Your kids will be better off if you get out of the situation. My siblings and I suffered for years because my mother wouldn't divorce a violent alcoholic. It was unnecessary. We would have been poor either way, but suffering less if she had just gotten out. Poor isn't the worst thing in the world. And you've had some good advice here -- make a plan, get a good lawyer, get some training or go back to school if you can, get as much help as possible with the kids.
Divorcing my husband of 13 years...
Hey, if this helps, I found this blog by a former Independent Fundamental Baptist (IFB) who was part of the quiverfull movement. Some of her circumstances are similar to yours. It sounds like you are doing what is best for your health and that of the kids. No one should remain married to an alcoholic, especially if he/she is in any way abusive.
My wife has a JW aunt who is married to an alcoholic and even though he and I are both 'unbelieving spouses' I would join the chorus of individuals who thinks she should leave him. She won't sadly and it has taken a toll on her kids. The oldest is doing semi ok and managed to leave the house and get married. The second oldest stood up to his dad and got kicked out and became a drifter for a while. As crazy as this sounds, he was actually 'saved' by a group of IFBs and now considers himself to be a devout IFB if you can believe that. The youngest is doing quite badly and became addicted to drugs and is currently a drifter.
Thank you again for all the helpful replies and advice. I have retained an attorney for consultation purposes only. I have no idea what the laws are on this, what my rights are, what his rights are, and what option would be best for the kids. I do need to hear all of the legal stuff, and he does too, so we can hopefully come to an out of court agreement (but drawn up legally in a contract that will stand up in a court should that day ever come).
I find the comments about my kids really sad and ignorant. (I think many of you completely misunderstand the term "special needs" and its broad application.) If I had 4 bio kids, and 3 had happened to have been born with special needs, would you still advise me to offload the 3 of them? Maybe dump them a fire station or a deserted parking lot? Just because I did not birth 3 of them does not mean my committment to them is any less or that they are not now "my" kids and my biological child's siblings, whom she loves with her whole heart. Unfortunately, my crystal ball wasn't working on that day a few years ago when we decided to adopt them so I had no idea his behavior would deteriorate into what it has. But regardless, "returning" them is NOT an option. As messy as this divorce will be, I am going to minimize the impacts on them as much as I can. I actually do know that they and I will be happier once the waves have settled and he is gone. But it will be a long, hard road there.
Again, thank you for the helpful tips. I'm writing them all down for my consult with my attorney.
You did the right thing contacting an attorney. You are right, it is a difficult road but you will and can get through it. Your children may need some therapy to help them through it. When I went through it 34 years ago no one suggested I take my son to one and I wish I would have done that. It was difficult on him and it is for all children.
That is a good idea to keep a notebook with questions and answers that way you have it right at your finger tips. I would also check to see what help you are eligible for and what local colleges or trade schools have to offer you. I know a number of years ago a friend of mine was able to get her education as a dental hygienist for free and she was 40+ years old and divorced.
Your children are very fortunate that you love them as much as you do. I don't understand why some would even suggest you give them back. They are very precious and you will find a way to continue to take care of them. I have a cousin who has a son with MD and they are paid to be his caretaker instead of someone coming in to take care of him or putting him in an institution. There are so many programs out there that you may not be aware of.
Take care and sending you a hug.
hi 2pink - good for you in getting an attorney. Don't worry about the ignorant judgemental advice about your kids and your marriage - this is par for the course here at JWN, particularly from those like Gustv Cintrn, who are still controlled by cult thinking. Good luck, Fraz
In most cases divorce is not amicable. It can be a tough challenge to face for all and it takes time to recover. I have been separated four years and divorced for one and we are still in court over custody and contact issues. It seems neverending for us and sometimes that can be the way if you're unprepared like I was.
Prepare well before you take your steps and you could avoid some hardships I am facing at the moment.
I wish you well. It's very apparent that you love all of your children so much. You're investigating the legalities and seeking the advice and experience of others. Maybe there are other parents of special needs kids, that have been through divorce, in your area where you can draw some support and ideas about resources.
Excuse the idiot poster who sounds as heartless as he/she probably is. As far as anyone else projecting their emotional history and applying it to you...... once again look past that and review the many posts offering constructive advice.
KateWild offers the other side of the divorce and custody battle........ she's lived it so she knows what she's talking about. Good advice from all concerning legal situation.
When I mentioned looking into a good stay at home job, you wondered where and how to start looking.
At this point in time you have expertise in special needs children and the services they are provided. Start there by looking and talking to everyone and every agency associated with special needs to find out what services they may want to out-source. You may find an opportunity to build on. Just a thought.