rainMaker

February 16, 2009

The Request…

Filed under: Uncategorized — rainMaker @ 10:51 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

Dying

 

It’s not like I wanted to go but something was pulling at me and it wouldn’t disappear, it was bothering me during the day and invading my dreams at night.  Just on the edge of my consciousness my promise was lurking.  My first thought was that my grandmother was prodding me into action from somewhere in kayaayeen (heaven).  She always had to get the last word in during the time we spent together and I was thinking this was her way of reaching beyond the grave to get my attention.  Yes grandmother, I remember what I promised you that day.   The promise doesn’t stray that far from my mind.  She had passed away back in 2001 and it was now 2008.  In my opinion, 7 years was more than enough time for her to rest easy and leave me alone but one of her final statements still echoed in the back of my mind and she never forgets. 

She was laying there in a hospital room dying in small moments as she gathered strength from one breath to the next – she couldn’t let go she had to fight the pain and struggle to stay right here.  Her feet and hands were beginning to turn blue as her heart fought to conserve energy and pulled blood from her legs and arms.  The spring sun was warm and melting the snow – it was this sun that came in through the single window.  It was a blaze of heat with a brilliant blue sky.  The room smelled of hospital antiseptic and the small sounds of my grandmother struggling to live another moment – a deep rattle coming from her chest.  A television far in the background selling sham-wow at an amazing price and conversations from the nursing station pushed their way into my grandmother’s last breath reminding me the world would still continue no matter who died.  Why would the world stop for one old woman?  It made me wonder why we struggle during those final moments to stay in the here and now.   It was in this world, in her life there was laughter and a fair amount of pain.  What was keeping her here?   Thinking to myself at those final moments that maybe because the next step is such a huge unknown for us at the point of our own death and that fear strengthen our resolve to be here.  Who knows what really happens to you?  It’s not like there is a roadmap for all of us to follow.  I don’t know the answer but like everyone I know I will face it one day.

One of the small mercies granted to my grandmother by the hospital is that they moved her into a private room so she could die in peace and not in the ward with 5 other people watching her and wondering if they were next.   She was lying on that bed with many monitors and tubes going in and out of her,   supporting her worn out body but what she really wanted was anyone to tell her she wasn’t going to die and when she asked me it was with an intense stare, she wanted me to deny it, that she would continue to live, eat and breath.  I was at a loss for words – life just doesn’t prepare you for an answer at that moment.   I didn’t want to lie to her but I didn’t know what to say either.  My eyes met hers and I hugged her – that was what I was capable of in that moment.   The best I could do which didn’t seem enough.  She had been stricken with ovarian cancer over a year ago and someone had a very sick sense of humour because her belly had bloated to extreme proportions that unless your eyes traveled up and met her face and you knew she was 86 years old you would think she was pregnant.  Her outline on the bed similar to woman ready to give birth.   Her belly extended up through the blankets pushing obscenely into the room and capturing your attention when you walked in.  You had to look at her cancer pregnancy because it dominated everything even though you realized you shouldn’t at that moment – you wanted to offer her even the smallest dignity because this was death.  Further complications was that this massive cyst had pushed against her stomach and intestines meaning she couldn’t eat.  Food couldn’t find its way through the disease.  The cancer had crushed her upper intestines, stomach and kidneys.  For the first week, when I first went to see her, she would beg me to go downstairs to the cafeteria and buy her a popsicle but the nurses had already warned me she would vomit up the popsicle as fast as it went down.  The nurses were correct and for the first time in my life I cradled my grandmother in my arms as she was sick.

I stayed there in her room with her.   Sitting uncomfortably on a plastic chair and most of the time just being there – silent.  With the signs on the wall saying for oxygen plug in here or nitrogen down there, the harsh fluorescent lights, beeps coming softly out the equipment beside her and the white blinds on the window.  There are reminders of my grandmother around the room.  Intrusions into the hospital and out of place.  Her teeth beside her in a glass, a cloth for cooling her face, cards, books and a small fan I had brought to cool her off.  Sometimes the room was blistering hot or 40 below zero.  Her body unable to regulate temperature anymore.  These items sat silent beside her as she no longer need any of them.  I am not sure who picked the colors for a hospital but it seems as if all hospitals have that ubiquitous green paint on everything.  Stepping into the hospital every morning, everyone coming through the automated doors that slide open abnormally fast, everyone is solemn but it’s a serious business being here.  People are talking in quiet whispers as I move through the hallway so has not to wake the sick and interrupt the routine in the hospital.  People don’t say hello or meet your eyes, they are caught in their own tragedies and observing these niceties is no longer a priority which is fine by me because I couldn’t even manage a fake smile at that point as I stepped on the elevator and met other healthy people.  We huddled together on that elevator pushing the white buttons, silent and engulfed by our own separate tragedies.  The elevator is huge, large enough for 2 gurneys and another door on the back.  This allowed us to have greater distance between ourselves.  People were getting off floors with signs like surgery or post operative care or the more frightening critical care department.  Were their misfortunes bigger than mine?

 It’s interesting how your own world shrinks and focuses on the person dying.  The calm and routine we have in lives taken away by this immediate crisis.  Everything taken for granted or normal in your own life loses meaning when you are facing death with someone.  Paying the cable bill, showing up for work or putting gas in your car is a mundane task and in front of the ultimate mystery everything else takes a back seat.   The routine of getting up, shaving and showering, now replaced by the trip to the hospital with details crowding into your mind as your drive up to the hospital.  Was she still alive?  How did she sleep?  Was there another tragedy waiting for me as I went into the hospital.  I was exhausted at the end of every day with her.  I would sit beside her bed and sometimes she was asleep as I entered quietly.   Sometimes I stood there looking at her, trying to gather a picture about her in my mind that the years wouldn’t take away from me.  I would spend 6 to 8 hours in that room with her, but it was like a marathon, my body and my brain were completely exhausted at the end of every day as I pointed myself home and on autopilot made it there.  At that point I couldn’t tell you why I felt so drained at the end of my visits but later when I think about it, it’s the emotional support you offer, it’s unconditional and it’s 100 percent of who you are is invested in that moment and with that investment in love comes all your energy. 

Sitting there watching them fight for life beside you, you want to say something; you want to offer them the great comfort and solace that those moments seem to demand from you.  At least a single word of comfort for her but I had none.  All the movies, and shows and programs always have that final sentence or statement that has significant meaning for everyone as they gather around the dying that seems to bring that certain comfort but this knowledge from all the movies and books flees you in the final days and it seems small and banal.  This is death.  This is not some distant news story from across the planet talking about a car bomb with reserved tones with video playing in the background, people running and screaming, holding people in their arms with grief so clearly etched on their faces while the new anchor brings you up to the minute details but you can change the channel to something better.  You can’t change this channel nor can you escape. This isn’t someone who knew someone that was killed in a car crash relating this story to you over a coffee and you can nod in return not really connecting with them as you sip your warm, sweet coffee relaxing your body.  This is a person, you know them, you have seen them laugh, you have seen them cry, you have seen them yell and now you get to be with them when they die.  What you don’t realize is their dying will change you forever. 

Sitting there beside her, her face worn and tired, blankets covering her up and around her until only her face was peeking out because even in the spring sun she was always cold.  Her eyes still that brilliant blue you remember as a child looking down at you as you looked up and into them.  There was no indication, no future premonition that you would do that for her one day.  These are eyes that loved you and still do, but they are tired now.  You are talking about everything with her because there is nothing left at that moment and the best you can do is distract her from death.  She can say anything now about her memories or people or secrets long buried but not forgotten and not be afraid of hurting anyone because she will be gone before the emotions swing back from these people at her.  I learned a lot in those small quiet conversations with some soap opera playing in the background.  Someone was getting plastic surgery and it seemed highly ironic as I put my hand on my grandmother’s arm.  My hand warm and strong and her arm soft and cold even under the blankets.  It was more to reassure myself than her – I wanted to know that someone was still in there.  Somewhere in her body besides the cancer she was in there, my grandmother.  My grandmother talked about her life as a child and it dawned on me that she wasn’t always my grandmother but it was hard to think of her as a child herself. 


 

Kindness

 

She was the first person in my life to be kind to me.  This sounds horrific or maybe I am remembering it wrong but visits to her house still echo around me including the first visit.  There was a peace in her house that enveloped you as you entered the door.  There were aromas like canned peaches and waffles on Sundays – a normal life unlike the abnormal abuse I suffered at the hands of my parents.  So alien in my limited experience.  It smelled of furniture polish and of flowers.  There was always the murmur of the television in the background but never loud except when she played bingo, the cards in front of her on the coffee table, a pen posed in one hand ready to record the numbers, the sound was turned up because she didn’t want to miss a call.  A china cabinet in her dining room with expensive dishes that I had never seen used along one wall.  The setting sun reflecting the brilliant white of the unblemished dishes behind glass – protected from the world.  Black and white pictures of people dressed in clothes from the 50’s and 60’s smiling and fishing.  These pictures are on end tables or on the fake mantel on the fireplace.  I never did ask who these people were.  It was as if she has a totally different life that I didn’t know about.  I didn’t ask her because if she wanted me to know she would have told me. 

The floor in the living room and dining room was covered with that heavy green shag carpet on the floor – a throwback from the seventies – the shag was long and dark green with light speckled green flicks throughout and this rug needed a good mow.  It was very long and shaggy and sometimes caught your toes and made you trip.  My grandmother was hard pressed to buy new carpet when the old was good enough.  So this carpet survived well into the 80’s and bit of the 90’s with that polyester fibre.  How many times had I played under the dining room table while they played cards above me?  Talking and laughing above me as hands were won and last.  It was those moments I felt safe in my life because my parents wouldn’t smack me around with my grandmother in my room, they would wait until we left – it was a kind of mercy.  How many dinners had I sat there, around that table, eating the turkey or Salisbury steak served by my grandmother?

The bathroom was at the end of the hall.   You walked through a hallway with wooden floors and bedrooms with doors closed around you.  It was always quiet and cool in the back of her house even the floor didn’t squeak.  My grandmother’s house was always neat and clean until the last weeks of her life when people routed through her house and tossed pictures, cushions and dressers around looking for something to sell.  The bathroom had soft rugs that tickled my feet with their comfort and it always smelled clean and fresh, very different than the stink of shit and piss I was used to at home.  Exploring the medicine cabinet and being very quiet because my grandmother had very sharp ears and she would come down the hall and knock on the door.  But if I was very quiet in my exploration, I discovered many unusual things like Nitro-glycerine pills and denture adhesive cream placed neatly in the cabinet.   This was a complete mystery to me as I looked into the pill bottle and saw many tiny little white pills in the bottom of that orange bottle.

We slept in the spare room on the floor and it was very exciting – a true adventure in my young mind.   The room at night was always lit up from the streetlight bathing everything in yellow.  When I woke up the morning light would filter down from the window with cars rolling by.  Being raised in a far and remote town, this place was always so busy and where was everyone going to?  There was the excitement of the day – we might go to a drive through and have pop – a new experience for me.

I was six years old sitting at her kitchen table with worn handed down pyjamas on me from my older brother, my legs swinging back and forth on the chair I was in.  The kitchen had dark, warm wood cabinets, with a double sink and large counters.  Many dinners and the canning of peaches, pickles and cabbage went on in that kitchen.  I loved my grandmother’s peaches and I never found an adequate replacement after she stopped making them. 

I was thin and pale and my clothes engulfed me making me even smaller as I looked up to her.   I never spoke first to anyone, too afraid that I would get a good smack if I asked the wrong question.  Almost every question was the wrong question.  Other adults would assume that I was mentally incapacitated because sometimes no matter how hard they tired I wouldn’t say anything – too afraid of what they might do to me.  She was asking me what I wanted for breakfast.  I didn’t know what she meant.  Why would she care about breakfast?  For all my small years at that point, I got my own food, whatever I could reach in the fridge and feed myself, early in the morning.  Standing there at the fridge on my tippy-toes finding pickles, cabbage and sometimes jam if I could reach it.  It’s true that food might come later in the day but I was starving in the morning – my small belly grumbling and reminding me pulling my attention from the tv demanding that I do something.  It was always a job finding something to eat and I was quite used to in my six years already.  If I ate the wrong thing like a piece of apple pie or drank my father’s cool, sweet milk, my father would strike me until the tears rolled down my face and a large red mark would appear on my face the size of his hand.  But her question didn’t connect within me because I didn’t understand the meaning behind the question.  I thought all adults were the same at that point, they kept the best things for themselves and I was allowed to eat when they said and not when my belly told me I was hungry.  I was waiting for my grandmother to leave so I could search for something to eat.

She asked me again and this time she opened her cupboard and pulled out some boxes.  I realized I should pick something or I was sure to get a smack from her.  I was afraid at that moment – past violent experiences were a great teacher.  I pointed at the box of porridge.  She picked out a package from the box and turned her back on me.  I thought that was that and she would leave me alone and began wondering what I was going to eat.  A few minutes later a bowl was placed in front of me.  Warm porridge steamed up from the lake of milk in the middle.  My tummy growled long and low which earned a laugh from my grandmother.  I moved to get out of the chair, swinging my legs over the side of light brown vinyl on the chair.  Someone was supposed to come and eat this and I was thinking it must be for my mom or dad because nobody has ever did this for me.  I felt a hand on my shoulder and looking up at my grandmother I could see tears around her eyes as she told me this was for me – reassuring me.  It was wonderful and new to me and I ate the porridge with huge gulping spoons afraid my mom would show up and start to scream at me for eating something that belonged to them.  My grandmother was still watching me and her face was getting red and tears one at a time were coming down her face and wetting her cheeks.  I finished the porridge as fast as possible and before I could do anything she picked up my bowl and refilled it and placed it front of me with the same result, it took 4 bowls of porridge that morning, I ate because I was afraid this would all disappear in the next moment but my grandmother kept feeding me until I was full – this was a new experience for a 6 year old.  My belly was bursting.  This was the first act of kindness in my life and it was a memory of my grandmother.


 

The Request

 

Now, she was there in front of me again, but there was something I could do I could offer that kindness in return.  I knew she was dying, I realized the pain my grandmother was experiencing was not just physical but emotional – she had regrets.  My grandmother had regrets and kept them for many years which took me by surprise.  As she lay there dying I think it was the regrets that were demanding she had to stay here with all of us until it was resolved.   I could see a question in her eyes so I leaned close to her because she had difficultly even keeping down water so her mouth was very dry.  The request tumbled out of her, between cracked lips “I want to see my son before I die.”  Her eyes met mine as the words came.  Damn, why couldn’t she ask me anything else but that question.  It would have been easier to get the Pope to visit her (actually I think my grandmother was Mormon but the Pope would probably forgive of this one small tragedy).   It would have been easier to find Franklin’s ship in the Arctic or perhaps getting a job gluing tiles back on the space shuttle.  Damn, why did she have to ask for that.     

I don’t think that these two people didn’t love each other, my grandmother and my father; it’s just that they couldn’t stand one another in the same room.  I believed in times such as this people would put aside their differences and do what is required of them.  Here is someone dying and there won’t be a next time but I was wrong about that assumption.  My father refused to come and see her.  He was still in the North West Territories, retired now, sitting there in his chair watching television day and night slowly retreating from life and all the decisions he didn’t desire to make.  As long as I known him, I thought he was the strong and silent type doing what was required.  I admired him for this strength, he said little but when he did it always made sense to me.  I thought he knew that – doing what was required of him and he would do it.  He would turn off the LCD Television, get off his chair, pack a few things and come.  His complete refusal did take me by surprise and it pissed me off at the same time.  I lost what respect I had for him.  I realized that it was all a sham all those years growing up and him presenting a pillar of strength – just a pile of crap with no significant strength behind it.  Here came one of those tests, one of those things we face in our lives and he left me to do it and in the beginning I resented him for it.  This was supposed to be his responsibility not mine and he lacked the internal strength and conviction to do what was right.  He was supposed to offer comfort and compassion to his dying mother sharing stories and telling her it was okay.  He was supposed to put the cool cloth on her forehead, close the drapes when the sun was too bright another.  He was supposed to see her one last time and tell her it was all right.  None of this was going to happen.  My image of him changed forever in that moment.

What I was thinking about later after I shut off my cell phone and I was walking back to the hospital room is why did I approach this situation so differently than my own father?  Was I not his son?  The same DNA and build, I could be a younger version of him.  But I stayed and faced the issue.  I resented my father but my conviction of right and wrong and decency wouldn’t let me leave my dying grandmother, so I stayed in that uncomfortable chair, in the green room with my grandmother.  But in the back of mind I was wondering what separated me from my father in this situation?  Would I run away one day?  Would I have enough of life and retreat as he did – finding a comfortable chair and watching tv and ignoring life?

2 days later my grandmother died without seeing her son.  In my opinion it made her passing that much harder and if we could make the transition easier shouldn’t we?  There was nothing I could do about her son’s decision except to tell her.  To watch her absorb this knowledge, turn her head to the side as I stood beside her so I wouldn’t see her tears.  Like earlier I didn’t have any words of comfort for her to help her get past this.   I didn’t understand why he wouldn’t come except maybe he was afraid of death and what it might mean for him. 

Chicken shit – leaving me to do his job.  I held on to that feeling way too long because we can’t change people but I felt justified in this feeling.  No matter how angry I felt it wasn’t going to change what happened but there was one gift I received in return.  I got to spend time with grandmother and help her move on with her life.  I felt humbled by the moment and proud that I was allowed to be involved in those moments.  Death changes you in ways you don’t imagine until it’s over. 

I gave her one last kiss on her forehead.  She was gone I could tell.  I cried, up to that point, I kept my emotions in check for her but then I cried, for her, the pain and then finally the released.  God I would miss her.

My grandmother’s last request or promise or what she had pulled from me when she could still talk and had not slipped into a coma was to keep the family together.  Damn, when she asked me I already knew to enormity of the request but like I was going to say no – so sorry can’t do this, let’s get on with this dying business.  This was all she wanted but she watched us disappear into our own lives.  After the abuse at the hands of our parents we wanted as far away from them as we could get.  Yes grandmother, I remember.

 

July 2, 2008

Into Extinction Day 127 (it dawn’s on me…)

What dawns on me this past week.  That no matter what happens in my life, no matter what catastrophic events play out, I have no control over them.

Take for example, my parents.  Lets say they are reach their 60’s and they need a little help.  Disregarding past injustices you or I would like to help them out.  Say they are living at the edge of poverty and every moment they could be on the street.  You could say it’s their own fault.  They should have saved.  They should have managed their money better, but then you remember.

The one thing my parents consistently did was to help out my siblings.  Call it a fault in their character if you want to.  My parents consistently gave money to my brothers and my sister when they needed it.  Well at least they tried to help them and that is one redeeming quality.

Whats interesting, well whats fucked up now is the way the system works.  Even if I tried to help my parents I would be penalized by the system.  The only priority being the payment of MEP or as you know (well if you read past blogs) will take away everything.  So if my mom doesn’t have enough money to give my father a proper burial who gives a fuck?  Not the government says I.

June 22, 2008

Into Extinction Day 126 (well now it’s fucked…)

 

I am faced with one of those moments that have the opportunity to define me and seriously impact those around me.  The choice will seem obvious once you know the details.  I have been divorced for a while now well over a year.  Most articles I read tell you that the first year is the hardest for being divorced.  The first year you have to spend time and redefine who and what you are.  You can no longer be defined as a couple, no longer make those couple decisions.  Of course, there is the emotional baggage that goes with it as well.  That’s why most of us in the know (those of us that are divorced and have been for while) stay away from the recently divorced. 

Getting involved with the recently divorce (less than 1 year) is like being invited to a train wreck.  There you stand on the precipice examining the mile long wreck with the recently divorced waving to you from somewhere in the wreck.  The problem with being invited in to the newly divorced is you get the complete tour of the wreck.  There is a need when you are first divorced to spew forth the litany of half-truths, broken promises or explain in detail that emotional wasteland they find themselves in.  I know, I have been there.  You don’t even realize you are doing it but you are.  The issue for those of us in the know (by us, I mean those individuals savvy about the divorce process), we know it takes time and energy to move on.  Being involved with you means we end up as your emotional crutch and we are only a stopping point.

Now as cruel as that sounds, the newly divorce either want to retreat from life or sample all the little delectable’s that went by – that you had to ignore when you were married.  I just don’t want to be a way station as you move on with your life.  Yes, you could argue you want something more but you would be lying and probably don’t even know it because you need time to figure out who you are.  You can’t make any type of commitment until you clean up the train wreckage and even then there will probably still be a few cars left that will follow you around for a while.      

Enough with the soapbox and back to the problem sitting with me.  As I mentioned in past blogs, my ex-wife is an abuser.  She uses such tools as intimidation and manipulation to get her own way.  Oh, and she has a terrible temper, yelling and screaming and jumping up and down.  You could say, that I am making this up and god I wish it were so but I am not.  Interesting if you ever confronted her, she would be the sweetest kindest person you ever met.  She has an incredible ability to hide that part of herself when people are looking.

After reading the book “Why people do bad things?”, I think I have maybe a better handle on what’s going on with her.  I don’t believe she has multiple personalities because this would show up in much more severe ways.  No, what I believe is that she isn’t a whole individual.  There is a darker shadow in all of us we keep carefully locked away.  If you never examine this side of yourself (and some of us never do or are afraid of the outcome) this side can popup all by itself.  This helps to explain why some normally decent people do horrible things (such as steal money).  The weaker the outside persona the more likely this dark side will pop up.  So my ex-wife for years growing up, played housemaid to her parents, as the eldest, she was responsible for changing diapers, making dinner and the like.  Basically she didn’t have a childhood and her personality was suppressed.  I am not a professional so this is my best guess.  This is in alignment with when I was married to her, some of our smallest arguments turned into huge fights with her.   Over time, I realized I was getting the brunt of years of pent up rage from within her.  Try telling her that. 

