I do my best to refrain from saying the same things repeatedly. However, some things are so important they must repeatedly be said. To that end, please know that your children can never afford for their parent, especially single dads since there are few resources for you, to lose hope. If you as a single dad or as a single noncustodial mom lose hope, then your children may lose you due to your despair.
On that note, and especially given our economy which is the worst since the Great Depression, I fear that more and more single fathers are becoming despondent, and hence the reason I’ve taken a recent comment posted somewhere else in the blog and copied it (along with my comment) below. I’ve posted “Charles'” comment first, and then my response.
Finally, and quite tragically and equally sad, I believe that the father who posted the comment in this piece probably took his own life.
And it’s situations such as that, where more children become permanently fatherless, that I’m hoping to prevent by discussing hopelessness. Unless you’ve been there; to that very dark place where you are utterly hopeless, and where life has become nothing more than it taking everything you’ve got to merely place one foot before the other, then you don’t know what it’s like to be struggling to survive under the immense and emotionally crushing weight of a financially impossible and thereby unbearable “child support” order. Especially one where the recipient, like many many others, uses the money to support her own lifestyle while the children suffer and go without.
Posted by Charles
2012/09/26 at 11:51
I’m at the end of the rope after dealing with my daughters crazy mom and family court and child support , they just doubled my monthly payments put me up to 76% of medical after insurance ,yes I do have insurance ,she’s self employed they said she dosent make enough money to figure child support so they put her at making minimum wage ,$16000year she gets credit for her other two kids something close to $8000 so that brings her to making $8000 a year ,,she showed that she made over $35000 last year but then she wrote of like $26000 ,she has a $500 month car allowance but they say she don’t make any money ,,this year ill make close to $25000 that’s with all the over time I’ve worked ,with insurance ,taxes ,doubled child support payments ,I will not be able to live ,not sure what my next step is ….
Please understand that as hopeless as life may seem right now, at some point in the future things will improve, PLEASE trust me on that. I’ve been where you are, so I can truly emphasize with your regarding your distress, ex, child support and everything else. So PLEASE…Don’t ever lose hope. If you lose hope, you’ll have little to live for, and your daughter may lose you. I grew up without a father, so I understand what that emptiness is like.
And although my surrogate father “Steve” played the role of a father in my life stepped in and did a fantastic job, at age 45, I still think about and wonder who my biological father really was, and what he was like. He passed when I was nine, and he and my mother were divorced so I didn’t see him much and therefore really didn’t know him.
I really do understand what you’re going through and can truly empathize. I at one time had a perfect credit history, owned three homes, and had nearly $100,000 in securities. Additionally, I was well down the road to retiring with millions when I reached my mid-fifties.
That, until I was ordered to pay nearly $1300/mo in “child support” as well as provide health insurance and pay the out-of-pocket medical expenses for my daughter back in 2004.
In 2005, I filed for bankruptcy and had one home foreclosed. In 2007 the other two homes were foreclosed as well, and I was terminated for the first time ever from my employment.
My employer back then fired me after the Hamilton County Sheriff’s “Fugitive Warrant Unit” went to my place of employment to arrest me on a civil contempt warrant related to my divorce which was ongoing at the time.
I was found in contempt because the court ordered me to make monthly payments to my daughter’s mother for “equity” in a pre-marital rental property of mine that not only was she not entitled to, I was upside down on the mortgage due to the housing bubble bursting. There was therefore no equity in the property, none. But facts and truth never stop a court from abusing a good and loving father.
However, after being ordered to make monthly payments on the court’s fantasy equity in that home, I “couldn’t” do so due to about 65% of my net monthly pay being seized by the same court under the guise of “child support.”
So after the court literally bankrupted me through said “child support” order, that same court then jailed me for being so financially devastated and destitute that I had no money to pay what it ordered me to.
Oh, did I mention that given my “visitation” order at the time, I had my daughter with me exactly 50% of the time? It still confounds me that millions of single fathers, who didn’t ask for divorce and didn’t agree to give up their parental rights (the court forcibly stripped them of their rights against their will) are forced to pay “child support” to the mother when he has his children 50% of the time or more.
That in my humble and moral opinion is outright thievery on the mother’s part and is wrong. Just because it’s legal doesn’t make it right. Additionally, I believe that when they meet their maker, they will then be held accountable as justice is finally delivered on behalf of both father and children.
They can rationalize their theft of the father’s money through “child support” all they want as they delude themselves into thinking it’s righteous, however I believe God will judge otherwise, and with the ramifications being eternal. Please understand that I’m not proselytizing, I’m merely expressing my beliefs.
Back to where I left off; we had no heat in the house during most of the winters, and wore hats, gloves, and winter coats while inside the house during the winter months. And despite that, we were still cold…Always, and which brings about the forthcoming memory that I’ll always remember.
