Friday, November 5, 2010
- I drove home for the trial;
- She petitioned the court for a delay;
- It was granted -- to September;
- I drove back home;
- Her attorney went on vacation for all of August;
- They stonewalled us on documents;
- I drove back across country again;
- They delivered a pile of documents two days before trial;
- We went to trial;
- It went badly for me;
- My lawyer was an asshat;
- He begged me to settle for 50% of his firm's worst expectation;
- I gave in and signed the papers;
- I had a long drive back across the country cursing myself.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Sadly, there has been no forward movement and the frustration has been really difficult for me to bear, even more so to talk about. I feel as if we are completely out of control of this divorce process. My lawyer assures me that we are calling the tune, but it seems as if we all are on defense, all the time.
I am hemorrhaging money. Job prospects are slim, even for a good guy like myself. I owe $6,000 to the IRS and don't have a cent to my name. I have borrowed $15K from a good friend and my accounts are at zero.
I was told by the State that she is fighting my unemployment benefits on the basis that I "abandoned" my job. Funny, I just happen to have an e-mail from her lawyer firing me effective 12/1 of last year. That allowed me to collect unemployment benefits which I am living on. Hello Ramen Noodles!
Met with my attorney today. They know how weak I am at this time and are attempting to string out the trial so that she can go "on a well deserved vacation". Ridiculous. I drive across country to prepare for this trial and they want a continuance so that she can hit the beach with her girlfriend.
Sadly, that action shows where her sense of priorities are. Vacation time is more important than dealing with this issue. That's how crazy these women get.
Well, keep your collective chins up. Thanks for writing me, I really appreciate the words of encouragement.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
- The caring guy that does the right thing, sets up and appreciates beauty, especially the beauty in nature and that which surrounds us everyday? or
- The "taker" or the guy who seeks to optimize what I get out of everything.
Am I the poet or the shark? I see a bit of both in myself. I don't mean to seem melodramatic, but I'm not really sure I know who I am and that is at the root of everything. I have mentioned before that I am an excellent chameleon, quickly assessing and understanding various situations (personal and professional) and "coloring" myself to fit in.
I am very adept at this skill. Some would say that children of alcoholic parents develop this skill in order to cope with the inconsistency and upheaval in their family life.
So, I ask myself about relationships and I came up with the following "truths" about myself -- areas that I need to change:
- I don't know what a normal relationship is -
I need to realize this fact. I think I have an idea and have clearly tried to do what is necessary in order to "fit in" with what I see others having in their relationships. But, when I ask myself, do I really know? I don't. This ripples through intimate relationships as well as "friend" relationships with men and women and also relationships with employers and other institutions. I volunteer a lot and even my relationships with those organizations can be inappropriate.
- I judge myself and others harshly -
I am amazingly critical. Unfairly so. I love when people fuck up as it gives me a chance to show how superior that I am to their situation. Well -- smarty-pants -- here I sit, broke, alone and lonely at 50. How's that approach working for you?
- I have difficulty just having fun--everything had an agenda -
I think I have fun, but I don't really. Weekends frighten the crap out of me -- 48 hours with nothing to do is torture.
- I take myself way too seriously and was overly responsible -
I am so responsible, its sick. I think thats why I like to drink, a chance to be irresponsible.
- I don't like change or know how to deal with it -
I hate change. I completely don't know how to deal. Look at me now. I don't even know where I want to live or what I want to do. What a sad commentary on my life. I feel I have a lot to give, but nobody to give it to...
- I seek approval and affirmations from others but not from myself -
People think I am great. They love me and shower appreciation on me. And why not, I work it every day and I am smart and successful. But, I think I am a piece of crap and unworthy of their affection or attention. Christ, I show up to a job daily where I don't get paid and do a crap-pile of work. Talk about not seeing any value to my life. I'm broke and I fill my life with obligations instead of focusing on what needs to happen. It's freaking tragic.
- I want immediate gratification -
Not so much, but I do need to see results. Sooner is better than later
- I avoid conflict because I didn't know how to deal with it -
Completely true. I take everything so personally that conflict gets elevated to a high level and it becomes all about me and then I get immediately defensive and take it to a new level because I feel personally threatened.
