Need Some Advice on Divorce and Child Custody...

Updated on February 02, 2007
C.L. asks from Sidney, OH
20 answers

Hello... I need some good advice on divorce. I have a 19month old daughter. Husband has told me to get out so that's what I'm doing. All his fault on whole thing.. He goes out with friends and doesn't come home till the next day. Doesn't take care of our daughter hardly ever. He works almost 100 hrs a week. Doesn't see a problem in any of it.Drinks a lot and gets pretty violent with me, but has never hit me. Blames me for everything.. Here is my thing... How will child custody play out in this.?? He has said to me before if I leave he is going to fight me for our daughter. What do are my chances of sole custody of my daughter. I'm a great mother I have a full time job so I have all the means of taking care of my child. just afraid he is going to take her.... Please help!

** I should add he has never hit me but has pushed me around. He won't hit me because he knows that I will call police.
Also how do I prove things he has done. I know I can't use the he said she said thing goes it doesn't fly. I have a kept a journel about things that have happened is that acceptable?

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So What Happened?

I want to thank everyone who responded to me about this.. Thanks so much...This has helped ease my mind somewhat. I am in the works of moving out right now. I have hired the best attorney in Shelby County and I'm working on divorce. I will let you all know let happens

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J.N.

answers from Cleveland on

C.,
Please, Please get a lawyer. I can not stress that enough. I went through an awful divorce from the father of my first 5 children. He put me through the worst year of my life. (trying to get sole custody) My kids are my life. Without a good attorney you could lose a lot. You have way more rights than you could ever imagine. His drinking and violent behavior are definitly points against him. Please- get a good divorce lawyer to represent you. If I would have lost my kids because my ex had a good lawyer and I had none (which almost did happen-I didn't want to get a lawyer at first) my kids would never have become who they are. Not to mention my life could never have been what it is if I did not have them.

1 mom found this helpful
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S.P.

answers from Cleveland on

I don't have any experience in this department but I do know my husband and I have had plenty of rocky times and talk about divorce and he has threatened the same thing at time. Everthing the girls have said so far sounds correct and I too have been told by friends that my husband just tries to scare me too. I personally would contact a lawyer asap and discuss this w/him so you know what you need to do. Just my opinion.

S.

1 mom found this helpful

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R.G.

answers from Cleveland on

C., It sounds like you would get full custody of your daughter already from what I read.
What judge will let a small girl be with her father if he stays out all night, boozes all the time, even if he didn't go out and boozes at home, who's to say he won't pass out asleep and leave her unattended, or get volent with her while drinking.
I wouldn't even let sleepovers happen.
There is no reason he wouldn't be satisfied with a day visit and your daughter return home so he can go out like the single dad he seems to want to be and have his buddies and booze.

best advice is an attorney and be sure he has all deatils of why you don't want your daughter to stay over night or to have a joint custody ect.....
R.

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T.P.

answers from Dayton on

Hi C.,
I would understand your fear of losing your child, but please remember. If he isn't violent to you, or the child, it is in the childs best interest to have both parents involved in his/her life! When going through a breakup of any sort, it is really hard on all. He would have to prove your an unfit parent, by court standards to totally take her away. It doesn't sound like he can or really would do that. If he threatens it while arguing is one thing, but to really want to be a full time dad, without really wanting to is another.

There are strict rules in force to prevent someone from just saying your unfit to take care of your daughter. Many of which you can read about online. So i hope this helps to ease your fears. I have two sons, and would never want someone to try to take them away from me. But if they did, they would definatley have to prove me unworthy of being there for my children. And that isn't going to happen! Which sounds like the same in your case.

My suggestion would be, try a discussion with him, on what you both want about the care of your daughter after the split. Sometimes it is healthy and can avoid alot of problems later. Maybe even counseling together? Never hurts to try.

But don't be afraid, unless you know you did something wrong, and remember there is always help out here! :)

Your friend in Mamasource.
T.

