NPO publishes blog articles to inform and to stimulate conversation about issues of importance to NPO's mission. All blog articles express the opinions of the authors as individuals and do not necessarily reflect the views of National Parents Organization, its Board of Directors, or its executives.
'The divorce court allowed my ex-wife to get away with wiping out the bank accounts, leaving me to pay the $20,000 of debt she charged up'
We've often discussed how women are sometimes able to get away with practically anything in family court, and the letter below is another example. Part of the reason for this problem is the family law system's anti-father bias. Part of it is the negative societal image of men and fathers, particularly divorced dads. Part of it is that courts are often so jammed that judges don't have the time to make meaningful decisions. Part of it is judges' concern--legitimate, to a degree--that economically vulnerable women not be left unable to provide for themselves and their children after divorce or separation. The letter below from Mike, a reader, provides a good example of the way some women try to scam men in family court, and the way the courts close their eyes to it. It was originally written in response to my blog post Welcome Home, Soldier--Dad Comes Back from Army in Iraq to Visit His Daughters, Is Jailed for Child Support. Mike writes: "I was a good, law-abiding citizen and a hard worker all my life. I struggled and sacrificed to get educated and provide a comfortable life for my family...throughout the four years of my divorce the courts allowed my ex-wife to get away with wiping out the bank accounts, leaving me to pay the $20,000 of debt she charged up, and pay all medical bills (including the ones for her colored contact lenses, which had no medical purpose other than to turn her eyes blue). "The court further labeled me as a criminal and abuser through false allegations from my ex-wife, while also allowing the man she cheated with (a documented alcoholic and convicted felon with attempted murder and vehicular homicide on his record) to move in with her and my young son. "To add insult to injury, the court made me pay all the bills in the house (including the electricity of which they kept the lights, air-conditioning, and pool heater on 24x7; and the phone, where they got every feature and made daily calls overseas). The court also gave her my only car, even though she bought both herself and her boyfriend new cars from the money she got when she wiped out our bank account (my life savings). "In the end the court turned a blind eye to the daily abuse my ex and her boyfriend would inflict on our son, while justifying her refusal to give me court ordered visitation with the myth that I am probably the abuser. Best of all, they allowed my son to be abused (even to this day) with the justification that it is in the 'best interest of the child.' "These days I'm in a job I hate. Normally, I would just quit, cut down on expenses, and find something new. However, since I pay child support voluntarily quitting a job can well put me in jail."