So, when we were in court, she swore in court, she needed all this money from me to stay at home and take care of the children.  I called her a liar as when I lived with her, I did all the cooking and shared the household duties and she worked at her job all the time – sometimes 80 hours a week.  Well, the court system being what it is, the judge didn’t believe me.  So in the past several months, I have seen my own children warning they wanted to commit suicide instead of the life they have with her.   Why the children would want to commit suicide is a mystery to my ex-wife but is quite clear to me.  She is doing what was done to her.  My ex-wife completely suppresses the children.  There is little to no love in that house.  No opinion except those in alignment with her own are allowed.  Screaming and ranting from my ex-wife is the way she runs that house.  Oh please, tell me I am making this up and just saying this because I hate my ex-wife.  I would love to be wrong, so totally wrong, but I am not, the signs are all there.  Now after the children have threatened suicide what does my ex do but leave town for week long trips for her pitiful job. 

This is beyond my experience and capability.  My ex is a master of manipulating the moments.  She can paint such pictures with words you cannot NOT believe her.  That is the part of her that scares me the most.  When I go to report this to the authorities she will believe I am doing this to get her but nothing can be further from the truth.  But this one place, on this blog, I can express my feelings about this without worry about retribution.   I do this for my children and damn the consequences – bring it bitch, let’s have at it, I am fighting for them, not you or me anymore….

June 18, 2008

Into Extinction Day 124 (ya, I wouldn’t really bother if I were you)

I am not sure why I even made the attempt.  The feedback or response was so vicious and direct, I realized that my attempt was a failure.  My ex and I were going around on a few topics.  I reached the point where I attempted to explain my position which was basically I had to pay Maintenance Enforcement or I would lose what little freedoms I enjoyed (suspension of my license, jail time – you now minor things like that).  Actually I was feeling frustrated by all her demands and wanted to explain my position.

“Your email makes no sense and neither do you.”  Was her response back to me when I tried to explain my priority was to pay maintenance enforcement.  And really when I thought about it why would she care?  Her standard of living was excellent.  In ensuring my children received their support – she automatically upped hers.  She makes $40,000 a year in a city where the cost of living is much high.  Combined with what I pay her, she tops above $100,000 – why would she care?  I could be eating beans out of a can warmed over a city grate for all she knew. 

What I found interesting about this situation is the change in her character.  This was not the person I originally married.  She always claimed to be a highly religious and very devout in her faith.  A caring and compassionate person to all her friends and colleagues.  What happened was I left her because I was tired of all the verbal and emotional abuse.  In the end, as she has reminded me many times this was my decision.  The hidden undertone of that statement is you made the decision and now you pay the price.

I can only chalk this up to be that I really didn’t know her – which for me was and is scary.  I had spent a lot of time understanding her and thought I knew her.  This part of her is vindictive and brutal almost like a complete alter-ego.  When I went to therapy, the therapist explained to me that this wasn’t uncommon for this behaviour to exhibit itself.   Which lead me to question – my ability to truly understand another person.  Was there always another ego waiting in the dark recesses of someone to surprise me later? 

This led me to do some research on this topic and I found a book (well many books on the topic).  Not that everything can be explained by science but I needed a starting point.  The book hypothesizes that all of us have other ego’s buried in our sub-conscious.  The author suppositions that these other ego’s show up at different times in our life.  Take for example the accountant working for a charity for 10 years and steals $300,000.00 from the charity.  The author explains that this is the other ego surfacing. 

Those of us who spend time examining the darker side of ourselves gain a better understanding of what motivates us.  Most individuals ignore the darker side well, because, it is the darker side in all of us.  Examining that side would bring up pain and hurt and we already have enough of that without pursuing it.   This darker side typically shows up when we are under extreme stress or we have to make a significant choice that challenges our ethics.  For instance, if you were struggling to eat, found a wallet with a $1000.00 in it.  You decided that if the person could shove a thousand in their wallet then they had plenty of money and wouldn’t miss this amount.  You use the money to buy food.  This is called situational ethics and it’s not likely you would share this story with your friends because it would show a darker side to yourself you would rather stay hidden.  However, the moralized payoff is that you now have a food on the table and nobody was hurt.  So let’s take this example further.

During the divorce, governments and the court have decided the greatest interest shall be in the children thereby as the father your income or the ability to support yourself doesn’t matter.  The soon-to-be ex-wife is given the tools and power to strip you of everything you have.  This is a powerful motivator to appeal to the darker side of her and very few have the ability to resist it especially if she is told this is her right and she needs to pursue this.   What rises up in the court is something I hadn’t seen in her before – a ruthless and vindictive individual capable of anything.  This caught me off guard as I only wanted a 50/50 split.  What I came to realize was I would lose.

It really didn’t matter what she had done to me.  Short of killing me the courts don’t take actions such as emotional abuse into consideration.  The fact she had trapped me many times in rooms and held my hostage doesn’t matter.  That analytically side of me finds the process fascinating that this could occur while my emotional side was damaged by all this.

So in the end, I should have followed my therapist’s advice on this matter.  Don’t respond to her.  Explaining where you are coming from won’t matter.  My therapist was correct on this matter.

 

June 17, 2008

Into Extinction Day 123 (Survival of the fittest…)

 

 

As we are brought up to believe we live in a free and democratic society.   In a democracy there is a suppose to be a series of check and balances ensuring liberty, the rule of law and a balanced approach for all citizens.  This in turn ensures protection of the rights and freedoms of individuals.

 

Our rights in Canada are as follows:

·        Every citizen of Canada has the right to enter, remain in and leave Canada.

·        Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice.

·        Everyone has the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure.

·        Everyone has the right not to be subjected to any cruel and unusual treatment or punishment.

·        Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.

 

As you will find, being a divorced dad, these rights are amended significantly.  As follows:

·        Maintenance Enforcement, provincial governments and the federal government will seize your passport denying you right to leave Canada.

·        Your right to pursue life and liberty is also significantly reduced.  Your right to life disappears as a series of other rules come up with MEP.  These rights are the rights of other individuals superseding your own rights.   There is no commitment or guarantee or subsequent rules supporting you as an individual.  What I mean is, MEP will take everything away from you, leaving you with no means of income or support.  There is also no means of defending yourself has your means of defense like any democracy is based on your ability to hire a good lawyer.  This isn’t possible when MEP has claimed or frozen your accounts.  Further to the comments, there is no criminal charge, thereby denying your ability to fight this in criminal court.  Both provincial and federal have carefully constructed these additional rules avoiding rights that were supposed under the charter. 

·        When your basic rights have been infringed there is a section of the charter that applies, as follows:

o       Anyone whose rights or freedoms, as guaranteed by this Charter, have been infringed or denied may apply to a court of competent jurisdiction to obtain such remedy as the court considers appropriate and just in the circumstances.

However taking on a legal battle of this nature would require funds in the hundred’s of thousands to challenge precedence established by the government.  But these types of battles have been waged in history before however it takes monumental strength of character to pursue this avenue.  I believe that both provincial and federal governments are better on the following:

1.    You are too dumb to realize what has really happened.  A lot of the rules impose by MEP really require a criminal charge to truly be enforced.

2.    That you, like me lack the will to pursue and object.

3.    That the careful rationalization that anything we say as divorced dads against the system will be seen as a negative point of view and popular public opinion is against us.

Fundamentally, we are talking about a struggle of our basic rights as citizens of Canada versus popular public opinion quick to label us as deadbeats. 

·        To further support the government efforts, they will seize your property.   When is the last time the government seized property?  Well, you are put in the same class as a criminal because the government seizes properties, assets and money from criminally related activity.  Interesting.  Although we as divorced dads haven’t been charged anything,  we are treated like criminals however we have even less rights than criminals.   No wonder dads kills themselves and jump off of buildings.

·        Cruel and unusual treatment of the individual would be considered to restrict or remove rights of a group of individuals.  History has many examples of this occurring.  Individuals are identified as groups then systematically stripped of their identity.  What could be more damaging in Canada then to freeze your accounts and assets.  Have you tried going to the food bank?  It’s ironic because the food bank won’t give you food because you make too much money – you are denied the basic rights to life. 

 

All of the above actions are carefully hidden from public view and who would believe you anyway?  Any compliant on your part as a divorced dad would label you quickly as a deadbeat.  The rights of you as an individual are gone in this system.  It’s interesting that nobody is really complaining because this leaves the government to perform greater actions around this.  This is a warning, if the government could do this in this area – what’s to stop them from pursuing you?

June 16, 2008

Into Extinction Day 122 (Does someone’s actions dictate your response?)

 

If you have read any portions of my blog, you know it’s tough and difficult road.   I have whined and complained at great length about the injustice of everything.  So there is a temptation to withdraw from everything and focus just on your problems assuming your problems are the most significant around but I was reminded earlier in the previous week that this might not be the case.

I had finished a lengthy workout and I had parked beside an ESSO gas station trying to decide what to get to eat.  I was focused on what I wanted and I didn’t realize someone had crept up the my driver’s side window.  He rapped softly on my window and pulled me from my thoughts surprising me and annoying me at the same time.  He was thin to the point of emaciation.  He was wearing a dirty black jacket, cargo pants and filthy brown v-neck sweater underneath.  I could see each breath he took as I could clearly see his collar bones and ribs showing. 

Of course he wanted money.  I could see it in his eyes.  His teeth were brown and his face was dirty.  I didn’t feel repulsed by this individual just annoyed that he had pulled me away from my very important thoughts about dinner and the catastrophe that Maintenance Enforcement put me in.   I shook my head no before he even finished and his eyes met mine for a second.  My thoughts were pulled in his direction, I could see how easy it would be to give up and slip into the lower rungs of society, I wondered what circumstances had placed him there.   I watched him move away from my vehicle,  a slow and painful shuffle as he searched for others to ask for money.

I sat there as he disappeared around the corner and I was now thinking about him.  The easiest answer to not give him any money is because he would obviously use it for drugs or rob a liquor store but what if?  What if, he actually needed the money to buy food.  How many people would he ask before he had enough – hard work indeed.  

I had lost sight of him as he rounded the corner and still in my own thoughts I watched a group of teenagers with spiked hair and the “goth” look cross the street.  Like any adult with more experience I automatically wondered why they didn’t smarten up and get decent clothes and real jobs.  They crossed in front of me and disappeared around the same corner as the homeless man had.

I had made a decision by this point, to find that homeless guy and see if I couldn’t buy him a meal.  Starting my vehicle , I eased it around the corner.  About 30 feet down the alley, I saw the “Goths” meeting with the homeless guy.  I had assumed they would ignore him.  Instead as he approached the one girl and 3 guys, they smiled at him and listened to him.  I couldn’t hear the conversation but one of the teenagers put his hand on the homeless man’s shoulder and patted him.  They were all searching their pockets, pulling bits of change from their pocket and placing it his hand with smiles.  Interesting, that they had done something automatically that took thinking from me.  I waited for them to finish their exchange with him.  They continued to smile and talk to him like he was a human being.  This wasn’t a small poke for me but a reminder that even as bad as I thought things were for me, they could be worse for others.  At that moment, I knew I could have done better by this man.

They finished up with him and I drove up slowly to him and motioned him to come over.  He smiled and painfully limped over to my window.  “hi”, “hi”  “Can I buy you some dinner?”  “Oh man, that would be great, just great.”  He smiled, brown and yellowed teeth but I saw something different there.  Here was a single situation where I could make a difference.  He slide into my passenger seat.  “Wow, you have a great car.”  He was in my SUV Hybrid with GPS and stereo system and leather seats.  He was right, it was a very nice car.

I went over to the KFC and we went in together.  He looked at me waiting to speak first.  I could see the KFC employee looking at both of us with some interest as this was an unknown to her.  I told him “order anything you want.”  I could tell this stopped him dead in his tracks.  He looked at me in wonder and I could see tears forming in his eyes.  The tears were making tracks down his cheeks and I asked “what’s wrong?”  My first thought was that I offended him somehow.  He met my eyes.  “It’s been so long since anyone has been this good to me.”  He turned towards the counter.  The server was looking at him with distrust.  He ordered the 30 bucket chicken.  The server hesitated and I told her I would pay for it.  She rang it through as I pulled twenties from my wallet.  I was curious and I asked.

“What are you going to do with 30 pieces of chicken?”

“Oh, it’s for me and my buddies, we leave under some trees over by that bridge.”  He pointed vaguely in some direction.

Okay, here was an individual living from one moment to the next and his first thought was for his friends.  Ummm, wow – okay.  Never judge a person by their outside appearance was a significant slap in the face at that very moment.   

June 4, 2008

Into Extinction Day 121 (Being right sucks…)

 

 

we have the ability to differ from right and wrong, some just choose to ignore it  Alejandro Santillan – young

 

When I went to court and argued that my ex-wife didn’t really support or nurture the children I had placed many examples in front of the lawyers:

1.     She often worked late into the night and ignored the needs of the children including caring for them and even feeding them.

2.     She would leave them alone for hours at time.  They had to learn to fend for themselves.

3.     She used tactics such as yelling and screaming at them to control them.  Her temper would go off the deep end and she could do this for hours.

4.     I pulled up examples of her attending meetings and seminars in remote locations as examples.

In the end, the courts didn’t believe me and did not allow my examples as evidence.  My ex-wife counted with she was always there for the children and that’s why she needed as much money from me as possible.

 

I hate being right about this but I knew this from the very beginning of the case.  I knew deep down I was right about her.  That the abuse I received at her hands would continue with my children.  Part of the reason I stayed so far away from her was I couldn’t bear to watch what she would do – call it the coward’s way out.  I had tried my best to convince the world that maybe even a small part of what I said had a lot of truth behind me and I failed.  I came to the conclusion that the courts are more willing to believe the woman than the man.

 

And now, after so many months turning into years, it’s coming back to haunt me.  I have received several emails from my ex that my own children are threatening suicide.   It is incredibly painful to watch and hear this.  This isn’t a plea for suicide, my children are looking for attention and love they are not getting from her.  Where am I in all of this?   Ah, the excuses are long and many coming from me.  After 14 years of abuse from her, I cannot stand to even be in her presence.  I am repulsed by her and even her emails.  I want to yell and scream to the world that see – “I WAS FUCKING RIGHT ALL ALONG!  YOU DUMB STUPID FUCKING BASTARDS!”  I was right…  It just cost the welfare of my children, a huge price to pay.  This feels as helpless and fucked up as the day I tried to change this….

June 3, 2008

Into Extinction Day 120 (Stupid decisions we men make about women…)

 

 

 

 

The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.”  Albert Einstein

 

If you are looking for the federal guidelines around divorce, here is the link >>> http://canada.justice.gc.ca/eng/pi/pad-rpad/res/divorce/index.html

 

I was reading an article on why confirmed bachelors don’t want to marry.  In asking these men why it was because they were afraid the marriage would eventually end in divorce and woman would take him for everything he had.  I am hard pressed to argue with this logical, here are some more links:

·        http://www.timesrecordnews.com/news/2008/jan/28/confirmed-bachelors/

·        http://dontmarry.wordpress.com/2007/05/02/views-of-a-40-something-confirmed-bachelor/

 

This site is even more brutal than anything I have posted: http://www.dont-marry.com/.  Some highlights from the article include:

·        The cost of proclaiming your undying love – speaking to the responsibility of the man to unconditionally support the woman after marriage.

·        Marriage can mean career slavery – working to support the woman.

·        If she stops working, she may never work again – accusing the wife hiding behind excuses not to work and…

o       “I’m busy with the housework”

o       “I can’t find a job”

o       “It doesn’t pay for me to work”

·        Even more unfair double standards that favour wives – such as cheating, the man is scum and the woman is a victim. 

·        “Stupid, Irresponsible” Men – portrayal of men in society.

·        Divorce – direct quote “Upon divorce, all assets accumulated during and prior to a marriage are subject to division.  It has become, simply put. a licence to steal.  Even if the woman has not worked in years, and has spent the intervening decade(s) shopping and lunching from 8am-3pm, she is entitled to half, or more, of everything the man worked for during the course of the marriage.  Is this fair?  How many people would ever agree to a job contract that stipulated that in the event of separation that one party would have to return 50% of the gross amount of everything in the pay packet?  No one in his or her right mind would knowingly sign such an agreement.  Yet Western Men unknowingly agree to the exact same insanity each time they sign their marriage contract!”

·        If you pamper your wife, it can be used against you – you have to support your ex-wife in the style she has become accustomed to.

 

My comments on the above article.

 

I am not against marriage, I believe some marriages will go the distance, however I do believe before you get married as a guy, you should know what’s going to happen if you ever untie the knot – that’s all. 

 

The article is extreme to me however it raises some excellent points:

1.     I did tell my ex to quit her job and look for something for fulfilling.  This was the end of me in court.  It was used to prove I should continue to support her.  I learned never be this nice – ever.  She even pulled up Christmas and birthday cards to prove her point.  She was seen as the victim and I was the nasty man that did this to her.  I will never tell anyone ever again to quit their job.

What’s interesting about this point is I claimed physical and verbal abuse from her which was disallowed in court.  I provided pages and pages of data that was not allowed.  It was extraordinarily frustrating at the time, I really wanted to scream at that woman judge.

2.     The career slavery comment in my case was basically correct.  I basically kept jobs to continue financial support for her.  This was never recognized in court, nor all the hundreds of hours of overtime I put in to support her, nope.

What did come in court was her supporting the children all the time.  It wasn’t mentioned I did all the cooking and half the cleaning.  I cooked for her and her family at special events and during the week for years.  Fascinating the astonishing bias of the court system.  This really didn’t matter but hers did, I quickly came to realization I would spend my entire case defending my actions not on the attack.  This always puts in you is a losing situation.

3.     If you pamper your wife it can be used against you – actually in my case it was used against me.  My ex-wife was frustrated with her current job as a salesperson.  She was making about $70 grand a year and with bonus it popped up to about $85 grand but she was very unhappy.  I responded to her but telling her to go find something she really enjoyed and I would support her.  This was a major mistake on my part. 

She eventually took a job at $40k a year, well below her ability to make money.  This killed me in court.  I argued she was working well below her ability to make significant income.  She has a degree and several certifications.  Once more, I was the bad guy and this action was not allowed in court.  The judge did say it would be nice if my ex found better work.  On the flip side, I have to work, every single day, or I lose everything – seems fair.

 

My point is I am not sure why a man would let or allow or however the decision is made – for a woman to stay at home.  By making this decision, you are telling her, the courts, the provincial and federal governments you are willing to support her for the rest of her life.  The longer she stays at home, the more her career skills atrophy, the larger the settlement becomes.  In this era of women seeking equal rights, this is one that men should be seeking – an equalization in the marriage.

Ah, ain’t entitlement grand?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June 2, 2008

Into Extinction Day 119 (Who is running this shit show…)

 

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” Martin Luther King Jr. (1929 – 1968)

 

I have discussed the punitive measures placed by Maintenance Enforcement in past blogs, such measures as:

·        Canceling your driver’s license

·        Freezing your banks accounts.

·        Applying late fees or other fees on documents.

·        Federal garnishes any revenue from you income tax or wages.

·        Provincial garnishes from your job.

·        Seizing personal property.

·        Seizing any other assets such as RFP’s, companies or other assets declared or not declared.

·        Prison terms up to 3 years. 

 

I received a letter from Maintenance Enforcement last week stating a new policy on collections:

·        Their old policy was to apply a $25 charge to late payments.  This was charged even if you had an agreement to catch up with late payments.

·        The new policy is charging 4.50% per annual on late payments.  This is a dramatic change from the previous policy making it significantly more difficult to catch up with late payments.

 

After seeing this new policy from MEP, I was wondering why they would do this.  Are there a serious number of deadbeat dads running around, thumbing their noses at the system.  So I examined the evidence.  There are 97 deadbeat dads and 1 deadbeat mom (wait I can’t use deadbeat mom – I am sure she has an excuse the court would find acceptable).  This means based on 100,000 men paying (based on the Alberta Government’s own statistics) it’s about 0.097% of the entire fucking guys paying that are deadbeats.  This is less than 1% which would mean the current, fucked up, punitive, corrective, castigatory, disciplinary actions weren’t working?  Which fucked up civil service individual came up with this?

 

MEP reported they collected $190,000,000 in 2006 and 2007.  That would be $95,000,000 per year.  Let’s say there is a 10% default rate which I doubt it because I am sure nobody wants to face what would happen.  That would $9.5 million.  The new policy of interest charged would be $427,500.00 or collecting an additional $35,625 per month. 

 

The old policy would have allowed for approximately $25,000.00 per month based on MEP’s information.  This is an increase of 40% increase between the old policy and the new policy.  Holy Fuck!

 

My suggestion to Maintenance Enforcement is why don’t you take all of useless fucks out back and shot us?  I can’t think of why you would apply another kick to balls?  This is beyond me.  This smacks of a department and a ministry with no accountability.  My advice to you – run – to a different country now.

May 30, 2008

Into Extinction Day 118 (Signs you are whipped and beaten.)

 

 

“The riskiest year is the fourth year of marriage. In the first year of marriage, there are less than one divorce for every 1,000 marriages. After one year of marriage, there are 5.1 divorces for every 1,000 marriages in Canada. After two years of marriage, there are 17 divorces for every 1,000 marriages in Canada. After three years, there are 23.6 divorces for every 1,000 Canadian marriages. After four years, there are 25.5 divorces for every 1,000 Canadian marriages. After that, the chances of divorce decline slowly for each subsequent year of marriage.”  http://www.ottawadivorce.com/statistics.htm

 

Curious statistics and yes these are Canadian stats.  I was divorced after 13 or 14 years of marriage, I can’t remember because I stopped keeping track.

 

Top 10: Signs You’re Whipped (from askmen.com)


10.                        Going for a beer requires permission – It’s not just going for a beer that requires her permission, so does every other trivial excursion. In the mind of your power-hungry girlfriend, going for a beer with your friends spells out trouble and, therefore, it’s heavily frowned upon. All of a sudden, you can’t even pop into a pub for a quick one at the end of the day without facing a barrage of harassment when you return home. Subsequently, you’ve stopped doing it to avoid the hassle that, for the record, makes you a spineless pansy. This is a big one boys, but our signs you’re whipped doesn’t end here.

