Mediation….

The day came for us to go to mediation. We’d been in contact to try to come up with an agreement before we went to sit with the mediator. As it turns out, he did not really want to make any agreements, he wanted to control the situation and he wanted me to agree to his terms. He would not compromise at all. He wanted me to agree to signing over the house so that he can have it, getting my children every other weekend, and paying him between $300 and $400 in child support a month. I wanted 50/50 times-haring with my children and I wanted him to either buy me out of the house or let me have it. As far as the child support goes, I didn’t think it was fair for me to pay anything at all because he was making a lot more than me. Of course, the extra money he earned was for the side work he did so it was undocumented income. The only issue with the court was they didn’t request his undocumented income. He was making some of his money on the side or under the table and I couldn’t prove that to the courts. At the end of it all, I was okay with it because it was better than me paying the $1,060 a month. I only was okay with it because I was tired of going back and forth about it. He wasn’t going to budge with what he wanted. He even said that if I didn’t agree with what he wanted, he would refuse the divorce and drag it out as long as possible and it would cost me more money. I was once again at his mercy and he knew it. He then tried to use it to his advantage and proposition me again. He said that he would agree to what I wanted if I would give him oral sex. I declined. I could’t go back to doing that and I didn’t.

The day came for our mediation meeting. before the meeting, he texted me and tried to tell me that I had to agree to 70/30 time-sharing with me having the children 30 percent of the time. He went as far as to say that no judge would agree to me having the children more than that. As if I all of a suudden was a horrible mother because I left him. He was pretty confident in his efforts and I almost went for it but I simply responded by telling him we will find out. Finally, we get to mediation. He was there with his attorney and I was there by myself. I was not intimidated at all. I was excited and ready to get it done and over with. The mediator came in, she had already reviewed our case. As I was talking to her I can tell she was bothered by our situation. She tried to tell me that I should not give up the house in return of nothing. When I tried to ask her what she meant, she politely told me that she could not give me any legal advice. I knew deep within myself that he’d manipulated the situation but I figured that I would eventually be able to purchase another home so I wasn’t too concerned about it. My main focus was getting the divorce finalized so that I could move forward with my life and take the next steps in getting the children back with me without any interference from him or his attorney.

The mediator began to ask if we had discussed or made any agreements and we told her we did. The time came where we had to talk about time-sharing and child support. The mediator knew I was being taken advantage of, she told us that we had to adjust our agreement for the time-sharing. As it turns out, my ex didn’t know anything about time-sharing and my rights as a parent. We automatically knew that I would have them every other weekend because I was off every other weekend. We had to discuss how things would work during the week. I told the mediator that I would get them 2 days a week. When she did the calculations, it would turn out we would have them 50/50 and he would have to pay me child support. Once he heard that, he immediately disagreed and said that we will figure it out in court. He knew I didn’t want to draw out the divorce but he didn’t care. I was still paying him the $1,060 and I really needed the divorce to be finalized. The mediator told me that if I took one day back it would be 53/47. I agreed and with that agreement my child support went down from $1,060 to $147 a month and as each child turned 18 the payment would drop. I was over the whole process and ready to move on. With both of our agreements, we signed the documents. Mediation was over and the next step was to go before to judge and get the divorce finalized.

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