Abandoned

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RivN

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Abandoned
« on: April 04, 2019, 12:39:07 PM »
How do you cope with a possibly PD spouse who just abandons you but doesn't divorce you?
He left 3.5 years ago, moved 1000 miles away.  I don't know his phone number or email.  Financially devastated from being left and then getting aggressive cancer.  (So I can't pay pay for a lawyer right now, not even in installments.  I have almost no income.  Have tried to find pro bono or someone who will delay payment but have had no luck, probably because we have no children and there's no physical abuse involved.)

He never exhibited PD traits until just before he left.  He lives with another woman in a whole new life now - new partner, new city, new career, new friends, etcetera - but is still legally married to me. (I posted in Welcome Mat with more background).  I don't know if he's PD but he left and practically erased me.  Am I worth so little after almost 2 decades together?  How did he just shut off any feelings for me and move on like I never existed?  I have advanced cancer and it's like if I die, it won't affect him at all.

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Poison Ivy

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2019, 12:43:14 PM »
I'm so sorry.  My now ex-husband abandoned me but in much less dramatic fashion.  I have no relevant suggestions but I can say that I understand how much it hurts to be ghosted. 

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mrstring

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2019, 01:34:14 PM »
Really sorry to hear that. That must feel devastating. :( Circumstances were different for me, but it was a feeling of feeling discarded. In my experience, people similar to them don;t think with a conscious so you wont ever be able to figure them out.

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Boat Babe

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2019, 12:00:04 PM »
Dear Abandoned
What a rotten situation to be in. Just one of those is enough in any lifetime, let alone two at once.
All you can do is to focus on yourself and your health right now but that's easier said than done, I know. Get as much emotional support as you can to help you through this difficult time. Everyone here is rooting for you ❤️

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clara

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2019, 01:50:25 PM »
While I don't think anyone develops a PD in middle age, RivN, unless they're suffering from some sort of dementia or other physical condition that's affecting their thinking/behavior, I think it might be possible you're dealing with someone with ASPD.  If you can find it, I would suggest the book The Sociopath Next Door because in the case histories presented you might find some similarities to your ex.  People with ASPD can fool people for long periods of time especially if they  have one of the more passive variants.  Just upping and leaving a relationship without much warning or justification is one of the behaviors they can exhibit. 

Also, I don't know if they exist where you live, but you might try contacting a legal aide society for the legal issues of him leaving but not divorcing you.  I'd think you'd qualify for such help because of your financial situation.  It's possible he doesn't want to divorce you because he doesn't want you to have a share of his assets.  But I believe that's not entirely his decision to make once you've been separated for so long.  Also, if you're in the US, you're entitled to a portion of his social security, regardless of your marital status, if you're of eligible age or if you become disabled.   

Hope this is of some little help! 

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RivN

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2019, 04:21:58 PM »
Thank you for the replies.

I have tried to get legal aid but because there are no children involved and no domestic violence involved, no one can help me.  We also have no assets.
 The only thing I'd be getting is my share of the retirement fund that I'm legally entitled to.  My therapist has been reaching out as well to try to help me get some legal help but so far no luck.

I just can't stop feeling worthless.  I spent almost 2 decades with this man who never exhibited a single PD trait, and then all of a sudden I matter so little to him that he changed his phone number while I was in chemo. 

Sometimes I think he really did find the love of his life in the OW and has the life he always wanted and just can't face the guilt so he pretends I don't exist.  It hurts so much to know he's off having fun and enjoying life with absolutely no care at all for how much I'm struggling financially and health-wise.

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Jsinjin

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2019, 01:03:32 AM »
Hello!   You are worth so much and so very valuable as a human and a woman and his actions are terrible.   You deserve respect and dignity and his actions are stealing that from you.   

You deserve more than what he left and you do have legal rights to demand a closure and the difficult but necessary process of divorce and asset settlement.

I can't advise on the specifics but there are definitions around abandonment of a marriage that can make the process flow through courts and those legal processes can settle the accounts.

Remember that the actions are his and they are bad behavior and regardless of PD or simply being cruel behavior, those actions are not your fault.

Protect yourself!   Take care of yourself!

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RivN

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2019, 06:39:32 PM »
Thank you.  So far I have not been able to find any legal aid.  Even my therapist and the social worker at my cancer center tried to help me find a lawyer who would take my case pro bono but no one could find any help for me.

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Swirlingemotions

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #8 on: June 14, 2019, 01:51:34 AM »
I am so sorry for your situation and I am sending you healing thoughts.

Chemo is very difficult.  Focus on your recovery right now.  If you have no children or real assets, then take it one day at a time.  Or one minute, hour, etc.  Get through now.  Recover, heal and love yourself.

When the time is right, look at your state's law on divorce.  What options are available for you?  Can you fill out a form asking for a divorce due to abandonment?  Then your only pay to serve him papers?  Maybe you can do the paperwork yourself without a lawyer?

But all of that is in the future, because right now you are in a fight for your life.  You are worthy.   You can heal.  You are loved.

Hugging you from afar.

