As usual, I’m reading books to educate myself. Tonight’s subject is divorce.
The thrust of Nolo’s book on divorce is on deciding what kind of divorce I want, then considering how I want to get there. Do attorney’s hash it out? Do we have to go to court and air our dirty laundry? Or would mediation work for us?
But then there’s the big question: Am I on the path to divorce? Is there NO alternative? Am I going to get divorced in the same hasty manner I married? Did I throw out the brakes on this vehicle on a down hill road?
If we lived in Texas, we could get a quickie divorce (so long as we were happy with the separation agreement). In North Carolina, we must live separately for one year. I am beginning to see the wisdom in the forced wait.
I find myself wishing Will and I could talk. We both want separation from each other. We both want the other to change. We both want to renegotiate a LOT of crap. And there I go speaking for him again when there is no way to know what he is thinking. I cannot, by choice and by law, talk to him now.
I need time.
But my attorney wants my financial documentation yesterday. She wants to know exactly where I’m headed when all I know is that I don’t want him around me now. Isn’t there some way to slow down?
Will wants me to not show up in court for his next appearance. If I don’t show up, then chances are the court will drop the charges. Good for him, makes me look like a liar. I’m no liar; I’ll be in court. What he says doesn’t align with what my attorney says. He says I can’t trust a civilian attorney; I think I can trust a civilian attorney because I have NO ACCESS to a military one.
I trust that everyone knows military courts are completely different from civilian ones. Even Will, an active duty soldier, cannot hire a military attorney to represent him in civil court. JAG is not a free attorney service for the military. JAG only governs what happens to a soldier under military law (discharge from the military, dock pay, reduce rank…that kind of thing).
Because the military now pays attention to domestic violence and abuse, IF Will’s convicted of domestic abuse the Army will dishonorably discharge him. That’s what Will says JAG says. I haven’t been able to get to JAG yet – they have a class two times a week and my other appointments have taken priority.
So here I am, being pressured to “not show up” in court and to get financial documents so “we can proceed,” and all I’m really wanting to do is to SIT WITH THIS for a bit.
There may be a really smart way to handle this separation and divorce that doesn’t involve ridiculous amounts of pressure OR money. I’m no attorney, but I think, given a little time, I can get a handle on WHAT I WANT and then find out WHAT HE WANTS and then see how close to agreeing we are.
I’m thinking a mediator is necessary. Will wants the cheapest way out, but I have a lot at stake. If I don’t have someone who can protect my interests, then Will loses nothing and keeps everything WE have worked for and created in the past 18 years.
I think he doesn’t care about that. I think he wants to rush things so I don’t have a chance to think. Or maybe he wants to rush things because it hurts. But ALL of those ideas are simply me projecting my own thoughts onto Will, and that isn’t going to help me one bit.
Instead of blogging, I am going to write out what I want. I’m going to give that to my attorney (for record-keeping) and have her send it to Will. Then maybe he’ll tell me what HE WANTS and I can either be pleased, hurt, or angry, but I would be able to move ahead without feeling unheard and rushed.
See “What I Want” on the post entitled I Want To Lie To You