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Old 11-10-2011, 10:22 PM
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Default Light at the end of the tunnel

I married my husband only seven months after we met online. He was a great charmer and swept me off my feet. Things started going wrong about a month into the marriage when I soon realized he controlled my every movement. He arranged my social life, picked out my clothes, and decided how I spent my days. He often spoke for me, to the point that people often did not realize I could speak English.

I felt very isolated and depressed. Considered leaving but learnt I was pregnant and felt I couldn't walk away from the marriage. The pregnancy was a nightmare. Lots of arguments and no rest. I was still working full-time but very worried about my what life was going to be like once the child was born

When my daughter was born, things moved from bad to very bad. He hated the fact that I was spending so much time with a newborn and was angry that she was getting so much attention. Determined to make the marriage work, I persisted, in trying to "please" him but nothing was ever good enough.

Then my dad passed away very suddenly and unexpectedly following a fatal accident. I was devastated. My husband flew back to the UK with me for the funeral. However, things just got worse. He argued at the funeral because the deceased got more attention then he did from my family and the fact that none of my family "appreciated" how famous and well respected my ex was in his community. It was horrible.

Wanting desperately to believe in life again, I got pregnant with my second child. My son was only two days old, when I over heard my husband complaining to his mother about the fact that I was an insufficient housewife. I had left a unwashed saucepan, cup and spoon behind after having made myself a cup of tea.

That was the turning point for me. I made a decision, that although I had no family in this country but my two small children (a toddler and newborn) I had to leave this marriage. I went to see a lawyer very shortly and started legal separation. My first lawyer was awful. Refused to go into court because I had legal aid.

The separation itself was ugly and police officers were called on more then one occasion. My now soon to be legal ex was advised by his lawyer in very strong terms to leave the matrimonial home and stay away. I changed the locks. My mom came out to help me for a couple of weeks but it was difficult having to look after the children and deal with the legal stuff on a daily basis.

My Ex complained to Child Protection services and convinced them that the children were in danger because I was suffering from Postpartum Depression. I wasn't but I had to spend the next six months persuading the social workers that I was a very capable mother and that the children were not in any danger.

I succeeded, and largely as a result of having a great lawyer I found second time around, I was able to secure custody and permanent residency for the children as well as child support. Once I was financially secure I left the matrimonial home and moved to a new neighborhood.

My ex continued to be abusive after the Final Family Court Order in every possible way he could. He dragged me to court alleging contempt no less then seven times in two years. We had a trial. Not only did I win but my ex had a huge cost order awarded against him (which helped pay some of my legal fees). He was also prohibited from ever bringng forward any further motions without prior leave from the court.

The abuse also continued with the involvement of police. Police officers were at my door step almost a weekly basis. Some of the neighbors stopped talking to me. Other times, he would call the police after I had already dropped off the kids because I was a few minutes late. The exchanges themselves became ugly as he used the opportunity to berate and yell at me in front of the children. He stopped the yelling after he realized I was recording everything.

In January of this year, I self-represented myself and won a legal motion to remove the police enforcement clause from our family court order because it was being abused so flagarantly by my ex. My Ex was so mad. I had single handedly removed one of the weapons he had been using to continue the abuse.

In the summer I self-represented myself again, and this time managed to get my ex to pay his share towards our daughters schooling expenses. She has special needs and was enroled in a private school. Again, he was bitter and angry and made sure I knew about it.

Because we have children together, I still have to communicate with my ex. Most of the abuse is via email and phone calls. I changed my cell number and most phone calls at home get screened before I answer them. The children routinely get informed "mommy is a liar" or that all this is "mommy's fault." But I have done everything I can to encourage their relationship with him. I know I've done my best because they always seem happy and excited when I drop them off at his place.

It has been four and half years since the separation and although it has been difficult, I have never regretted leaving him for one minute. The children are growing up fast, and are now aged four and a half and seven years old. People who meet them often comment upon how happy they appear. I think they are going to be ok.

For all of you who are in the midst of separation and divorce, it may seem that this nightmare might never end. But let me assure you that it will.