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RivN

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #9 on: June 14, 2019, 11:48:13 AM »
Yes, my state allows divorce for cause such as abandonment. But I don't know if I could do it because he didn't abandon me completely until he had already been gone for over 2 years.  He left in July 2015.  He paid the rent until December 2015 (and also made me think we were just "separated" while he lived with his mother). Then I found out about the affair and that he had no plans of trying with our marriage but was making plans to move 1100 miles to be with his affair partner. 

I had to move in with my brother in early 2016. He played games with me for months while I tried to "work with him" on a separation agreement.
Then he moved 1100 miles away in June 2016.
This is where it gets weird.  A month after he moved away, THEN he started paying me what he agreed on.
He paid me for all of two months. Then I told him I was moving to a new state 700 miles away (cheaper cost of living).  Mind you, HE had already moved 1100 miles from me.  So my moving away shouldn't have been an issue, but he got pissed and stopped paying me. 

Also stopped paying EVERYTHING. I can see his credit report still because we had ordered it through my email before the marriage ended, so I get updates.  He has $40,000 in debt that he completely stopped paying on in October 2016 and yet has faced NO consequences for it.  Only one account has gone to collections and it is for a small amount, a few hundred dollars.  The largest one was a debt consolidation loan for almost $25,000 and although it says "charged off as bad debt," it's never gone to collections and there's no derogatory remark.  It's just been in limbo for 2.5 years.  So his credit is not really getting hit that bad.  His scores actually went up like 70 points, so they're still in the "needs work" category, but they should be rock bottom.

When he changed his phone number, he never even bothered to pay the last bill on his old phone service, and even Verizon still has his balance of $150 showing as "collection account," but still listed under "active accounts" and no derogatory remark and his credit score didn't change.  That was a year and a half ago.

Anyway, so he acted like he was "working with me" until I moved out of state in fall 2016, and then for months after he would respond to me every so often but still be vague, never pay and always want a change to the separation agreement.  I spent the last little bit of money I had on a lawyer trying to do everything through the proper channels but he was basically unresponsive.

Then I got diagnosed with cancer in late spring 2017, just before I became a legal resident of my new state, and had to move back to my home state.  He used that as an opportunity to pretty much disappear.  I sent him one email right after my diagnosis asking him to pay.  His response was ridiculous, something about not wanting to "play hardball" with all I was going through, but that's what he "had to do."
It was demoralizing, emailing and texting him from spring 2016 all the way through spring 2017, feeling like he was making me beg him for money, which he never gave me anyway, except for 2 months.

I was so busy with treatment and trying to stay alive, I never contacted him again after that email contact when I was first diagnosed.  On my birthday a month after my diagnosis, I got a text with a picture of the dog, telling me the dog says happy birthday.  Then no contact between us again.  Then during a lull in my treatment in January 2018, I felt a little better so I sent a text hoping to get things rolling again.  That's when a stranger texted me back and informed me that was no longer his phone number.

Then in July 2018, he sent me an email telling me my beloved dog was sick. He had taken the dog with him and I had been trying to get the dog back before I got sick.  I was devastated but not sure it was true, since when I moved in 2016 he had also sent me an email saying the dog was really sick but that turned out to just be him trying to make my move all about him.

But this time it was true.  While I was sitting in the cardiac unit at the hospital because my chemo had caused basically a mild heart attack, I got a condolence email from an old acquaintance who apparently didn't realize we were no longer together.  She had seen on his Fakebook that he posted that the dog had died.  That's how I found out he put the dog to sleep and never bothered to tell me.

I unblocked him on Fakebook just to message and ask for the dog's collar.  His response was like a toddler begging mommy not to be mad at him and he promised to send me the collar and anything else I wanted.  (He of course never actually sent me the collar.) He asked about my health (I didn't give him any info on myself) and called me by my nickname that I had explicitly forbidden him from using when I found out about the affair because only people who love and respect me are allowed to call me by my nickname.

So that was July 2018.  Didn't hear from him again.  Heard from my MIL, his mother, periodically but she wouldn't help me get in touch with him because "That's between the two of you."

My mother died suddenly in January 2019.  I broke down that morning and messaged him through Fakebook to tell him.  His response was that he was sorry to hear it and "how is your health." (Again, I didn't give him any info.  If he really wanted to know, he'd check in and also make my life less stressful by paying me, transferring the retirement account I'm entitled to, and making himself available to deal with divorce.)
My father died suddenly 3 weeks later.  I got a message from him telling me his mother had told him about my father and he was sorry for my loss. I said thank you and he again asked "how is your health."  I told him everything was just really rough.  He said, "I'm sure it is. Hang in there."  Really? 

So now he's gone again.  I haven't re-blocked him on Fakebook as that's literally the only way I might hear from him, although I have no intention of conducting my divorce through social media. 

In April, there was a hard inquiry on his credit report from a property management company.  Then last week, a hard inquiry from an internet service provider, so he's obviously moved again.  So even with his list of "charged off as bad debt," "sent to collections" and clear evidence that his last payment made on anything was October 2016, he's still been able to get a lease and move.  Meanwhile, I am destitute and live in someone's basement and sleep on an air mattress.

