About Me

Cedar Creek, Queensland, Australia
At the age of 40, I thought I was the luckiest man in England. I had been married to my childhood sweetheart for 15 years with 4 wonderful children that I doted on. I was self employed, making good money and living in a beautiful 500 year old farmhouse. We had great friends, great holidays then BOOM. My life imploded. My wife had an affair. A bitter divorce ensued. I was forced out of my home and out of my business. My Ex hired aggressive lawyers who cleaned me out financially. All in the space of a year. I was then offered a job on the other side of the world in Brisbane, Australia. Since then, I have started to rebuild my life and am happier than ever. I have remarried, discovered a wonderful country that I am proud to call home and am continuing to learn and become a better person. My new life has come at a price but I do not regret what I have done. I have always been a caring, loving Dad who is now alienated from my four teenage children because I did not behave as my ex-wife wanted me to behave. This blog describes reflections on life then, now and into the future. My blogs may be random but I hope they are not dull. Life isn't. It is what you make it.

Friday, December 11, 2009

The story of my divorce


Isn't it strange that at those moments when you can easily feel like giving up, you come across a glimmer of hope that surges through your body making you feel renewed and alive again? I experienced that a few weeks ago when I read a story about a man who was alienated from his daughters. A few days later I responded to his blog and sent my children a link to his website.

Today I saw a blog posting from my daughter on his blog, and again felt helpless, trapped and desperate. My Ex has taken everything I love. My kids, my home, my photo's, my car, my self-respect, well- not quite, but she tried and still does try her hardest.
Angered by the alienation my children are experiencing which is so apparent from my daughter’s blog, I decided to tell the whole story by creating this blog. Maybe this will help address the lies being perpetrated by my Ex and her vindictive solicitor.

I will tell my story but warn you that it is not pretty. The only positives being that there was never any physical violence between my Ex and I and that I am now far happier than I have been for many years. However, there is always the D word that is casting its shadow over my new life and I just cannot escape it. The D word has forced me to lose contact with my children. The D word has cost me hundreds of thousands of pounds. The D word has caused Depression, Desperation and Distress.
I'll start by making you laugh: What caused the D? It was my Ex's desire to "rediscover herself" with a married Pastor! What a scandal.
He renounced God.
She renounced the sanctity of marriage.
I nicknamed him "The Randy Reverend".
 His ex-parishioners call him “Pastor Pants Down”.
Its funny, but it has taken me 3 years to laugh.

My ex-wife blamed me for “being preoccupied and not paying her attention”. She was probably right. I was running a company that paid us a six figure salary in England, global travel but cost me a lot of good night sleeps. My company was going backwards but I didn't hear my Ex complaining about the many holidays we took to various exotic locations. She hadn't needed to work for 17 years but with the kids all getting into their teens, she had lots of "leisure" time.
I was so naive. I didn't see the signs.
When I finally caught them out ( I found out about their affair), I still tried Relate.
Too Late. She had seen her dream. Keep the Kids and Lifestyle and swap Hubby for older, caring, homely type who pays her a lot of attention. So, we stayed living together "for the kids" whilst she dated "The Man Of The Cloth". She said she wanted me to divorce her. She said that we would both find solicitors and do things "amicably". That was the first of many lies she told me, my children and the Judges.
My Ex had already been seeing “The Rampant Reverend” for about 3 months. I was sworn to secrecy (keeping it even from my kids) else he would lose his job. However, gossip started and he was out of the church faster than a greyhound out of a trap. Wanting to keep things amicable, my Ex and I stayed living in the same house "for the children".
My Ex encouraged me to start “dating” again by saying things like “get on with your life Nick”. So I did go on a few dates and did meet a lovely lady who I started seeing regularly. My Ex did not like that! It was a case of “she didn’t want me but she didn’t want anyone else to have me”.
Before I knew it, she had appointed solicitors who could not spell mediation let alone practice it. They were Aggressive, Bullying and, what was worse, very good at their job. This was my first introduction to Adrian Bressington of Awdry, Bailey and Douglas.