Last edited by Nadia; 11-10-2011 at 10:26 PM.
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Old 11-11-2011, 11:38 AM
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What an incredible story. Your ex in many ways sounds like mine. Jealous of a newborn, jealous of my dogs (?!) - jealous of anything or anyone that in his warped mind, took attention away from him. It's disgusting and repulsive behavior. You should be so proud of yourself for getting away from him. Thanks for posting such an honest, intelligent and poignant account - it gives me hope. I often feel it will "never end" - but a lot of what's involved in "endings" is changing one's perspective. Anger needs to be let go of, somehow and that's not so easy when one is in the midst of such a storm. Where does one put it?? I was very moved by your story and I hope you continue to reap the benefits of the freedom you have fought for, for you and your 2 children.
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Old 11-11-2011, 12:34 PM
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Hadenough...this:

Quote:
I often feel it will "never end" - but a lot of what's involved in "endings" is changing one's perspective.
..is so very, very true. Even though I know my divorce may continue some time, the misery of my terrible marriage is very much already over. And because I know that...it makes everything easier...including being able to find some peace and calm in dealing with my stbx.

At the beginning, I used to fantasize about the day I was finally awarded my final divorce decree but now I realize that the real start to my new life was the first day the divorce started. Every day since then (regardless of the difficulties of the family court process) has been a hope-filled, better day.


Nadia:

Thank you for telling your story...it was very inspiring.
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Old 11-11-2011, 12:53 PM
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I must say that as much as I empathize with some of the situations people here are involved in: there really is some comfort in knowing that I'm not (by a long shot!) "alone" - to see that many have had horrible lawyers, had to deal with outrageous allegations, and to go through what I think is a fairly lousy "system" - or perhaps UNfair AND lousy - there really is some odd sense of comfort to hear other peoples' stories. How they got through it, and the often encouraging words. I know ppl even argue on here w/eachother sometimes (gotta keep it diverse and even I have engaged in some of it, then realized I'm not here to argue. I just want to thank everyone who comes on here and speaks from their hearts, with a genuine effort to help or offer support to others, through their own experiences. Thank You All!
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Old 11-16-2011, 11:05 PM
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I'm not sure why I decided to share my story now. I guess I thought the worst of it was over. Unfortunately, it isn't. My ex-husband had police officers at my residence this evening. As he put it so eloquently, just because there is no police enforcement clause, doesn't mean he can't contact the police if he is "concerned" about "his" children.

Sadly, the children have become so familiar with the appearance of police officers, it has become the norm. Once I spoke to the officers and sent them off on their way, we had a bed time story and off to sleep they went.

I think it never really ends. You just have to come to terms with the situation until such time that the children have grown up and don't need you as much.

You do what you can legally. But at some point you have to make a decision on whether you continue fighting on every single front or choose your battles selectively. There is only so much money and so much time one can expend. Life is short and I would like to try and live some of it "my way" before I have to leave.

Thank you to everyone who wrote back on this thread and sent me encouraging messages.
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Old 12-26-2011, 11:24 AM
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Hi Nadia:

Your story is pretty much as same as mine. But I suffered way longer than you. My best advise is use email for communication, this is what I have put in order to have a piece of mind. I legally over with him but he is not paying, may take him back to court and represent myself. I have learned lot how to talk in the court in 2 years process. It was painful though.

Take care
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Old 12-26-2011, 11:59 AM
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Single Mom: is your support order w/ the FRO? Can't they help? Court does suck but definitely haul him back in if that's your only option. I know I'm going to end up having to do the same. Our order is still not w/Fro even though we had trial and a judgment was made last September. It's bs. He is shortpaying the ordered amt although he is paying more than he was (before the judgment). Basically, he's doing whatever the hell he wants. Still "controlling" the situation - still disobeying everything that is legal. Amazing that over christmas though, he could spring for expensive gifts (for our child). He does this for "show" _ to try and impress child and also his wife's parents who see him as a "great father" -- he can only splash out like this b/c of the way he short changes the order. It's going to take a while but I do know that he will reap what he's sown and his little "me" party will be over one day. As for my son - he sees right through him. I don't compete w/ the ex's show-boating and the "image" he tries to put forth. It's pathetic is what it is.
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Old 02-04-2012, 11:03 PM
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thank you for sharing your story, nadia. it was inspiring.
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Old 02-05-2012, 12:26 PM
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Thank you Sara.

If I hadn't decided to stand up for myself and fight, things could have turned out quite differently.
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Old 02-05-2012, 01:30 PM
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Nadia, you have been through a horrible experience, much worse than I have, and your story has put mine in persepctive just a little. You are very brave, and your children will grow up strong and safe becasue of your actions. Thank you for sharing. Your story will make a difference to someone else who is anonymously reading this forum, and they will have the courage to leave as well. It is the best way that we can all give back, by giving hope to those who have none, and sharing just a little of the strength we have gained.

Big hugs to you!
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