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Old 03-16-2017, 10:45 AM
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Default My Background

Going to make an introduction thread for myself, as a conversation I participated in another thread ended up getting derailed due to questions and advice given to me as a result of a few statements I made about my own situation.

Both my former spouse and I are employed with the military. She is from the hill-billy area of Quebec, and I am from Edmonton.
2005 - Met and started dating in Kingston ON
2007 - Married
2008 - Son born
- Moved to Halifax due to posting
2010 - Daughter born
2011 - Moved to Edmonton due to posting (house purchased)
2012 - Seperated

She initiated the seperation. For a year or so prior she had been making noises about wanting to quit her job and be a stay at home mom, I refused that idea as our finances would not make that practical, as she really enjoyed spending money. Sometime around February of 2012 she decided she wanted to make a massive change in her life. She wanted a divorce, to move back to her hometown in Quebec, and to take the kids with her. She initially proposed that I go with her, but as the people there survive pretty much off of welfare I wanted no part in raising my kids on welfare in an area with no job prospects for them when they grew up, and I again refused. Her stated plan once I refused, was to move out there with the kids, and live off of a combination of welfare, child support, and spousal support.

I was pretty fortunate in that I found this forum pretty early on, and while I didn't post, I read a ridiculous amount of threads on any subject remotely related to mine, which helped to shape a lot of my decisions from that point on.

From about Feb 2012-Apr 2012 we lived in the same house, I took on a room in the basement, and started keeping notes of the general daily happenings in the house, as well as informing her that I would be recording all of our interactions, which had the effect of keeping her on pretty good behaviour and possibly preventing that false accusation crap that seems to happen so often. During this time she also put in her release from the military, which takes 6 months.

In Apr she realized that the court process wasn't going to happen quickly, and that I wasn't just going to roll over and let her remove me from the childrens lives. She wanted me to move out of the house and get my own place. I'll admit, at this point I took advantage of her desperate belief that she would get everything she wanted because, in her words, "I'm the mom and no judge would ever seperate a child from their mom". I told her that if she intends to move back to Quebec, then regardless of what happens I'll be staying in the home, and it didnt make sense for me to leave it. She found herself a place to move to and was out of the house a week later.
Prior to her leaving the house I had convinced her that the kids are supposed to stay in the marital home, but that I would be willing to go with a 50/50 schedule with her for the kids, where they would stay with one of us for a week, and then go to the other parent for a week. Status quo of 50/50 was established at this point, and I'm sure her lawyer face palmed when she told him...

At this point it dragged out a few more months, until about 3 weeks before her release date from the military. I believe a combination of factors happened:

1) Her finances were likely in shambles, as she rented a ridiculously expensive apartment, and delighted in sending angry lawyer letters on a weekly basis.
2) In combination with the finances being screwed, she was about the quit her job and didn't have anything else lined up, as her focus was on just getting back to Quebec
3) She realized that the courts don't move quickly, and this would take a great deal more time
4) Nobody seemed to support her decisions

She approached me about just coming up with a seperation agreement to carry on with the arrangment we had already established. I of course was more than happy to go along with that. She had her lawyer draw one up, it went back and forth a few times with some changes, it was signed and done with, and she cancelled her release from the military.
So in the end, everything worked out with:
- 50/50 week on, week off, joint custody.
- I kept the house, which seems rare for men. To do so I ended up taking on pretty much all the marital debt (vehicle, credit card, etc), and still ended up having to pay her out about $10,000.00 in equilization.
- Child support, we didn't want to have even mentioned, but of course ended up being forced to have it in there, it's offset $1/mth to her. We don't bother with it, and don't update it.

Mobility - This was a big one for me, as in my view, she had basically tried to dump me out of the kids lives and move across the country. I'd seen a few threads, and cases on CanLi where parents play games with the kids moving all over that 50km radius of the city (or whatever the limit is). As we both live in a small city outside of Edmonton, Fort Saskatchewan, I figured out what seems to be the simplest way to avoid those games and drama. Our seperation agreement, and now divorce order, states quite simply that "The children will attend school in Fort Saskatchewan." The ex-wife or I can move wherever the heck we want, and can have the kids live there with us, so long as we are willing to get them to their school in Fort Sask.