The first letter I had from them changed everything. Bressington informed me that my ex was divorcing ME on grounds of unreasonable behaviour and seeking "Maintenance Pending Suit". I was stunned and, I'm afraid to say, lost it completely. I felt betrayed as she had asked ME to divorce HER ( I hadn't done a thing wrong) and wanted things to be amicable. This certainly wasn't amicable. This was a declaration of war.

At first I went into denial. How could this be happening but before I knew it, I was locked into a MPS whereby I was ordered to give her all my earnings. Why? Because she claimed she needed it all to live on. I was left with literally nothing but, because I was in denial, I failed to understand the implication of MPS as we still had joint bank accounts and my Ex accessed my salary as if it was her own anyway. I'd never thought of my income as “Mine” or “Hers”. It was “Ours”. Now, it was Hers.
I was daft not to resist this court order as it caused major issues for me 6 months later.

I had chosen solicitors regarded as being mediation specialists. It was like pitting a cuddly baby kitten against a snarling Rottweiler.
Lesson: Think carefully before choosing your solicitor. The next thing I got was a series of letters complaining about my "behaviour". I now know what it feels like to be a celebrity with the press on your back. How the truth became distorted was quite a work of art. Suddenly, I was not a "family person". I was a "monster". Yet my solicitors did not want to play this game. They would politely respond by stating the facts but I always felt that I was being defensive despite not having any real reason to be.

Our home was a large old farmhouse which I loved dearly. We had restored it and created a fair bit of equity in the house. I believe that my Ex's solicitors knew that as they took out a Sears Tooth agreement which allowed my Ex to spend willy nilly on legal costs as Bressington's fees were only payable upon settlement. (Looking back, I think she used Bressington as an “Agony Aunt” too, which was reflected in her final solicitor’s fees). A Sears Tooth agreement is a deed that assigns the client’s settlement to the solicitor, to enable them to cover their costs incurred in acting for the client and out of which they will be paid first and in full, when the case is over.
At the time of the Final Hearing, my Ex had spent over 75K GBP on solicitors. I had spent 35K. It has NEVER been explained just how she racked up those costs (Bressington made excuses for not preparing details) but she didn't care as it all was paid for out of my split of the equity (which will leave you astonished when I get to that part).

Anyway, the house was large enough for us both to live in without really seeing each other. That was fine until The Rampant Reverend needed a home as his Ex had kicked him out (yes, they split up two families with a total of 7 children affected). My Ex decided that he should move in to the family home!!!!! Trouble is, I lived there.
Therefore, she first requested that I move out through her solicitors (I refused) so then I got the Court summons. She had built up a complete "dossier" of supposed facts supporting her claim that I should be the one to leave.
The dossier was awful. Full of lies and breaches in child confidentiality. The most painful item in the dossier was a confidential report from a school counsellor (who was a personal friend of my Ex) saying she felt that my eldest son was scared of me. This was so far from the truth but what could I do? This was over 2 years ago but I still find this hard to talk about. I will NEVER forgive my Ex for doing this to me. It was the most painful and hurtful experience of my life.  All my married life, people regarded me as a placid, loyal family man. Now I was being FORCED out of my house and FORCED to move away from my kids. I went to court where I was told that if I wanted to contest the order, it would be likely to cost a further 7 to 10K. What choice did I have? Perhaps I would have been delaying the inevitable but that was a huge turning point. I was forced by my worsening financial situation not to contest the order and "voluntarily" move out.
It was so humiliating. I was given a date and time to move out- my sons 11th Birthday. It was raining and we hadn't agreed what was mine to take. I moved out with a few books, clothes and a laptop. Luckily, I moved in with my parents who lived about 15 miles away. My ex quickly changed the locks and I never set foot in my home again. “Pastor Pants Down” moved immediately into the family home. I was devastated and very upset. That upset soon turned to anger. The gloves were off and open warfare ensued.
In January 2007, I was at my lowest point. I had been forced to move in with my parents and almost every day, a letter from Bressington was arriving on my doorstep. I started feeling ill and saw my GP. He gave me some Happy pills and Heart pills. I lost interest in my work and folded my company. I had no job yet my ex still needed the money set in the MPS. I didn't know what to do as her solicitors completely refused a mediated settlement. How ironic the statement on their website. I made offer after offer but they just turned down everything. They offered me a deal whereby I would "only" have to make Maintenance payments of 25% of my salary (once I had one!) and to take 80% of the gross (not net) equity. I realised that would leave me deeply in debt so, having no choice, I rejected it.