I will never, ever forget the day when my daughter (5 at the time) looked me straight in the eyes; we were sitting on the landing to the 3rd floor steps, talking and bonding while wearing our gloves, hats and winter coats as usual inside the home. She very innocently asked me “daddy, why is it always cold over here?”
I was speechless and I had no answer for her. It was cold, because I couldn’t afford to heat my home in winter. And as her father, I felt like a complete and utter loser as well as an abject failure who was in no way deserving of such a precious and terrific child. There I was, sitting with that precious child, who loved me unconditionally and meant the world to me, and she was forced to live in a home where winter temperatures inside the house where in the mid to low thirties. I believed myself to be worth less than the trash that I was garbage picking with her at the time.
I was so beaten down and hopeless at one time that I called a National Guard recruiter and met with him. I took the entrance exam and scored high enough on it that given my background and education, he suggested I take an Engineering or IT type job in the Guard.
But I was having nothing of it and I told him, “no.” I further explained that before I’d sign the papers he’d have to guarantee me in writing that I’d get an infantry position and would be immediately deployed to Iraq patrolling the streets of Baghdad. When the shooting started, I wasn’t ducking.
I wanted that infantry position due to the high number of casualties, and therefore it appealed to me as a “honorable” way out. I want to go to Iraq, but I didn’t want to come home, and if I didn’t, then my daughter would have grown up believing that her father died a war hero.
But the night before I was to depart to Columbus OH with my recruiter to enlist, I called him and told him I’d changed my mind because “a five year old girl needed her daddy.”
I simply couldn’t bring myself, no matter how bad my own emotional pain, to leave my daughter alone in this world, especially given the conditions she lived under while not with me.
I had many incredibly long and hopeless years back then that were 100% caused by the State of Ohio’s and the court’s contemptuous, hateful, discriminatory and utterly vile treatment of good and loving fathers like us Charles.
I truly believe that the system intentionally beats fathers down until they’re destroyed emotionally, financially and physically. They look at fathers as nothing more than ATM machines that should be punished by any means possible if they “can’t”, not don’t want to, but “can’t” pay their “child support” orders.
If you disagree with me consider this; a child support order is basic math. A father (or noncustodial mother) must have the financial resources and thereby means to support themselves, or they can’t support themselves. It’s as simple as that statement.
However, you have these highly educated people, magistrates and judges, they are lawyers for heaven’s sake, and we’re expected to believe that they’re without the intellectual capacity to set reasonable “child support” orders whereby fathers can afford to pay it as well as afford to merely survive themselves?
But yet time and again, they continually set “child support” orders so high, that using only kindergarten math, any reasonable person can deduce that in many cases it’s impossible for fathers to pay as ordered, while simultaneously supporting himself or new household. And such is demonstrated by the amounts on his income and expense affidavit.
That affidavit is filed along with proof of income and often times shows (as in my case) a negative amount in the income column after expenses are deducted. It clearly demonstrates that the father cannot afford to pay what he’s ordered to.
Yet time and again, and millions of times over, courts order fathers to pay such outrageous amounts of monthly “child support”, that it’s not uncommon for some to have less than $100 per MONTH to support themselves on. That’s “in the best interests of the children” how again?
To whom does that make sense? Why order someone to pay an amount of money falsely called “child support” when you’re staring right at documents (income and expense sheets, check stubs etc) that demonstrate incontrovertibly that the fathers can’t afford to make the payments? Especially, knowing that the courts have the legislative authority to order a downward deviation in the calculated amount if the court feels there’s just cause or it’s in the best interest of the child?
How does any clear-thinking, logical, and rationally minded person look at a document that shows for instance, a father can only afford to pay $200 monthly in “child support” (and said amount would consume nearly their entire net pay) then order that he instead pay $2000 monthly? And that, while knowing it’s nearly impossible for him not to default on his order unless he commits criminal offenses in order to honor the obligation?
That right there describes the ‘thinking’ processes of tens of thousands of judges whose legal lunacy and faulty logic causes them to regularly issue financially impossible child support orders to fathers. Such are orders where monthly amounts are not only incredibly excessive, it was also never proven that they had the financial means to pay to begin with and that’s not the worst of it.
The most shocking of all is that in many cases, it’s proven to the courts that the father does NOT have the financial wherewithal to pay what he’s ordered to, and yet he’s still ordered to pay it. Mine is a perfect example. My income and expense statement was teetering on the edge of negative when my original order was being determined. The order was issued and I then went bankrupt and lost everything shortly thereafter.
So why do the courts, time and again, do this to fathers? The only answer I can arrive at using simple logic is that the courts and the State of Ohio, through their “child support” related statues, intentionally destroy the lives of father’s, and thereby the lives of their children.