9.     She makes your decisions for you – You question how you ever let it get to the point where she makes your decisions for you, but it’s true. In your protective prison/womb of a relationship you no longer really make anything more than minor life decisions for yourself. Somehow, she’s managed to grant herself a seat on the UN Security Council that is your life and she’s not afraid to wield her power of veto. As mandated by No. 9 of our signs you’re whipped, you have little or no say in the affairs that directly concern you, such as holiday destinations, major purchases or even plans for the weekend.

8.     You have a joint e-mail account – We all have friends who’ve fallen into the insane trap of sharing an e-mail account. You know the case: Buddy meets, dates and gets married to a dominant girl and, before you know it, you’re receiving e-mails that are signed by them both, but clearly written by her. This loss of independence is one of the clearest and most seemingly innocent signs you’re whipped by a woman. Certain prerogatives must be sacrificed in any serious relationship, of course, but don’t let her combine your personalities into one and do your speaking for you.

7.     You go home when she’s ready – There was a time when men would drink their fill and decide if it was time to go home or not. Things have certainly changed for you if you’re whipped — and not in any kind of progressive and mature way either. The decision to go home during a night of socializing is no longer yours when you’re whipped; now you wait for the “I’m ready” command and then rush off to get the coats and issue apologies to your friends (who, once you’ve left, just shake their heads and talk about your pathetic transformation). Your friends clearly recognize the signs that you’re whipped and they can’t understand why you allow it to continue.

6.     You have a different social group – When your friends are magically replaced with her friends, you can take it as one of the definite signs you’re whipped. It’s no longer acceptable for you to spend time with your old crew, so you find yourself looking for an acceptable substitute, which ends up being the boring boyfriend of one of her friends. You have simply lost touch with all your old friends and you can’t understand how it ever happened.

5.     She commits you to events – You might think your calendar of events is pretty open for the next few months, but little did you know how wrong you are as she has committed you to other events. In actuality, you’ve already been penciled into about a dozen boring affairs that are completely unbeknownst to you. The really sad thing is that she does it without your permission because she knows she doesn’t need it — since you display such clear signs you’re whipped.

4.     You constantly worry about her reaction – It’s a definite sign that you’re whipped when you get some piece of news (good or bad) and your thoughts immediately turn to how she will respond when she hears it. You don’t even consider how it affects you anymore, which is pretty weird when you think about it. When you walk through the door at the end of a day, you automatically start running through a list of things that have potentially made her angry and you brace yourself for her accusations and complaints.

3.     Your friends don’t even bother – On your average Friday afternoon you used to get several calls and even more text messages from friends wondering about your plans for the evening. Now you get nothing because everyone just assumes that you’ll be kept under lock and key all weekend, and the scary thing is they’ve given up trying to help you escape.

2.     What you once took for granted is now a victory – You’re whipped if your basic God-given rights, like killing a few beers and watching the game or other things you used to do regularly, have been usurped. Now, when you gain “permission” you feel like it’s your lucky day, even if it is tainted with the bitter knowledge that you’ll probably have to do something really annoying to pay her back for her so-called generosity.

1.     You’re no longer interesting, funny or desirable – Essentially, her power over you has managed to drain you of all your willpower and creativity. Often it’s the ego that gets hit hardest when a man has been whipped into submission. You know you’re acting like a chump and you begin to accept your dismal situation in order to spare yourself the embarrassment of dealing with it publicly. Over time you’ve been forced to water yourself down so much in the name of maturity and respectability — terms used to manipulate you — that you can no longer pretend to be of any use to anyone but your overbearing girlfriend.

 

This is a good list and although its sarcastic – it’s true.  Normally what happens when you are pussy-whipped it happens over a gradual period of time.  It doesn’t dawn on you until later in the relationship that when you look around the house you realize it’s all her stuff and you are just paying the rent.

 

 I was speaking to a 21-year old guy about women and he was apologizing about having a list of standards on what type of women he would go out with.  I stopped him right there dead in his tracks.  I told him, “It’s okay to have standards, it’s not shallow – you aren’t going to date every women you come across.  It’s important to know what you like and don’t like and even more important what are your boundaries.”

 

Further to list from askmen.com it is important to have a ground rules in a relationship and boundaries.  It could be a silly as don’t move stuff around in my bathroom to the much more serious don’t open my mail.  Some standard ground rules to think about:

1.     Don’t go snooping around my place, my computer or through my mail.   This has nothing to do with whether or not you are hiding anything (and if you are it’s your own business) it’s about respect for your space.  Lets face it if she is looking for something it says something more about your relationship.

2.     You are not a work in progress.  If she has a list of stuff she wants you to change for instance, get rid of all those t-shirts and buy some polo shirts.  Commentary is okay in this space but its clearly your decision on what you want to do.

3.     There is a significant list of do’s and don’ts around her family.   Substantial rules and required behavior around her family isn’t going to work.  Why not?  Come on its you and that should be enough.  Of course, some information is important for instance if her dad was in Afghanistan and that subject is taboo, this is completely okay.

4.     Everything you do requires approval.  Similar to the list from askmen.com however I would make one modification, she never gives her approval or she says she doesn’t mind however when you come home it’s the third degree.

5.     2 different religions.  Alright in the beginning this isn’t a huge issue but trust me it is.  She wants to form a cult and rise to the Hailey’s comet on the next passing and you idea of religion is excusing yourself to fart in private.  Doesn’t matter how hot she is – this should be a deal breaker.

6.     Her family hates the ground you walk on and made 2 attempts on your life.  Not good.  This one will never go away.  When you have a relationship with her, you have one with her family.  If they think you are a piece of shit, it’s a very long and hard road from there.

7.     She gets pregnant.  This friend is a huge one.  Trust is absolutely broken at this time.  Think about it – what kind of scheming had to go in this one?

8.     Those little twinges.  Just something sitting in the back of your mind.  Things don’t line up from her.  She says she was at her sister’s but you know that wasn’t the case.  Don’t leave this one alone, follow up and find out.

9.     Her sister and her mom hits on you.  Hopefully at different times and ewwww.  This is a no-win situation that no amount of explanation is going to help you. 

10.                        Compromise.   This is about the middle ground not her ground or yours but somewhere in the middle.  If she wins every single time, think about it. 

 

 

May 29, 2008

Into Extinction Day 117 (fuck – it could be worse – really.)

“Ignorant men don’t know what good they hold in their hands until they’ve flung it away.” – Sophocles – BC 495-406, Greek Tragic Poet

 

We (me included) have this way of thinking that our situation is unique and our own disaster is grander than anyone else’s.  Well I have good news and bad news.  The good news is yes your divorce is a disaster and the bad news is there others worse off than you.  Not to say you don’t rate but it could be worse.  Reading through the news….

·        A man married his love of 2 years only to have her die in his arms during their first dance.  Trumps both you and I (not that should be a contest).

·        The Inuit of the Northern Canada start with depressions almost as soon as they are born and this continues with the following in:

o       loss of culture;

o       lack of recognition;

o       poverty;

o       housing; and,

o       addictions.

You thought you had it bad but image being in a tiny isolated community with no opportunities, where suicides are common, drugs and addictions are the only way out.

·        You aren’t a quadriplegic (well I am assuming).

·        You don’t have aids.

·        Your ex isn’t out hunting you and trying to kill you off (once again I am assuming).

·        You aren’t Maxime Bernier – who is a single week saw his career go up in flames around him.  See this link if you have no idea what the fuck I am talking about >>> http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2008/05/28/security-bernier.html

·        Your own grow op has not been discovered by the police – cool.

·        You aren’t homeless (well once again I am assuming).  Having a shopping cart does count as a home.

·        You haven’t been stabbed waiting for a bus.

·        You weren’t impersonating a police officer or a gynecologist (or at least you weren’t caught).

·        You weren’t carjacked this week – maybe next week.

 

I am not trying to convince you that so many others are worse off than you are, just trying to get you to move forward with your life – that’s all.

May 28, 2008

Into Extinction Day 116 (Nobody said life owed you a living.)

“Tragedy, sadness, loneliness and despair taught me that life is really a beautiful thing; if it wasn’t I wouldn’t be able to recognize that anything was wrong” Greg Evans Suspense Novelist

 

If you ever met me, you would probably think here is guy that had everything handed to him.  Great childhood, his parents love him, sent to a great college or university, and everything set up.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

 

When I was much smaller, my parents drank a lot.  My mom was drunk a lot of the time and fought with my father.  These would be knock down – drag out fights.  In the early days, sometimes my mom won’t even come home.  She had found someone else to sleep with.

 

If you read previous blogs, you know my parents verbally and physically abused me.  My father smacked me around often, one right across my head to keep in line.  He used to smoke cigars and to make a particular point with me, he would get the cigar end red hot and glowing and then apply it to my hands, burning me.  My mom had a quick and ready hand for slapping me when I wasn’t moving fast enough to her liking.

 

As I got older and went to school, my parents never really found the time to go to concerts or plays.  In the beginning I would look out at the audience for them, they were never there, so I stopped looking.

 

By the time I was in Grade 7, I had learned to be self-sufficient.  My parents had stopped looking at my report cards or caring whether I passed a grade or not.  My older brother quit school in grade 7, my 2nd youngest brother and older sister didn’t finish school but got their GED’s later in life.

 

 

So I had decided when I was 12 I didn’t like this life and I would pursue something more for myself.  I didn’t know why I made this decision at the time but I knew I wanted something more.  What was worse was I was totally unequipped to pursue anything better.

 

My success at life today is a matter of simply not wanting a life my parents had.  I was just smart enough to realize there had to something more.  They would spend their evenings in front of the television, smoking and eating.  It was my job to roll them more cigarettes and get them candy.  Funny, they never offered a chocolate bar to me.  I remember this clearly.

 

I left the day after I graduated high school, to never return.  Most people leaving home get home sick.  I never suffered from that.  Of course, being unprepared for the larger world, I made huge mistakes, like my marriage and other things.

 

I still wonder even today how I made it out of there.  I had everything against me.  Looking at my past you probably wouldn’t believe me – the stories I could tell you of abuse and neglect as a 5-year old child.  The number of times I went without lunch at school or the beatings at home.  I do believe we are the sum of our experiences and we can be better than what we are taught.  

 

 

 

 

 

May 27, 2008

Into Extinction Day 115 (Nothing is so fucked up as when she doesn’t listen.)

 

 

* Author’s note:  If you find extreme language and hostility a problem do not read this note. 

 

I have told my ex-wife for the past 3 years I wish no contact with her.  This has not stopped her from attempting to send me past Christmas or Birthday cards plus emails on a continual basis to me.  Personally, I find this so fucking frustrating about her and one of the reasons I left her.  She always believed there were no lines.  If she felt and believed that is was her due, she would cross the any line.  For example, when I was still married to her and seeing a therapist, she demanded to see his files on me.  I said it wasn’t possible but this didn’t stop her from cornering my therapist one day (she waited outside his office and then pounced on the poor fellow) and interrogated him for 45 minutes demanding to see my files.  It was beyond her understanding as to why she couldn’t see my files.

 

So, it continues to this day.  She sends me emails with trite little sayings or how I can be closer to god.  I can’t think of an individual I would like less discourse or interactions with.  She is the last person on this fucking planet I would want any type of advice from.

 

How Christian could this possible be?  When she used the courts, the government and her lawyers to fuck me over?  They managed to strip me of all my income and any significant assets I have.  What kind of fucked up world does my ex live in that she thinks everything is fine now?   The only thing this proves to me is how fucking far away is she from reality and the fantasy world she lives in.  When you get everything you want and strip the dignity from the other person it is easy to be gracious and smile as the other person struggles to move on. 

 

Sending me photos or cards is just a huge fucking reminder of what she did to me over the years.  The years of abuse, of yelling and screaming from her.  The constant interrogations of everything I did.  If you (the ex) should every read this, leave me the fuck alone.  I would rather be on the other side of the planet, in a war zone, with a suicide bomber, with the Koran strapped to my ass, up to my neck in goat shit than go through this again with you.  If I could and I had the means, I would disappear forever.  Your continued attempts at communication only prove to me you have no fucking idea what you did to me and that makes me angrier than I have been in my life and I don’t like to feel this way.   So pardon the expression but fuck off. 

May 26, 2008

Into Extinction Day 114 (Damn – this isn’t the first time.)

 

 

“Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it” – George Santayana quotes (Spanish born American Philosopher, Poet and Humanist who made important contributions to aesthetics, speculative philosophy and literary criticism. 1863-1952)

 

A history lesson:

·        A popular political policy began separating individuals from the state.

·        Certain government legislation that began segregation of certain individuals from the state – clearly identifying them as undesirable.

·        The population through identification and media began to mark these individuals.  Nobody from the general population made any attempt to stop state policy.

·        Property from identified individuals was seized from any infraction.

·        Over time discrimination and mistreatment continued to mount on a large scale.

·        These individuals were pushed to lower end of the economic scale by legislation, the government, the courts and the general population.

·        Eventually these individuals were seen as outcasts from general society and treated as such.  All were seen as the same and the dehumanization was almost complete.  These individuals were no longer people but objects, and the state began to imprison individuals for the slightest infraction.

·        These individuals were stripped of their property, their freedom and liberties.

·        Individuals carrying out orders from the state were normal people, Catholics and Protestants, the old and the young, people with double doctorates and poorly educated members of the working class all worked to separate these undesirables from the state. 

The current state of divorced fathers and treatment from Maintenance Enforcement:

Divorced fathers are clearly identified and tracked in the government system.

Legislation has been passed that allow the following:

·        Wage Support Deduction Notice (WSDN): MEP can require that employers make scheduled deductions from a debtor’s wages in order to fulfill support responsibilities. A support deduction notice requires an employer to send to MEP a maximum of 40 per cent of the debtor’s gross wages.

·        Non-Wage Support Deduction Notice (NWSDN): MEP can intercept monies payable to the debtor from bank accounts or other sources (e.g. mutual funds, rent or contract fees). NWSDNs are placed to satisfy outstanding arrears on maintenance accounts. They may be used to collect funds until the arrears are paid or satisfactory arrangements are made with MEP for alternative forms of payment.

·        Federal Support Deduction Notice (FSDN): These support deduction notices are issued in co-operation with the federal government and can attach funds that may be payable to the debtor from federal sources, such as income tax refunds, G.S.T. rebates, Canada Pension Plan income and Employment Insurance payments.

·        Writ at the Personal Property Registry: MEP can file a support order with the Personal Property Registry as a writ against the name of the debtor and/or any personal property that the debtor may own, such as recreational or other vehicles. Once a writ is filed, the debtor may be prevented from transferring clear title to any property he or she may wish to sell. The filing of a writ also allows MEP to seize assets, including vehicles and certain kinds of retirement savings plans, shares and bonds.

·        Motor Vehicle Restrictions: MEP may restrict the debtor’s access to motor vehicle services within the province of Alberta. These include vehicle registrations, licence plates, driver’s licences, abstracts and the issuance of identification.

·        Driver’s Licence Cancellations: MEP may cancel current driver’s licences for accounts more than sixty days in arrears. Advance warning to the debtor must first be provided.

·        Federal Licence Denial: Through co-operation with the federal government, MEP may restrict the issuing of federal licences, passports and permits. MEP can also cause an existing licence or passport to be revoked.

·        Default Hearing: MEP can summon defaulting debtors to court to explain why they have not complied with their support obligations. The court can send a debtor to jail for continued non-payment of maintenance.

·        Recreational Hunting and Fishing Licence Restrictions: MEP may restrict the issuance of provincial recreational hunting and fishing licenses to debtors with maintenance arrears.

·        Registration Against Real Property: In some circumstances, MEP may register the support order against a property at the Land Titles Registry and/or force sale of real estate. The registration can prevent the owner from re-mortgaging or selling the property without first making payment arrangements with MEP.

·        Credit Bureau Reporting: MEP can report a failure to pay child or spousal support to the Credit Bureau to be registered as a bad debt.

·        Piercing the Corporate Veil: Some debtors try to shelter or hide assets or income from MEP by keeping them in the name of a company. In these cases, MEP can apply for a court order allowing the company’s property or income to be applied towards the debtor’s maintenance debt.

·        Seizure: MEP may intercept a debtor’s assets (e.g. vehicles). Seized assets may be sold and applied towards a debtor’s maintenance arrears.

·        Seizure of Third-Party Assets: Some debtors may try to shelter or hide assets or income in someone else’s name to avoid collection by MEP. In these cases, MEP can apply for a court order allowing it to seize the sheltered assets or income.

 

These individuals are clearly marked by Maintenance Enforcement and the state through all means necessary including an enforced numbering system.  The general population has labeled divorced dads as deadbeat for any type of infraction.

 

The general population is unaware of the power of the state over the deadbeat dads and in most cases when the population is informed believes this is for the greater good. 

 

Deadbeat dads are pushed to the lower end of the economic scale and money is pulled from deadbeat dads until there is nothing left including personal property.  This is for the good of all regardless of the health and welfare of the father.

 

Maintenance Enforcement uses a numbered system to identify and dehumanize individuals in the system.

 

The system is staffed by regular people believing what they are doing is right and just.  They have no problem with enforcing swift and harsh justice as quickly as possible.  Individuals supporting the state and the state itself use what is called “situational ethics” where the end, justifies the means.  Thereby the use of significant force, power and the law are utilized to support the ex-wife and the children.  It is a moral argument of the moment without considering the consequences of such treatment on the father.  In fact the outcome to the father is generally ignored in all cases because if it was recognized would require a re-examination of the process.

 

Power and the law is given to the powerless (well it’s seen this way).  Individuals (ex-wives) are encouraged to use this power and the law over deadbeat dads.  Such a system sets up a long series of entitlements for the individual (ex-wife).  This leads the phrase:

 

“Power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely.” – This arose as a quotation by John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton, first Baron Acton (1834–1902).

 

As this type of power is extended to the individual and the individual is encourage to exercise the power, deadbeat dads are crucified by this process.   

May 23, 2008

Into Extinction Day 112 (Nice guys finish last.)

 

 

                                    Nice Guy Eddie: The chick got tired of him beatin’ her so one night she walks in the guys bedroom and super glues his dick to his belly. Ambulance came and had to cut the prick loose.
Mr. White: Was he all pissed off?
Nice Guy Eddie: How would you feel if every time you had to take a piss you had to do a fuckin’ hand stand? – 
Reservoir Dogs 1992

 

If you are thinking that your divorce is going to be smooth sailing – well.  My advice is to stick your head between your legs and kiss your ass goodbye.  Reading through some of the women’s articles (see this link >>> http://women.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/women/article3283690.ece ) why would a man get married today?  I am amazed that some women seem to still think man-hunting is a good thing.  I would certainly give the single guy this type of advice –

 

The latest stats from Stats Canada show 37% of marriages in Canada end in divorce.   37% of men are going to face this situation is Canada and the current system favoring women.

 

If you knew now what you knew now about the system, lawyers, government and MEP would you still tie the knot?   I am not against marriage and love.  But if one day you found out your wife was making extra money as pole dancer down at Bootulious Big Bottoms or if you found out she gambled all your money away and was now thinking of selling one of your kidneys – you might want a divorce.  You think circumstances are on your side – truth is – you lose – enormously. 

 

Of course you could pursue a prenuptial agreement –

“A prenuptial agreement, antenuptial agreement, or premarital agreement, commonly abbreviated to prenup or prenupt, is a contract entered into by two people prior to marriage or civil union. The content of a prenuptial agreement can vary widely, but commonly includes provisions for the division of property should the couple divorce and any rights to spousal support during or after the dissolution of marriage.”

I strongly suggest this avenue.  Although popular media and culture has poked fun at this approach it’s the only thing that might save you ass.  I say might because even the courts might overturn it.

 

Even pictures of her infidelity probably won’t help you.  Neither will that DNA testing to prove that it wasn’t you that fathered 3 of your children will not help you (imagine if all 3 came from 3 different sources).  Maury did a great clip on this – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vt2i0ts-uck.  

 

So even if she slid a knife between your ribs this is not going to help you.   Or she attempted to run you down with the SUV or layered your cookies with a little hydrocyanic acid or put a Poison dart frog in your bed it doesn’t really matter.

 

So I am not saying don’t get married, but as the marriage progresses and you change and she changes, what next?

May 22, 2008

Into Extinction Day 111 (Experience good or bad has some redeeming qualities)

 

 “Wolves which batten upon lambs, lambs consumed by wolves, the strong who immolate the weak, the weak victims of the strong: there you have Nature, there you have her intentions, there you have her scheme: a perpetual action and reaction, a host of vices, a host of virtues, in one word, a perfect equilibrium resulting from the equality of good and evil on earth.”  Marquis De Sade – 1740-1814, French Author

 

I was speaking to someone just starting out on her career earlier in the week.  I enjoyed talking to her and asking her about what happens next in her career and what are her aspirations. 

 

Being young and new to world (never tell them that they don’t want to hear it), untouched by disappointment or rejection or personal issues, she has a unique view on the rest of us.  We are tainted by disillusionment, broken promises and frustration.  As my therapist once said to me, “it’s those circumstances; those incidents which cause you the greatest pain come clear understanding.”  This young and new person was talking about her pursuits it was just nice and uncomplicated to see and hear that view.

 

There is no warning you can provide for those starting out.  Any warning you provide is seen as tainted with terrible memories which could only happen to you not to the new and untried.   Not to say you shouldn’t try but she is probably right, it will likely not happen to her as it happened to you.

 

Experience increases our wisdom but doesn’t reduce our follies.  Josh Billings – 1815-1885, American Humorist, Lecturer

 

Some of our experiences such as divorce demand we share with others if only to serve as a warning.  Other experiences will only be understand by you, no matter how hard you try to relate them to others. 

 

There is one thing these terrible memories can bring to us that cannot be seen by someone new.  I understand clearly what love is and cherish it.  I understand and hold on to those moments in life that I laughed with friends, shared a good meal, opened a present, watched the sunset or held the person I loved close to me.  Because of experience, you know those moments are fleeting so enjoy the moment for exactly what is and move on.