- I fear rejection and abandonment and would put up with a lot of stuff to avoid being rejected -
Look at the crap I put up with my marriage. My wife is a lesbian -- hello?? Who did that, me or her? Her, obviously, but I can either accept it or reject it. I am so crazy that I accept it in my relationship and then think its normal and it's what I deserve. That's bullshit. If you asked a 100 men if they would accept being married to a lesbian, you would get 100 "no" answers. Why do I try to make it work? See the "smarty pants" comment above.
- I fear criticism and judgment of myself, but would not hesitate to criticize or judge others -
Yes and yes.
- I have a lot of misplaced loyalty -
I get treated like crap again and again.
So, some insights and some places to work. What a list.
Monday, May 10, 2010
What you're experiencing is the stages of grief.
They don't march in an order as Kubler-Ross suggested, they come all tumbled together. I hear anger, acceptance, occasional denial and some bargaining.
You're right where you need to be and you need to give yourself time to grieve.
You can't make it go away by forcing yourself into action. It is inevitable and probably necessary that you get some distance from your wife as she is beginning to do from you. It doesn't have to be angry distance but you both need to find separate support for yourselves because you can't lean on each other the way you once did.
I know that right now it seems like the end of the world and in a way it is. Much of the structure of your life is being ripped away and that hurts like hell.
There will be a new world for you and it may be a better one. You'll come to see how hard you've been working to be in love with someone who can't love you back the same way and in time you'll see how nice it is to be with someone who can.
But for now take the time to grieve. Try to focus on your needs as much as you have on your wife's. Find support for yourself here, with friends; a counselor of your own can be helpful.
Be good to yourself.
You'll get through this and we are here for you.
It sure resonates with my experience. I love that he highlighted that "you can't force it away through action" I sure tried that one. With disastrous results.
And, especially "I know that right now it seems like the end of the world and in a way it is. Much of the structure of your life is being ripped away and that hurts like hell."
Man, do I feel that pain. Just like yesterday.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Hopefully, someone, somewhere, sometime, will love me, eventually. Someone eventually will genuinely care about my well-being. Someone, eventually, will see me all the way through and love me anyway.
I hope I will still have the courage to let them love me and to love them back.
Saturday, May 1, 2010
I have no idea how I'm gonna to make my rent payment (due Monday). Luckily, I'm a bit chubby, so I can stand to not eat for a while!
It really sucks being me right now.
Keep the faith, Baby.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Unfortunately, the very thought of sex (and intimacy) with someone just turns my stomach. I'm not gay, but sheesh, I don't know if I can emotionally handle it.
What is wrong with me? It's been close to three years without intimacy and then when it's all teed up, I can't do it?
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Bunny doesn't care about mediation or lawyers.
Bunny is happy that it is getting warmer.
James needs to listen to Bunny.
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Here are the ways that it went down:
- Scheduled for Mediation last Wednesday with a Mediator
- Issued a Demand Letter on Sunday, establishing our position and why we felt it was fair
- Traveled 2,000 miles to the mediation location, rented a car, hotel, etc. Planned for day of prep, day of mediation and extra day if it went longer than expected. 5 days off work. Hotels, fees, etc.
- Mediator and lawyers for the day were approximately $1,000 hour - 8 hours = $8,000. With travel, $10,000. Lost earnings, $1,000. Lawyer prep 2 @ 4 hours = $2,000. Total cost expected around $13,000, plus day off of work.
- Wife lawyer does not prepare -- No demand, no explanation on Tuesday. Expected Wednesday morning before mediation commences.
- Wednesday, no letter. My lawyer has never seen this situation. and is concerned.
- They arrive at 9:00. Placed in a separate conference room. Lawyers meet with mediator. Her lawyer produces letter which is 4 pages of attacks on my character and really nasty.
- Mediation commences after we read letters.
- We are in different solar systems. They offer 10% of what we are asking to settle case.