Those are the very same children that the courts and the State of Ohio falsely claim to be protecting by using the phrase “it’s in the best interests of the children.” Said phrase is used not because the mouthpieces of ODJFS endlessly reciting it actually believe it. Nope, it’s constantly recycled verbally by those state actors so as to enamor the public (and the media) for the purposes of garnering their unconditional support for the destruction of countless father’s lives via “child support” payments and the system itself.
Seriously…Who can realistically argue that bankrupting fathers, incarcerating them, forcing them into homelessness, or for those with roofs over their heads, forcing them (and their children) to endure Ohio winters without any heat in their home, all normal byproducts of financially unbearable “child support” orders, is in the best interest of any child?
No one can, no one has to, and hence the reason that despite those very inconvenient truths, the practice of Ohio courts and Ohio’s CSEAs setting unconscionably high “child support” orders remains normal practice and continues today, nearly eight years after my original order was issued. Such is accomplished by diverting public attention from it using a straw man whereby they focus on and demonize the fathers who have fallen behind. They NEVER focus on or look at why he did, only that he dared to do it.
However, the only “why” I can use to explain the willful destruction of so many lives is the word “profit” since Ohio actually ‘earns’ a profit off of “child support” orders, and the higher that order is, the higher that profit is.
And I honestly think that’s it, that sums it up; filling Ohio’s coffers up off the backs of over a million good and loving Ohio fathers, and at the expense of the millions of Ohio’s fathers and their precious children who are falsely said to be the recipient of those “child support” orders.
Studies have shown and as most of us know; “child support” monies aren’t spent on the children of the order, they’re used to support the noncustodial parent’s lifestyle. Yes, there are some, not many, but some mothers who spend the money only on the children. However such instances are aberrations rather than the norm.
Charles, you have to do whatever you can to keep a roof over your head while simultaneously trying to play a meaningful role in your daughter’s life. And as difficult as that may be, you’re going to have to do so notwithstanding her mother’s hate and spitefulness.
I can tell from what you’ve said that her mother couldn’t care less about her, or she wouldn’t be bankrupting you by stealing your money through “child support.” That therefore speaks volumes about her lack of morals and character, so I expect that she’ll impede your efforts and stop at nothing to keep you out of your daughter’s life.
What that means is more stress for you and a harder road to travel, and as difficult as that may be, your daughter will need you exponentially more due to the conflict. Refrain from engaging her mother and remember to keep calm and mind your temper as hard as that may be.
Memories are created via words and actions. Do your best to always create positive memories for your daughter. When she looks back as a grown woman, you’ll want her to have nothing but good memories of you.
Kind words (or no words) and actions on your part with regard to your ex will bring that to fruition. Arguing with her mother, even when you’re attacked first won’t benefit your daughter. If there is conflict, let their memories of you being you silently walking away from it, not partaking of it. You may blow it on occasion, but strive to do better the next time as we’re all human and can only take so much.
I really don’t want to sound overwhelmingly negative, but conflict, even if you don’t respond in kind, is very stressful on you as I suspect you know. But again, please trust me when I say I’ve been where you are, and things WILL get better in time.
I picked garbage (and my daughter was with me most of the time) for years so that I could sell the items I found at yard sales. Although I lived on a busy street so that was very helpful.
But after I lost my last house, I was looking for a place to live in the woods in a tent after I lost my job. As bad as that sounds, and as horrible as it is to live that way, it may be something you might have to do temporarily if you can’t find a basement or car to sleep in, or couch to sleep on.
I had nothing, nowhere to go, and fell behind in my “child support” payments at one point. And when a father falls behind, be that because of unemployment, heart attack, cancer, car wreck, accident, etc, the State of Ohio will not give him one penny of assistance. Eventually, you’ll be shown a jail cell as your assistance and that’s it.
No food stamps, heat subsidies, rent subsides, welfare, etc, nothing. And when you’re penniless or homeless as a result of paying “child support,” so are your children, but the State of Ohio claims that such “is in the best interests of the children.”
Whatever you do, and despite what I’ve described; please don’t lose your hope Charles. IT WILL GET BETTER. Otherwise, if you lose hope, your mind will go places where it shouldn’t be, and your daughter will suffer in many ways as a result.
As bad as things are and as bad as they may get, if you hold onto your hope, then at some point that light at the end of the tunnel won’t be yet another train that hits you head on, it’ll signify a new (and wonderful) beginning where life is once again brightening up.
In closing, it concerns me is where you posted your comment Charles. And having walked alone down some very dark and creepy roads myself in the past, I wonder about some of the reasons that post appealed to you. With that said, what “next step” options are viable at this time? If you’d rather not discuss openly, then please email me. Your daughter needs you Charles, and leaving her alone, without her father is neither a fair nor viable option for her. She is innocent, precious, loves, misses and needs her daddy.
Ohio Council for Fathers Rights