1 mom found this helpful
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B.R.

answers from Columbus on

Hi C.,

Sorry to hear about your situation...unfortunately if he is working 100 work weeks and he spends nights out with friends, I seriuosly doubt he will have time to take custody of your daughter. He just wants to scare you!!!! Not to mention, he is an alcoholic! If you have enough support and truly dont want him to have her, Im sure you could get sole custody. Howeverm you would have to have a pretty strong case and proof that he wouldnt cut it as a part time dad due to the fact most Ohio courts give BOTH parents custody. He is telling you to leave,...Im sure there are reasons for that and I'm sure they are all selfish. Dont be afraid, you have a job that sounds like it will provide for you and your daughter, and you are dedicated and loving to her...it will all work out for the best, stay encouraged!

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P.J.

answers from Columbus on

unfortunatly unless you prove he is a unfit father the courts will give both of you custody. It sounds like he don't care he just wants to use your child as a weapon to hurt you. It sounds like you are needing to get out if he is violent it is only a matter of time before he does get violent with you or your child and you might say he would never hurt me or our child but I said the same thing and I stayed and eventually he hit me. I realized that if he could do it to me then he could one day do it to our children and I left. My ex don't care about out children unless it hurts me or ruins my plans. I one day had enough of the threats and making me feel a inch big so I should up to him and now I am finally making the decisions(he still tries to ruin plans, day etc but I am learning) I moved on with my life and so did he but I wasn't suppose to in his eyes. anyways he can not get sole custody unless he proves you are unfit and in these days that is harder for a man to do to a women then it is for a women to do to a man. Good luck and let us know if you need to talk. Remember you will get through it. It will just take some time and what ever you do if you leave don't go back.

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C.B.

answers from Cleveland on

C. R.

Get a good attorney. Mine was Russel Kubyn:

Kubyn & Kubyn Attorneys At Law
1 Victoria Square Suite 280
Painesville, OH 44077
###-###-####


he does give FREE ADVICE, you may want to call him to see if he knows anyone in your area. He is very Quiet in his large office, but get him into court and HE is a LION! Bing Bam BOOM you are divorced and You get what you want.
He will work with you on finances as well.

My EX-Husband TRIED to get JOINT CUSTODY!
He too drank a lot (ALCOHOLIC) and was violent, I did look down the barrel of a shot gun with this man, plus all the mind games. I know it is tough but you must get out for your saftey as well as your childs. NO MAN WHO LOVES YOU WOULD TREAT YOU THIS WAY!
Document everything-- DON'T TELL YOUR HUSBAND YOUR BUILDING A CASE, JUST KEEP A JOURNAL WITH DATES, TIMES, WHAT WHAT WAS SAID IF YOU WERE THREATHENED ETC. WHEN HE LEAVES AND COMES HOME AND WHERE HE WAS, AT WORK OR AT THE BAR WITH FRIENDS ETC. IF YOU CAN AFFORD A DECTIVE THEN GET ONE IF NOT YOU MAY HAVE TO HAVE FRIENDS OR RELATIVES HELP YOU BUILD EVIDENCE TO KEEP HIM FROM TAKING YOUR CHILD. OR HAVING JOINT CUSTODY IF YOU FEAR FOR THE CHILD.
Anyways,

Russel Kubyn was in there (court) and with-in a few minutes we were divorced and I have full custody. He (EX) has supervised visitation EVERY Saturday and Sunday at my home,He has NOT used his visitation more than once or twice and it now has been Three years since he saw our 19 year old son (I did call him when Logan had a tumor removed in an open heart surgery at age 16)and Seven years since he saw our 9 year old(I also called him when Mason had surgery for tubes in his ear, tonsilectomy and adnoidectomy when he was 2 years old). Luckily I am re-married to a Wonderful man. But I ALWAYS tell everyone about Russel Kubyn because he truly helped me through a bad time.I am forever Greatful for him.

Tell him C.(pronoun CorInn) Balante
(formerly C. PLYLER---Pronoun PLY LER )sent you.

Good Luck I hope this helps you.

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N.D.

answers from Cleveland on

I am going through something very similar...DON'T LEAVE the house. Make him leave. That is the most important thing I've learned so far. If you leave and take the child with you, it could be considered Child snatching and you could loose your custody battle and support. You could also loose your "stuff". See an attorney. Your first visit is free. I saw 4 different attorneys until I found the right one for me. Tell them you’re shopping around. What ever you do, DON'T LEAVE THE HOUSE...I could go on and on, but first ~ Don't leave the house, I can't stress that enought. And second, find an attorney. Start making copies of tax returns, his retirement, copies of all your current accounts. Find out what is in your name, his name, and joint. DOCUMENT EVERYTHING. Good luck.