He's living a brand new life, living with is girlfriend, working at his new job, going to events in his new city and golfing like a carefree man with no worries, while he's still legally married to a woman with cancer who is financially devastated (largely due to him) and has just lost both of her parents.  He paid me spousal support for two months in 2016 and nothing since.  I don't know his address, I don't know his phone number, and I don't know his email address.  I owe back taxes for 2016, 2017, and 2018.  I am working some freelance that barely covers my basic monthly bills (car, car insurance, food, etc). 

I'm so tired.  Tired from treatment, tired from what seems to be one heartbreak after another (marriage ending so abruptly and traumatically, cancer diagnosis, dog dying, mother dying, father dying.)

It seems like he's done everything wrong and is facing no consequences and is actually reaping rewards.  Meanwhile I've tried to do everything right and I'm sinking further and further into a hole. 

I don't know if the courts will consider this abandonment because of the contact for the first 2 years.  I guess it's abandonment in the sense that he paid for two months and then stopped and has refused to pay since. 

I have an advanced degree, an MFA in creative writing, so not like an MBA or anything.  But my inability to work has more to do with my health than my education level.  I do think that my education level will play a role here in a judge deeming me as not as needing of spousal support. 

I am legally entitled to the retirement account, though I suspect due to his major change in personality and complete loss of moral compass, he's probably spent that money (possibly a reason why he's cut off all contact).  So then I would have to fight to have him pay it back to me, which would of course involve lots of court processes and legal fees. 

None of this makes sense.  He lives with the woman he left me for, but won't divorce me.  He's living an entirely new life as if his old life with me never existed.  But his social media profile pictures are all pictures taken in the home we shared when we were married.
He changed his phone number while I was in chemo, but emailed me months later about the dog and said he was sorry for the lack of contact but it was because his phone went through the washing machine. (WTF???  :wacko: As if refusing to acknowledge even to himself that he changed his phone number.) He's cut off all avenues of communication but contacted me when my father died as if it was normal.

He just doesn't seem to be living fully in reality.  I can't find any lawyer to take my case pro bono.  With no kids or domestic violence involved, it's hard to get legal aid for divorce. 
« Last Edit: June 18, 2019, 01:35:59 AM by Bloomie »

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notrightinthehead

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #10 on: June 15, 2019, 04:49:32 AM »
You seem to be a fighter. I have no advice for you, just wanted to send you a big hug.

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RivN

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2019, 10:41:18 AM »
You seem to be a fighter. I have no advice for you, just wanted to send you a big hug.

Thank you. I feel weak and like heís steamrolling right over me.

The only thing I really fight is the urge every single day to message him (via fakebook because itís the only way I can) and tell him Iím NOT less than, that his behavior is despicable and whoever he is now is someone I never want to see or speak to ever again.

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Swirlingemotions

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2019, 01:05:49 AM »
I am very impressed with all you have accomplished.  Chemo and fighting cancer, dealing your ex and all the trauma are enough to make a person never leave their bed.

When I met with my lawyer,  he told me that papers can be filed on their own.  They are online - google them - and you can fill them.  You don't need to have lawyer to see a case through.  It might be worth a try.

On the other hand, even if you just file for separation or abandonment, it may forestall any future debt he incurs if they come after you.  If you had not contact for a year, it is abandonment.

Do some googling and become familiar with the legal language.  With a MFA, you are smart and creative enough to work it through yourself.  Don't let him drag you down.  You got this!

Hugs!

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RivN

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Re: Abandoned
« Reply #13 on: June 17, 2019, 02:57:08 PM »
I do appreciate your reply very much.  Papers can be filed without an attorney, but the legalities of getting a retirement fund transferred via a QDRO are very specific and, even without an attorney, cost money to deal with through the court system. 

We have had contact in the past year (I sent him a message via Fakebook Messenger when my mother died and three weeks later he messaged me to say he'd heard from his mother that my father died .)
We have not had contact regarding legalities since June 2017.  Up to that point, I had been doing everything by the book and had a lawyer and he would sometimes reply but usually not.  I have the email thread still.  There are 27 messages from me over the course of 6 months, 2 replies from him, both of which made little sense.

After my cancer diagnosis in June 2017, I gave up because I could see that he was making me beg and it would never stop going around in circles unless I stopped it.  So I stopped contacting him about legalities (and that was the only reason I had been contacting him).
He never replied to my final email and sometime around the end of 2017, he changed his phone number.

So since summer 2017, he emailed me once (to tell me that our dog was sick) and we have had 2 brief exchanges on Messenger.  His email, after at that point nearly a full year of no contact, opened with, "Sorry for the lack of contact" - which proves he knows he should be in contact as we are still legally married, and also that just as a human being with a soul, he should have at least checked in on me once since I have cancer. 
His excuse for the "lack of contact" (abandonment) was that his phone went through the washing machine.  Yup.   ::)

I am not just broke, I'm destitute.  I can't even afford the filing fee, never mind trying to figure out how to actually get what I'm entitled to (which is really not that much money to begin with but would sure help me out right now).