In March 2007, I was finally offered a job in Australia. Although I had been approached in the UK, every job opportunity would have meant moving away from my West Country home and away from my kids.
My Ex was only offering to let me see the children at alternate weekends. With the various social engagements of four teenagers, I knew I would hardly ever see them.
I loved my kids dearly but had realised that as teenagers, the only time I got with them now that I lived away was the odd hour of an evening and one day at the weekend due to their social lives. The time I spent with them was in the car. We had nowhere to go. I had no home. It was awful. I can't tell you how depressing that was.
I thought about my options: Surely it would be better to see them less often but for dedicated periods of time? Instead of snatches every other weekend, why not have four 2 week holidays with them each year? I then thought that if I went to Australia, I could come home 3 times a year and they could come out initially for a holiday every year but eventually they would treat Australia as their second home. I could then have 8 weeks of quality time rather than 26 Saturdays ferrying them around to parties and cinemas. I didn't want to be a McDonalds Dad (read Tony Parsons: Man and Boy- essential reading for anyone going through a divorce) so I decided to take the job. My Ex was shocked. She just hadn't seen it coming. My kids: They were pleased that it would make me happy but devastated that I was going so far away. However, we were a Hi Tech family. We had Webcams, Skype and other gadgets to help talk and see each other regularly- at least, that was the plan......

At the end of April 2007, I moved out to Brisbane to work for a Management Consultancy. My salary was 1/3 of what I was used to but it was a job. 
To begin with, I spoke to my kids every day. Then it became every other day, then just weekends. They had given me pictures and cards wishing me luck which I put on my bedroom wall. They said they loved me and that they would never stop loving me. They said they couldn't wait for their first trip to Oz. As soon as I got to Australia, I went ahead and booked 4 tickets for a 3 week trip for them and rented a 3 bedroomed apartment. I bought bunk beds and furniture for their rooms. I started to get the feeling that they were gradually losing their enthusiasm for the trip.
They eventually told me they felt it was "too soon" after the breakup. I could understand them being nervous about the trip and had organised for them to be escorted on the flight. However, what could they mean "too soon" after the breakup? They were living with the new boyfriend after all.
That, in retrospect, was the first sign of Parental Alienation. My Ex had started to sow the seeds of uncertainty and negativity into my children. They had gone from being excited about coming to Australia to not wanting to come in just 2 months. I was angry and upset. I cancelled the tickets and decided to go back to the UK instead. The date was set for the Final Hearing (to coincide with my holiday back in the UK) to sort out the financial arrangements as neither set of solicitors were able to strike a deal. On this holiday, I spent lots of time with my children, who were a bit sheepish about cancelling their trip to Australia! Despite this, we had a great time together. They seemed pleased to be with me and loved their Aussie pressies and looking at photos, new and old. However, I was alarmed by the fact that it seemed that they had been “groomed” by their mother to not discuss many facets of their life. If one of them overstepped the mark, the others would “hush” the one who had stepped out of line. This was just the beginning of the severe Parental Alienation I have since experienced.