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T.V.

answers from Cincinnati on

Yes the journel is the best thing u could have done. I know several cases where people use dates on paper and what happened on that day ... As for custody, I do believe he has to prove u an unfit mother which doesnt look possible. But in any case for someone to get custody the one side has to prove the otherside unfit or more than likely it will be an every other weekend thing. U can bring up his drinking and all that and that can be used against him... I am prayin for u and hope things become better hon.

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L.H.

answers from Columbus on

Hi you are going through a very scary time right now. The courts give the mom's full custody of the child unless the mother isn't stable. My husband was told to get out when his son was 18 months and he has no chance on custody. Even though the mother just used my step-son for money. We have recently tried for custody, but once it has been given up it is very hard to get back. You are right they don't like he said she said, but if you have a journal it sometimes helps. The Lawyer that we go to is expensive but I love him. He is very detailed and personal with you. His associates are really good to. The first time you see him he has an associate with him listening so you get to opinons about the situation. Hi name is Brad Frick. He is located in the German Village area. I don't have his address right now, but if you need it email me and I can get it. Good luck Also your husband is just trying to scare you.

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A.H.

answers from Cleveland on

hello! im sorry you have to go through that. you have to be on top of your game when it comes to devorce. to me it sounds like he will do anything so you dont win. all you should have to say is how much he works and the fact that he wont have time for your child. also make sure they know you work and theirs a roof over her head. also if i was you i would take that notebook in just to be safe. it couldnt hurt!

T.K.

answers from Cleveland on

Hi C.!

What you are going through is so hard. I'm sorry things have turned out the way they have. It's very good that you've been keeping a journal. That is definitely acceptable. It shows you are responsible and organized. You are the mother. So you are pretty much guaranteed sole custody. However, you need to be prepared to fight if he's going to fight.

I work at a pyschology office with pyschologists who specialize in custody cases and who work with very good divorce attorneys. I will warn you, a consultation with an attorney may be free, but the whole process is expensive. For example, my office charges a $3500 retainer fee (each side pays half) up front before your first appointment.

If you want anymore info, don't hesitate to send me a message. I have a lot of resources. Good luck!

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M.L.

answers from Cleveland on

http://www.ohiolegalservices.org/OSLSA/PublicWeb

C. here is a link that may be helpful to you. If not cal your local Public Defender Office and seek advice. A push will lead to more violence. Do you have somewhere safe you can go?
Please let me know and I will try my best to help. I had a similiar experience and that is how it all began. It can escalate to more violence!
M.

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S.B.

answers from Cincinnati on

Okay are you in Clinton County? Well if so I just finished the divorce, custody and child support stuff recently. There is no such thing as sole custody in the state of OH unless you can prove him an unfit parent or he is dead. They have the custodial/residential parent and the non residential parent. You do need to get either a separation agreement or a divorce started. This will put a court ordered stay on the situation until you can meet with the magistrate and hammer out the arrangements. By court order I mean it will designate you as the residential parent and prevent him from making any changes to the marital property or custody until your divorce hearing. I recommend a lawyer when children are involved and if you are in Clinton County I have a recommendation. The standard custody agreement is pretty liberal to the nonresidential parent but fair over all. As for child support - you don't need to be divorced for that you can go to Child Support enforcement and they will set a hearing date and an order for a monthly amount right then. They only receive payments from a paycheck deduction and they auto deposit into your bank account so you don't have to have any contact on money issues. Sorry about your situation

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N.L.

answers from Canton on

Hello! I'm hopeing what I have to say will put your mind at ease. I don't think you should be concerned at all about your ex takeing custody, it is extremely hard to take a child from the mother unless you can prove absuse or neglect. I'm not married myself, but I have been helping my bf raise his 5 y/0 son since he was 2, which is when he took custody of his son from his ex gf. She's a big drug user, and would come into court higher then a kite. And he still had a battle with her. Even though it was quite obvious to the judge that she was a drug user... it took the third time of her not showing up for court for them to give my boyfriend full custody of the child. And given that he has pushed you around, I think there is no way in hell he would be awarded custody. Good luck! Hope I helped ya out a little!
-Nikkol

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S.H.

answers from Columbus on

I wish I could say more, but I just wanted to let you know that I am a single mother and I am fighting with my X husband for sole custody of my two daughters and I don't think you need to worry much, just for the simple fact that you are her mother, and there would have to be something really wrong with you for the court to not give you custody.

