Tag Archives: child support

Things Only a Divorced Parent Understands

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Amicable or not, getting divorced is never going to be a picnic.

When there are children in the equation, things can be exponentially more challenging/maddening.  Aside from the initial concern of “How is this ordeal affecting my delicate offspring?” there are a variety of other issues sure to pop up.   There’s the time you will have to spend apart from your kids, their newfound perception of you and a host of other mentally taxing dilemmas only a single-parent can comprehend.

Here’s a list of the common conundrums that we’ve identified, and how they ultimately can translate into positive experiences in the end.

  • “You’re no fun!” – nothing can be as infuriating as hearing about how much FUN it is at your ex-spouse’s domicile of debauchery.  “Dad let’s me eat Count Chocula for dinner!” …sorry, guess you’re the über boring one since you care about your child’s health.

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positive spin:  When your children are older/grown, they will recognize they you were the parent who was truly looking out for their welfare, and not just providing easy/popular solutions.

  • It can feel a trifle lonely when your child is at your ex’s, ostensibly having a good time without you.  You used to be instrumental in everything they did – now you may feel like your watching from the sidelines.

positive spin: When your child comes home and tells you how much they missed you.  This will never get old.

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  • You now have to monitor every little word that escapes your mouth, as your spawn gobbles them up and giddily reiterates them to your ex.  Heaven forbid if you should accidentally let a remark specifically about your former spouse slip out…

positive spin: Realize that the exact opposite applies.  If your ex says anything about you, it is instantly recorded by your kids as well – so they need to watch their mouths too.

  • Living in constant fear of whose “side” your shared friends will be on.  Whichever parent these people pledge allegiance to will be perceived by the tykes and this inevitably causes them/you anxiety.

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positive spin:  Once things are settled, you then know who your real friends truly are.

  • Determining which rules will be steadfast and should be observed in both parents’ homes.  Is mom saying the kids can stay up to watch Jimmy Fallon, while you want them tucked in before the early edition news broadcast starts?

positive spin:  No matter how contentious your relationship may be with your ex, there will always be some common ground you can reach regarding your kid’s upbringing.

  • Having to hide the emotional lilt in your voice because you physically can’t give your baby a ‘goodnight kiss’ over the phone.

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positive spin:  Again, when you are reunited with your child, their hugs feel that much more magical.

  • Having to show up “childless” to certain extended family functions/holidays because your kid is enjoying the day with your ex and their bizarro family.

positive spin:  Secretly knowing that they have more fun with you and your (possibly equally crazy) clan.

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  • The stabbing pain of hearing your little one cry out “I need mommy/daddy!” …when that parent isn’t you.  It never was all that great before to listen to how you were unneeded in a situation of tantamount importance to them, but now it holds a truly acrimonious tinge.

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positive spin:  Undoubtedly, there are times when they are with your ex and shriek for you in that “end of the world” tone that only children not getting exactly what they want can attain.

  • When you have to ignore/feign that you don’t see the close-knit, smiley family (with both a Mom AND Dad in attendance) enjoying their Pizza Hut dinner feast, while you and you child somberly eat in solitude.

positive spin:  Having the time to focus all of your attention on your kids when you are with them (without the potential distractions of a partner who always seems to want to argue).

  • Not hearing your child’s laughter in the halls when they are at your ex’s for the night.

positive spin: Having license to engage in passionate, grunt-inducing intercourse with a new lover and not having to worry in the slightest that your kid will hear.

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  • When you finally have a new and possibly serious beau, deciding if and when the right time is to present them to your kids.  Will they instantly resent him/her?  Also, maybe this new partner is not good with kids? (Clearly, a deal-breaker – but truly stinks if you like them otherwise)

positive spin:  Inadvertently, your kids can help you quickly weed out people you may be looking at with rose-colored glasses, who are really not going to be great mates in the long run.

  • Feeling the inverse: does your child like your ex’s new “person” more than you??  Will you be “replaced”?

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positive spin:  When these type of questions unsuspectingly pop up in your brain, it’s a good time to take a moment and truly assess the situation.  When you remind yourself that these fears are completely unfounded and irrational, it gives you real clarity and peace of mind.

  • Trying to deal with/suppress feelings of supreme GUILT.  Do my kids think the break-up is my fault?  Are their new problems in school/ extra-curricular activities/PlayStation ultimately my doing??

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positive spin:  If you are really worried about these things, it’s always good to open the lines of communication with your child.  As long as you present any issues in a sensitive manner, your child may be forthcoming and tell you their own fears.  Then the two of you can come to a real place of resolution.

  • Fighting to stay awake at work the day after you had to stay up with your baby as they did battle with a scary cold through the entire night.  When it’s “your night,” being a single parent means having all the responsibly squarely on you.

