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All alone at Christmas


XanaXand
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I never thought I would be typing this, but my wife and three kids left for her family in another state for Christmas without me. The last thing she said to me was she wants a divorce and my kids seem to be OK with it. I'm sitting here on Christmas Eve in the house we built together after 20 years of marriage wondering if I can even go on. I have no real friends to turn to. I am a mess.

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I am so very sorry to hear this, especially at this time of year.  Are you aware of any signs that your marriage was in trouble? 

As Batya suggested, perhaps you should find a place to volunteer to get your mind off your situation, and you'd be helping not only yourself but others as well.  I imagine that would lift your spirits to some degree.  Do you have any family that you can be with?

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Your kids are no doubt confused and not sure what to think right now.

But don't ever kid yourself, they need you!...they need their Dad.

You have a long road ahead of you with the divorce (if she is 100% sure that's what she wants).

But keep reminding yourself, that it's not the end of the world.

Many of us on this forum (myself included), have survived devastating end of a long term marriages, and we made it out the other side.

You're not alone.

Take deep breaths, try to get your head calmed down enough so that you're not considering doing something stupid.

If for whatever reason, the emotions and thoughts take over...PLEASE, call someone. 

Whether that be the hospital, a crisis help line, the police, 911..etc...but tell someone you are struggling very badly and need help.

Don't sit there and try to endure it alone if you know it's becoming too much.

Keep writing here and updating us on how you're doing.

It feels very overwhelming right now, but it's temporary. You CAN survive this and the future CAN hold something better.

Please keep telling yourself that, because it's true.

You're not alone, this forum is here 24/7, just write and write if it helps, someone will reply to you.

Deep breaths, one day at a time.

Edited by SherrySher
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On 12/24/2021 at 7:23 PM, Seraphim said:

If your children are under 18 contact a lawyer and what she has done if she left permanently is kidnapped your kids. Call a lawyer on Monday. I am sorry. 

He didn't say she permanently moved away with the kids, he said she took them to see family in another state for Christmas. Seeing an attorney about parental kidnapping is way overboard. He's got enough on his plate right now no need to complicate the matter.

To the Op- deep breaths man. Be kind to yourself, no major decisions, give things a bit of time to settle. Perhaps she's just angry right now, maybe there's still time to turn things around with counseling and some self accountability and behavior changes. Assuming of course there isn't someone else in the picture, unfortunately oftentimes there is and that's what's driving the other person's actions.

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4 hours ago, gamon said:

He didn't say she permanently moved away with the kids, he said she took them to see family in another state for Christmas. Seeing an attorney about parental kidnapping is way overboard. He's got enough on his plate right now no need to complicate the matter.

To the Op- deep breaths man. Be kind to yourself, no major decisions, give things a bit of time to settle. Perhaps she's just angry right now, maybe there's still time to turn things around with counseling and some self accountability and behavior changes. Assuming of course there isn't someone else in the picture, unfortunately oftentimes there is and that's what's driving the other person's actions.

OP said "The last thing she said to me was she wants a divorce..."  That is a very hurtful thing to say, especially 1.  in front of the children (even though they seem OK with it) and 2. during a major holiday.  Obviously, I don't have specific details, but OP seems devastated by her actions.  It seems to be that OP didn't deserve such harsh treatment.

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Ok, the Op is devastated by her words and actions, that's probably true.

People say things when they're angry and frustrated.

My ex used to tell me she wanted a divorce after every argument which we had on a regular basis towards the end of the marriage. Sometimes she'd storm out of the house. Sometimes she'd take the kids with her.

I probably didn't deserve that either. Neither did they. The kids get a lot more than they deserve when the parents divorce and conflict is high. Oftentimes they're scarred for life. That isn't fair either.

Unfortunately there are no laws pertaining to morality and doing the right and fair thing when it comes to saying "I want a divorce!".

 

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1 hour ago, Seraphim said:

There are laws to parental kidnapping though. So she better bring them back soon. 

If the parents are married and there is no custody order in place then either parent is free to take the children wherever they want.

Now if one of the two parents take the child out of state for an extended time and refuses to disclose the location of the children to the other parent, they are approaching a gray area of the law in "some" states.

https://talkingparents.com/parenting-resources/parental-kidnapping

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3 minutes ago, gamon said:

If the parents are married and there is no custody order in place then either parent is free to take the children wherever they want.

Now if one of the two parents take the child out of state for an extended time and refuses to disclose the location of the children to the other parent, they are approaching a gray area of the law in "some" states.

https://talkingparents.com/parenting-resources/parental-kidnapping

That is why I am saying to consult a lawyer . We have no clue which state he is in . I know he said state, so he is American. Not everyone here is American though. I am not American for instance . 

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In my state, if it's a married couple, either one can take the children anywhere as long as the other parent is notified and there's no intention to keep them away permanently.  My attorney told me I could take the kids to Antarctica if I wanted to and my husband couldn't stop me.  Of course, I would never have done that.

If the OP's wife told him specifically that she was taking the kids for a visit to her parents' and makes no attempt to keep them there permanently she would not be guilty of kidnapping.

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29 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

In my state, if it's a married couple, either one can take the children anywhere as long as the other parent is notified and there's no intention to keep them away permanently.  My attorney told me I could take the kids to Antarctica if I wanted to and my husband couldn't stop me.  Of course, I would never have done that.

If the OP's wife told him specifically that she was taking the kids for a visit to her parents' and makes no attempt to keep them there permanently she would not be guilty of kidnapping.

Here both parents have to consent. My brother’s ex hag ( they are not divorced yet) wanted to take my brother’s kids to California and he told her no way in hell he wouldn’t sign and so she couldn’t take them. 
 

Even in the 70’s my mom was told upon her divorce she couldn’t take me and my brother to another location without his consent. She did anyway but he never complained to the court but he could have . 

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On 12/26/2021 at 7:32 PM, Seraphim said:

That is why I am saying to consult a lawyer . We have no clue which state he is in . I know he said state, so he is American. Not everyone here is American though. I am not American for instance . 

No lawyer would get involved with a parent taking the children to see their grandparents for Christmas, especially if normally both spouses would have gone

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On 12/26/2021 at 5:27 PM, Seraphim said:

Here both parents have to consent. My brother’s ex hag ( they are not divorced yet) wanted to take my brother’s kids to California and he told her no way in hell he wouldn’t sign and so she couldn’t take them. 
 

Even in the 70’s my mom was told upon her divorce she couldn’t take me and my brother to another location without his consent. She did anyway but he never complained to the court but he could have . 

It appears from his OP he had full knowledge of the visit to his wife's parent's home for Christmas. He didn't mention they were taken for this visit without his consent.

I do agree with consulting an attorney regarding his rights pertaining to custody.

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