This bitterness and litigation had gone on for months. Bickering via expensive Solicitor letters, offers from me, rejection from her. What was worse is that I had little confidence in my solicitors. This was borne out when a hearing was set by the court and my solicitors didn't even know about it. I told them and they admitted that my solicitor was on holiday at that time! They therefore instructed a Bristol based Barrister (seemingly at no extra cost to me) to represent me. He felt that my offers of settlement to my Ex had been fair and could not understand why my Ex's solicitors were so reluctant to an out of court settlement. I struck a deal for him to represent me at the Final Hearing supported by my firm of solicitors. He was confident of an equitable settlement. How wrong he was.
The Final Hearing was simply awful and was nothing short of scandalous. This was when I learnt that my Ex had spent 75K on solicitors, more than twice as much as I had.
My parents were joined to the case as my Ex and I, during good times, had borrowed some money from them to develop the house. We had been faithfully repaying the loan. My Ex had argued that this was, in fact, a SOFT loan and that she had nothing to do with it, even though it was proved to the court the money was used to renovate the family home which has added value to it. She even argued that the money had been paid into my sole account (a technicality- she had unrestricted access to it) and she had not benefitted in any way. My parents were attending as they had a call on being repaid out of the family funds.

The whole hearing was a farce. Firstly, the two legal parties seemed unable to mediate as they had been instructed. Their behaviour was almost childish. All of this was, of course, at my expense! They started arguing over not being sent documents and even started trading insults. I was astounded. The charade of professionalism and politeness did not mask the ill feeling that clearly existed. Finally we got in front of the Judge. A doddery old boy who (I later learnt) was a soft touch for women.  I later learnt he has an awful reputation for siding with females in divorce cases. It should be borne in mind that at one of the previous Court hearings, a different Judge had told my Ex to create an Employment plan to "demonstrate what you are and will be doing to gain employment". This judge at the Final Hearing decided that my poor Ex was too accustomed to living a nice lifestyle and did not need to work. I was dismayed at how two judges can have such differing views.

My Ex was cross examined by my solicitor who had probed into her needs and her capability to be self sufficient. At one time she burst into tears. I knew it was a case of her infamous “crocodile tears”- the family had seen her do it so many times before. She was a very good actress and her “crocodile tears” were a long standing family joke. One family member nicknamed her “Princess Di” after the famous Martin Bashir interview- the name has since stuck! 
The judge asked that she be given a box of tissues. At that stage, I momentarily lost it and grabbed the box of tissues saying that she didn't need them as there was nothing to mop up. The judge reprimanded me and I was scolded by my Barrister later and was asked to apologise. I did so as I had been stupid and impetuous.
I had just lost my cool after hearing her tell lies under oath (perjury) and seeing her act to manipulate the judge. This mistake has cost me very dearly as I think it turned the judge completely against me. Lesson: to anyone in a court setting, try as hard as you can to keep your emotions in check. It is very hard as the things you hear are very personal but do not rise to the bait.
The afternoon saw me being cross examined by Bressington. He started questioning me about my lifestyle in Australia. I could not understand what he was trying to prove until it was too late. He was trying to portray me as a "playboy" type character who was living the life of Riley in Australia. Nothing, of course, could be further from the truth but he painted a false but compelling picture. I realise now that justice has nothing to do with truth. It is all about Marketing. How well you "sell" your version of events.
After a break in the meeting rooms, I went back into the court to hear my Ex's solicitors complaining to the judge about my "aggressive" behaviour. I had no idea (and still don't) about what they were on about. I hadn't spoken to, looked at or even touched my Ex. My Barrister was completely perplexed as none of us knew what they were talking about. However, the Judge without asking for our version of events, warned me about my behaviour. I now believe this was all part of the trick to further damage my reputation. It was so frustrating. Nothing had happened!
Because of a loan my Ex and I had borrowed from my parents, they were allowed to ask direct questions to my Ex since they were creditors to the settlement. My Ex replied with such a lot of lies that my parents have been unable to bring themselves to speak to her since. They were appalled and disgusted that she could so blatantly lie to them. To this day, my Dad still finds it hard to talk about as he felt so betrayed by a person he had loved as a daughter for 20 years. The judge dismissed the role of my parents due to some legal technicality. They too had been poorly directed by my solicitors.
After the hearing, the judge then took 8 weeks to come to a decision.
The outcome was nothing short of a disaster for me and my parents.
He awarded 97% of the family equity to my Ex so that she could buy a house outright without a mortgage. Stating that he saw no reason why she needed to work, he awarded her 25% of my salary as Child Maintenance (I agreed to that) but also 15% as Spousal Maintenance, despite the fact that she now lived with “The Rampant Reverend”. I was told that I had to repay my parents personally meaning I had a huge debt to them and no cash reserves or little income to repay it! I was in a financial straightjacket. I also now had no funds to appeal.
The only possible lifeline I was offered was a clause in the Court Order which said that an unpaid debt could be paid to me if Bressington could negotiate a favourable settlement with the creditor. This could have been as much as 50K plus interest. To this date, I have not received one penny from this clause and have not had one word of communication from Bressington on the negotiation proceedings. This money put aside for me has in actual fact been a blessing in disguise as it means I have been able to utilise it to make child maintenance payments through the court, during the time I haven’t been unable to make payments..
After the bombshell of the Judge's decision, I started to panic. I was in a financial straightjacket with only expensive legal action as a way of releasing the jacket. As I was back in Australia, I organised a conference call with the Barrister who had represented me in court. He felt that my chances of a successful appeal were "very strong" as he identified several technical faults with the Judge's decision.