May 21, 2008

Into Extinction Day 110 (It’s your past that determines your future)

 

When we (or maybe it’s just me) go out and form bad relationships it’s not just a coincidence.  Whether you realize it or not you form relationships based on what was modeled during your childhood and the things that happened to you.  For example:

·        I was 5 years old and I loved pancakes.  Just the thought of a hot pancake and syrup was one of the small joys during my childhood.  I remember sitting there eating a 4 stack with my family.  My father had a really bad temper and I was chewing with my mouth open.  He asked me to stop but I didn’t exactly know what he was talking about and continued to eat my pancakes, reveling in each bite.

 

A minute later, I was on the floor and didn’t how I got there and my ears were ringing.  My father had used his open hand and smashed me on the side of my head.  I flew off the chair and hit the wall on the other side of the room.  I must have been unconscious for a few seconds as I couldn’t remember the exactly what happened right away.  There was blood down one side of my face and a few teeth were loose and my dad was glaring at me. “Don’t chew with your mouth open!”  After that I didn’t eat pancakes anymore.  It didn’t dawn on me until much later in life.   I hate pancakes but I remembered loving them as a kid, I connected the incident and realized what had happened.

 

·        My parents weren’t very good at feeding us.  I remember being hungry most of my childhood.  I got up in the middle of the night (I was seven) and padded out to the kitchen.  My stomach woke me up and the pain was too great to ignore.  There sitting in the fridge was one slice of apple pie.  We weren’t allowed to touch these things as this belonged to my father.  I couldn’t help myself as I picked up the pie and ate it.  The flaky crust with the sweet apples was like heaven to me.  I finished the entire slice as quickly as possible; I didn’t want to get caught.

 

The following morning, I was watching TV when my father got up.  He got into the kitchen and was looking through the fridge.  He roared out of the kitchen, slammed the TV off, “Who ate my fucking pie?”  He was pissed.  He lined up my older sister, brother and me – the youngest and started the interrogation.  “Who ate my pie?”  I didn’t want to get my siblings in trouble and I stepped forward and in a small voice “it was me”.

 

He grabbed me and swung me up and held me by my ankles, he stripped my clothes and started smashing me all over my body with his other free hand.  I couldn’t even cry at that moment.  He let me go and I hit the ground and I crawled under the table.  I spent the day under the table, naked and bleeding, it was my sister that coaxed me out.

 

·        When I first attended school and kindergarten, I would sit there and watch the other children, never trying anything.  I was mute and didn’t talk to anybody, years of abuse left me afraid of any adult.  I remember the teachers trying to get me talk or play but I was too afraid and I didn’t know how to play with other children.  My mother never let me out of the house as a child and didn’t let other children near me (to this day I don’t know why).

 

In today’s society, my behavior as a child would send alarm bells through the teacher, the school  and to social services but back then it was assumed I had some kind of mental handicap.  My behavior was reported to my mother which led to a one-sided conversation “what the fuck is wrong with you?”  I didn’t know what to so that wouldn’t end up with me getting clubbed over the head, so I learned that silence was the best option.

My point about the stories above is not to get anyone to pity or sympathize with me.  My point is if the only love we know as children comes through with violence that’s what we move towards as adults.  The only way I know of to break this cycle is to go to therapy.  Yes, professional help, think about it.

May 20, 2008

Into Extinction Day 109 (Wow, who knew that continually beating the snot out of men would produce such magnificent results.)

 

“The perfect no-stress environment is the grave. When we change our perception we gain control. The stress becomes a challenge, not a threat. When we commit to action, to actually doing something rather than feeling trapped by events, the stress in our life becomes manageable.”  Greg Anderson American Author of ”The 22 Non-Negotiable Laws of Wellness

 

If you are expecting some unknown miracle to come along and save you from your life, this is not likely to happen.  Divorce is like a repeated kick in the balls just when you get back up there is another swift kick waiting.  The point being that this is a traumatic event in your life and likely one of the most traumatic events in your life with the exception of the death of a loved one.

 

Here is an article of an interesting decision >>> http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20060620/scc_nofaultdivorce_060621/20060621?hub=TopStories

 

My point is not to depress but survive this and everything else will be minor in your life (with a few exceptions).  There is something to be said for losing everything – having been there – there is nothing anyone else can really say that can significantly stress you out.

 

I went looking the Maintenance Enforcement website for some emotional help or stress counseling or something.  Here is the MEP website.  http://www.justice.gov.ab.ca/mep/default.aspx

 

Doesn’t appear to be any help on the website but they do happily inform you of the following:

 

“MEP collected $190.7 million in court-ordered support payments in the 2006/07 fiscal year. Since MEP started in February 1986, over $2 billion has been collected on behalf of clients and their children.”

 

Wow, who knew that continually beating the snot out of men would produce such magnificent results.  They should publish these results in the paper to show how good they are.  Of course (tongue in cheek) perhaps they should publish the suicide rates along with these results.

 

 The only justification for repressive institutions is material and cultural deficit. But such institutions, at certain stages of history, perpetuate and produce such a deficit, and even threaten human survival.  Noam Chomsky 1928-, American Linguist, Political Activist

 

My advice is to find your own way through this.  It might be through a bottle (which I don’t recommend),

·        it might be through isolation,

·        it might be through moving across the planet,

·        it might be through friends,

·        it might be through a relationship,

·        it might be through ignoring everything,

·        it might be through letting go of everything,

·        it might be through going back to court,

·        it might be through building your own support network,

·        it might be through living well,

·        it might be through redefining yourself,

 

You chose, it won’t last forever even if it feels like it will. 

May 18, 2008

Into Extinction Day 108 (Life and Divorce is what you make it… No really.)

 

 

“Our life is not really a mutual helpfulness; but rather, it’s fair competition cloaked under due laws of war; it’s a mutual hostility.”  Thomas Carlyle  – 1795-1881, Scottish Philosopher, Author

 

In the terms of what happens as I have said before, “it’s not fair”.   The balance in divorce is there is no balance.  In everything I have learned the balance tips quickly.

 

“Civilization is drugs, alcohol, engines of war, prostitution, machines and ‘machine slaves, low wages, bad food, bad taste, prisons, reformatories, lunatic asylums, divorce, perversion, brutal sports, suicides, infanticide, cinema, quackery, demagogy, strikes, lockouts, revolutions, putsches, colonization, electric chairs, guillotines, sabotage, floods, famine, disease, gangsters, money barons, horse racing, fashion shows, poodle dogs, chow dogs, Siamese cats, condoms, peccaries, syphilis, gonorrhea, insanity, neuroses, etc., etc.” Henry Miller – 1891-1980, American Author

 

What are you going to do? 

 

“The essence of justice is mercy.” Edwin Hubbel Chapin 1814-1880, American Author, Clergyman

 

Offer mercy – acceptable certain inalienable truths –  such as:

·        the scales are not tipped in your favor,

·        harbor no resentment,

·        live your own life, not in dreams of vengeance in hers,

·        embrace reality – it’s okay to have dreams – but live in the now,

·        be spontaneous,

·        solve the problem move on,

·        use your experience, wisdom, knowledge, to help others,

·        accept yourself and others and remove prejudice,

·        do what you do and pursue fulfillment,

·        become what you are capable of becoming,

·        be unthreatened and un-frightened by the unknown,

·        reason, see the truth and know that truths change,

·        be logical and efficient but follow love (right GF),

·        accept the natural world,

·        see human nature as it is – a lack of crippling shame or guilt,

·        pursue enjoyment without shame or guilt,

·        build no unnecessary inhibitions,

·        create your thoughts and your impulses unhampered by convention,

·        your ethics are clear and autonomous,

·        pursue growth,

·        focus on your problems, and people outside of yourself – you are not the center of universe,

·        know your mission in life and apply energy,

·        be alone but not lonely,

·        be unflappable, have dignity amid everyone else confusion and personal misfortunate’s,

·        retain objectivity

·        be a self-starter, you reason for moving on is your own,

·        don’t stereotype people,

·        moment to moment living is fantastic, every moment is the best moment,

·        your vision can be a limitless horizon,

·        Identify, provide sympathy, and affection for those that really need it regardless if that individual is cruel or ugly or indifferent – your reasons are your own,

·        Share your love with a precious few,

·        Be humble and friends to anyone regardless of class, education, religion, political belief, race or color, your beliefs transcend the typical boundaries.

·        Be original, inventive, intrinsic, and sensitive to the situation

·        Know your imperfections and pursue growth,

·        become self-actualized (look it up – you will know what I mean)

 

I have said a lot of things on here, mostly tongue-in-cheek, what I really believe is the list above.  I am not saying I am this person just striving to be.

May 16, 2008

Into Extinction Day 107 (Revenge is a bitch – anonymous)

The best revenge is massive success.” Frank Sinatra, 1915-, American Singer and Actor

 

How do you move on? Or why bother moving on because there is nothing left or it will be 3 to 4 years before any good can come of this.  Poking and prodding of friends isn’t going to help either – unless they have experienced the reaming your ex-wife and the justice system gave you – there is simply no comparison. 

 

Well, you could spend your time dreaming of revenge, common themes include:

1.     Winning the Super 7 or Lotto 649.  Using this money to crush her.  Nice dream, but is after all a dream.  Just imagine you hire a team of sharks that swoop in and crush her lawyer and her and the fucked up case they put together.

2.     Disappearing off the face of the planet.   This is my favorite.  Just removing yourself from the entire system and moving on.  I think the appeal is I get to still have a life and she gets a little of nothing.  The appeal is you could actually do this.  However leaving on the edge of the Amazon basin with Yanomani Indians eating the butts out of pigs may not be that appealing.

3.     Running her over with your SUV.  Some tips include, make sure you have a push-bar on the front of your SUV because you don’t want to ruin your paint job.  Make sure you pick a car wash or detail place that will get ride of the criminal evidence and for fucks sake have a good alibi – don’t think for a second the police won’t be CSI’ing your ass.   This thinking is bad!  And if anything were to actually happen to her, this thinking will probably get you into trouble.

4.     You prove she is a rat-faced, skanky, two-faced, skinny-ass loser.  Ah, there is nothing like destroying the life that destroyed yours.  Don’t sink too deep into this kind of thinking it will taint everyday for you.

5.     Everyone discovers what a loser, gold brick, shit-faced liar, slacker, loafer and failure she actually is.  It doesn’t change much except people realize you weren’t wrong.

6.     The government discovers what she is really doing with the money you are giving her.  They discover she is dropping the money into a long term investment for her retirement.  The government decides to fry her ass and it all becomes public.  Okay, this one is total fantasy, the likelihood of the government suddenly becoming competent is such a long shot, its better if you place your hopes in winning the lotto.

7.     She goes out with someone that takes her for every last dime she every made.   Strips her clean including those RRSP’s she has.  Nice to see someone get back some their own.  You spend the time dancing around and cavorting – might happen. 

8.     You arrange your fake death and she gets blamed.  This did show up in another one of my blogs.  As fun as this was or going to be, hello!  You are dead.  You can watch the trial from a distance but life will never be the same again.

9.     You become incredibly successful and she realizes that you never – ever needed her, she was a boat anchor or she was a skid mark on the underwear of life.  This one is a little healthier that the above scenarios – nothing like living well and beyond her means.

10.                         You find a soft, warm loving individual.  She smells great and best of all, she understands you.  She helps you through the tough times and she is great to snuggle with – this is one worth pursuing.

 

My point is, its okay to fantasize about what could happen just don’t like it drag you into it until there is nothing left of you.  This will be one of the most trying times of your life.  You have to make a decision –

 

“Andy Dufresne: “Get busy living, or get busy dying.  The Shawshank Redemption 1994

So what’s it going to be?

May 15, 2008

Into Extinction Day 106 (don’t blame me, its his/her fault this all happened)

Reading through many blogs here on WordPress.com and other sites; the blogs teeter between depression, blame, holding onto the ex or God.  I have read blogs that lay out in minutia – detailing every wrong perpetrated by the other party.  Some examples include:

·        He makes sarcastic comments about me in public.

·        He only wants me for sex.

·        I waiting for her to make her mind about our marriage.

·        She is having dinner with a guy – their just friends.

and the list goes on… 

 

Of course there are those blogs on there preaching a return to god and a life of chastity.  I have no problem with God however its my business and praying to God does not release you from making a decision or moving forward. 

 

The general idea is as follows:

·        Definition: Intrinsic motivation refers to motivation that comes from inside an individual rather than from any external or outside rewards, such as money or grades.

·        Definition: Extrinsic motivation refers to motivation that comes from outside an individual. The motivating factors are external, or outside, rewards such as money or grades. These rewards provide satisfaction and pleasure that the task itself may not provide.

 

Extrinsic people will tend to lay of blame of most things around circumstances surrounding themselves.  Such as he called me an idiot or I am waiting for her decision whereas intrinsic individuals accept responsibility for their actions, make a decision and move on with their lives.  I rarely read a blog that does balance what is going or happening to themselves with their own actions.  What I mean is – if you stay and accept the action of her sleeping around you are enabling the situation.

 

 

The other strategy I see played throughout these blogs again and again is the “I am a victim”.  This is through writing blogs and conversations with others to manipulate feelings of sympathy thereby satisfying the need for personal power and control.  Wait, I am not labeling all complaining as a victim strategy just those that can’t seem to get beyond it and use this victim strategy in all cases to gain the sympathies of others.  Additional definition follows:

 

The self-defined, “Victim” writes his/her own history (along with keeping a now wary protective vigilance toward his/her future power structures by a practiced “marketing” of his/her “mistreatment” and/or “abuse.” Support garnered through such projections provide outside support during rejection, separation or divorce potentials and isolates the falsely labeled “Victimizer” in his/her life).

 

Often having been forced into an early abusive relationship as a child (where he/she had been a genuine victim), the underlying determination as an adult is a lesson learned; being “abused” provides outside sympathy and protective reaction within any life situation).

 

As is common with having been abused as a child, the past-abused child now becomes the adult abuser (within the self-defined “Victim” personality disorder, this adult is a stealth abuser).

 

The self-defined “Victim” is practiced in presenting facial/body behavior signals to his/her outside world as a presentation of the “truth” of his/her position. The facial “mask” along with an “emotion-less” mask at times are silent “display” mechanisms.

 

His/her children as tools whereby anger is expressed in more subtle ways through the hurtful or “direction-signaling” words of his/her children toward the person “needing” punishing or who the “Victim” desires to control.

 

My ex-wife is a master of this strategy and played the victim the entire length of marriage.  So strong was her conviction that I would get emails from what used to be our mutual friends telling me to stop hurting her.

 

My point is I see a lot of finger pointing to other parties when you should also look internally for what you allowed to happen to yourself.  Additionally, I read about individuals inviting again the same type of person into their lives again and again the blog writer plays the victim. 

 

Remember take responsibility for your actions and move forward.  Don’t wait for her or him to make their minds about the marriage, you are placing the control in their hands.  Yes, I know its easy for me to say however, if you always wait for others, you will never be satisfied with the outcome.

May 14, 2008

Into Extinction Day 105 (The pursuit of Justice for the individual)

  At first it may seem like insurmountable obstacles in front of you.   The only way to survive is to pay everyone and what is left is yours.  The latest material I have found on the subject is here >>> http://www.westernstandard.ca/website/article.php?id=2770

 

What I find interesting is there is the occasional article on this topic but for the most part we are ignored.  It seems unless we are homeless or have a strong special interest group representing us; we are buried back in page 25 of the newspaper.  Of course, when one of us kills ourselves in public we do make the front page but it’s just that day.

 

I have been cross-referencing and looking for ways for the government to hear our case because I am not giving up on this easily and I want to fight this.  There is the website >>>  http://www.albertahumanrights.ab.ca/about.asp

 

The vision statement of the Human Rights Commission is as follows:

 

“In Alberta, the Human Rights, Citizenship and Multiculturalism Act (HRCM Act) protects Albertans from discrimination in certain areas and on certain grounds. The purpose of the HRCM Act is to ensure that all Albertans are offered an equal opportunity to earn a living, find a place to live and enjoy services customarily available to the public without discrimination.“

 

The HUMAN RIGHTS, CITIZENSHIP

AND MULTICULTURALISM ACT publishes the following section:

 

Functions of Commission

 

16(1) It is the function of the Commission

 

(a)          to forward the principle that all persons are equal in: dignity, rights and responsibilities without regard to race, religious beliefs, colour, gender, physical disability, mental disability, age, ancestry, place of origin, marital status, source of income or family status,

 

I would contend or file a compliant with the Human Rights Commission based on the Charter of Rights and Freedoms based on the following section:

 

Section 7 guarantees the life, liberty and personal security of all Canadians. It also demands that governments respect the basic principles of justice whenever it intrudes on those rights. Section 7 often comes into play in criminal matters because an accused person clearly faces the risk that, if convicted, his or her liberty will be lost.

 

I would construct the complaint with Alberta Human Rights that when Maintenance Enforcement garnished my wages, suspended my driver’s license and revoked my ability to renew the registry on my vehicle that MEP was violating my right to life, liberty and personal security without a criminal charge being placed against me. 

 

I would maintain that my rights as an individual were severely curtailed without criminal charges and my life, liberty and personal security were at risk.

 

What do you think?

May 13, 2008

Into Extinction Day 104 (What all soon-to-be divorced dads need to know.)

Damn, I wish my lawyer or someone had explained these things to me, would have made life a lot easier and less expensive.

 

1.     Your opinion doesn’t matter.  Nope.  It’s better if you don’t have one.  Just bend over and grab your ankles, think warm thoughts.  You think I am being sarcastic don’t you?

2.     Whatever job; you have – quit – take the job as the fry-girl at MacDonald’s.   Seriously – making $9 an hour is really going to help you.

3.     Whatever she tells the court and the judge, they are going to believe.  You were a cross-dressing, transvestite, and vampire.  This is bad for the children.  They won’t believe you when you tell them she is soul-sucking bitch – nope – ain’t gonna happen.

4.     Sell off everything; take that trip to Thailand before the courts rule.  As a matter of fact, think of moving to Thailand.  You will be stripped of everything including your dignity, manhood, pride, ego, personality, sense of self, character, self-image, self-esteem, confidence, self-assurance, poise, self-belief, self-reliance, and anything else they can think of.

5.     Get used to beans in a can and Kraft Dinner.  This will be haute cuisine.  You idea of a great time will be taking out a frozen hotdog, warming it up in your armpit, and watching the neighbor’s television from your shopping cart in the alley.

6.     The fact that she stuck your dick in the toaster and set it to fry will matter not.  The fact that she stalked you for weeks and eventually pulled a “boiled rabbit” in your apartment matters not.  The fact that she convinced everyone in your office you have herpes matters not in court.  The court system is setup to protect her not you.

7.     Okay new concept here.  You will pay child support and in doing so pay what is called hidden spousal support.  The government, the courts and her lawyer and going to tell her to make as little money as possible so they can tap-dance all over your ass for it. 

8.     You may think because you walked out its done – forget that thought.  She has you by the balls.  She owns your ass. 

9.     Burn and shred everything, I mean everything.  I thought I did (shred everything) and missed her box of cards.  She kept everything I sent her which at first I thought because she liked mementos but in the end it was used against me.  I remember standing there thinking should I shred this?  I thought to myself, naw, too brutal.  On hindsight, I should have.  I kicked myself in court later when she brought the evidence forward.  Think of burning down the house – hmmm, maybe not that might come up in court.

10.                        Your standard of living is about to drop perniciously.  Your charter of rights is about to get a serious stomping.  You will be a second class citizen.  Better you hear it now and get used to the idea.

 

My list is a bit over the top but the feeling is there.  Its difficult to imagine in the beginning when you think you have rights and the law will protect to you to the eventual thoughts that this is not the case.  It is one of the rudest awakenings I can think of.  Good luck my friend, you will need 100lbs of horseshoes to make it through this.

May 12, 2008

Into Extinction Day 103 (Vengeance is best served cold…)

I was thinking over the weekend about the right thing.  I have been faced with several incidents over the past several weeks and what choices to make.   A part of me always wants to be vindictive, spiteful, malicious, bitter, mean, cruel, hurtful, nasty, and malevolent.  It’s an opportunity to give some where I took some.  The outcome of not doing this you get to be the better person, there are no awards, precious little recognition and nothing really for you except you know you did what had to be done.

 

In our world and in popular culture, most movies, friends, and governments make a big thing out of taking back what is yours.  Movies such as Payback is entire film out of getting back what was done to and more.  The first wives club –

“Three ex-wives, dumped for newer models, determine to get their revenge. They had helped their husbands become financially successful, so they cleverly plan to hurt their exes in their pockets. Justice is sweet and fun with plenty of great on-liners and physical gags”

Is a lengthy exposition on how to gut your ex-husband – forgiveness doesn’t seem to be apart of this.  War of the Roses –

The Roses, Barbara and Oliver, live happily as a married couple. Then she starts to wonder what life would be like without Oliver, and likes what she sees. Both want to stay in the house, and so they begin a campaign to force each other to leave. In the middle of the fighting is D’Amato, the divorce lawyer. He gets to see how far both will go to get rid of the other, and boy do they go far.

Is one of the most brutal and damaging movies I have seen on the subject of divorce – a black comedy.  I have seen it once and plan to never see it again.

 

The point of this is revenge.

Revenge (also vengeance, retribution, or vendetta amongst others) consists primarily of retaliation against a person or group in response to a perceived wrongdoing. Although many aspects of revenge resemble or echo the concept of justice, revenge usually has a more injurious than harmonious goal. The goal of revenge usually consists of forcing the perceived wrongdoer to suffer the same pain that was originally inflicted.

 

The point being is get back some of your own. 

In some societies, it is believed that the punishment in revenge should be more than the original injury, as a punitive measure. The Old Testament philosophy of “an eye for an eye” (cf. Exodus 21:24) tried to moderate the allowed damage, in order to avoid a vendetta or series of violent acts that could spiral out of control—instead of ‘tenfold’ vengeance, there would be a simple ‘equality of suffering’. Detractors argue that revenge is a simple logical fallacy, of the same design as “two wrongs make a right.” Some Christians interpret Paul’s “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord” (Romans 12:19, King James Version) to mean that only God has the moral right to exact revenge. Indeed, every major religious system contains some method for the mediation of disputes and for the limitation of vengeance by imputing a sense of cosmic justice to replace the often faulty justice systems of the world of men.