- Slight improvement through rounds of negotiation. By noon, they are offering 25% of what we were originally seeking. We are down to 85%.
- Noon, they go to lunch. Her lawyer announces that he has appointment at 3:30 PM and will have to leave at that time. My lawyer can't believe it.
- I can't eat as I am afraid I will puke. 2 diet cokes (not a good idea)
- 3:15, we are at 40% offered. We are down to 75%.
- They leave. We decide not to counter their last offer because we are essentially bidding against ourselves.
- I ask my lawyers if they are upset by this disrespectful behavior. They ask me why I'm not more upset.
- I leave, go back to my hotel and completely lose it. Their behavior, the waste of money, the personal attacks and lack of food are too much.
- After an hour of sobbing, decide to get something to eat. Low blood sugar.
- Have to answer the goddam mobile and explain how it didn't work.
- Embarrassed, ashamed and very, very sad.
- Her lawyer is an asshole, but doing a great job. He got me off balance with the personal attacks and his strategy was brilliant -- go for an incredible low settlement number and they look like heros for coming up from the basement. Force us to show our hand first. Do a sneak attack on their offer and don't give us a chance to respond or consider it carefully in advance.
- We take the high road and estimated what the courts would settle out with and that was our opening. We should have taken that number and padded it with some form of giveaway that would make us look good and reconcile about where the courts would end up. Bad strategy. We started where we wanted to finish and offered continuous concessions, ending at approximately 80% of where we expect it to settle at trial.
- I had expectations that this process would be fair and that they wanted it to end. The lawyers are not motivated for that to happen. They are motivated (financially) by dragging this process out as long as possible at $250/hour.
- I had some hope that this would be it and we could go on with our lives. When that did't happen, I was shellshocked and very sad. I did bad "expectation management" on myself and should have considered any possible reconciliation through mediation as an unexpected benefit and not a certainty. Prepare for the worst and be surprised when it doesn't break that way. Don't hope for the best.
- My wife does not care about me or in any way honor our relationship. She wants to get out as cheaply as possible. This is a different person than I expected in the negotiations. I expected that the division of assets would be done with love and respect for the other person and to ensure that we both had a solid foundation form which to grow our respective futures. She wants all the pie and for me to go away with as little as possible.
- I am hopelessly naive.
- Try not to focus on the money. I have spent approximately $20,000 and Wednesday was another $13,000. That is $33,000 and the expectation is that trial prep will be an additional $25,000. That's close to $60,000 and I can only assume that her costs are similar. Assume $100,000 in legal costs which is more than she offered me in terms of the settlement. She would rather pay lawyers than me.
- Never underestimate the mean-ness of lesbians, especially when they are dealing with men.
- Don't forget to eat.
Needless to say, it was a long flight home of licking my wounds. Man, I need a drink.
Why did I ever get married?
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
What can I say, I'm disappointed.
I have to remember that she is a sick woman.
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Case prep was an hour...I expected two or three.
Haven't had a response from her or her lawyer. Makes me wonder if they even know that there is a meeting tomorrow. That would be rich.
It is cold and RAW -- raining, grey and 34 degrees with a stiff breeze. My skin is loving it, but it is cold!
I rented a nice room on the third floor of an old victorian house. The house where I am is located at the dge of the college, with some dorms and frat houses as neighbors.
Took a blissful nap in the rain and about to walk downtown for an early dinner. I'll try and get in bed early... I feel pretty relaxed and not really worried.
Its just mediation.
Monday, March 29, 2010
My lawyers have been so slow and are so unprepared for this mediation scheduled for Wednesday that I completely and totally lost it. In my book, mediation means that two parties have tried to come to a reasonable concensus, are unable to do so and are headed to court. As a last ditch effort, they bring in someone to help them get to a common ground.
We have made no demands, have not received any offers and yet are scheduled for mediation? WTF? It sounds to me like a very expensive (4 lawyers at $250/hr means $1,000/hr for lawyers -- 8 hours = $8,000) way of developing a plan.
