fabricated allegations of assault, violence, sexual misconduct or whatever you may have come into play.
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Old 02-29-2012, 09:00 PM
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Danny Guspie | Divorced Dad News (info@fathers-resources.com)
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Old 02-29-2012, 09:19 PM
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Fathers Resources International, Toronto Chapter

Info in here for a few places. United way on York Region and I believe Salvation Army.
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Old 02-29-2012, 09:57 PM
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there is a easy way for each and every person who reads this thread to determine for themselves if the courts are fair and are not biased when it comes to children and custody - "simply hug a custodial father this week " , ask your friends and family if needed to help you find '1'


i dont envy your situation dadthathadenough, i think your idea of trying to work through mediation is really really good idea for you and the whole family - i would keep trying to push that agenda


the 'every 2nd weekend/weds' is the standard access package, i would track all access denials also,

if 1 side wants to go to court I dont see anyway to stop it.

something to be aware of, Judges have personalities and lawyers know what they are, its exactly same as working in a mid sized business - there's some people you want to work for and those you want to avoid, try not to end up in front of one your 'X' prefer's ...

wish'n you the very best of luck
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Old 02-29-2012, 10:14 PM
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Originally Posted by pokeman View Post
there is a easy way for each and every person who reads this thread to determine for themselves if the courts are fair and are not biased when it comes to children and custody - "simply hug a custodial father this week " , ask your friends and family if needed to help you find '1'

No problem, I have several if you need to borrow any.
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