 

I am not a bible thumper just thought the quote was interesting.  In my experience although revenge is sweet by the very nature of enacting it propagates more and more of the same.  The point being is to get past whatever was done to you and move on with your life.  This is an extraordinary difficult task to accomplish – I know.

 

“Of the psychological, moral, and cultural foundation for revenge, philosopher Martha Nussbaum has written: “The primitive sense of the just—remarkably constant from several ancient cultures to modern institutions…—starts from the notion that a human life…is a vulnerable thing, a thing that can be invaded, wounded, violated by another’s act in many ways. For this penetration, the only remedy that seems appropriate is a counter invasion, equally deliberate, equally grave. And to right the balance truly, the retribution must be exactly, strictly proportional to the original encroachment. It differs from the original act only in the sequence of time and in the fact that it is response rather than original act—a fact frequently obscured if there is a long sequence of acts and counteracts”.

 

My mother was in town this past weekend.  She came in town because her brother was dying.  I don’t keep close with my family nor do they have a current phone number for me.  After years of child abuse at their hands I need some distance. 

 

However, when my grandmother died her greatest wish for me was to help my family and I respect that wish.  So my older brother contacted me and told me my mother was arriving.  I called her and asked her if she needed anything and she just wanted to see me.

 

As usual it was a dog-fuck from the start.  I called her Saturday morning to discover the hotel wanted her out because she didn’t have a credit card.  *sigh  I went over and straightened that out.  Then I discovered like always she had no money for food.  I gave her money as well.

 

This was the woman that beat me as a child and stripped away my sense of self over the years.  I remember every morning in the summer we would dread her getting up.  As she stomped down the stairs we would all scurry about cleaning up the house.  This didn’t stop the verbal abuse from her as she called us useless and dumb-fucks.

 

One distinct memory was when I was in Grade 9 about 15 years old.  We were shopping for my winter clothing.  She slammed my new coat into the cart and announced to me that was the last fucking jacket she was going to buy me.   True to her word she never bought me clothes again.

 

Over the years I was told by my mom, that you little fucker wouldn’t amount to anything.  I remember her screaming that into my face one day and it followed with a smack to my face. 

 

So I did amount to something and managed to create almost the same atmosphere within my failed marriage.  But in the end, we are supposed to rise above this.  To be better than you were taught.   I gave that money to my mother for a few reasons:

1.     My dad got up every morning at 6am and went to work for 30 years – I owned him and it was the right thing to do.

2.     It was what my grandmother wanted me to do.  I didn’t understand her dying request 5 years ago but I know now.

3.     I suppose despite my best efforts I might be the better person and no this wasn’t something I was striving to do or I am proud of – it just is.  I don’t want any thank you’s or hugs for what I did.

 

There was one single incident that struck me about the past weekend.  As I was leaving my mother at the hospital – my duty done she came outside to say goodbye to me.  For a moment I thought it was just goodbye but she broke down and cried on my shoulder for 10 minutes.  It all the time I had know here I never saw this.  It struck me that although at the time, I didn’t need her perhaps she needed me – I had forgotten this with everything else going on.

May 9, 2008

Into Extinction Day 102 (Women smell nice)

If you have been reading my past posts, it may seem like I hate, dislike, abhor, detest and loathe all women.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  I am very attracted to women – well one in particular (you know who you are).  Women smell nicer than us (well try it, take a sniff, but um, try not to sniff unknown women, this will get you in jail very, very fast and sniffing your mother doesn’t count and ewwww).  Women have some very nice soft bits we (as men) are missing.  If you have no clue what I am talking about see your grade 8 sex education classes for details or look on the web (be prepared for nasty stuff on the web by the way).  A great relationship is a woman that complements you – not exactly like you.   She understands you despite your best efforts and lets you be who you want to be (i.e. you don’t have to hide the bag of Cheetos under the seat cushion because she is a health nut). 

 

After the pain of previous breakout has leached out of your system, remember I said after, its time to move on.  The reason it takes time to move on is because of the emotional bond you had with the ex.  I know it’s hard to imagine but it was there.  Breaking that bond is painful and takes time – you should take the time.  Unless of course there were no bonds and you are simply ready to move on.    If this is the case and its remarkable easy to move on, try this book http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/Snakes-Suits-Psychopaths-Workplace-Paul-Babiak/9780060837723-item.html they might be talking about you.

 

Okay as I have said before, in search of a new relationship, lets have some standards or you will end up with a woman who has to either shave her back every other day or who lives out of her car.  Some standards to think of:

 

1.     Height – yes I said height.  Seems trivial but if she only comes up to your waist that may be fantastic for some things (use your imagination) but if you keep losing her in crowds and she is asked for ID all the time, might be a problem.

2.     Interests – what do you like?  If she is interested in scrap booking and/or mud-wrestling alligators – hell if you don’t mind it’s your choice.  Interests indicate what’s beneath the surface.  If her biggest hobby is bingo on Saturday nights is this what you want?  If she likes to zip line across 300 foot gorges, can you do it?

3.     I have always had the standard rule, if the women can bench press more than me it’s a no-go.   Why?  Do you want your ears pinned back when you lose an argument?  Do you want her to use you for pushups?   You really will be a boy toy.  Hell, maybe you like that – not for me.

4.     Intelligence – if she is part of the local chapter of Mensa and you crush beer cans on your forehead – this might be a problem.  If she has 2 undergraduate degrees and a PHD, you may have a problem discussing world politics with her because world politics involve for you involve what your friends said down in the bar last night and comparing who can fart the loudest.

5.      Her ambitions – if her greatest ambition is to be on Jerry Springer, well it’s your choice.  Think about it, you will have to sleep with her half-sister who had the sex change to get on Springer and make her dreams come true.  Of course, if your greatest ambition is to do the run to Sturgis and she doesn’t know what the bitch seat is… Well….

6.     Your habits – if cleaning your toenails in bed is completely acceptable to you  – I am telling you now – good luck trying to find someone that will put with that (your dog doesn’t count).   If you never clean up after yourself, and weeks of food are lying around – I don’t know many people that will put with that.  Think personal grooming habits, think bathing once a day and a nice cologne – not cologne that attacks and subdues women by beating them over the head – something subtle (but that’s my preference).

7.     Religion – I know this doesn’t come up right away.  If she attends church 3 times a week and you during the first full moon sacrifice a cat to your pagan gods, there might a teeny weenie problem here.   Religion, in my opinion should be a close match, either she comes over to your side and is prepared to dance naked under the full moon with sheep or you go to her church – even this, in my opinion I don’t think will work.

8.     World View – what I mean by that what is her perception of the world around her.  If her world view doesn’t extend beyond the 6 blocks she has always lived in and yours is hiking through the Himalayas – there might be a problem here.

9.     Avoid psychotic women, now really, you would think this goes without saying however statistics show 1 in 10 people have a little Texas Chainsaw massacre in them.   A psychosis can show up many different ways, here are some common ones;

a.     Schizophrenia (multiple types) – every time you pick her for a date you meet someone new, this is a danger sign.

b.     Hallucinations (false perceptions) – she thinks she is the Prime Minister and wants you to address her as her lordship (well without tying you up this really isn’t a lot of fun).  Doesn’t matter how beautiful she is – this is a problem.

c.      Delusions (false beliefs) – she really does believe that aliens have come and probed her and they will bring her to their planet as their queen. 

d.     Flattened affect (loss of range of emotions) – if she has 2 emotions and one of them involves a lot of sex – while this may be fun – even this will wear on.  This to me is a significant danger sign.

10.                         Spending time with her.  If many things crop up, like the way she clicks her teeth all the time annoys you from day one, it isn’t going to get better.  If her unwillingness to shave body parts is really bugging you – it’s really time to move on.

 

My point is to know what your standards are.  I know this might sound shallow but it’s important.  This will help you and her decide if you want to invest time in the relationship because it can’t all be about the sex.  Good luck.

May 8, 2008

Into Extinction Day 101 (the Dehumanization of divorced fathers)

Dehumanization often begins with the removal of personal identification. A convicted criminal is issued a prison identification number, for example. This form of dehumanization allows the guards and other authorities to maintain an impersonal relationship with inmates. This practice of dehumanization is also used by military prisons to maintain a feeling of superiority over captured enemy combatants. Viewing the enemy as a human being may compromise a soldier’s ability to interrogate him or her later.

 

Dehumanization is a process by which members of a group of people assert the “inferiority” of another group through subtle or overt acts or statements. Dehumanization may be directed by an organization (such as a state) or may be the composite of individual sentiments and actions, as with some types of de facto racism. State-organized dehumanization has been directed against perceived racial or ethnic groups, nationalities (or “foreigners” in general), religious groups, genders, minorities of various sexual orientations (eg. homosexuals or pedophiles), disabled people as a class, economic [e.g. the homeless] and social classes, and many other groups.

 

A common theme (or meme) is that of scapegoating, where dehumanizing the target provides a release from guilt for the person that scapegoats them, who typically begins to see themselves as a victim of the dehumanized person, rather than as a potential oppressor.

 

The only reason this thought came up for me; I was watching “Saving Private Ryan” over the last few days and it dawned on me.  There is a well known psychological process for dehumanizing a group of individuals.  It starts with classification of the group of individuals, in our case its “Deadbeat dads”.  When dealing with Maintenance Enforcement you are assigned a seven digit number – that is what you are known as.  Every transaction and conversation begins with this number.  I know my number by rote now because that’s how I am addressed in the system.  They don’t use my first or last name in addressing me. 

 

Additional classifications is putting more psychological distance between the individuals perpetrating the act and those on the receiving end.  In our case, it’s the extreme punishment such as 14 years in prison for misfiling a statement of finance.  It continues with breaking down the moral and ethics boundaries of the individual.   This can be found in the Statement of Finance documentation required by Maintenance Enforcement, this document calls for the following:

·        Name, current address, Social Insurance Number, Health Care number and Driver’s License.

·        Present Employer information – gross and net salary

·        Annual bonus’s, commission, any raises you might receive, part-time employment, income producing hobbies, other income from rental properties, annuities, and pensions.

·        List of additional income such as are you collecting rent from a roommate.

·        Income from self-employment.

·        Do you have a business?  What is the salary?  Bonuses?  Dividends?  Other income such as automobile allowances and expenses you submit.

·        Any other monies received from the business such as company car, house, loans, savings plans, and share purchase options.

·        Copies the business financial statements.

·        Number of shares in the business and are you an officer of the corporation?

·        Total amount of loans you have made to the corporation.

·        Your monthly expenses including rent or mortgage payments, property taxes, utilities, groceries, clothing, transportation, personal expenses, home or rental insurance, vehicle insurance, life insurance, disability insurance, maintenance, alcohol, tobacco or other dependencies.

·        Complete list of your monthly payments to creditors.

·        List of dependants.

·        List of agreements requiring you to pay child or spousal maintenance.

·        List of all chequing and savings accounts, term deposits and annuities.

·        List of all retirement savings plans including RRSP, LIRA, LIF, and LRIF’s.

·        List of all real estates.

·        List of motor vehicles including type, make, model, year, serial no of the vehicle, purchase price you paid, balance owing, current market value and equity.

·        List of securities, including your shares, bonds and their current market value including any dividends paid out.

·        List of all location of all certificates for all corporate holdings both public and private and names and addresses of the brokers you deal with.

·        Insurance policies including the name of the insurance company, policy number, amount, person insured, premium and the cash surrender value.

·        Trusts – including the description of the assets held, location and the names and addresses of the trustee’s.

·        Parties who owe you money including their name, address, reason for debt, and amounts owning.

·        Are you a plaintiff in any lawsuit that may result in the court awarding you money?  Name of the person being sued, amount claimed, your lawyer’s name, address, phone number and status of the court action.

·        Have you settled a lawsuit for a sum of money that has not yet been paid?  Your lawyer’s name, amount owing, payment date, lawyer’s address, lawyer’s phone number and status of the court action.

·        Have you applied for any benefit, refund, compensation, grant, settlement or other funds form any government or program? 

·        Do you have any inheritances?

·        Other assets such as interests in other businesses, promissory notes, judgment debts, loans and mortgages receivable, objects of art, jewellery, bullion, coins, cameras, household furnishings and appliances (stereos, TVs, computers, crystal, dishwashers, and other asses no previously listed.

·        Have you given away, sold or assigned or otherwise transferred any property?

 

You have become a number and a series of assets that the government can claim at any time.  Where is our humanity?  The only thing I see missing on this list is your gold filings or perhaps how much they could get for that pacemaker in your chest or the clothes on your back. 

 

The process of filling out MEP’s forms is very dehumanizing and demoralizing, it might be better to jump off a building.

 

Further steps in the dehumanizaing process include:

 

“However, for individuals viewed as outside the scope of morality and justice, “the concepts of deserving basic needs and fair treatment do not apply and can seem irrelevant.”  Any harm that befalls such individuals seems warranted, and perhaps even morally justified. Those excluded from the scope of morality are typically perceived as psychologically distant, expendable, and deserving of treatment that would not be acceptable for those included in one’s moral community. Common criteria for exclusion include ideology, skin color, and cognitive capacity. We typically dehumanize those whom we perceive as a threat to our well-being or values”

 

It seems in the process of dehumanizing divorced fathers, whatever happens to them is because they were bad people, didn’t pay for their children, cheated in their wives and the like.  When one of us “deadbeat dads” commits suicide he was mentally imbalanced – nobody bothers to look at the process that drove the individual to that point.

 

“Psychologically, it is necessary to categorize one’s enemy as sub-human in order to legitimize increased violence or justify the violation of basic human rights. Moral exclusion reduces restraints against harming or exploiting certain groups of people. In severe cases, dehumanization makes the violation of generally accepted norms of behavior regarding one’s fellow man seem reasonable, or even necessary. “

 

Basic human rights such as food, shelter and clothing are denied when paying MEP.   You must pay the support and whatever is left you get to live off of.  What happens is the actions taken against a divorced father through our legal system have become the accepted norms for behavior however if the same individuals (i.e. such as judges, politicians, lawyers and other officials) faced the same punitive actions – how would they react?  You, as a divoriced father, have been re-classified out of normal society.  You are no longer a normal citizen; the only thing missing is getting you to sow a label on your jacket branding you a deadbeat dad.

 

“Deindividuation facilitates dehumanization as well. This is the psychological process whereby a person is seen as a member of a category or group rather than as an individual. Because people who are deindividuated seem less than fully human, they are viewed as less protected by social norms against aggression than those who are individuated. It then becomes easier to rationalize contentious moves or severe actions taken against one’s opponents.”

 

How quickly is a divorced father viewed as a “deadbeat dad” when you have an argument against the system?  When you say the payout for support in unfair?  What has happened is the normal social conventions that would have stopped such things as your bank accounts froze or your drivers license suspended is gone – it is a perfectly rational move by society to suspend your rights and freedoms.

 

“Once certain groups are stigmatized as evil, morally inferior, and not fully human, the persecution of those groups becomes more psychologically acceptable. Restraints against aggression and violence begin to disappear.”

 

Tell me when someone speaks of a deadbeat dad they are saying this person might be or are evil.  It becomes perfectly acceptable or more psychologically acceptable to use more extreme means on these deadbeat dads.  Let’s show them all they can’t fuck with us.

 

In the end, deadbeat dads or divorced fathers are seen as second class in society.   It is easier to brand us all the same way and to treat us as such.  There is one system and one treatment and one punishment for all divorced dads.  Your freedoms are taken away.

 

May 7, 2008

Into Extinction Day 100 (it really bites you on the ass)

  I was calculating how much I would continue to have pay and I stopped when the total exceeded $100,000.00.  It’s depressing.  It’s depressing to know for the following years I can never be sick or take a day off because this means those soulless bastards from Maintenance Enforcement will jump all over you.  They don’t really call you they just start taking things away and it’s not gradual.  They file with the Federal and Provincial wage garnishes.  They file with Motor Vehicles to suspend your ability to renew your vehicle registration.  They suspend your drivers license and then garnish your wages within your company.  They can and will take up to 70% of your income, including the second job at MacDonald’s.    They threaten that if a single item is out of place on your submitted financial statements they can toss you away for 14 years.  This is enormous power and heavy is the hand of those bastards. 

 

I have watched and read how Maintenance Enforcement will take from any student loans you get.  They will take from pensions.  They will take from welfare or any other means you have.  If you have a heart attack or stroke, living from hand to mouth, they won’t even leave you enough for bus fare.

 

The world doesn’t owe me a living.  This is a fairly common saying with no specific individual claiming the quote.  I owe the world a living is my conclusion.  It’s hard not to think day after day what has happened to me.  My only consolation is that I am not the only one this has happened to.  I suppose if my ex were to read this and knew it was me, she would take some joy at what has happened to me.  My penalty for suggesting a divorce that isn’t allowed by the Catholic faith.   Despite the significant punishments levied by her, the courts and the government, I would still do it again.  I would rather die a man free of her than one imprisoned by her. 

 

I was wondering today as I trudged my way into work will I still give to the man at the side of the street handout.  The old man, that sits beside the rails (C-Train) begging for money.  He wears a dirty cap, long grey dirty beard, scruffy blackened coat, shoes 2 sizes too big for him and every inch of him is covered in dirt.  Some days I envy him.  He is invisible.  Of course, your comment could be, shut the fuck up and pay and you would be right, as long as I chose to live in Canada, these are the rules imposed that I must abide by.  But if I am homeless and have nothing then there is nothing to take.  You can’t find me I slip under the radar and who really gives a damn about the homeless anyways.  It takes significant time, talent and energy to keep this going.  To continue to make enough money to keep myself afloat and when I look at the years left for paying.  Some days, I think it would be easier to give it up.  After all, if they take everything, what is left to hold on to?  I have to admit there is a part of me, that would like to see what my ex would do if there was nothing left.

 

But why would you go on?  My GF (who is reading this now) would say it can’t last forever.  The pace is significant and demanding with no rest.  I was somewhat idealistic about Canada and our laws.  Maybe even a little naive.  Now I understand other people’s frustration with the courts, lawyers and the government.  There really is a sense of entitlement there, that the government and the courts have the best interests of everyone and you should obey.  We were all brought up with a sense of freedom.  Get a job, buy a house and live your life and you would be left alone.  This has changed forever for me.  I no longer put any trust in our legal system, the banks or lawyers (okay, the lawyers I should have known about in the first place).  I have learned to bring the full measure of my abilities to anything dealing with the province – don’t play nice – it really bites you on the ass in the end. 

 

May 6, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 99 (Leaving and finding someone else)

Looking for a new relationship – now that the old one has blown up and taken little bits of you with it, its time to look for a new one, unless of course you happy being alone with a TV, a couple of plants and a pillow to caress at night.  Not that there is anything wrong with that however a loving a pillow over a longer period of time may require therapy and I wouldn’t bring the pillow along for the sessions.

 

The whole point of leaving the previous relationships is the following:

1.     You were unhappy.

2.     You found her cheating skanky ass in bed with someone else and that pretty much did it.

3.     You found someone else.

4.     You didn’t like to be smacked around every day.

5.     You didn’t like to be told you are worthless and lower than dog crap on a sunny day in the middle of a park.

6.     He/she stopped loving you.

7.     You stopped loving them.

8.     You moved on with your life and they were stuck where their were in Grade 10 Chemistry.

9.     He/she moved on and all you smell is fumes from the bus that took them there.

 

So you were unhappy.  If this is the length and depth you thought about it, you might be from the shallow end of the gene pool.  Why were you unhappy?  Does she nag you until you want to put a plastic bag over her head?  Is her strongest ambition is to see the DNA results on Jerry Springer cause she knows that cheating bastard is not the father?  Did she drink all your beer every day and you find her in a pool of her own vomit at the end of the day?  If you don’t know exactly and precisely why you unhappy you are just going to transfer this unhappiness onto the next bewildered victim.  Knowing why you unhappy is important because you can avoid this in your next relationship.

 

You found her cheating skanky ass in bed with someone else.  Doesn’t matter if it’s another female and you want pictures.  Of course, you can get around to forgiving her and continuing along with the relationship.  My personal opinion is this won’t work.  There is the little matter of trust.  It’s very hard and extraordinarily difficult to rebuild that kind of trust.   I know, I know you love her, but it will take years to re-build this and a lot of energy.   My advice – walk away… 

 

Okay, you found someone else.  You are a bad, bad person.  There my only judgment call.  If you found someone else think about it.  Was it really exciting to sneak around?  Was it thrilling to get to know somebody else?  Was it fantastic to keep the wife in the dark?  I am not making a judgment call here – not my business, however you might be depressed.  No, I am not making excuses for you to jump in bed with that stripper because you liked the way she handed that pole in the bar but you might be depressed.  A sign of depression is when someone looks for excitement in their world, somebody new to make them feel alive again.  Again, I am not condoning your behavior but you might want to seek professional help and you might want to bow out gracefully out the marriage.  I am also suggesting you don’t tell her you have had sex with someone else.  That is irreparable damage to her.  I am not thinking about your feelings at all on this one. 

 

You don’t like to be smacked around every day – well who does?  Smacking or any form of physical abuse is not okay.  If he or she blocks the doors from you leaving that’s just as bad because they are forcing a confrontation.  If you stay for the smackings because of kids and you have nowhere to go, in my opinion its just as much damage.  I know, its easy for me to say pick up and move on, but you have to.

 

You didn’t like to be told you are worthless and lower than dog crap on a sunny day in the middle of a park.  Ah, verbal abuse – very difficult to provide and leaves just as many scars as the physical abuse – see my posting on day 94 for details.

 

They stopped loving you.  You just become a stop in the middle of life once a day.  No real emotional connection.  Well, couples therapy might work but if you don’t understand why this happened you might never.  Remember it’s not entirely their fault, you own 50/50 on this one.  You could ask them why they stopped but I bet no real answer if forthcoming and why not?   Because if they really respected you and the relationship they would have already fessed up.

