Everyone experiences sadness at times. Sometimes, life just gets you down. However, you don’t have to take sadness lying down. You can actively combat sadness by changing your perspective or by doing something enjoyable.
The ability to self-soothe is one of the most important skills a person can have at their disposal.
Try these tips to take control of your emotional state and feel more joy.
When you go to the case management hearing, mine was handled by the general magistrate, they will go over the list of papers you need to have. Bring in the copies of all of your papers that you have on hand from filing the dissolution of marriage and any mail you have received from the courthouse along the way. The checklist will help you get everything in order for your final hearing.
After you make sure that all paperwork is in order and you have copies of all financial records such as the debt owed in your name, the income of both parties, assets, and life insurance policies make copies and add it – because you will need it for the final hearing.
When you have everything in order you will call the judge’s assistant and set a date for the final hearing. They will usually give you a few and you pick the one that best fits you. If your spouse has an attorney they will try to set the date but remember you are an acting attorney so if the dates they choose don’t fit yours, don’t be afraid to tell them so.
Lessons I have learned through making mistakes. During my case management hearings, we never went over the financial obligations. Knowing what I know now if there are bills from the marriage that are in your name that you want your spouse to help pay, you need to provide copies to the court. If the bills are in your spouse’s name it is their responsibility to provide copies to the court. My largest bill that I am not willing to take on all on my own is in my name and is affecting my credit but with no support at this time I can only afford the main bills and I am not willing to take this marital debt on myself.
Unfortunately, I did not learn that lesson until the final hearing that turned out not to be the final. I will be contacting my credit card company to get a printout of my statement from January 2017 until we separated in November. The court can require him to supply money to pay for this. Something that you also need to be aware of is even though the court can order your spouse to pay past bills, child support, and spousal support it does not mean that they will but it will be on record and if your spouse ever comes into money on the books, you will get paid.
Getting records with no spouse involvement.
A subpoena duces tecum is a subpoena for production of evidence. I received indigent status, so I will be filing this next week to have his employers provide his income to me. In all of the stress of filing it on my own and dealing with the DVI at the same time, it is amazing how much I have forgotten legally.
I wish I had thought to subpoena them before the hearing. I hoped because he was in default this would not be necessary but since it seems to be one of the factors holding me back from spousal support I will go that route.
My husband worked for cash for many years because he could not hold a real job and hide money for his drug use – but he was supposed to be paying support on 3 of his older children. Over the 10 years we were married, he mostly worked landscaping for cash jobs and his child support built up. The government took our taxes every year and gave it to his exes. I am thankful this year will be different.
In the next part of my series, we will be discussing the parenting class.
When you make the decision to file for divorce on your own, you will realize quickly that there are a lot of things that have to be done. Once the court has the paperwork, your next step is to get your spouse served. Some states have process servers and some states just have law enforcement serve them. But the good news is that it is not something you will have to do. I worked with a process server and my husband was served within hours of me filing the paperwork because I knew that he was leaving the state and things would be a lot harder as well as expensive with him so far away.
He did call me after he was served and assured me I would get my answer. Of course, I am still waiting. There is a time limit for your spouse to answer the petition and it is usually 20 days or less, but if they miss that deadline, then your case will go into default and you will more than likely get what you’ve asked for. It does take a little longer to do it all on your own and without the other party participating but the savings and lack of contact make it worth it.
There will be a case management hearing; I had two, so that the court can make sure that you have all of your paperwork in its entirety and that you have done everything you needed to do. If your spouse is involved in the divorce they will be there also.
If you can both agree on the terms of the divorce, it goes a little quicker. But if not, just do your best to relax and know that it will come to an end sooner than later.For example, I filed for divorce January 10 and my final hearing was supposed to be August 24th (this didn’t go as planned, so the new final hearing October 8, 2018). It has been a long wait but I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.
We were both court-ordered to take a parenting class in order for the divorce to go through. Some states make it mandatory and some don’t. Most states want you to take the class in person but if there is some reason you can not attend an in-person class you can file a motion with the courthouse and ask the judge to approve you taking the online class but you will have to have a reason other than you do not want to. Because of my anxiety and C-PTSD, being in a room full of strangers while I was still stuck with the verbal and mental abuse was not an option. I actually took the class first and asked for permission later. Luckily my judge was understanding and it was accepted.
Now to start the waiting game. There will be a lot of that. My county has a web page for the clerk’s office that you can look at to see the activity on your case. Every page you filed is on there and you can keep an eye on it to see if your spouse has done their part.
Divorce is stressful any way you go about it. Know that you are a survivor and this is just another bump in the road. You have overcome so much more. Good luck SPANily! I look forward to hearing about your experiences along the way. You never know who your experience can help.
Check out our new sister site, Divorce Your Narcissist for more resources and information on divorcing your narcissist.
A lot of our readers have asked about our affiliation with Life Makeover Academy, so I thought I’d fill you in today! To make it simple, here are the most important bits of information from the LMA about page:
Founded by certified life coach and author Angie Atkinson (and backed by BlissFireMedia), the Life Makeover Academy‘s mission is to help you discover, understand and overcome any obstacle that stands in the way of the manifestation of your ideal life. Plus, we’ll teach you how to take your life to the next level and to become the ideal version of yourself.
At the Life Makeover Academy, we’re about just one thing – creating the life you truly want and deserve!
It’s about your personal life, your physical health, your spiritual and psychological wellbeing and even your professional life!
We believe you can have everything you want so much that we’re creating a whole new MOVEMENT here at the Life Makeover Academy!
Whether you’re just getting started in life or you’ve been around the block a few times, chances are that you’re full of thoughts, experiences and ideas that lead you to want to fix parts of your life.
And, being human, it’s only sensible that you’ve got so many different things you’d like to change that you don’t even know where to begin. Maybe a “whole life” change is too much for you?
But here’s the thing. It’s really not about jumping into a whole new personality by tomorrow afternoon–nope. In reality, what this whole life fix movement is all about is pretty simple–it’s a whole attitude change and comes along with a whole host of tools to help you in the day-to-day challenges that beat you down.
The Life Makeover Academy is focused on improving every aspect of your life. Take some time and look around! Try out some of our free courses, and get involved in our community. If you’re tired of the life you’re living and you’re ready to create serious personal change, you have found your new online home.
My greatest joys in life are (hands down) my children. Since the day each was born, my entire focus was making sure they were nurtured and FELT loved and valued. I was determined that they would have the ego I always wanted for myself. Name the activity and they did it. I had a simple plan: I was going to be THE BEST PARENT EVER!!
In my case, my son (who had more exposure to the narc than my daughters) is definitely more introverted than my daughters. He struggles in the area of self esteem and confidence.
My ex had a bully side to him (shocking right?) and while he would often verbally abuse my son, I always thought I was protecting him (and thus wiping out any negative impact of his words) by telling the narcissist, “don’t talk to him like that.” But looking back now, I realize that “sticking up” for my son was not a replacement for zero exposure.
My three daughters, on the other hand, are the complete opposite. They’re three very strong, very self aware women who don’t need validation from others. I’m guessing this may be because they saw the toll this has taken on me and have decided they want better for themselves (thankfully).
For years, I was wracked with guilt over all this. After all, I brought this mess and chaos into their lives.
With the help of therapy and the lifting of the fog, I can now see that, yes they’ve been changed, but he never touched their spirit; he never touched their hearts. For that I am grateful. As parents, we do the best we can given our circumstances. Probably one of the hardest parts of parenting that no one tells us is learning to forgive ourselves.
Thankfully, my children forgave me long before I forgave myself. Have you noticed a difference in your children pre or post toxic relationship?