There was a lot of money at stake (hundreds of thousands of pounds) and I quickly lodged the appeal. The Appeal Court is at Bristol but my Final Hearing had been at Bath. Bristol were therefore aware of the Appeal but Bath were not. My solicitor lodged a "Stay Of Execution" request to Bath Court.

Too late, the money had been released (at record speed) to my Ex who bought a house, for cash, within 2 weeks! Therefore, my appeal was rendered useless before it had begun. What appeal judge, even if I had won, would reverse the original decision and force my Ex to sell the new house where my kids were housed?
As a matter of clarification, I don't want anyone to think that I wanted my kids homeless! Far from it. All I wanted was an arrangement that allowed us BOTH to buy houses.
That would have meant my ex having to work part-time and take on a very small mortgage. Another option I proposed was one where I would own a small silent share in the house which I could not "cash in" for, say, 10 years. This is a common mechanism but was rejected totally by my Ex's solicitors. Now I know why.
Instead, I was left homeless and in debt. I was bewildered that the Order was considered a "Clean Break" for me. The only benefit of an appeal would have been to vary the monthly payments. Again, I tool legal advice and was told to look at the Risk: Benefit profile. The Risk was that I lost and paid everyone's fees. The only benefit (if I won) was that I might be up to a few hundred pounds a month better off. It was a no brainer and head ruled heart: I dropped the appeal. I do wish the Family Law profession could act on a No Win, No fee. It might have made for a different outcome.
I therefore had to weigh up my options: I was living in Australia and being ordered to pay over 40% of everything I earned to my Ex in England. I was hoping to see my kids 3 times a year in the UK and fly them over to Australia annually. I had debts to my parents in the tens of thousands and I was on a far lower salary than I was used to. I therefore decided that if the law wouldn't help me, then I would have to help myself. I decided to disobey the Order with regard to the spousal maintenance. This has had impacts far wider than I could have imagined
In my blog to date, I've not really discussed my relationship with my children. When I moved to Australia, they were clearly upset but also full of hope for me in starting to rebuild my life.
It is now over 2 years later and I have not spoken to my children for over 12 months.

Why? To be honest, I don't really know and probably never will. It isn't my choice. I write to them, email them, text them, visit them (they refuse to see me) - all to no avail.
So, how did it go so wrong? I believe that my Ex has waged a subliminal campaign against me through the children. This is not paranoia. This statement is based on an impartial evaluation of the facts and I think there are lessons here for others in similar situations. I've therefore decided to outline my "misdemeanours" in the eyes of my children and Ex. As a result of this, my children and I are now estranged, which tears me apart.

Misdemeanour #1. I bounced back
I went to Australia, rediscovered life and fell in love with a woman who is now my wife. My children (or was it my Ex?) did not approve of me getting remarried, especially to someone they had not met. When offered the chance to meet her, they declined. My wife has still not met her Stepchildren. It was insinuated that, I was living the "life of luxury" and "clearly don't care". Where did this come from? It wasn't what they were saying when I left the UK. I never have nor never will stop loving or caring for them.