I am sure you have asked him this question, but who is going to take care of your daghter while he is working, (and out all night?)

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D.F.

answers from Cleveland on

C.,
Good morning, sorry to hear of your situation, but I also have gone through a similar one. To be honest, its going to be really tough for you to get sole custody, as the courts prefer joint. Continue with the journal as it may come in handy. Even though he is only pushing you, you may want to consider calling the police, it will show the courts a history of violence.. Good luck!

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C.T.

answers from Cincinnati on

I know EXACTLY how you feel, maybe we were married to the same man( LOL ), My ex was exactly the same way, said exactly the same things,"If you go the kids stay with me" or " If you try to get custody I WILL get them every weekend". Unfortunately theres not a JUDGE around that will give either parent Full Sole Custody, unless the father or mother has been deemed Unfit, and the way I worked it out with my ex, and all his Windbag ways.. He wanted every weekend visitation, Great he can have it, turns out.. he didnt expect me to give into his demands, he got the kids MAYBE 1 time a month, something ALWAYS came up, work, plans with friends, new girlfriend, 9 times out of 10 the judge grants the mother physical custody, and if he's abusive ( and he is, just not in the customary way) that will help your case too.. Make sure you find a Lawyer that WONT be intimidated. It will all come out ok, Just dont let him see your buying into his terroristic ways! and remember.. If It Doesnt Kill You It Only Makes You Stronger!

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C.M.

answers from Flagstaff on

While I have never divorced, I do have a child with a man from a previous relationship. When he got married I looked very carefully into how child custody goes. Fist of all, It would be highly unlikely that you would lose custody, courts tend to rule in mother's favor unless she is just not fit (drugs and the like). From what I hesr journals are very good because you have full details, and won't have to think about them, which could not only look like you might be making them up but also if you wrote them down shortly after they happened you won't lose any of the details. I know this is a very scarey thing. Just the thought of losing my son would terrify me. Do you think he would really sue for custody, or was he just trying to scare you into not leaving at some point? you don't have to answer, I just wanted to give you that to think about. As far as the violence and shoving, I think you're well on your way to full custody, maybe with him getting visitation every now and then, not sure exactly how that works. Shoving isn't too far from hitting. Anyway, I hope that this helped and if there is anything I can do, or if you need to talk to someone, please feel free to contact me here or my email [email protected]____.com Hope this all works out for you.

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M.B.

answers from Dayton on

Hello C.,
I went through a very similar experience The only difference with mine was that I had two children at the time and my now ex did actually put his hands on me. Feel blessed that you hadn't experienced that pain. Anyway, yes, it is a good thing that you have kept a journal of everything. Hopefully it includes dates of each incident as well. Although you probably won't need it for the divorce, you should have it with you for the custody hearing, if there is one. He may be just trying to scare you with saying he will take her or fight for custody. The way I see it is, if he is staying out all night and working so much and drinking, he probably wouldn't want the responsibility of taking on a full-time father position. He would have to tell the divorce judge, at the divorce hearing, if he wants to fight for custody. If he doesn't say anything or if he says no, the judge will automatically give parental custody too you and allow him the basic visitation required by law, unless you have an issue with certain visitation specifics. Such as if you fear that he might take and flee with her when he has her for one of his visits. If so, you can request a conditional visitation hearing in which he could be granted visitation but with supervision by a court appointed official. There are different avenues to explore, although I don't know every avenue, you may want to consult Legal Aid in your area or a private attorney. I tried Legal Aid but I was making too much money for them to accept my case. I searched and found a private attorney that accepted payments while taking the steps for my divorce and it was all said and done except for the final filing of the divorce until I made the last payment. When I done that, she filed it and it was finalized about two weeks after that. I have been divorced now for 6 years. Good luck on your journey and I am sorry to hear that you are going through this. I am more than willing to answer any other questions you may have if I have the answer you need.

Sincerely,
M. B.

my e-mail address is:

[email protected]____.com

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