Long post, if its unclear in an area let me know and I can clarify, I was going off of memory on events that occurred years ago.
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Old 03-16-2017, 10:49 AM
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Taking this from another thread that I ended up taking pretty far from the original topic..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rioe View Post
In that case, if you are going to have the child 100% time while she's posted, then yes, you SHOULD ask for child support during that time. It's not a matter of being financially independent or avoiding being a dick. It's a matter of it being her responsibility for supporting her child in proportion to her income. The child isn't going to stop eating, wearing clothes, using up electricity, etc, just because your ex isn't there to see it. If you don't get CS from your ex when you have the child, you are permitting your ex to be a deadbeat during that time. CS is for the child, and the child is not financially independent from her. You ARE going to incur additional expenses due to the child being with you 100%.
You could probably work it out that the CS is at her normal income rate, though.
And see, that's an absolutely ridiculous line of reasoning to me. My monthly expenses, to feed an additional two children, aged 6 and 8, for an extra 2 weeks will go up by perhaps $100.00. Everything else you've listed I'm paying for already regardless of whether or not the children are with me or not. 50/50 each household maintains a set of clothing for the kids, electricity usage doesn't stop when they leave, etc.

In addition to the usual reasoning's for volunteering for a deployment (serving the country, getting new experiences, etc) she is looking to use the 'tour bucks' to put together a down payment on a house. The biggest complaint the kids have about their time with her is that its in some crappy apartment that's falling apart with no yard to play in.

Now, lets outline what may occur for those 6-8 months... She may be shot at, deal with IED's, rocket attacks, and live in overall pretty crappy conditions. She will also not physically see her children for that entire time. She may on occasion be able to call or Skype.

So in addition to all of that, she should have an Ex-husband taking her to court to get child support? An ex husband who is apparently stupid enough to consider spending thousands at court, in order to obtain... Hmmm, lets see... 8 months of child support, and we'll be generous on the monthly rate, and say 1300... So $10,400.00. We'll err on the low end, and say it'll cost me $3000.00 to go to court for that, and another $3000.00 for her.

So in reality, I'll only get $7,400.00 from their mother. On the other hand, their mother will LOSE $13,400.00 from her household. $6000.00 of household funds have disappeared uselessly outside of the household, and definitely won't have benefited the kids at all. As well, we both know those figures are extremely low if she chose to fight it.

In that scenario, the only deadbeat really, would be me. Maybe the kids wouldn't realize it now, but when they're adults and understand these things they would look back at it, and regard me with disgust for taking advantage of their mothers situation like that.

Last edited by Soiled; 03-16-2017 at 10:53 AM. Reason: Period of time feeding kids unclear
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Old 03-16-2017, 11:00 AM
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In the scenario of her being deployed, would you both agree to her paying a non-table amount of cs? I ask because you said you dont want to take away from the kids future home but you also have costs.

I think a lot of people on here have feelings about certain aspects of cs, ss, divorce, custody and the like. Most (if not all) of their feelings are coloured by their own experience. The hard part is getting the whole picture from a few quick posts which are also coloured by a users perspective.

The fact that you were able to negotiate and end up in a favourable situation speaks volumes. Not many are as fortunate.
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Old 03-16-2017, 11:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rockscan View Post
In the scenario of her being deployed, would you both agree to her paying a non-table amount of cs? I ask because you said you dont want to take away from the kids future home but you also have costs.

I think a lot of people on here have feelings about certain aspects of cs, ss, divorce, custody and the like. Most (if not all) of their feelings are coloured by their own experience. The hard part is getting the whole picture from a few quick posts which are also coloured by a users perspective.

The fact that you were able to negotiate and end up in a favourable situation speaks volumes. Not many are as fortunate.
I think I need to expand on military lifestyle a bit further for my point of view to come across better. In any given year, you can expect to be away from home at a minimum 2-3 months. Exercises, training courses, deployments, all take you away for weeks or months at a time.