Misdemeanour #2. I appealed against the Court Order.

My children moaned to me that it was awful that I was "dragging Mum back to court". They could not understand why. I have always tried to avoid discussing the mechanics of the divorce around the kids. However, they seemed to know an awful lot about the Court Order.

Misdemeanour #3. I stopped paying spousal maintenance.

When my appeal failed and the variation application was rejected, I became very depressed. With the children seemingly ex-communicated and my finances "on the edge", I struggled to maintain my motivation and keep my stress levels at a manageable level. I had a wake up call by way of a health scare and was advised to stop working .
With no income, I temporarily ceased payments and have now sought Ancillary Relief although I'm having to self represent.
I have always maintained I should NOT pay Spousal Maintenance and have not paid since the Order was made.
However, I feel it is my duty to pay Child Maintenance and have paid it even before any Order was made.
Incidentally, it needs to be mentioned here, that though I had stopped making monthly payments from my income, my ex has had access to the 50K of my money in the UK, which she has utilized for maintenance payments
I am waiting a response on an offer made to settle out of court using the 50K set aside for me in the original Court Order.

Though the way the story has been told by my ex to my children, “your father isn’t paying us any money” has not exactly helped rebuild my relationship with the children.

Misdemeanour #4.  I was "insulting" to my Ex.
Although I have never been given an actual example of having been "insulting" to her (especially as we don't speak), my parents and family (including my Ex's family) are also accused of the same and are similarly estranged. This devoted loyalty to their Mum is further evidence of Severe Parental Alienation. The children are just protecting themselves, they know some details of their Mother’s part in the marital breakup but she is the one who cooks meals and tucks them in at night. They therefore need to be onside with her, because they also know the consequences if they aren’t onside with her.  So they have to join in the fight against Dad?
I truly believe they are scared of being seen to be in touch with me for fear of the consequences of what will happen to them if they upset their Mum.

In April 2008, I married Tina, the  lady that I fell in love with when I came to Australia. Like me, she is a "Pom" although she has lived in Australia for 16 years.

As I said earlier, finding happiness was like waving a red rag to a bull (my Ex) who was clearly so angry that I was rebuilding my life, which has been evidenced by her behaviour since she learned of relationship and marriage to Tina. It was a case of “How DARE I be happy!”

This is when things really started to get out of control.

My children decided that they didn't want to talk to my wife, Tina. Their logic was that they "didn't know" her. My Ex also said that it was "highly inappropriate" for them to have a relationship with their stepmum despite the fact that the children lived with Mum's boyfriend. That was somehow "different" and acceptable.

Therefore, we decided to come to England for a "Wedding Blessing" in August 2008. We arranged a nice little ceremony by a canal near Bath just for very close friends and family. The important guests were to be my children. About a month before we were due to fly to England, the children told me that they weren't coming to the wedding blessing because their Mum had booked a holiday for the same time (once we had told her the date of the ceremony). How cruel is that?
Before I knew it, my Ex had decided that not only were the children not attending our wedding blessing, but also that  they did not  want to even meet my wife.

My ex told me the children “would only see me”. What choice did I have?
The next week, a new demand: The kids were "scared" to see me so they would only see me at a “neutral venue” where friends could chaperone.
I was hugely upset and insulted. I have only ever loved and cared for my children and (at a distance) was now being treated as though I was someone to be feared, not loved.