So, I lost it. I took my wife's settlement idea (communicated to me via IM) that I should take half the equity in the house and go away and countered with my own. She owes me half the marital estate (like the laws say) less what portion I have already (to be fair) as well as half the equity in the home. Seems fair to me -- no kids, etc.
My lawyer is trying to convince me that I should take my equity in the home as well as an amount which will mean that she gets 75% of the marital assets and I get 25%. And she gets the business, keeps the dog, and the 4 BR house and I get to stay in my crappy rental apartment and sleep on the lumpy bed that I bought from the church goodwill.
I don't think so...
So, I wrote it up, 50/50, sent it to all the parties, told them it wasn't from my lawyer and asked if we should meet on Wednesday.
They have two hours to decide.
James (the seemingly aggressive James)
Thursday, March 25, 2010
I just had to file a massive statement in response to a fishing expedition asking broad swaths of information from me.
It troubles me as my lwayers haven't asked for 1/10th of what they have asked from us. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I didn't go to Law School; I didn't pass the bar; I'm not a divorce attorney and most importantly -- they are just playing a game between themselves.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
- I failed to see what good I had created - My wife had a crazy childhood with lots of instability. The home that we created had lots of stability and was a solid environment for her. In a way, it allowed her to build an emotional base -- sadly one that she then felt strong enough to build her new life upon.
- I needed to let go in a supported environment - it sounds all woo-woo, but she was able to let me see the good that had done and that my allegiances were still pure. It was good for me to hear articulated by another.
We did all the things that you could imagine a native shaman would do - oils, crystals, rattles, drums, feathers, aura cleansing and the like.
I slept well today and will take a salt and clay bath tonight to further detoxify.
Like I said, it all may be woo-woo, but better to leave no stones unturned in dealing with my emotional stability.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
A lot of betrayed spouses, myself included, go into panic mode when they first discover the Affair. Even if you were only lukewarm about your wayward spouse before discovery day, when it happens, you find yourself gripped with fear that you may lose this person.
It's only natural when you perceive such a threat to panic, fight, beg, negotiate, compromise, even demean yourself in an effort to maintain your marriage.
When the wayward spouse is a cake-eater, fence sitter, or really just on the way out--this period of panic and desperation can go on for a long time.
BUT, there will come a time (maybe when wayward spouse decides to really try to reconcile or the two of you are divorcing) when the panic will subside and you will see clearly. You will see how hurtful and disrespectful your wayward spouse was.
You will see how poorly you were treated and how taken for granted you were. You will begin to get angry.
You will go from "please don't leave me, I'll do anything to make this work" to "how fucking dare you do this to me? who in the hell do you think you are?"
You will see that your wayward spouse -- the cheating, lying wayward spouse -- ain't all that. You will realize that you didn't deserve this. You deserved so much more.
That day is coming. I promise you. It won't come all at once. It will come and go, come and go and then it will become the predominant view: how fucking dare you!
Then you may have decisions to make about whether you can reconcile with wayward spouse after all. I mean once it becomes an option, you may realize that you're too good for this wayward spouse. I mean how can someone like that deserve someone like you?
So maybe you decide to reconcile. Maybe it's beyond reconcile and you move one. Whatever.
The point is that you will not always feel this desperate and needy. You will not always be willing to sell your soul for one more dance with the devil.
The day is coming when you will say: How fucking dare you?
I'm over 18 months from my disclosure day. Who knows if I'll ever reconcile for sure? Some days I could really care less. I mean I've been living separate for 18 months. Maybe I don't want to ever share my bed again. Maybe I'll keep my free time. Or maybe, he'll win me over.
But I'll never beg or plead again. He's the fuck up, not me. He betrayed ME! How fucking dare he.
I have changed my tune. I have come along way from lying in my bed, crying until I vomited, clutching the phone, praying for him to call.
You will change your tune too. You will journey a long way. You will regain control. You will realize that you have been wronged and it is the wayward spouse who should make amends.
The day is coming when you will say, "how fucking dare you."
Seriously, it really is.
A I believe you're referring to my "My Space" ...