 

You stopped loving them.  At first, when they were clipping their toenails in bed that was cute now its disgusting.  At first, her going out 3 times a week with her friends including guy-friends didn’t bother you – you believed in the relationship, now there is nothing left.  At first, him farting under the blankets was something you could put up with, now you want to smother him with the pillow.  At first, her asking you every day if her breasts were okay was cute, now you are just annoyed, is not a good sign.  When, where and why you stopped loving them is important.  It says a lot about what you do and don’t want in a relationship and if you don’t understand this you will repeat this again and again.

 

You moved on with your life and they were stuck where their were in Grade 10 Chemistry.  Okay in the dating side, it was kinda cute when they wore their high school jacket everywhere.  Now he’s 40 pounds over and that hairy belly sticking out is just ridiculous.  Some people stop in life and that’s as far as they go or want to go.  You have to decide if this is enough or its time to burn the jacket and move on.

 

He/she moved on and all you smell is fumes from the bus that took them there.  She goes to book readings once a week and you would rather slit your wrists.  He moves from hockey to football and back to hockey every year and you want to slit his wrists.  By the way, there is nothing wrong with someone having a hobby or interest that doesn’t include you.  It is a problem when this is all that they are and you want to be beaten senseless whenever they bring it up.  This isn’t good. 

 

My point is, if you ready to leave the relationship, know why within yourself.  If you don’t you will repeat it.  Don’t leave the relationship for someone else, this might work out or you could find out that he sleeps with 2 great Danes and you and he loves the dogs more than you.  Leave and take a year for yourself.  I have said this before, you need a year before you crash someone else’s party and live alone.  Yes all alone, and if this scares you, why does it scare you?

 

May 5, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 98 (Fathers with no or little contact with the children – why?)

Why do some or the majority of fathers have little to no contact with their children?  Why is this a mystery to the ex-wives?  I am going to be blunt here; if the ex-wives understood the men in the first place they would understand why the men didn’t pursue relationships with the children.   Of course, I am painting all ex-wives with the same brush but I have heard of and read great stories where both parents create a fantastic environment for the children.  I applaud them.  This is a very mature decision but a very rare decision – I hear most often that the father is not exercising their right to see the children.

 

My case like everyone else’s is unique to my situation.  As I have stated in previous postings, mine included abuse.  My therapist recommended I never see her again (and yes my therapist knew I have children).  My therapist thought the damage was significant enough, I needed to move on but enough about me, lets discuss why men don’t see their children, as follows:

 

1.     They (men) don’t give a damn.  Men don’t have the direct emotional connection that women have with children.  This seems to mystify most women – they can’t seem to grasp this concept.  Men at the point of divorce see this as moment to move on and shake the dust of the old relationship off.  Yes, I know there are children at stake here however re-read my first point at the beginning of the paragraph.   Here is a more important question behind the first – why don’t men give a damn?  They helped bring these children into the world.  Probably because seeing the children is a reminder of the ex-wife and the failure behind that.  I am betting most women may not understand this at all.

 

2.     You (the ex-wife) rip him a new one in court.  You win and pummel him into the ground.  This is very easy to accomplish these days.  You take out your vengeance and get the majority of his income.  Something very satisfying about this isn’t there?  However, for the man, it is one of the most crushing blows you could ever do.  If you wanted to kill him, this is as close as you will ever come.  Think about this, you win, but your children will lose.  I hear you saying already, it’s the only way I can his money.  There might be a better balance here, let things calm down and negotiate.  If you decide to gut him anyways (on the advice of your lawyer of course), the children may never see him again or rarely.  Yes I know this doesn’t make any sense to you. 

 

 

3.     It’s just too painful.  Maybe he feels abused.  I know you didn’t abuse him.  But that may be the case.  You might think he is making it up but in my case as it continued into years, there might be something there.  Maybe you should think about therapy.

 

In the end, some men view the divorce as the divorcing of everything including the children.  I didn’t say this would make sense.  And if you the ex-wife choose to make this a more difficult, it makes it that much easier to cut ties with everything.

 

For instance, I would give my children presents on their birthday (I still do) and my ex-wife would send me past birthday or Christmas cards I sent to her.  This is a mystery to me (maybe someone can explain it to me).  All these cards every did, is remind me how she used these cards in court to nail me against the wall.  Not a pleasant memory.  So my conclusion on her sending the cards, is she doesn’t have a damn clue what really happened.  Pity I suppose but I am not about to explain it to her, she is not good at empathizing with someone else. 

 

May 4, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 97 (I can change him/her)

I can change them…  Enough love and understanding will change him or her.  If I try hard enough.  I have seen enough to know it might, may, possibly, or perhaps could happen but at what cost?

 

 

 

Ah, I can hear you now – “I am not abused”.  It’s quite possible that you are right or you are wrong.  I didn’t believe it.  It took a skilled, trained and experienced individual to help me realize it.  I didn’t want to believe it.  The key item he told me that got through to me was, “if it doesn’t feel right, it isn’t”. 

 

I want to share something I believe – you can’t change them, they however can change you.  They can rip pieces from you and destroy them forever, but hey its love and if you didn’t love them, a little sacrifice is worth it.  But how much is too much? 

 

Oh, let’s try couple’s counseling or maybe he/she will go to counseling – this on the surface is a great idea.  It looks like your partner is committed to a change.  But let’s remember these individuals are masters at manipulation and control, even trained professionals have a hard time with them.  I’ll bet when you were in couples counseling it comes out to be your fault.   If you were a little more understanding and a lot more giving this wouldn’t happen. 

 

Confused?  Because at each counseling session or different counseling sessions – it looks like everything is your fault.  You begin to wonder if it’s your entire fault but here is the key.  Unless your controlling, abusive partner is willing to admit their culpability in this – it’s never going to come up and they are going to hide it.  Only you will see their behavior for what it really is.  They are masters at picking the right place and time for the abuse, no witnesses and who is going to believe you?  All the counselors said it was your fault in the first place. 

 

So the steps and I am no professional, I only speak from personal experience.

 

1.     Tension building stage – over time, walking carefully, you realize that he or she is building up to something.  In the back of your mind you realize it’s been too long, they haven’t released their anger and it’s bound to happen.  No matter how careful you are, you are going to do something that sets them off.

2.     The Abusive Incident – they explode.  Its interesting, in my case, she always waited until nobody else was around including the children.  The fight was exhausting for me, tearing down everything as she cried, screamed and yelled for hours.

3.     The manipulation stage – she apologizes.  I learned to hate this stage and I refused her apologies.  Full of I’m “sorries” and you didn’t deserve that.    This went on for years – years.  The human mind can only take so much, I often felt like I was the only outlet for her anger, every slight she had suffered, abusive from her parents came down on me.  I did encourage her to go to counseling but it never worked.  There was always a problem with the counselor, then I realized no counselor would ever work for her and none ever did. 

 

So if you think to change the situation, to change the other person, think of everything else too.  The children will suffer too.  The situation may be beyond your experience and capabilities.   What will it take?  Will be 10 years later and everything is still the same before you realize?

May 2, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 96 ( Abuse and Love)

I met an old friend on the street yesterday.  I hadn’t seen this individual in about 8 years and a lot can happen in 8 years.  The pause and the conversation had me thinking of those things that had happened and eventually the conversation turned towards my family.  He asked how my wife and the children were.  I told him I was divorced.  “Oh” he said.  Sadness in his eyes.  Interesting, I was thinking, he was treating this like someone had died.   Before I would have loved to regal him with what had happened leading up to my divorce but I no longer feel the need to do this.  I have no interest in dumping my emotional garbage on someone else.  Well onto today’s topic. 

 

Your next relationship or mine as the case may be.  I highly recommend therapy.  Um, not for the person that will be dating you but for you (might be a good idea – but it’s your date).  Because if you, like me, came from a incredible mess that left you an emotional cripple I think it’s important to not make the same mistake again.  If you have not internalized what you learned from the marriage, you will make the same mistakes again.  I repeat, you will make the same mistakes again.  Here is what I learned:

1.     Yelling and screaming at the drop of a hat is not love.  Living with my ex everything she wants ended up with a fight and I lost.  As mentioned in previous postings, I simply gave up and let her win at everything, it made life easier for me, but then again, I didn’t want to live anymore – not much of a choice.

2.     Love is not a tug-of-war.  There shouldn’t be winners and losers – love just is being with the other person.

3.     Love is not about setting up a series of rules for the other person.  My ex had a series of activities she wanted me to do to show how much I loved her.  I must have been insane when I agreed to this and at the time I realized if I finished these tasks (similar to what Hercules did in the story called The Labors of Hercules) I thought the love would be better than ever.  Turns out with each task I completed, there were 2 new fresh ones to take its place.

4.     Love isn’t a test.  She really enjoyed setting up situations to prove I loved her.  It took me a while to realize what was going on.  I confronted her one day and she said “I just want to know you will love me forever.”  My advice, every test you setup actually builds up resentment and pushes the two of you further apart.

5.     Love isn’t about changing the other person to be more perfect in your eyes.  She often said that’s what she does for me.  Point out my imperfections; help me set a plan in place so I can be better.  The more she did this, the less I was me.  I like my imperfections thank you very much.

6.     You can’t live inside someone else.  As we went along in our marriage, I realized she wanted to share 100% of everything.  It made me very uncomfortable.  I didn’t want to share everything, I couldn’t and I don’t know any rational human being that could – it’s not possible.  We all need our own space to grow and pursue things that only interest us – this is healthy.

7.     At the extreme sadistically end; she encouraged me to hit her.  No, I am not kidding nor did I make this up nor do I even like to talk about this subject.  She thought if I could hit her; I would be more in touch with my emotions.  This thought of hitting someone else was incredulous.  It wasn’t something in me and I never want it to be.  Where do people come up these ideas?

8.     It’s not all your fault or mine – it can’t be.  In the final months of our marriage I asked her, “Did you make any mistakes?”  I watched her sitting on our bed and thinking about it for 15 minutes – I kid you not.  She couldn’t come with single instance where she was to blame.  I wasn’t really looking for blame in her; I was curious as to where she thought the fault was.  This was one of the most eye-opening experiences for me.  

9.     You can’t always help the other person.  I realized in the final months of my marriage that this was completely beyond my experience.  Whatever psychosis or psychological problems she had – was certainly beyond my capabilities.  Once I admitted that, I realized this would never get better and it would get magnificently worse.

10.                         Even your patience would run out.  I never thought my patience would end.  I could put up with anything.  Turns out I was so wrong on such a large scale it has backfired on me probably forever.  What I mean is, I took in so much verbal abuse, emotional blackmail and threats, the well (of patience) dried up completely.  When it was gone so was I.  When your well of patience is gone, you have no patience for anything anymore.  I am not even sure to this day whether I will ever have patience for anyone and that’s not fair to the people around me.

 

So my advice to you, if you don’t spend the time to examine all the reasons your marriage or relationship went South on you; you will repeat these mistakes again.   I am going to suggest professional help again,  Not because I think you or I are crazy its just that a professional can help you gain insight you may never have.  The list I presented above just come from nowhere, I did go to therapy and I realized something.  Because I grew up in an abusive house, I equated abuse with love.  Think about it. 

May 1, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 95 (Frame of Reference)

Frame of ReferenceA position from which an observer watches an event and makes measurements as he/she sees them can be called that observers frame of reference.

 

The subject frame of reference and the subsequent definition doesn’t seem to have any relevance to my subject matter but it’s all about your frame of reference.

 

I was watching Charlie Wilson’s War the other night.  This is a movie about Afghanistan and the Soviet Union.  When you watch this movie you get additional information (where true or not is not the subject of this posting) about the Soviet invasion.  You are presented with the Soviets being vicious and cruel to the Afghans by planting toy bombs that blow the hands off of children and other such atrocities.  Then the movie progresses to the ideals of a single man put into action.  Charlie Wilson literally changes the outcome of the war.  He is an America politician and an idealist.  He proceeds to procure money from the American Government starting at $10million and ending up over a billion.  He equips the Afghans with the military hardware to defeat the Soviets and they do. 

 

This changed my frame of reference in two ways:

1.     The first way is I never bothered to truly understand the conflict that occurred in Afghanistan.  The movie presents significant information (whether true on not is not the subject of debate here) about what happened and why it happened.  It changed my frame of reference.  In doing so, prompted me to search out more information on the conflict.  Why would I bother?  Well, once again, we have a country (Afghanistan) with a bunch of rocks and weeds that we seem to fighting over – again – why?  And further to this, why the hell would you be interested?  Well, my friend, in this global world we live in, things halfway around the world impact you and I.

2.     The second fact or information I realized, that if the movie is even 10% correct, we helped to create the problem in Afghanistan.  This was complete new information to me.   If you read the book, “the looming tower” you would realize that al quaeda started in Afghanistan.  This terrorist group touched many of us and intentionally changed us.

 

So to further bring forward the concept of frame of reference, I think about my divorce and the subsequent things that happened to me.  I can limit my frame of reference to simply being very, very angry about Maintenance Enforcement.  I can limit my frame of reference to the next hockey game or a cold beer.  This is immediate gratification and possibly I drink myself into slumber and temporarily forget the sodomy that Maintenance Enforcement has done.

 

However I chose (and if you have read any of my previous postings you know this) to research and gather information.  Why would I bother to do this?  Isn’t this just more aggravation on top of everything else?  Yes, it certainly is, because as I dig deeper into Maintenance Enforcement and the labels applied to divorced fathers I get more angry.  As my frame of reference increases, I understand the problem better.  I want to understand the issues and problems behind deadbeat dads better than the judges, ex-wives and governments and it helps that I am one.  A perspective armed with information. 

 

Why would I do this?  Because is the simplest answer or maybe, just maybe, I am thinking we (you and I) could change this for the better.  I am not talking about removing payments, what I am talking about is a better balance in the system.  A system of accountability for both parties.  And all this starts out with one person saying “enough is enough”.  It has to start somewhere,  I hope you change your frame of reference along with me.

April 30, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 94 (Abused? It matters not in court…)

I remember when it first occurred to me, that there might be a serious problem beyond my capabilities and experience in my previous marriage.  I was at her parent’s house; we were watching old 8mm films of her childhood.  At certain points during the film when my ex was feeling picked on or abused by her own family something very peculiar happened, she would wave her arms up and down in a flapping motion, then as the abuse contained from either her mother or father, she would re-treat and drawn into herself, curling up in a ball and rocking herself – her only comfort was herself.  Everyone in her family always laughs when this comes up in the film and I was alarmed because I had seen this behavior before.

 

Whenever she and I had a significant fight and she felt she was on losing, she would re-treat.  She would retreat into our walk-in closet, shut off the light and rock herself back and forth.  At first, I left her alone.  Then after one episode, she explained to me it was my job to go in and comfort her – so I did.  What resulted was manipulation.  In order to get her to stop this behavior I had to agree to all sorts of things – I enabled the situation.  Looking back now, I wonder how and why I ever got myself into this situation with her.   

 

As I have mentioned in the previous posts, she was emotional and verbally abusive to me.  She would strip me to down to nothing through a barrage of interrogation techniques.  She is by the far the best at this I have ever seen in my life.  She still scares me.   I was naïve enough to think this would matter in court.  I spent significant time researching and pulling data forward and providing comparisons.  I talked to psychiatrists and health care professionals but after I read the current case law, I began to realize she could have broken both my arms and it wouldn’t make a damn bit of difference in a court of law. 

 

What amazes me is her outside persona.  You wouldn’t know it.  She is entirely capable of knock down brawl one moment and sweetly answering the phone the next second.  In court, she was sweet and demure, the picture of someone set upon by her vicious and cruel ex-husband.  Now that is skill and one I do not have.  Not having this skill and recognizing it in her, I keep as far away as possible from her.  She scares me, I never quite sure what she is capable of.     

 

She did accuse me of molesting my children.  Remember there is no line she won’t cross.  After numerous sessions with a child psychiatrist there was nothing to be found because I didn’t molest my children but the damage was done.  She forgets that she did this in the early part of the divorce proceedings but that is something I don’t forget easily, that hurt me. 

 

And don’t think for a second I blame everything on my ex-wife.  You would be wrong.  I enabled the situation.  I did stupid, hurtful things as well.  I am held accountable for my decisions – however she is not.  There isn’t a day that goes by I wonder what she is doing to the children. 

April 29, 2008

Into Extinction Day 93 (bad news, its not getting better)

You know, I want to think of my case in the province of Alberta as unique.  That not every man is being bent over by the government and Maintenance Enforcement and given the spousal support enema.  But the more I read, I realize its pretty damn common.  

 

I was on one of my other websites and they were talking about a father who had stopped all payments and health support for the children.  Now this might be the case, but I think it’s important to step back a little and not be so quick to judge but I was wrong.  The word deadbeat dad came out so fast – it was well – very disappointing.   The media has done a fantastic job of painting fathers into this corner.  So fabulous was this job, that the Federal, Provincial and local judges have jumped onboard.  It is presumed by those in higher authority that you will try to skip the judgments.   However when you look at the actual statistics its less than 1% of us deadbeat dads that don’t pay however we all get painted with the same brush.  Equality be damned.  If you, the deadbeat dad, were to speak up on this injustice, I am sure everyone would be thinking he is trying to weasel his way out of paying.  It’s a corrupt and foolish system in place today.

 

If you access the website from the Federal Government (http://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/pi/sup-pen/pub/guide/qa-qr.html#2) they do a fantastic job of telling you what you should pay.  They don’t explain the formula in great detail and here is another bit of interesting news from the Feds:

 

“The receiving parent is expected to contribute a similar share of his or her income to meet the costs of raising the child. The standards of living of the child and the receiving parent are inseparable because the child resides in his or her household. This approach allows the children to continue to share in increases or decreases in their parents’ income, just as they would have if the two parents had continued to live together.”

 

Really I am highly amused by this.  While there are rules and penalties for the deadbeat dad I don’t see any for the mother.  As a matter of fact, she could spend her entire income at the 7-Eleven and who would care?  As a matter of fact, it is important that my ex make as little money as possible thereby increasing her monthly take of my income.  The system really does screw you over doesn’t it?  To this previous fact (low income for my ex), since our divorce and subsequent court ordered payments she has made no effort to increase her income and who would and why? 

 

Lets examine this more closely shall we?  (I am going to calculate like she is a single person) – She makes $40,000 (gross income) a year. 

·        Net Provincial Tax is $2,204.00

·        Net Federal Tax is $6,433.00

·        Net income after taxes is $31,363 or $1306.92 every 2 weeks or $2,613.58 a month.

·        Her rent at her current place is $1,600.00

·        That leavers her with $1,013.58

·        Gas/Utilities/Cable/Phone is $320

·        Drops her to $693.58.

·        Insurance for her car, home insurance, cell phone, other expenses is another $225 a month.

·        Drops her to $468.58

·        Okay lets talk about what I pay her – add in excess of $3000 a month.  Oh my, that’s a very good life.

 

Sock some of that money away for her retirement and everything is rosy.  God that is a good life. 

 

The Federal and Provincial guidelines also fail to balance the equation should you take additional care of your children.  You actually make less and less take home pay the more you take care of your children because the line in the formula is around 40%.   

 

Nobody said life was fair.

April 28, 2008

Into Extinction Day 91 (crossing the line)

There seems to be a moment during the divorce when someone crosses the line and the gloves come off.  The hurt is too much too bear and that son-of-a-bitch is going to pay.  I want to remind you of one fact – what goes around comes around as I was reminded of that the other day.  Almost every single blog I read about on here or other blogging sites seems to come down to that. 

I am not saying this is the exclusive domain of women either but it seems to be that one party suggests a possible solution which so outrages the other party – that the fight is on.  Having lived with this person for a long time, you know where the chinks in the armor are.   I suppose for most divorces the gloves have to come off.  How else could you express your angry and hurt at the betrayal.   You thought this was going to last a lifetime and it doesn’t.   This is the last opportunity to prove your side and your points but my advice is it isn’t worth it.  If she/he could have seen your side, it would have never come to this anyways.  Save your anger for therapy.

The business of the actual divorce is quite impersonal.  A lot of the emotional baggage doesn’t come into play.  Just the facts, remember that its about facts. 

The Top Ten Myths of Divorce

Discussion of the most common misinformation about divorce

David Popenoe

1        Because people learn from their bad experiences, second marriages tend to be more successful than first marriages.

Although many people who divorce have successful subsequent marriages, the divorce rate of remarriages is in fact higher than that of first marriages.1

 2        Living together before marriage is a good way to reduce the chances of eventually divorcing.

Many studies have found that those who live together before marriage have a considerably higher chance of eventually divorcing.  The reasons for this are not well understood.  In part, the type of people who are willing to cohabit may also be those who are more willing to divorce.  There is some evidence that the act of cohabitation itself generates attitudes in people that are more conducive to divorce, for example the attitude that relationships are temporary and easily can be ended.2 

 

 3        Divorce may cause problems for many of the children who are affected by it, but by and large these problems are not long lasting and the children recover relatively quickly.

 

Divorce increases the risk of interpersonal problems in children. There is evidence, both from small qualitative studies and from large-scale, long-term empirical studies, that many of these problems are long lasting.  In fact, they may even become worse in adulthood.3 

 

 4        Having a child together will help a couple to improve their marital satisfaction and prevent a divorce.

Many studies have shown that the most stressful time in a marriage is after the first child is born.  Couples who have a child together have a slightly decreased risk of divorce compared to couples without children, but the decreased risk is far less than it used to be when parents with marital problems were more likely to stay together “for the sake of the children.”4

 5        Following divorce, the woman’s standard of living plummets by seventy three percent while that of the man’s improves by forty two percent.

