There was one more catch of the state sponsored job program that I haven’t mentioned here.
Namely, a requirement to allow child support enforcement to seek support on your behalf, and if successful, they keep any child support paid for the time that you are in the program.
I’ve tried this on three different occasions over the years, as it’s also a requirement for some of the other government services in this state.
But, it has always ended up going nowhere. Because mine is a complicated situation where we had lived at the same address, but then I had moved while he didn’t. So even though my daughter was born here, and we hadn’t even known I was pregnant when I moved, this still gives the state where he lives jurisdiction… meaning they have to be the ones to prove paternity, get court orders, and enforce payment.
All my state can do is request that they do this. Afterwards I can file motions for a change of juristiction, but the initial work has to be done there. (A 16 hour drive away from here, meaning its not likely I’d even be able to attend the court dates when they do so.)
Thus far, every time they have tried, the other state has said that they are unable to track him down, and thus unable to establish any paternity. Because he hasn’t had consistent employment, addresses, etc.
Which, surprisingly enough, has been a good outcome to me.
Because there’s also a dark side of this.
Because the people working “on my behalf” very clearly spell out that they do not work on the parent’s behalf, but on the state’s financial behalf.
So the fact that establishing paternity to make him pay also gives him grounds for custody and visitation is completely ignored other than to say that it’s outside of the scope of their responsibility.
So, in other words, court declarations will be made that can have a major impact in our lives… several states from here, without me there, with the people there in my place hired by the state and only concerned with money.
Gee, that doesn’t have the potential to go really poorly.
Especially when you look at the past situation that got things to this point… a controlling relationship that turned sexual through coercion bordering on rape depending on your definition, that only later turned physically violent and was revealed to have drug abuse involved. (Amazing how the luster of a rebound relationship can blind to massive red flags)
Followed by literal stalking following my fleeing the relationship, and a planned adoption thwarted by his refusal to consent to it and threats to sue for custody if it went ahead anyway (that I had no documentation or concrete proof of the abuse to be able to legally prevent from happening)
Eventually followed by my attempts to allow him to be involved being used as further attempts at controlling me without him actually taking any responsibility or real involvement with her.
He stormed out of the hospital (where he wasn’t to have been told I’d been admitted but managed to find out anyway) a few days after she was born after I got mad that he’d intentionally woke her up after a rough night of my dealing with her not sleeping… claiming this showed I wasn’t going to let him be involved… and thus he isn’t listed on the birth certificate or other paperwork.
He came back to the state a couple of months later, staying for a few months, but every time he wanted to see her, it turned into him ignoring her and instead spending the time trying to interrogate me, attempting to make me feel guilty for everything bad that happened in his life, and making unwanted sexual advances.
After he left again, he’s been back just once, to see her on Christmas about a year and a half later. Which was spent accusing me of turning her against him (because why else would she be treating him as a stranger… when she’s not even two and hasn’t seen him in over a year?), and trying to make me feel guilty about going to family events that he’d been told about in advance, and for having a new stable relationship. And again, pretty much ignoring the fact she was even in the room.
He hasn’t been back since, nor has he even asked to see her, or to speak to her, or written to her or sent cards etc (he does have my mother’s address, which hasn’t changed). Not once.
I’ve never once blocked his involvement, or denied visits or contact… because I’ve never had to.
Every so often he’ll send an instant message to my yahoo account, but only to either blame me or to go back to threatening to sue for custody. And weirdly enough, a couple times he’s actually had a girlfriend of his contact me to essentially tell me the same thing… that his problems are all my fault and he’s going to get custody as soon as his tax return comes in, etc.
Which I’ve learned to stop freaking out in fear about, and see not as actual interest, but just more games as an attempt to get to me.
Thus, his having court paperwork establishing paternity is not particularly in my best interest mentally. But especially when he will be able to be at the court hearings to set things, and I will not. Nor can I afford a private lawyer to fight anything independently that the state’s team will just say is outside of their interests.
And so, it came as a bad sign when instead of sending the usual letter, his state sent back a message stating that they needed a certified copy of her birth certificate sent to them. Basically, I was required to provide this, or I’d be banned from not only the job program, but also other government help that would require cooperation.
About this time was when I got hired, and thus was out of the job program, and participation again became voluntary.
And so I did not send the form to get the certified copy.
Because the potential for actually getting any support from someone who rarely keeps a job long are very low. And the potential for this paperwork causing me issues is rather high.
Sometime in December, there was a facebook post going around mentioning that not all of your messages are in your inbox. To get to the ones from pages and from people you aren’t friends with, you have to go to the main messages page, and then click “other” on the sidebar.
And when I did so, I had a message from him.
After previous stalking issues, no huge surprise that he’d found my page even with the name not being a match from what he knew. I’d pretty much expected him to track it down eventually, and had kept privacy settings as tight as possible, made sure no profile pics had my daughter in them, no location settings given, etc.
(This is also a lot of why this blog has so little identifiable info, and links to my other facebook page in no way involving my personal info.)
Anyway, this message was sent back in June.
And for a change, it wasn’t a threat. It was a message telling me that he was on disability now, so if I wanted child support to go for it, because they would be paying it, not him.
Ironically, sent just a few weeks before the job program required me to go after it.
My first impression is annoyance that a lowlife who can’t keep a job now and doesn’t support his kid has a free ride while the rest of us bust our rears to attempt to provide basic needs….
followed by annoyance that the most likely cause of the disability was his own drug and alcohol problems…
followed by annoyance that he’s fine with child support only as long as someone else is paying for it…
followed by annoyance with the system after I’d googled around enough and found out he was pretty much right that they would pay a separate amount to his dependents and not have any effect on him at all.
But, this means the government knows where he is.
Which means, if I send the certificate, they should be able to track him now. So it’s pretty much a certain shot that if I make that choice, I will find myself going down the road of dealing with the court’s rulings.
Though, it does also mean when things are set, payment wouldn’t be dependent on him keeping a job, and should be pretty stable. And from the numbers given on pages that google pulled up for his state, would be almost as much as I was getting as a stipend from the job program.
However, besides the rub-in factor, I know he wouldn’t have just been sending this to me out of the goodness of his heart or concern for our well being.
He knows this opens doors of having his paternity legally established… without his having to be the one to come up with the fees and take the effort to sue over it.
I know that it’s a carrot in a trap from his perspective…. because everything with him over the years has turned out to just be moves in his own manipulative little control game.
A game I’ve long since stopped being willing to play.
And it makes me mad (as well as hurt at the unfairness of life) to be stuck in a position where I really need the carrot, and yet know I’m going to be forced to play games again if I take it.
And unless something new comes along soon, I’m going to end up having to resort back to the job program…. meaning I don’t even get a choice in whether or not to take it. It’s a situation of take it voluntarily (maybe even avoid the need to go back into the program), or go back into the program and be forced to take it anyway.
I’m thinking I lose either way.
I can’t even just give up and be a welfare queen, because that requires cooperation too.
So unless I can find a new job before my tax refund money runs out, I’m stuck thrown into choosing providing for my child over being able to protect my child from an abusive drug addict.
This planet sucks.