The last few weeks were rough between Mr. J and I, and that never happens.
His concussion head has been going up and down in the 15 months since he was concussed, and so sometimes we’ll have a long period of good discussions, and then bam! Concussion brain hits, and he cannot function. He can keep up with routine – work, eat, sleep, etc. – but any discussions or small talk just… disappears.
It was the end of his week with his kids. The weeks with them always leave him a little frazzled.
I should have known better.
But I asked him how things were going with the divorce, as he and The Ex had had some discussion around it. Mostly her wanting to know why the rush, she can’t pay, and then finally a ‘you want it, you pay for it – that’s how it works’.
So a week or so had passed and I asked how things were progressing. Apparently The Ex has a document that’s required (I doubt it’s the right one so we’ll see if I am right about it) and Mr. J was supposed to get it from her.
So after not discussing it for the week, I asked him, “so, can I ask what’s going on with your divorce?”
He replied, “no.”
To say this did not go over well with me would be the understatement of the year.
I went upstairs and we didn’t talk for a bit. Then he came up and tried to talk but he really didn’t have a clue as to why I was so upset. I talked. He listened. And as usual, he was unable to return the discussion.
The following day, Saturday, I met him for lunch in our usual spot. After he had eaten and we was getting ready to go back to work I told him, ‘we are not a family. The three of you [meaning him and his children] are a family. The FOUR of you [included his wife] are a family. But WE? Are not.”
He chewed on that for a while, then later in the week I could see him getting better. I could see that he was able to concentrate a little more. And a full week later, we were able to actually talk about what happened. I had told him in our discussions that I will not stay with him if he continues to be married. I did say it in a much better way – it was not an ultimatum by any means. I told him that it’s not that I am looking to get married – I just don’t like the idea that he is still technically married to his wife. I feel it cheapens our relationship.
So we had some good discussions on Friday and Saturday nights, and again on Sunday. The children arrived back from an extended stay with Mom on Monday, and so I fully expect Mr. J to begin his downturn soon. Usually after a week spent dealing with teenagers, he begins to experience the after effects of his concussion again.
As we were walking last night, we talked as we normally do, and he got around to telling me that The Ex had dropped off the papers he asked her for.
He also said that she is looking for cheaper alternatives for the divorce. His lawyer originally quoted him $1600 which I told him was too high; the firm I used charges a flat fee for simple uncontested divorces. Mr. J went back to the firm and told them that and they agreed to lower it to $1200, which is reasonable. But The Ex says she has no money and cannot afford to pay for her half. She is insisting that it can be done for cheaper, and included the option of doing it without an attorney. She said, “but since you want it, you would have to do the paperwork and the filing with the court.”
So. Follow along: The Ex wanted out of the marriage so three years ago told him that she was ‘done”. They limped along, staying in the same house until she moved out year later. She wanted to end the marriage but felt that it was fine for them to continue to be legally married. Now Mr. J wants to end that. She gets mad, says if he wants it he has to pay for it – which he is fine with, although had the situation been reversed, he would have offered to pay half. So even though he said he would pay for it himself, she is insisting that she has ‘no money’ and can’t afford $600 for half the cost (which he hasn’t asked for) and is pushing to find a cheaper alternative than using lawyers. All the while insisting that Mr. J must do it all since he’s the one who wants it to become official.
Do the words Control Freak ring any bells?
Holy shitballs, Batman. I seriously cannot believe this. No wonder she feels so much stress all the time – she is trying to control things that she should not be controlling. The only thing she has to do in this process is sign her name on the forms when she receives them. That’s it. Oh, and send them back by mail, let’s not forget that. Once Mr. J files the papers with the lawyer the entire process should take about three months. All the financial and custody issues are done, so it should be simple.
But I guarantee she will make this difficult for Mr. J. I am going to try really hard to trust him, and work on communicating better with him so he feels he can continue to talk about the process with me. All I really want to know is that everything is in the hands of the lawyer. Then I know that it’s going to happen, that it will be moving forward – and I won’t worry and stress that it won’t actually happen.
Because it is going to happen.