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positive spin:  At least you get to sleep in when it’s “their” turn.

  • Worrying about how screaming matches with your ex may have negatively affected your children.

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positive spin: Finally letting out that built-up, monumental sigh of relief when you realize you can love and raise your child in a home without constant spousal bickering, mistrust and tension.

  • Staying up at night, wondering if you’ve been doing the right thing.

positive spin: When it finally dawns on you that your child will love you, no matter what.

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-Joe Leone 

Celebrities Who Pay Child Support (And Some Who Don’t)

 

via Featureflash / Shutterstock.com
via Featureflash / Shutterstock.com

So many people are delinquent in paying child support, there is a whole federal bureau designated to its enforcement. The Office of Child Support Enforcement tries its best to help people who can’t afford child support and people who can’t afford to be gypped child support, but they’re merely putting a dent in the over $100 billion owed to mothers and fathers who legally deserve the payments. CNN Money explained that child support delinquencies cost taxpayers an estimated $53 billion in 2012.

The chains of child support certainly don’t escape the rich and famous, with some celebrities’ child support payments apparently getting lost in the mail. Here’s a look at Hollywood to see who paid their 17 percent per child, and who didn’t.

Who Didn’t

When things turn sour, many people run away. Below are a few examples of celebrities who apparently tried to ignore the problem of child support payments rather than deal with it.

Levi Johnston: After a highly public bout with marriage, Sarah Palin’s ex-almost-son-in-law managed to spend $1 million on dirt bikes and four wheelers instead of making his court-mandated child support payments totaling $21,000. Boys and their toys. (TMZ)

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via s_bukley / Shutterstock.com

 

Jon Gosselin: After making tons of money on his kids and his wife by getting a television show dedicated to their very full house, Jon of Jon and Kate Plus 8 decided he no longer really wanted to support the household he vacated. In an interview, he said Kate pays household costs at her house, and he pays household costs at his.

via People.com
via People.com

 

Allen Iverson: In a (not very) shocking announcement in 2013, Allen Iverson of basketball fame announced angrily that he no longer had as much money as he used to, citing this as a reason to skip out on his child support payments. Since his ex-wife got tired of hunting him down every month to make him hand over the check, she took him to court to get the whole amount in a one-and-done lump sum.

via Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com
via Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com

 

Skeet Ulrich: After his ‘90s fame came to a halt, actor Skeet Ulrich apparently could not afford his children anymore, and stopped making child support payments. The situation got real when he was held in contempt of court after letting his back payments rack up to almost $290,000.

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via Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com

 

Who Did

It’s always better to end on a positive note. Below are some celebrities who, despite being asked to give a lot to their pesky children, have thus far done their duty and paid up.

Russell Simmons: According to TheRichest.com, Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons pays $40,000 per month in child support to be split between his two daughters, to whom he has also legally promised new cars when they turn 16. Until they get the cars of their own, Simmons buys a new car worth at least $60,000 for them to be transported in.

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via a katz / Shutterstock.com

 

Terrell Owens: Even after many purported financial troubles, Terrell Owens has apparently managed to squeeze out approximately $44K per each of his four kids per month. While his financial forecast is not looking good, Owens has not yet made any lists of celebrities with egregiously outstanding child support payments.

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via Ken Durden / Shutterstock.com

 

Donald Trump: The Trump paid about $300,000 per year (equaling almost $500,000 per year today) in child support after his high profile divorce in the 1990s, according to a New York news station. This number seems surprisingly low, seeing as his post-divorce alimony payments were $350,000 and the former Mrs. Trump got the house.

via Christopher Halloran / Shutterstock.com
via Christopher Halloran / Shutterstock.com

 

Britney Spears: Pop princess Britney Spears is one of the few ladies who makes the list of people who pay big bucks in child support. After a sad public decline in her mental health, Spears signed up to pay $20,000 per month in child support.

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via s_bukley / Shutterstock.com

 

While it can be interesting to see which celebrities fall behind on their court-mandated duties, not being able to pay child support is no joke. Selling a diamond may help raise the cash needed to either pay child support, or to make up for someone else who fails to do their part.

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Weird Divorce Laws

via youtube.com
via youtube.com

Divorce can sometimes be harrowing, frustrating and even severely emotionally debilitating.  Then, of course, there are the divorce related circumstances that are just flat out bizarre.

Well, luckily nationwide lawmakers never miss an opportunity to cement court case verdicts into permanent mandates.  While our research department was hard at work drumming up and categorizing important and helpful factoids related to divorce legalities, some of us (…ahem) were busy finding “Funny and Odd Tales from the Annals of Divorce Law.”

Here are some of the oddest divorce laws on record, all of which are currently active.
Continue reading Weird Divorce Laws