Q I'm not-I-no, I'm not referring to anything. I'm just asking you a simple question: if you'd ever expressed or communicated in any way that you wanted your ex-husband, Mr. Embry, to die a slow painful death?
A I see it right there on your desk.
A It's my "My Space" blog.
Q Okay, did you say it?
A I typed it.
Q Okay. But the answer is, did you say it? I mean is that your communication.
A I typed it.
Q Okay. And did you ever express um, or communicate in any way that you wanted to be present and dance the cha-cha around his slow painful death?
A It's all there in the blog.
Q Okay. The answer's a simple yes or no. You said it; you've communicated it some way, did you?
A If you want to put that blog there, I ...
Q I'm just asking you a simple question.
BY COURT: Ma'am, will ya just answer the question yes or no?
A Yes, I did.
Q Did you ever refer to Mr. Embry or communicate in any way that he was a worthless bag of monkey shit?
Q Did you ever refer to him as dog piss?
Q Did you ever refer to him as a worm puke stale crusty moldy inhuman horrible human oxygen sucking moron?
Q Did you ever communicate the desire, that because he's older and more stupid than you, he will die way before you do?
A I believe I said please assure me that it was possible that he would pass before me."
The state's attorney redirects with this understated summary:
"BY [STATE]: Ms. Embry, is it fair-fair to say that you're not very fond of your former husband?
A No, I am not fond of him at all."
Monday, March 22, 2010
Here are the things that are currently keeping me awake --
- How will I react to seeing her? I haven't spoken with her in close to 1 1/2 years. It's crazy, but the thought of seeing her unnerves me.
- Will she bring her partner to the hearing? How will I react to seeing the two of them together?
- Her lawyer fired me from my job of the last 10 years (we had a small business where she, her lover and I were all employed). As their passion for each other grew, it was hard for them to keep it a secret from me, so I was asked to work at home. Like a fool, I did so.
- How will I react. It is hard to "let go" and just know that the devine feminine (or whatever higher power you favor) will take care of me.
I have booked myself into a small bed and breakfast that is walking distance from the mediation location. I am trying to reduce the number of variables that could throw me off balance.
Why do wives have to change like this?
Monday, March 15, 2010
So, we're gonna jam a health care bill through just so we can claim victory? And so many people (myself included) are dying on the vine, blowing through our savings, just to prove a political point?
If they had the votes before, it would have already been done.
This country saddens me sometime.
Jobs, heard of them??
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
2. I gained 25 pounds in the last two years. I'm not proud of this.
3. I have very low self-confidence, but at times am cocky.
4. I love to read, but haven't touched a "fun" book in about two years.
5. My sister, brother and mother are all alcoholics.
6. I think I'm different from everybody else.
7. I wouldn't think of wearing the same clothes for two days, but sometimes will only wash my sheets once a month.
8. I have Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
9. A homeless man once saved my life.
10. Within the past two years, I got 3 speeding tickets. Before that, my last traffic ticket was in the early 90's.
11. I failed to declare all of my earnings in 2000.
12. I quit drinking two year ago. I go to AA and Alanon meetings regularly, but in my heart of hearts, I don't really believe that I'm an alcoholic.
13. Sometimes, I think having gay male friends is "safer" than having straight friends of both sexes.
14. I like to be in bed early.
15. I like mornings.
16. I cannot stand heat.
17. I will make unhealthy food choices even though I like the healthier alternative.
18. Once, I seriously thought that committing suicide was the right thing to do.
19. Part of me loves woo-woo crap even though I know it can be a complete crock.
20. I like dogs and tolerate cats.
21. I love to get lost and usually find unique places that way.
22. I worked in an office for a woman who lived an alternative lifestyle. She used to put me in embarrassing situations and never paid me a cent. I left after three months.
23. I know that I am a good friend.
24. At times, when criticized, I get very defensive.
25. I take anti-depressant medication and see a psychiatrist monthly.
26. I like attractive people, though I do not think that I am attractive.
27. I hate conflict.
28. I don't really care for professional sports.
29. I get too caught up in work and sometimes fail to see it with the right balance and perspective.
30. I think what I do is important when it really isn't.
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
And the underlying thread - that honesty has to be in the relationship - is most true. Without honesty and empathy, there can be no reconciliation.