This dramatic inequity, one of the most widely publicized statistics from the social sciences, was later found to be based on a faulty calculation.  A reanalysis of the data determined that the woman’s loss was twenty seven percent while the man’s gain was ten percent. Irrespective of the magnitude of the differences, the gender gap is real and seems not to have narrowed much in recent decades.5 

 6        When parents don’t get along, children are better off if their parents divorce than if they stay together.

A recent large-scale, long-term study suggests otherwise.  While it found that parents’ marital unhappiness and discord have a broad negative impact on virtually every dimension of their children’s well-being, so does the fact of going through a divorce. In examining the negative impacts on children more closely, the study discovered that it was only the children in very high conflict homes who benefited from the conflict removal that divorce may bring.  In lower-conflict marriages that end in divorce—and the study found that perhaps as many as two thirds of the divorces were of this type—the situation of the children was made much worse following a divorce. Based on the findings of this study, therefore, except in the minority of high-conflict marriages it is better for the children if their parents stay together and work out their problems than if they divorce.6 

 

 7        Because they are more cautious in entering marital relationships and also have a strong determination to avoid the possibility of divorce, children who grow up in a home broken by divorce tend to have as much success in their own marriages as those from intact homes.

Marriages of the children of divorce actually have a much higher rate of divorce than the marriages of children from intact families.  A major reason for this, according to a recent study, is that children learn about marital commitment or permanence by observing their parents. In the children of divorce, the sense of commitment to a lifelong marriage has been undermined.7  

 8        Following divorce, the children involved are better off in stepfamilies than in single-parent families.

The evidence suggests that stepfamilies are no improvement over single-parent families, even though typically income levels are higher and there is a father figure in the home.  Stepfamilies tend to have their own set of problems, including interpersonal conflicts with new parent figures and a very high risk of family breakup.8 

 9    Being very unhappy at certain points in a marriage is a good sign that the marriage will eventually end in divorce.

All marriages have their ups and downs.  Recent research using a large national sample found that eighty six percent of people who were unhappily married in the late 1980s, and stayed with the marriage, indicated when interviewed five years later that they were happier. Indeed, three fifths of the formerly unhappily married couples rated their marriages as either “very happy” or “quite happy.”9  

  10 It is usually men who initiate divorce proceedings

Two-thirds of all divorces are initiated by women.  One recent study found that many of the reasons for this have to do with the nature of our divorce laws.  For example, in most states women have a good chance of receiving custody of their children.  Because women more strongly want to keep their children with them, in states where there is a presumption of shared custody with the husband the percentage of women who initiate divorces is much lower.10   Also, the higher rate of women initiators is probably due to the fact that men are more likely to be “badly behaved.” Husbands, for example, are more likely than wives to have problems with drinking, drug abuse, and infidelity.

 

April 27, 2008

Into Extinction Day 92 (I had my ex, I could have…)

I am reminded of these lyrics as I move through my life right now.  Its seems very relevant.

We’ve all seen the man at the liquor store beggin’ for your change
The hair on his face is dirty dread locked and full of mange
He asks a man for what he could spare with shame in his eyes
“Get a job you fucking slob ” is all he replies
God forbid you ever had to walk a mile in his shoes
‘Cause then you really might know what it’s like to sing the blues
Chorus
Then you really might know what it’s like…
Then you really might know what it’s like…
Then you really might know what it’s like…
Then you really might know what it’s like…
Mary got pregnant from a kid named Tom that said he was in love
He said, “Don’t worry about a thing, baby doll
I’m the man you’ve been dreaming of.”
But 3 months later he say he won’t date her or return her call
And she swear, “God damn, if I find that man I’m cuttin’ off his
Balls.”
And then she heads for the clinic and
She gets some static walking through the door
They call her a killer, and they call her a sinner
And they call her a whore
God forbid you ever had to walk a mile in her shoes
‘Cause then you really might know what it’s like to have to choose
Chorus
I’ve seen a rich man beg
I’ve seen a good man sin
I’ve seen a tough man cry
I’ve seen a loser win
And a sad man grin
I heard an honest man lie
I’ve seen the good side of bad
And the downside of up
And everything between
I licked the silver spoon
Drank from the golden cup
And smoked the finest green
I stroked the baddest dimes at least a couple of times
Before I broke their heart
You know where it ends, yo, it usually depends on where you start
I knew this kid named Max
Who used to get fat stacks out on the corner with drugs
He liked to hang out late
He liked to get shit-faced and keep the pace with thugs
Until late one night there was a big gun fight and Max lost his head
He pulled out his chrome .45, talked some shit, and wound up dead
Now his wife and his kids are caught in the midst of all of this pain
You know it crumbles that way
At least that’s what they say when you play the game
God forbid you ever had to wake up to hear the news
‘Cause then you really might know what it’s like to have to lose
Then you really might know what it’s like…
Then you really might know what it’s like…
Then you really might know what it’s like…to have to lose

Okay, I have the opportunity, the chance to change it all.   A series of items happened and they are:

1.  My ex went to Toronto for a week and left the children home alone.

2.  When my daughter went to the hospital for surgery, my ex went to Toronto for the week, leaving my daughter alone (you may ask where was I – I wasn’t told until after it happened).

3.  In the last week, my ex sent me a lengthly email telling me my daugther wants to commit suicide.

Of course my first thought is for my daughter, helping her, and talking to her.

But FUCK!  I was right all along.  I didn’t want to be right but it pissed me off.  I was in court, telling her lawyer, my lawyer and the judge, my ex was NEVER there to take care of the children.  I argued that my ex spent most of her time working with the office door closed and locked.  I argued that my ex traveled and spent long hours out of the home.   I argued that she rarely took the time to actually care for the children.  I presented examples from my experience and talked at length.   The reason I argued against this was because her spousal support was based on this face.  The judge didn’t listen to me as my ex argued that she spent the majority of her time taking care of the children.  Well, suck it up, life isn’t fair.

This out of everything I lost was the hardest to swallow.  I paid her and she lied in court.  This woman who was close to God, and to her church.   Hmmm, can you say the system is slanted towards the woman?  What has to happen here?  Does my daughter actually have to lose her life?  I accused my ex of verbal and physically abuse and nobody listened to me.  How could a 105lb woman be abusing a 200lb man?  There are no support systems for abused men.  No man’s shelter for us.  Oh, no, first you have to convince people, emasculate yourself.  Convince individuals, the government and your friends that you are the weaker man.

Well, since learning of my daughter’s problem – I jump into action.  I called my daughter and talked to her.  I setup a series of sessions for us (my ex has already tried counseling for my daughter but the councilors couldn’t find anything – gee, I wonder why – perhaps the threat of returning to the ex?).  Then having a few minutes to myself I think, I could really gut my ex.  I could expose her for the  abuse… See this web link for stuff about verbal abuse.   http://divorcesupport.about.com/od/abusiverelationships/f/verba_abuse.htm

I have to admit, it made me happy.  To get back some of my own.  To be perfectly and exactly right.  But, as my best friend and girlfriend said to me as we were getting dinner – whats in your blog.  This blog I write into and express my own frustration – she was right.  As much as I wanted my revenge, its not right.  Damn!  Sometimes I really hate it when she is so right.  Thank you GF.

April 25, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 90 (suicide and the divorced father)

I have a complete understanding of why he did this.  See this link >>> http://www.glennsacks.com/distraught_fathers_courthouse.htm

 

I don’t want this knowledge but whenever the news talks about a separated couple and the man commits suicide I understand, empathize and I have compassion for him.  What mystifies me is everyone else’s lack of understanding.  I believe (I have said this in early posts) that individuals don’t understand what happens to a man when the divorce occurs.

 

Suicide is still seen by many as an inherent weakness or flaw or some psychosis within the man.  But I hypothesize a different condition that moves a man into this position.  When you strip a man of everything for the sake of the “children” and given his “ex” to power to destroy his life what do you think is going to happen?  Here the female now has the power and ability of the government and judicial system to make that man pay.  It’s so empowering for the female.  Everyone around her including her friends, her lawyer and Maintenance Enforcement are encouraging her to get the “bastard”.   He fucked me around, well just let me show him what is going to happen next.  I will make that fucker pay. 

 

First, I am not suggesting all ex-wives are like this.  However when her emotions are stirred up, hell hath no fury.  Lawyers for the ex-wives should take responsibility in this action as well.  These lawyers are coaching these ex-wives to go for the jugular to get as much as possible from the bastard – squeeze that little prick dry.  If the lawyer and the ex-wife truly understood a life stood in the balance, I wonder what they would do.

 

In my case (and I have said this earlier) I realized this is exactly what was happening.  How do I know?  Because my ex also sued me for cat support.  Yes she wanted money to support the cat as well.  I know this sounds ridiculous when you talk about it outside the court of law but imagine if she had been awarded that $300 a month she was asking for.  As I was leaving the court, in the small chamber off to one side, I saw my ex-wife’s lawyer, she was dancing and talking into the phone, “we got the bastard.”  All I wanted was a fair and equitable settlement.   She was out to gut me.

 

So excuse me that if in the end, when everything has been taken away, a man only sees suicide as the way out.  I understand this perfectly.  As others “tisk, tisk” this away seeing the individual as mentally imbalanced – I see another man disemboweled and emasculated by his ex-wife using the tools placed in her hands by her lawyer and the government.  The blood of this individual and all others are the responsibility of the ex-wife and the government.  It’s a god-damn pity.   

 

April 24, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 89 (maybe prison is better than support)

 

I have wondered since finding myself trapped in this legal prison how we could let this happen (by we I mean the public as a whole).   We live in a democracy.  However, by its very definition a democracy is based on majority rule – the doctrine that the numerical majority of an organized group can make decisions binding on the whole group.   

 

I believe this probably started out with the best of intentions.  There were a number of dads not paying and thumbing their nose at the government and the rule of law.  The rule of law defines the very basis of any democracy and is defined as “One of the cornerstones of democratic society, meaning that everyone is subject to the law. It is not just the rule that everyone is covered by the Criminal Code and you must be charged and convicted if appropriate. …”  Basically, what this means is everyone is equal before a court of law and Habeas Corpus.  Habeas Corpus being defined as “writ commanding that a person be brought before a judge. Most commonly, a writ of habeas corpus is a legal document that forces law enforcement…”  

 

In summary, this means if we are all equal, and we are guilty of a criminal offence than we should be brought before a judge and charged with our crimes.

 

Finally (I will be done pontificating on the law I mean), another crucial cornerstone of law and democracy is “The presumption of innocence — being innocent until proven guilty — is a legal right that the accused in criminal trials has in many modern nations. It states that no person shall be considered guilty until finally convicted by a court.”  This one appears to be thrown away under the guise of enacting all of this as law by provincial and federal courts – you don’t have an option – it’s the law.

 

See this link>>> http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070222.wweb0223/BNStory/Technology/

 

 

If for a minute, you think, ah, I am not divorced this doesn’t apply to me, my point is if they could do that here how about enforcing the following:

·       You owe money on your taxes.

·       You owe money on your property taxes.

·       By the way they can refuse you service in Alberta Canada if you haven’t paid your Alberta Health Premiums.

·       You are caught speeding.

It’s just that the Provincial and Federal government made such a great case out of getting deadbeat dads into this pickle why not expand it?   Wait, I know you are going to say, it’s not going to happen.  I might tell you I told you so later – I might or I might feel way too sorry for you to say anything.

 

I want this posting as a comparison to an actual prisoner in a medium security prison in Canada versus the prison imposed on fathers paying child and spousal support with the subsequent controls in place, as follows (you can skip right to summary page if you don’t want to listen to my whining and bitching):

 

·       The comparison will exclude the actual confinement itself in an institution, the understanding that locked behind bars is a far greater penalty than we face, I am more interested in the comparison of the rights of a individual charged and convicted of a crime versus those of us that went through the legal system and are faced with Maintenance Enforcement.

·       Reference:  Corrections and Conditional Release Act (1992, c.20).  This act is current to March 27, 2008.

·       Sections under Principles that guide the service (section 4 – g), offenders have a grievance procedure.  

o      Wow – unless we pay a lawyer, nobody hears our story.  No, no, this isn’t entirely true, you can send Maintenance Enforcement feedback but you have to provide information on yourself.  Who isn’t scared that the MEP will take it out on you?  Wait, they took everything already, my dignity, my life and my ability to work, just my ass is left.  They can have that if they want it. 

·       Sections under Principles that guide the service (section 4 – h), that correctional policies, programs and practices respect gender, ethnic, cultural and linguistic differences and be responsive to the special needs of women and aboriginal peoples, as well as to the needs of other groups of offenders with special requirements. 

o      I see nothing under Maintenance Enforcement that supports our needs as divorced dads.  Hmmm, we are forced to go a parent’s course and told what a bad parent is and what a good parent is.  Thank god they outlined that for me.  They didn’t deal with being abused by your ex in that course – strange?  They didn’t deal with suicide or depression in that course either?

o      Of course the icing on the cake might be when the Federal Government garnishes your wages they also tell you they will be charging you another fee to recover the cost of the garnish, this might be enough to push any man over the edge.

·       Compensation for Death or Disability – section 22.  The Minister or a person authorized by the Minister may, subject to and in accordance with the regulations, pay compensation in respect of the death or disability of (a) an inmate, or (b) a person on day parole that is attributable to the participation of that inmate or person in an approved program.

o      Compensation if a death occurs.  I believe if we pass on as debtors – MEP goes after our Estate.  Death, taxes and now MEP in the same list.  If you die in prison they give you money, if you die within MEP, they take your money.

·       General Living Conditions – section 69.  No person shall administer, instigate, consent to or acquiesce in any cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment of an offender.

o      Hmmm, I don’t believe we get this we do get inhumane and degrading treatment.  The last time I visited an MEP location, everyone with MEP was behind bullet proof glass.  I walked up to the front and a small speaker came on “Your Name and Social Insurance Number please”  I told her.  “Speak louder please I can’t hear you.”  Well so much for my privacy and dignity, should I get down on my knees now or later?

·       Payments to offenders – 78. (1) For the purpose of  (a) encouraging offenders to participate in programs provided by the Service, or  (b) providing financial assistance to offenders to facilitate their reintegration into the community, the Commissioner may authorize payments to offenders at rates approved by the Treasury Board.

o      Oh, god they get paid in prison.  They get paid!  Fucking great!  I get a swift kick in my balls once a month if I miss a payment and then they are chopped off if I miss too many payments.

·       Obligations of Service – 86. (1) The Service shall provide every inmate with (a) essential health care; and (b) reasonable access to non-essential mental health care that will contribute to the inmate’s rehabilitation and successful reintegration into the community.

o      So let me get this straight, I can’t afford my health care premiums anymore but if I was a prisoner in a provincial cell I could get decent healthcare.  Well, I think this fuckin system is working.

 


In summary:

Provincial/Federal Prisoner

Legal Prisoner of Maintenance Enforcement

3 square meals a day.

So sorry, your accounts are frozen and your ass in a sling – try eating sugar packets from the coffee room or those little ketchup packages in McDonalds.

Don’t like the way you are treated, you have a grievance procedure.

Don’t like the way you are treated, who gives 2 fucks?  Suck it up little man.

Special programs and requirements to address the unique needs of the prisoners.

One program to beat the living shit out of you.  Depressed?  Pay us.  No job?  Pay us.  Dead?  Pay us.  We will take you down little man.  Oh, and pay us administration fees when we take your money.

Die in prison?  The ministry provides compensation.

Die in Maintenance Enforcement?  A quick search of your pockets, strip the body and sell everything to pay off your support.

In prison, you cannot be subject to  any cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment of an offender.

Ah, Maintenance Enforcement, we just need to tweak that statement from the Federal Government – you will be subject to any cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment of an debtor.  That’s better.

Offenders are paid a salary to work within the prisons.

You pay, and pay, and pay, and pay, and pay, and pay, and pay.  Oh, if there’s nothing left – lets see what we can sell.

Every inmate is guaranteed health care.

Hmmm, don’t seem to have money to pay for health care, better not get sick and keel over.  That would be bad. 

 

Its seems to me that if we just added strip searches to the Maintenance Enforcement program we could be sure we got everything.  However, it appears that Provincial and Federal prisoners have a better deal than being in Maintenance Enforcement – I hope nobody notices. 

 

April 23, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 88 (the silver bullet for divorce)

Author’s Note:  Before you dive into this posting, remember this is tongue-in-cheek for me, actually I harbor no ill-will towards my ex or any of the “ex’s”, I do however believe in Karma.  I intended to have a little fun with this posting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well I have found it; the silver bullet for all us divorced dads out there, pumping out money to Maintenance Enforcement with no chance of parole in a tiny little prison waiting for extinction.  It’s a bit of change but you could recover some of that lost income.  Okay, okay, the silver bullet is you have to switch teams.  Learn to play with a different set of balls.  Bat for the home team.  Run the bases like you never have before. 

 

Okay, I didn’t say it would be easy.  After all, I have no interior design sense, little fashion sense (I own maybe 3 pairs of shoes and my favorite color is blue), and I can’t put my little pinky up in the air whilst drinking coffee, tea or whatever.  Hmmm, this is turning into a slur on homosexuals which I didn’t intend for it to be but they may be our saving grace here gentlemen.  Check out this article >>> http://www.canada.com/edmontonjournal/news/letters/story.html?id=b1060631-fb75-4c77-8a62-0ddbf3098fbb

 

Okay it’s not my only suggestion, but there are precious few ideas floating around.  It’s like a silent underground.  It’s resonating – that just because we are men, we should just take it.  The pushing around, violation of rights and freedoms and everything else that goes with it.  Homosexuals have a better chance in court than you or I – this is crazy.  I am all for supporting my children but when you do this to me, it lessens me as a person and as a man.  You know what I am talking about.

 

So I have 2 maybe 3 other suggestions.  In order of priority:

 

  1. Make less money.  The system is built around the fact that you as a man are geared to make the money.  It’s built into all of us (men) to pursue because we use it as a measuring stick to determine our usefulness at home and in business.   When we lose this control to the courts, we have failed as men.  It’s there in the back of your mind.  So make less money.  It’s contrary to everything I have pursued in my life however if I made less money than that soul-sucking bitch (um, whoops, I try not to name call – not professional), than there is less to take away.  For example:
    1. She makes $40,000 a year
    2. You make $125,000 a year, I don’t have to tell you what the payout is – the courts already did ($1746 for 2 children).
    3. You drop your income to $40,000 to match her. The previous amount paid out would have been $1746 for 2 children; the drop to 40k is now $573 for both children (a net difference of $1173).  I am not suggesting you don’t support your children, but the drop would definitely get her scrawny ass off the couch, shut off Oprah or Dr. Phil and start looking for work (ah, damn, there I go with the name calling again).   You situation may be different and you may do it for different reasons than me. 
  2. Leave the country.  Lets face it, live in Canada abide by the laws, can’t stand the laws leave the country.  Let’s see there is Alaska, the United States, Mexico and bunch of 3rd world countries below that.  Stay here in Canada and you be living like you already are in the 3rd world, eating beans out of tin, heated by your car engine, and fuck – may as well be warm in some tropical paradise.  You could start a revolution in that 3rd world tropical paradise and set your own agenda – no sycophantic-faced, back-biting, skinny, yelling, sorry assed – bitches in power.  You could own a 3rd world country with enough determination.  Just remember – leave before Maintenance Enforcement gets wind of your dictatorial dreams and cancels your passport.  
  3. And my personal favorite, fake your own death.  This requires considerable planning on your part, or you can just simply set a body on fire.  Planning is the key here and here are the steps:
    1. Pull out some of your own teeth to include in the death.  They might think to check you dental records – your other option is to destroy your own dental records.  What are a few teeth anyway?  It’s probably the only thing you have left that you own that the slack-assed, mealy mouthed, lazy little slut has grabbed onto or sued you for.
    2. Find a body – preferably dead – I am not out to create more murders here.  Check the morgue for Christ sake – wait for it and grab a body – have somewhere cold to store it.  God knows what the smell of a rotting corpse would bring into your apartment and accusations from her (you would be accused of necrophilia by the way – look it up I am not explaining everything to you).  Or hang around funeral homes, wait for a body, tell people attending the funeral – you need some alone-time with Uncle Frank and hump that body out back and into the trunk.  You knew this wasn’t going to be pleasant. 
    3. Plan the accident.  Probably the greatest coup that could happen here is if it gets pinned on your ex (huge shit-eating grin is now plastered across your face) – no wait, don’t do that, who is going to look after the children (sorry what I meant to say is who is going to yell, scream and berate the children) – but its okay to dream about it, just make sure it doesn’t become your reason for living.  Okay, now popular ways to fake your death (pause) and think about this people, the body must be unrecognizable but your wallet with your identification must survive for the cops.  So look at the most obvious fake death which is fire, electrocution, or drowning (in order of unrecognizable remains).  You must have an eyewitness to the drowning or who is going to know you drowned.   My preference, a good old fashioned fire, preferably a vehicle accident involving you being torched.   Set it up, not during rush hour because nobody else should be hurt.  Smack the car into a tree and torch it.  Home free – remember the matches, you can’t start the fire with the cigarette lighter in the car.  As far as fissionable material – use your divorce papers.
    4. Um, wait, before the fire, drowning or electrocution, you need to setup another series of identification.  Faking your own death does involve setting up a new life.  I suggest searching birth/death records, finding a child born the same year as you and dieing within the same week as they were born.  Write away for the birth certificate and bob’s your uncle.  New birth certificate equals a nice new credit rating, say thank you Mr. Legalprison for pulling my ass out of the fire.
    5. Attend your own funeral if you want but be prepared to see your ex dancing on your grave.  I won’t go, I might be tempted to jump up and yell “boo” to her, I am haunting you for the rest of your life.  If the skinny bitch collapses there with a heart attack I win (huge shit-eating grin is now plastered across your face).  Let go of that dream. 
    6. Start your new life.

 

There some practical suggestions to helping you move on with your life.  Add your own to the comments below.  We might all be able to come up with something to help each other.

April 22, 2008

Into Extinction Day 87 (does the moment define you – stop you in your life?)

You can either let the moment define you or you define the moment.  This is a nice trite saying but it can have meaning.  You can either carry around the baggage of what has happened to you and dump it on unsuspecting souls or move on.  My piece of advice is this, getting a divorce and going through the swing of emotions (yes, even for us guys) can only be shared by others with the same experience.   It is similar to experiencing the death of someone close to you.  Either you have experienced divorce and you can directly relate to it or you can’t, you just nod your head during the important parts. 

