Still Alive

Yesterday was joint counseling session #2. It was rough. We have been arguing a lot more lately than we used to and there was a considerable amount of tension while we were at counseling. I feel like he’s barely making a half-hearted attempt at change and doesn’t take this seriously. We don’t listen to each other but only hear what we think the other is saying, apparently. It’s exhausting.

I don’t know why it’s so hard for me to make that next step, to talk to a lawyer and find out what to expect and start the process, but I just can’t bring myself to do it. I want to so badly but it is HARD.

I have actually been stitching again though, which is good. Luke and I rode up with my dad to Tahoe for a few days last weekend. I worked on Noah’s Sub for about 8 hours in the car on the way up and worked another 8 hours on Alpine Seasons on the ride back.

Tahoe was a fabulous trip; I have severely neglected my transfer of photos from camera to computer but hopefully I’ll remedy that soon and can share pictures from the trip.

Two weeks from now I will be backpacking along the John Muir Trail, southeast of Yosemite. I can’t wait. So far this week I’ve had pink eye, a sinus cold, fights with the husband, unpleasantness at counseling, and wretched female problems. Oh yeah, and it rained. Ugh. I’m ready for this week to be over and the next week to start. My brother his coming down this weekend and has agreed to watch Luke Saturday morning so I can go on a 10.5 mile hike to prepare for the trip. Thankfully I’ll be able to wear my contacts again then; I am sick of my glasses (today is day #4 of 7).

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13 Responses to “Still Alive”

  1. Belinda Says:

    Hang in there…. {{{{hug}}}}

  2. Terri Says:

    {{{{{Jill}}}}} I think the reason you’re afraid is you don’t know what to expect. Make the call. That’s the first step, and from there it will get easier.

  3. mouldfan Says:

    Okay, first a disclaimer then some thoughts to answer your questions. Nothing here is to be construed as legal advice. While a lawyer, yes, I’m not a CA licensed lawyer, so I don’t really “know” anything other than what I’ve read and personally experienced when my parents got divorced. So take this as merely and old friend giving some very general guidance.

    As you may know, California, like most states, is, to my knowledge, a “no fault” divorce state. This, of course, means you don’t need a legal reason to terminate a marriage (e.g., adultery or abuse).

    California is also, to my knowledge, a “community property” state, meaning that marital assets (things acquired during the course of the marriage) are supposed to be evenly divided, unless otherwise agreed to by the parties.

    I don’t know if CA has a separation period, many states, but not all do. If there is one, it’s probably 6 months to a year. Thus, technically you have to be legally separated (yes, there is often a definition, but I don’t know what it entails in CA) for a period of time before being eligible for a divorce.

    What to expect; your lawyer will go over all of this in great detail (especially if he or she is a good attorney), but basically you have to negotiate everything, and by that I mean every aspect of your lives becomes a subject for division. Most difficult, I assume, will be custody of Luke and visitation rights. Everything is subject to negotiation, the dates, times, places, duration, I mean every aspect of your relationships with Luke can potentially be used a bargaining chip. Obviously, I’m giving out worst case scenario, but better safe than sorry. Hopefully, issues related to children can be agreed to amicably, because if not things can get really ugly really quickly (trust me I know from experience). Second most difficult issue that I can foresee is the division of financial assets. Since from your posts, I know you own a townhouse (jointly I’m guessing), and that you make more income than your husband. These things will be issues for negotiation. Lots of options here, some good, some bad, some completely intolerable. Remember, though if you can’t agree to terms and division of assets privately, you would have to go before a Judge who will decide how things get divided. Always unpredictable and, of course, expensive (we lawyers often charge premiums for having to be in court all day, as it means we’re not available to bill other clients). Lots of judges may do things like simply require the house to be sold and proceeds evenly divided, which might not be in anyone’s best interest. Of course, the income disparity means potential child and spousal support issues. I don’t know how all that stuff works, but there are sometimes court imposed formulas, and again, all of this is subject to negotiation between the parties. Depending on how great the disparity is, the reality is that you might be looking at making payments either to your husband personally or for Luke’s care for a period of time to be determined by a court. Savings, if any, and other assets such as cars, and personal property, are all divisible, as are any debts that were jointly acquired during the marriage.

    There are probably 1000 or more other things that are specific to your situation that I’m not aware of, so the best thing I can probably say is to find someone that you really trust to be your lawyer. They are the one decision you get to make 100% on your own, so find a good one. In this situation, by good I mean one that will best serve your interests, whatever you decide that they are. Aggressive lawyers are not for everyone, nor are people whose general outlook is to settle things peacefully. Find someone who meshes with your personality, trust them, and let them guide you through the process in whatever way you want it to go. You as the client call the shots, always. I know that sounds easier than it is, but believe me a lawyer you’re comfortable working with will pay massive dividends in the end.

  4. mouldfan Says:

    I suppose I should have added expressions of sadness and support for what you are dealing with. I can’t even fathom how tough this must be. But, then again I’ve always been know for my lack of emotions and cold analytical side, so I’m sure you’ll understand. I am sorry that things have come to this, but I generally agree with other commentors who have said that you must look out first for yourself and do what is best for you emotionally no matter how difficult and painful in the short term.

  5. Faith Ann Says:

    I’ve been thinking about you and wondering how you were doing Jill. It’s gotta be rough to be on edge all the time when you’re at home… glad you have the backpacking trip to look forward to. I hope your week improves *really* soon. Lots of {{{hugs}}} for you and Luke.

  6. Karen Says:

    You’ve been on my mind, too. I was wondering how things are going. {{{ Hugs }}}

  7. Susan Says:

    {{{Jill}}} – I’m so glad that you had a lovely trip to Tahoe. I can’t believe you stitched in the car – I get car sick even looking at a map.

    I’m sorry that the counselling is not going well.

    The first step in the divorce process is to see a lawyer. The first appointment is usually free (I know, I’ve visited a divorce lawyer myself). She gave me my options, and what the laws were in my state. You’re not committing to anything, so that first step isn’t too hard!!

    Hang in there, sweetie!

  8. Melissa Says:

    ((((((Jill))))))

    Thinking of you all the time; let me know if you need anything.

  9. Suz Says:

    {{{jill}}}

  10. Sarah Says:

    Wow!! You have had a hell of a week {{{hugs}}} Here’s hoping that next week is better.

    I find if I put things off it makes it so much harder, it’s a lot easier to rip the band-aid off all at once, so to speak, then try to ease it off a little at a time. You *deserve* to be happy!

  11. Michelle Says:

    Glad to see you’re still here, even if you’re in hell. I completely agree w/what everyone, but most especially mouldfan says.
    And my little .02 worth, the sooner you start and get the ugliness over with, the sooner you can start healing and being happy again. As bad as it is now, it’ll be worse later. Sad, but usually true.

    ok … my .04 worth.

    Take care!!

  12. Amy Says:

    (((Jill))) We’re here for you, girl. I’m so sorry you’re having such a rough time. At leat you have a vacation to look forward to. Try to relax and do some stitching!

  13. Jenny Says:

    ((Jill))

    Counseling can be really rough in the beginning because you are so used to “being in your rut” and already emotionally divorced that the reconnecting and learning how to communicate effectively (when you are so practiced at doing it ineffectively) is really hard.

    ((hugs)) to you however things turn out, and I hope it gets easier to work it out, or easier to leave.–>

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