My depression got worse. I felt so low. How could anyone poison young minds to that extent? I had no choice but to accept.
We flew back to England and I had a total of 2 hours with the children around a kitchen table with "mutual friends". The kids wanted me to hear things from their point of view and I listened. They were hurt that I had gone to live in Australia and were upset that I had remarried.
However, they could not say why. It was clear to me that they had become convinced that these opinions were their own. This is what is known as, in parental alienation terms, as ‘the independent thinker’ phenomena. My Ex had waged a subtle war through the children over the previous year and they were turning against me.
I can't tell you how bad that made me feel. Did it make me feel like going back to the UK? No. If anything, it made me feel stronger than ever that I had done the right thing in moving to Australia. Had I been close at hand, just imagine the vitriolic nature of the relationship that my Ex would have fostered. I was depressed from a distance. I would have been suicidal had I been close to this home of deceit and lies.

At the end of the meeting, I gave each of them a hug and I felt that we had made some progress. Nevertheless, within a day I got a text saying that they didn't want to see me again whilst I was in England.
We cancelled our Wedding Blessing. It just wouldn't be the same without my kids wishing us both well.
My eldest daughter was 18 two weeks later. She refused to let me see her so I had to post her a card and present.
I have not spoken to or seen my children since then. I have tried all sorts of communication but it is always one way. After I got over the upset, I got angry. I decided that something had to be done. I couldn't FORCE my children to communicate with me but I was (and still am) convinced that my Ex is behind this behaviour. The kids simply have no reason not to love me- or am I being very naive? I didn't split the family, I never gave up on them and I promised to see them more than ever. They had gone from sending me a home made card telling me that they would love me for ever to zero communication in just over 15 months.

I had always maintained that my Ex was not entitled to Spousal Maintenance and I have never paid it to her despite the Court Order. I feel that strongly. This is because my Ex committed perjury at the Final Hearing by claiming that she lived alone unsupported. This was a blatant lie that distorted the judges’ final decision. She was living with her boyfriend as a family unit with my children through her own choice. At no time prior to the Final Hearing had Bressington asked for any contribution towards Spousal Maintenance. The judge just randomly decided that she needed an extra 15% of my salary to keep her from needing to work.

In telling my Ex that I could no longer pay any maintenance, I asked my Ex not to chase me as she knows the financial situation I had now found myself in. She persued me and was awarded a back payment (from the monies set aside for me) which compounded my financial difficulties. At this time, my depression relapsed and my stress levels (blood pressure) were sky high. This was being exacerbated by my children not being in my life. This led to me being unable to work.  I have repeatedly asked my Ex to help relieve my distress by facilitating regular contact with my children and by releasing her crippling financial demands voluntarily (namely, Spousal Maintenance). To date, she has not responded to these requests.
We are all hurting financially and emotionally. I miss my kids like life itself. It isn't nice living off of my wife's earnings but we always get by. However, I have now lodged an Application for Ancillary Relief to try to backdate a variation to the Spousal maintenance payments.

All of this has led to complete Alienation. I'm not blaming my children. They are victims. I travelled back to the UK in August 2009 (upon agreement from my Ex) to build bridges. . I had told my son that I had been given tickets to watch cricket so it was known when I would be back in the UK.
Upon arriving, I went to see them immediately. On knocking on the door, it was promptly slammed in my face. I tried again the next day and my Ex called the police. I had such high hopes for starting to "build bridges" as my Ex described it. So much for building bridges. That was another hard pill to swallow. I was devastated and very low.

This blog is the honest portrayal of events as time will tarnish the memories.
I am beginning to lose hope that my children will ever recover from this alienation and am coming to the harsh realisation that, because of this, they will never be in my life. I will never give up but it gets so hard.
My sincerest hope is that ,even if for just one day, my Ex gets a taste of what she has inflicted....no, I couldn't wish that pain on my worst enemy.
Parental Alienation is a vicious crime and my children and I are unwitting victims.
I will continue to post blogs but my story is now pretty much up to date. I've missed lots out and may add further things as I think of them. If you are about to go through a divorce,
  • PLEASE try mediation
  • PLEASE put kids first and, if you can identify with my situation,
  • PLEASE do not ever give up on your children. If they are being alienated against you, it is when you will need to love them and fight for them even more.
There is light at the end of the tunnel. I am so happy in my new relationship and new life. The contents of my blog represent the only blot on a very bright landscape. I never gave up and will never give up on my kids.

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