By in Family

Trial Over, Ruling In, Still Not Finished

Watching my daughter's divorce trial has given me a much different perspective about the legal and judicial systems, and also human behavior. It has been a situation that I hope no one ever has to go through in their lifetime--personally, professionally, or as a supportive bystander.

What should have been easy and could have been done in two hours in trial, if that were necessary, ended up being two full days of courtroom testimony. The judge in the matter, gave her ruling yesterday afternoon. Then there was the matter of contempt charges and sanctions. The whole thing yesterday took over an hour.

The long and short of it were this: The dissolution of marriage will be granted. My daughter was not found to be acting in bad faith in any of the situations that her husband contended. Her proposals as petitioner were all adopted. Once all filed, she will no longer be subject to the litany of past behaviors she has allowed herself to endure.

On the other hand, the respondent was not looked at favorably by the Court. It was found that he has acted in bad faith during this separation and divorce proceedings. The language the judge used was extremely strong in relationship to him. He was found "in contempt" for all, but one minor charge. Strong sanctions have been placed against him. She even told him that she "considered jail time," but did not think that it would be appropriate for him.

He began to try to get all his "last words in," which the judge told him, " do not get to talk anymore..." She also commented on his being "well-versed" on the law, and said, "You really should have been an attorney," but she followed that up with her disappointment in him as to how he chose to deal with the law (contempt charges), clearly knowledgeable and with his admitted background. It showed "willful intent." She mentioned the manipulation--"splitting hairs"--and intent to destroy his wife based on all he did, citing his email, social media comments, etc.

My daughter did not attend the ruling, as she just wanted to get back to work, but her attorney was there. He was there, acting pro se. (He had an attorney early on, but the attorney pulled out, for reasons I do not know.)

Her Dad and I, as well as the other attorney and paralegal from the law office, were in the peanut gallery. It was interesting to me that so many wanted to hear the ruling first-hand.

There is another hearing coming up in 16 days to discuss the financial details of the sanction to which he told the judge, "first divorce court, then bankruptcy court." She responded with a statement that his financial situation was not her concern and that the severity of the sanction was linked to how he chose to behave.

Once the upcoming hearing is over, the order of dissolution will be entered, and they will be divorced. Hopefully, this will be by the 30th. We were all hoping it could have happened before my daughter's 40th birthday on the 17th.

This is not over. As long as there is a minor child, there will be things with which to deal, especially since her husband has done his best this past year to place the same kind of wedge between the children and her, as he did 21 years ago between my daughter and I. He has been successful in doing a lot of damage over the years that cannot be undone.

However, there is now a chance, though difficult, to move forward and try to begin some healing. Getting through to a 15-year-old angry boy, who has responded in words mimicking his father in email and face-to-face, is a mountain that needs to be scaled. It might be a long time before he understands, but there is a glimmer of hope that now, with court-ordered counseling which the father cannot control, there will be some reconciliation in our family.

As well, the leopard will not change his spots. I suspect that this man will do everything in his power to appeal, as he feels he was not allowed to make his case or was treated unfairly as a man. He will likely attempt to make more trouble, and anything else he deems is his right to do.

Narcissistic people will likely do everything in their power to continue to seek and destroy those who dare to challenge them, including in-laws, attorneys, and elected county judges.

But, at least, it is now on record of how this one has handled himself during this divorce. The decisions regarding how he will act in relationship to the situation between my daughter and her relationship to her children, and in conducting communication with her have set a precedent. If not followed, there will be more consequences.

And, perhaps, this situation has helped my daughter's "balls to drop," so she no longer has to feel as if she has to acquiesce. Her upcoming 40s and beyond will be a chance for her to become the person she is meant to (finally) be.

© Copyright 2015- Coral Levang - All Rights Reserved

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Kasman wrote on September 2, 2015, 6:05 PM

Justice isn't blind. Justice knows full well that leopards don't change their spots. His behaviour is now a matter of record. Your daughter will triumph in the end (if triumph is the right word). Hopefully, the boy will see the truth and, although he won't stop loving his father, he will recognise (and accept) his failings.

CoralLevang wrote on September 2, 2015, 6:29 PM

Thank you, Kasman , for these kind words. My grandson will live with his father, but it was said in NO uncertain terms that, IF the son refuses to go with his mother for residential time (weekends, etc.), as he has refused for over a year (she has had less than 30 hours with him in over a year, mostly 30 seconds for him to say, "No" and then close the door, THEN , " then the court will view it as YOUR refusal." He (Dad) was given NO leeway there whatsoever.

lexiconlover wrote on September 2, 2015, 7:27 PM

Sounds like it's been a long hard battle. And that unfortunately it isn't over yet. I hope your daughter is doing well, as well as you. It's nice to see you back. Will you be going to be present for the next trial?

DWDavisRSL wrote on September 2, 2015, 8:40 PM

I pray that the healing will begin and your daughter will be able to reconnect with her children.