She's going to be away more than me this year. Next year, it could be a reversal of the roles. In the end over time it all evens out. Rather than shovelling money back and forth at each other, why not just realize that while I may spend $100 more this month due to her absence, in a few months I'll save that $100 in child related expenses when I'm gone for a month...
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Old 03-16-2017, 12:04 PM
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Every parent facing this situation needs to read this thread. Soiled you did exactly what you should have done. Excellent approach. Very well detailed. I am sure this thread will help hundreds of people. Thank-you very much for contributing this. I will be referencing it as a "how to" guide for those asking questions about mobility.
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Old 03-16-2017, 12:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soiled View Post
I think I need to expand on military lifestyle a bit further for my point of view to come across better. In any given year, you can expect to be away from home at a minimum 2-3 months. Exercises, training courses, deployments, all take you away for weeks or months at a time.

She's going to be away more than me this year. Next year, it could be a reversal of the roles. In the end over time it all evens out. Rather than shovelling money back and forth at each other, why not just realize that while I may spend $100 more this month due to her absence, in a few months I'll save that $100 in child related expenses when I'm gone for a month...
Very well thought out and considerate. You have everything under control. Reasoning in your above posts is sound and well thought out.
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:00 PM
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Very good post(s) from Soiled. Thank you.
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Old 03-18-2017, 08:42 AM
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Good job Soiled very detailed, and very well thought out.

My case involved mobility and again because I was preemptive in educating myself I understood what to do.
My ex moved "temporarily" 45 minutes away to work on our relationship. We were common law and lived in my house. After 3 months of the 50/50 arrangement, she declared that CAS had called and told her not to return the childs to me. (This was completely false and it was her friend who called CAS)
In total I waited less than 24 hours before starting a application for custody and access in my town court house. Had I waited even a weekend I am sure she would have filed in her town and it would have been heard there.
My children were not yet in school. So their home town would need to be argued. Within one week I brought a urgent motion using reasonable grounds that for a 1 and 3 year old 1 week is a life time. it took 3 weeks for it to be heard, and the justice returned us to the shared parenting schedule we had. My ex's cross motion to have the matter moved to her town (as she didn't have a lawyer willing to travel up to my town and that I had filed out of spite because she was going to do it in her town) was thrown out.
After 1 1/2 years my ex was forced to take the children to the school in my area and thus was forced to move back to my town.
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Old 03-18-2017, 09:48 AM
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Thanks for the compliments folks, I appreciate it, can be a bit nerve wracking to post about some of the hardest times of one's life.


Quote:
Originally Posted by involveddad75 View Post
My children were not yet in school. So their home town would need to be argued.
I hate the stories like yours involveddad, where the other parent just takes off and you end up at the mercy of the courts which can move so slowly. It was my biggest fear throughout the process.

For the home town Issue, I kind of glossed over that. Neither kid was in school yet either so I had the same issue as you there. With my son born in Ontario, daughter born in Nova Scotia, mother from Quebec, and me from Alberta, it would be hard to argue that they had one established by that point.

I looked at the community bonds aspect of it, and worked at establishing those. My parents are in the town we lives in then, and now. So visits to them became extremely frequent. I enrolled the kids in every program in town I could find. Soccer, dance, playgroups, library activities, there is a crazy amount of stuff when you look for it. It also had the bonus of having them meet lots of friends, going further along that attachment community bond. Not to mention it made it easy to do fun things with the kids when I had them as opposed to them hanging around with a father obsessed with the divorce process and in dark moods, or just in a rut because of it.
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Old 03-18-2017, 03:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soiled View Post
I looked at the community bonds aspect of it, and worked at establishing those. My parents are in the town we lives in then, and now. So visits to them became extremely frequent. I enrolled the kids in every program in town I could find. Soccer, dance, playgroups, library activities, there is a crazy amount of stuff when you look for it. It also had the bonus of having them meet lots of friends, going further along that attachment community bond. Not to mention it made it easy to do fun things with the kids when I had them as opposed to them hanging around with a father obsessed with the divorce process and in dark moods, or just in a rut because of it.
The early years is a great place to go for young children. By the time I was at trial I was already a member of the local school council even though my children didn't attend their.
My ex also enrolled the children in her town, her sister was the manager at a YMCA / early years center. In the beginning, during the three weeks I waited to get before the courts I had no contact with the children except for a visit to the early years center there. Her father guarded the door for the 1 hour I had with the children.
Once in front of the judge, the judge reamed my ex out declaring that supervised access is no access and that self help was not helping. He then re established the access they had before.
What I had going for was that we both lived in my town for an extended time, She moved away to her parents. And the time (4 month) was not a status quo. Especially since she told me it was temporary.
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