Why is the betrayer willing to throw their marriage & family away?
July 26, 2009 - by Brian Bercht
The reason why I am healed today, the reason why I am no longer stuck, is that I get it. I get it how my husband could love me and still end up having an affair. - Anne Bercht
The question I am often asked is "Why were you willing to throw away your marriage and family, of 18 years, away for the other woman?" or "Why were you willing to risk everything you had for this other person?"
Like most of the questions that we, as the unfaithful, are asked, the answer is not a simple one, but rather a culmination of many factors that need to be looked at collectively. If this is not done, there is a level of contempt held by the betrayed spouse towards the unfaithful, as well as a level of inferiority held by the unfaithful towards one's self. It will be much more difficult for healing to take place in this environment.
Here are six factors that play out in many people's situations that will give an understanding into answering these questions. The factors are given in a chronological sequence, but they don't always follow in order.
1. We didn't believe that the affair would ever get this far. We thought we would be able to end the relationship at any time (it was not and would not be an affair); our involvement was not as serious as we thought.
2. We were not thinking about the consequences. We lived only in the moment and avoided thinking about the future. We didn't think this would be found out. We didn't allow our self to think about how our actions would affect those around us, we were only concerned with what is in it for me. Our fantasy did not include our reality.
3. We would enter our affair box. Many of us are able, for a period of time, to separate our fantasy (affair, emotional or sexual) life from our real everyday life. We are able, more so for men than women, to compartmentalize our two lives, and function adequately in both.
4. We do not want to face the pain, hurt, anger or disappointment. We do not want to face the anger or pain or hurt we will cause in our spouse. We do not want to deal with the pain of how we have acted out of character for our self. We do not want to face up to fact that we have disappointed our spouse, our children, our family, our friends, and our community around us and even disappointed the person we see in the mirror.
5. We hope the affair will end on it's own. There are many affairs that continue on for extended periods of time because even though one person knows that what they are doing is wrong and harmful to their marriage, they don't have the nerve, balls or courage to end it. We are expecting the other to do the 'right' thing. We hope that 'we' mutually decide to end it. We can't see that we are either using the other person or they are using us.
6. Emotions over rational thinking. The power of emotion, excitement and secrecy has a greater influence in a person's life than that of logic or rational thinking. The chemical reaction in our brains cloud out reason, sensibility, or sound judgment, thus hindering us from healthy, productive and sane decisions.
Finally, there are those who don't care about who, how or what their actions affect, they are those who are willing to give up on their own marriage just satisfy their selfish desires. These are the ones whom are not willing to reconcile their marriage or even look at why this happened. The above issues are not really applicable to those individuals.
To the betrayed spouse of the those who are taking responsibility for their actions, for those who are working on restoration, for those who are looking to bring healing into their marriage, and for those who still say they love you, I would like to say be thankful that you are married to an individual who has the courage and willingness to go through the work with you.
Much of what they tell you does not make sense, there is rarely any yes/no answers, they could be telling you the truth (usually after they feel safe) and likely they were not deliberately or consciously willing to throw away you, your marriage or your life for this other person, even though their actions could have (or did) caused that.
© Copyright 2009 Anne and Brian Bercht. All rights reserved.
Its as if the aliens have scooped out her brains and all that is left is the physical body of what was your wife, bu she is now acting on the dumbest impulses ever -- it's all about what she wants, when she wants it, which is immediate.
So sad to see a close friend lose it like that.
Here is a pretty good post:
And if you're going through any of this stuff, it will get better (at least that's what I tell myself).
Monday, March 8, 2010
- My wife has decided that she prefers to be with women and the 20 years that we spent together doesn't interest her as much as it used to!
- I lost my job. (see above)
- Getting divorced (see above)
- Dealing with depression and also with depression (see above)
- I decided that the most embarrassing thing that could happen wold be for me to call my wife while drunk, so I quit drinking (see above)
- And, I moved to a new area of the country...