CoralLevang wrote on September 2, 2015, 9:27 PM

I plan to go for the hearing. Each time I show up and he is there, he gets to see me, in support of my daughter, whether she is there or not. He did not make eye contact with me either of the two days of trial. Yesterday, he did, but quickly averted his eyes. He did not do it again, after the ruling.

Feisty56 wrote on September 2, 2015, 9:28 PM

It would be wonderful if when all the court proceedings are completed that life could just move forward for everyone without any repercussions. That isn't how it usually works though. I'm sorry your family has been caught up in this tragedy, but relieved to learn there will be mandated family counseling. I hope bridges that have been burned or at least scorched will slowly but surely be made whole again.

CoralLevang wrote on September 2, 2015, 9:29 PM

Likewise. It is so hard, but hopefully, she will have a chance to move forward. She cannot control what her children do, or anyone else. I just hope she doesn't get beaten back by the difficulty. It's not going to be easy. But I think that she has finished the hard part. Now, that she has the backing of the Court, I hope she feels strong enough to carry it all through.

CoralLevang wrote on September 2, 2015, 9:32 PM

Thank you, Feisty56 .

You used the word, "scorched." This was one of the things he said threateningly in his email about her. That he would scorch the earth with her or something like that. Just vile shi*. And that was the mildest of them all.

Feisty56 wrote on September 2, 2015, 9:35 PM

Other than contempt findings, he has never been charge with harassment or threatening behavior? I can only imagine the ideas he has planted in the 15 year-old's mind. How frightening this has had to be for your daughter -- and everyone who loves her.

lexiconlover wrote on September 2, 2015, 9:43 PM

I feel for your daughter, having to go through all the emotional hell it sounds like he has put her through.

cheri wrote on September 2, 2015, 10:14 PM

Sorry to hear that the family has to go through with this. All I can do is pray for everyone.

Sailorchronos wrote on September 2, 2015, 10:25 PM

I'm glad that one step is done and the family can continue to move forward. The soon to be ex husband sounds like a real piece of work; narcissistic and psychopathic are two adjectives that spring to mind. Best wishes to your daughter and grandson.

CoralLevang wrote on September 2, 2015, 10:40 PM

Thank you, cheri .

CoralLevang wrote on September 2, 2015, 10:44 PM

Thank you sailorchronos . I met him years ago before they even started dating. I never liked him, and thought him to be horrid. I just "knew." I have always seen the narcissistic. As far as the 2nd, who knows. He shared that there is history of mental illness in his family, but "it skips generations." *RME* Thank you for the well-wishes. They also have a daughter, who is 18. I just hope the kids will eventually both be okay.

wolfgirl569 wrote on September 2, 2015, 11:11 PM

I am glad that part is over and the judge slapped him with everything she could. Hopefully the boy will soon see what type of person his father is. I hope your daughter can find her true self and start enjoying life now.

Paulie wrote on September 3, 2015, 12:38 AM

I didn't realize your daughter's case was so complicated. Good luck to you and her in the future.

Rufuszen wrote on September 3, 2015, 4:10 AM

Sounds a nasty piece of work when he doesn't get his own way.

CoralLevang wrote on September 3, 2015, 6:39 AM

wolfgirl569 Thanks. Me, too.

CoralLevang wrote on September 3, 2015, 6:48 AM

Not to my knowledge. She claims that he had never been violent, but only this mind game shit. Her personality has always been low drama, so she would try to ignore it and hope it would change--he would change. Famous last thoughts. Eviction after eviction. Spotty employment history. Taking money out and not paying bills with the money she worked for. She, too, is at fault there, because she didn't put her foot down (she feels that is DRAMA.) Emotional abuse, isolation, etc., etc., She put up with this for 20+ years. I think part of it was not wanting to admit to anyone what was going on. Classic. Finally, she walked. It has been a bigger hell, but that part is somewhat over. She has started the journey. The further away she gets in time, the easier it will become. And now, he's been made accountable and it is all on record.

CoralLevang wrote on September 3, 2015, 6:49 AM

I do, as well. It saddens me that she didn't feel that she could let us know and leave sooner. Instead, she chose emotional hell. emoticon :sad:

CoralLevang wrote on September 3, 2015, 6:55 AM

It did not need to be, but he forced that issue to "teach her a lesson."
"You think what I did to (his first wife) was bad, wait until I get done with you."

I think he will push the judge's order. It's his style not to "lose" without a big fight. I suspect he will not change his ways and it will escalate now. I hope not. He is about appearance. He might look like he complies, but he plots. I will be ever-vigilant, even if others think it's over.

CoralLevang wrote on September 3, 2015, 6:56 AM

Oh, Rufuszen ... you just said it perfectly.

Dawnwriter wrote on September 5, 2015, 4:06 PM

I am sorry for your daughter's ordeal and the fact that you have to witness all this pain and trauma. My best regards for her and you.

CoralLevang wrote on September 5, 2015, 5:12 PM

Thank you, Dawnwriter .