Try this link, died laughing >>> http://keboch.wordpress.com/2008/04/22/nothing-like-divorce/

My experience is moving on past the ex is easy.  After she carved up a bit of your inside, its easy to go forward.  Its the other parts that take a bit of work.  There are the children and the compexity of how to be with them without her.  My ex has not given up hope of us “co-parenting” as she continues to suggest.  However if she bothered to understand one single iota about me, she would realize how different we really are but as I discovered in the last parts of our failing marriage, she lacked the ability to really empathize with anyone else – this problem was not exlusive to me.  The following is a great example of what I mean:

I spoke with my 16-year old daughter before Christmas.  We had the sex talk between her and I.  I talked openly and frankly about sex with her.  The use of condoms and other aids to ensure she didn’t get pregnant.  My thinking at the time was, “She is bound to have sex no matter what.”  My daughter related to my conversation because I treated her like an adult because this is a very adult decisions every teenager is faced with.  My final comment to her was “once you have sex the first time, you can never take it back, that moment is gone.”

2 weeks after Christmas I got a call from my daughter.  It was a tense conversation.  She had sex and missed her period.  Okay I was a little amused, not at the predicament my daugther found herself in, but one for ex.  You see, my ex, is a bible thumping, god-fearing, ten commandments, the world is black and white, Catholic.  I couldn’t have thought anyone was more unprepared for this than her and yes it amused me.

My second thought as the amusement quickly went away was how my ex was going to torture my daugther.  The fire and brimestone speaches, the damnation, and of course, how could you do this to me.  What I hadn’t counted on was how my ex kept me as far away from this as possible.  She restriced my daughters to calls to me – what I mean my restricted was she didn’t allow my daughter to talk to me.  I found this interesting and contradictory because my ex said she would never get between the relationship I had with the children.  Like all things I had learned about my ex, all rules would be broken when the need arose in her line of thinking.

My ex went as far as to tell my daughter she was a virgin when she married me.  I nearly fell off my chair when I heard this.  Convenient lies to bring my daughter in line at the time.  My ex was no virgin when she married me.  Then to top it off, she (the ex) left me a message, telling me to not talk about my (our) sex life with my daughter.

It was and still is a control thing for my ex.  She was trying her best to control the entire situation including me.  As I negotiated with my ex to meet with my daugther to have a conversation about her current predicatment, my ex reminded me, very clearly, of the reasons I had left her.  She had a long list of items I could not talk about if I was going to see my daughter.  It was manipulation at its best, she had me by the short hairs because I needed to talk to my daugther so I broke 2 cardinal rules I had told myself I would never break, and these are:

  1. I would never speak directly to my ex.
  2. I would never go directly to my ex’s.

This was to keep myself a safe distance from her manipulation.  I broke these rules not for myself but for my daughter.  My ex maximized on that moment to exert her control over me.  It was one of the most difficult moments since our breakup.  However, this was a normal course of action for my ex.   She even had her sister over there as they plotted on how to control my daughter.  Phones were removed and the computer was taken away.  For me, I thought this was incredible naive of both of them, the horse was already out of the barn.  The part I really feel for my daughter was the grilling and interrogation she went under.  The yelling and screaming by my ex and her sister.  Nobody should go through this and I was reminded at that moment how I had lost this battle in court.  My children would be greater victims of abuse than I was.

I met with my daughter and offered her these words:

  1. “You don’t owe anyone an explanation for what happened.”
  2. “Whatever decision you make, you will live with it for the rest of life.”
  3. “Unfortunately, the family you live in, they will never let you forget what you have done here.  You will be branded with this mistake forever.”

My daughter asked me how I could be so calm about what had happened.  I explained to her that no amout of punishment was going to help the situation, the best outcome was that my daughter had made an adult decision to have sex, and now she was faced with the adult decision of what to do next.  This was punishment enough in my books.  My compassionate handling of what happened to my daugther is easy to explain.  My ex and her family would torture (no I am not overstating this) my daughter for years about this.  It was unfair and unjust but thats the way they are.

My daughter in the end, chose to have an abortion.  My own personal opinion was that my daughter should have an abortion but I kept the opinion to myself.  I just gave the facts to my daughter as she made her decision.  This prompted a 2am voicemail on my cell phone from my ex.  Tears and rage in my voicemail as my ex said my daugther had killed a human being.   Great, just great, I thought, there is an unstable structure if I ever saw one. 

When my daughter had the abortion I wasn’t told.  My ex kept me in the dark (although if she is reading this she would tell you otherwise) – its important for my ex to keep up appearances as the injured party or victim in all of this.  To make matters worse, my ex flew to Toronto for meetings and my daughter went through the abortion alone.  I couldn’t believe this, after all the speech making in court my ex had made about the care of the children.

When I finally manage to have lunch with my daugther I told her one thing, “I am proud of you, you made a very difficult decision and you stuck by it.  You don’t owe anybody an explanation.”

As for my ex, I abhor the way she handled the situation with daugther.  Utilizing punitive measures such as taking everything away from my daughter and her contact with me was unconscionable.  It brought back all the reasons I left her and I realized now my children were taking the brunt of it.  Hard to sleep at night knowing this.

April 21, 2008

Into Extinction Day 86 (the money, the money, the money, how is she spending it?)

Don’t get me wrong, I have done a lot of whining and bitching about what has happened to me lately but I am a proponent of paying child support.  I was examining the concept and action of a “deadbeat dad”.  Which according to the definitions I have found is “a father who defaults on his obligation to provide financial support for his offspring”.  I found an article in the reader’s digest – an older article but still relevant nonetheless – http://www.readersdigest.ca/debate.html?a=v&di=118.

What I find interesting about most articles is the out of balance in the system and I doubt will ever get addressed.  The local, Provincal and Federal governments are now phenomenally good at finding, punishing and extracting money from the fathers.  As mentioned previously, they take everything away, including your ability to drive, work and obtain the basis necessities of life.  It’s for the children they say however what about:

  • There seems to be no way of addressing where the money once collected goes?  Although the system extracts financial statments from the men and a complete listing of everything in their lives, nothing is required from the mother?  It is assumed that mom can do no wrong – that the money will be spent on the children and their education.  Upholding the mom as a downtrodden figure helps to give enormous power to the legislation is naive.  It allows one party complete and utter control over another.  As William Congreve said, “Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned / Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned”.  I would suggest that both parties be held accoutable in the system – this probably won’t happen as the system sees the “bad” guys as the “debtors” as Maintenance Enforcement puts it.
  • What if the man’s postion changes?  He gets sick or god forbid depressed?  Now there is a problem.  The system is setup to be immediately suspious of the man’s intent.  You have to submit a financial statement with the threat of 3 years in prison should Maintenance Enforcement find anything wrong.  If the woman’s position changes – lets say gets better?  Who cares – the man has to continue paying.
  • Let’s help the woman I say.  I know this sounds strange but if all this is about maintaining the life of the children why wouldn’t we help the women to better to their position?  I mean, the man can’t pay forever – he will eventually die and its hard to get money from a corpse.  However the system is setup to ensure and encourage that the woman never better her position.  She would lose that nice little cushion she is in while the man lives in poverty.  I had the audacity to ask this question during the court hearings, the woman judge frowned and said that my ex should be bettering her position but no real encouragement behind it.  I have read too many stories about this imbalance and the women sitting back and enjoying the money.   Oh, yes its about the children, but how would I know where and how the money is spent?

I checked the website on Mainenance Enforcement, approximately 91 men and 1 woman.  This is the MEP’s most wanted list.  Out of 100,000 men paying (okay 6% are women) 92 have fled or 0.0092%.  I would say there are little to no deadbeat dads.  These are the men that have fled.  I have to admit it did occur to me, I wanted to leave, if I had known I wouldn’t have enough money for food, I would have.  Thank god for food banks.

The other option that keeps coming up even in the Readers Digest article is men committing suicide.  Although through my reseach I find suicide mentioned I don’t find it anywhere on any official government websites.  I don’t think they want to acknowledge that the harsh and brutual measures leave some men with no other way out than to kill themselves.  When you take a man’s diginity, strip him of everything and do it continually, what did you think would happen? 

April 20, 2008

Into Extinction Day 85 (down to nothing, then a little past that)

I can’t think of a  better example of what into Extinction means that in the last couple of days.  I had negotiated with Maintenance Enforcement (for those of you not reading my previous posts – this is the arm of provincial government enforcing child support and alimony in Alberta Canada).  What I didn’t realize was what would continue to happen to me regardless of my agreement.

The local power company had left me a voice mail indicating they would cut power to my place today (April 18, 2008).  I couldn’t believe it, I had setup in my local bank account for the power company to be paid automatically.  The next letter I opened explained what had happened.

The Royal Bank Of Canada – my local bank informed me of the following:

Dear Sir/Madam;

Re: Support Deduction Notice

Issued By: AB – Alberta Justice Maintenance Enforcement Program

Amount:   $x,x00.00

Reference Number:  4803xxxxxxx//xxx-xxx

Contact Officer:

At:          MEP 780-422-5555

 

Our Royal Bank of Canada branch located at 339-8th Ave SW, Calgary,AB T2P 2N4 has received service of an attachment order, as described above.

 

Please be advised that, in accordance with its legal obligation, the Bank has complied with and acted upon the attachment to the extent necessary from available funds in your account.  If there are any further concerns please call the Contact Officer mentioned above.

 

I have no money to pay the power company, none.  I have no money for food, for rent, for gas, for anything.  I am going to be homeless.  I opened the 3rd envelope:

 

Department of Justice Canada

Family Orders and Agreements

 

Mr. Legalprison

 

Take notice, the Government of Canada was served with a garnishee summons.  This summons was served by the following court, provincial or territorial entity:

 

MEP Alberta

7th Floor N, P.O. Box 2404

Edmonton, Alberta, CAN

T5J 3Z7

 

(780) 422-5555

Account Number: 16xxxxx

Department of Justice Reference Number: XXX1964A

 

Effective immediately, the summon indicates that you owe the following arrears in support.

 

Any moneys that are payable to you by the Government of Canada from Funds, Acts or programs designated in the regulations to the Family Orders and Agreements Enforcement Assistance Act may be diverted to pay the judgement creditor named in the summons.

 

After sufficient moneys are diverted to pay the judgment creditor, an administrative fee will be deducted from moneys payable to you.  This fee is $190.

 

There were other letters, stopping me from renewing my driver’s license, wage deductions from the provincial government and the like.

 

I had already sent them a letter, agreeing to pay them all of net income from my job until July 2008.  I guess this wasn’t enough.  Don’t ask me what I live on, this is a secondary to paying support.

 

April 18, 2008

Into Extinction Day 84 (everyone has an opinion on your divorce)

Why is it everyone around you has an opinion on your divorce and how and when you should see your children?  If you are anything approaching a good parent; you should be seeing your children every weekend and if possible every day?  Even Maintenance Enforcement has an opinion, “MEP affects your life. Your children are important” and right below that statement is this one, “The Alberta Maintenance Enforcement Program (MEP) is authorized by the Alberta Maintenance Enforcement Act to ensure that individuals meet their obligations to pay spousal and child support under the terms of their court orders and certain agreements. Once an order or agreement has been registered with MEP, maintenance payments that the debtor (payor) would normally pay directly to the creditor (recipient) are sent to MEP. MEP then forwards the payment to the creditor once the funds have cleared through a trust account.”  Heads up people in Enforcement, if you take everything the Dad has, including his drivers license, how is he going to see anybody?

 

I was having lunch with some friends earlier this week and up came the question, “How often do you get to see your children?”  All eyes centered on me, waiting for me to tell them how I had set aside my life to pursue those futile few hours to spend with my children.   Okay, I wanted to say,

 

“Hands up how many are you divorced?”

“Hands up how many have suffered through years of abuse during their marriage”

“Hands up how many got a beating on their last day of marriage before they escaped their house?

“Hands up how many are paying better than 60% of their net income to the individual who perpetrated this shit?”

 

My point being, so many outsiders are quick to pass summary judgment on you.   Yes, I agree the children are very important however if I don’t take care of myself, they won’t have a father.  One more important opinion for those of you out there that like to pass out this snap judgments on marriage, divorce, abuse, violence, children, neglect or anything related to another person’s life”

 

It’s none of your god-damn business.”

 

Repeat after me again – “It’s none of your god-dam business.” And why isn’t any of your business because you have not walked a mile in their shoes or my shoes.  Do you have a degree in psychology?  Have you spent months helping me through this pain – NO.   So if you really were my friend, you would shut up and just support me. 

 

I can’t tell you the countless times someone has asked me if I see my children.  It’s a heartless question and it’s insensitive.   Really in order for me to tell you how many times I see my children you have to be clued in what happened, the years of abuse, and the violence.  It’s not something I am interested in summing up for you in a coffee shop over a couple of lattes.   Really, the reason you ask this question is to determine if I am continuing to be a good father, your question is one of judgment on another and it’s a thoughtless question.   People who ask me this question, need a good smack (ah, there I go, perpetuating violence) but it’s a sore point with me.  

 

One final thought for the dimwitted.  I do see my children and it is painful.  Why?  Because the abuse continues on my children.  Ah, you say, Mr. Legalprison, why don’t you stop this, report her?  Lord knows I tried and failed in every option.  I spoke to lawyers, and child psychologists.  If you read any of previous postings you would know she is a master manipulator and much better than I at fighting and winning this battle.  I hate losing and I hated losing this battle.  There isn’t a moment I didn’t apologize for my children for leaving them in that environment.  Yes, I failed and why don’t you push into my face every time you ask how often I see my children?

 

Next posting – Teen Pregnancy

April 17, 2008

Into Extinction Day 83 (dating afterthoughts)

After the initial crisis in done (i.e. you have fled the marriage) and you are sitting alone in whatever hovel you can afford.  Remember the court system generously awarded your ex with your money – it’s very nice of them.  You to start to think of what else is out there?

My advice, to you my friend, is don’t do it.  The wounds are still fresh and any conversation with a potential individual will eventually turn to you.  The most recent events, the stabbing, the loss in court, and the cat support will bubble up in casual conversation.  Actually it might come pouring out.  You may get a sympathetic ear as you dump your unwashed laundry in front of them but you will, in the end, scare them away – unless they are needier than you.

What you need is an entire year.  Yes, an entire year and if you can’t even do 3 or 4 months alone – time to seek therapy.  Yes, therapy – consider it.  An unbiased professional ear.  A little blunt truth at $120/hour is always helpful but hey it’s your life.

Dating has changed.  If you left dating say in the late eighties or the nineties its all changed.  You can still go to the bars or you can try the dating websites of which there are plenty.

Let’s start with Plenty of Fish.  This is a huge dating website with a lot of people and many are off their medication.  Like everything in life – you get what you pay for and PoF is free.  If you are curious about where Hannibal Lector’s sister dates – try this website out.

Then there is eHarmony.  The commercials have this non-threatening grey haired gent with a slight smile (like he knows you better than you know you – put down the Cheetos) genteelly pushing you into the eHarmony direction.  The geriatric salesman promises a clear scientific answer to love – god knows science is the answer.  To top it off, after Mr. Geriatric disappears, and a bunch of very happy couples pop up and tell you how wonderful everything is – they match each other perfectly, even blow each other’s noses.  One advantage – girls outnumber the guys 6 to 1.

Enter the eHarmony website is not quick or fast.  You are forced with a battery of multiple choice questions asking everything from how honest are you, were you breastfeed, do you like beer, what color are your shoelaces, are you addicted to anything, and how much risk you like in your life (axe murder okay?)  The real question that quickly pops up in your mind is “would I go out with me?”  “Probably not – too many psychosis’s.”   So you can either tell the truth and end up with the same loser as you are or you can beef it up a little.  Here is the latest on eHarmony – http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/article/0,28804,1638344_1638341,00.html

Yes, I have climbed Mount Everest – twice, in my t-shirt and bunny slippers.  Oh yes, I am independently wealthy and yes I am trim and ready to run a marathon.  There is one problem with this approach, with this bold faced lying like a dog – what if everyone else is doing it too?  The most you ever climbed was drunk, up that dammed snow bank outside the bar and you collapsed in your car barely able to breath and wondering if you should call 911 but you can’t because you would just squeak the words out.  Your idea of independent wealth is enough money to buy a lottery ticket.  The last time you ran was when the Jehovah Witnesses were trying to convert you.  Best to ask for pictures of Mount Everest, financial records and the medal they have from the Boston Marathon – on the first date of course.

Then there is Lavalife.  One of the most popular dating sites on the planet.  The saying goes you have to kiss a lot frogs, well pucker up honey, there are African bullfrogs, Asian Floating frogs, Barking Tree Frogs, Bell Horned Frogs, Dart Frogs, Monkey frogs, and Whistling Tree frogs.  There are a lot of frogs.  The great thing about the website is you get to talk to a lot of people, the stupid thing about the website is you get to talk to a lot of people. 

Newbie’s to Lava, especially women, are set upon by those men just waiting for them to show up.  2 seconds after the profile is up, they IM them.  The newbie not knowing any better thinks – cool – men attracted to me already not thinking that this particular male is from the bottom end of the food chain and lives with a fifty foot python. 

No, the key is to find someone who is not a newbie and not someone who has been on Lava since the day the site launched.  Have some standards and wear a thick skin, some of the people on Lava are vicious and like nothing better than to tear you a new one.

So my keys to successful dating – the rules to follow, based on my experience:

1.    No picture with their profile – no play.  I have tried and never been successful on a date with no picture.  Men are built to want to see the other sex.  Besides they could still be married, Lavalife reports half the guys on the site are still married and trolling for something better than they have.

2.    Have standards.  Such as must have original teeth or must not be living in your parents basement or must be employed, if he/she takes bi-polar medication maybe that’s a no but you get my drift.  You don’t have to publish your standards with your profile just have some.  Don’t lower your standards – no good will come of this.

3.    Washed out pictures on their profile that give little details or the person is 2 miles away in the shot and you kinda see them – well there is reason.  Think about it, people comfortable with themselves take nice pictures.  I once dated this woman, her picture was really washed out.  Most of her face was white, I could see her yes – blue and I think a smile.  We hit it off online and met for coffee.  I got there first and sat down.  She showed up 15 minutes later and I didn’t recognize her.  “And you are?”  Thinking to myself – god must hate me.  “I’m Trish” Okay god does hate me.  Trish apparently weighs 400lbs, her teeth are green and she easily has 20 years on me – Shrek’s mom.  This is false advertising.  Duck and run boy – duck and run.

4.    Beware of titles on the profile such as “I might be the one for you?” or “Looking for an honest guy.”  The first one smacks of a little too needy and possibly stalks you later in the relationship.  The second one requires a lot of work. Some guy or guys (maybe at the same time) used her and tossed her away and now you represent all males and it’s your job to regain her trust – good luck.

5.    Beware of lists in the profile.  Lists such as must be this tall, make this much money, must so long in length, and so on.  I didn’t say you wouldn’t have standards, you just don’t need to publish them or weed through them.  People that publish lists on their profiles, in my opinion, are at the shallow end of the gene pool.  The profile is there to see or write something significant about themselves and if there is nothing about them perhaps they will spend the entire relationship living in your personality – trust me – there’s not enough room.

6.    Beware of psycho’s – now this advice seems really obvious – I do avoid psychotic people – it’s a good rule.  However 1 in 10 has a little psycho in them and they are really, really, good at hiding it.  I talked to this one girl who was convinced I was still married.  She started the conversation angry, very angry and she was taking it out on me and I hadn’t even married her yet – okay this is what blocking is for.   

 

More to follow…

April 16, 2008

Into Extinction Day 82 (what’s the cost of divorce?)

  KarmaIs both the evil and the good a person does. Karma determines destiny. If a person has done too much evil, he or she cannot escape the wheel of life or the transmigration of souls. If a person’s karma is good, he or she will attain moksha or Nirvana.

I am not a complete believer in Karma but I do believe what you put into the world you get back.   I am not saying the collapse of the marriage is completely her fault – no I own half the failure, its just that I paid for 100% of the debt. 

I am wondering why anyone would get married in Canada.  Now it could be that I am bitter about what has happened to me and that would be right but lets look at a few numbers (No I didn’t make these numbers up – I reference Statistics Canda for the information).

  1. Most Males get married around the age of 29.
  2. Most Males if they decide on divorce (approximately 35%) get a divorce around the age 40 to 43.  Actually this isn’t completely true the higher divorce rate is males from 20 to 29.
  3. If I cross reference the StatsCan data to the published data from the MEP Survey conducted in 2006, the majority of people paying out on divorces are between the ages of 35 to 44 (less than 6% of the MEP Debtors are women – interesting isn’t it?)
  4. 66% of the men in the Enforcement Program have no college degree or advanced eduction.
  5. 77% of the men make less than $60,000 a year.

Now we have our statistics, lets take a look at what these numbers actually mean.  Lets say your gross income is $50,000.00 and you live in Alberta and when you divorced, there were 2 children. 

  1. Net monthly wage on $50,000.00 is $3,102.42.  No I didn’t make this number up, from the Government of Alberta website on finances the Provincal Tax is $3,185 and Federal is $9586 assuming no input to RRSPs.
  2. Child Support (according to Alberta Guidelines is $719 for both children).
  3. Spousal Support is quite varied but lets be consertive and say its $400 a month.
  4. That comes up to $1,119 a month reducing your net income to $1,983.00.  This is 36% of your net income.
  5. Lets say the children go to school and play in after school activities and have dental and health care requirements.  Lets say another $6,000 a year from you.  that would be another $500.00 a month, reducing your net income to $1,483.00. 
  6. Your rent is $700 a month because Alberta is not cheap – you are left with $783.00
  7. You have to eat – thats another $500 a month – $383.00
  8. You have to drive a car, insurance and gas – $68.00
  9. Okay utilities another $60 a month, basic cable another $32 a month, clothing another $30 a month, phone another $30 a month, and home insurance another $50 a month – total is $175, leaving you with a problem – minus $107.00.
  10. Lets say when you left your wife, the children were 8 and 10.  Thats at least 8 years of payments.

You would have to live much cheaper and eat a lot Mac and Cheese to survive because this doesn’t cover incidental expenses or you get a second job.   You can never go out, never see a movie, never have dinner at a nice place.  I can see why some men commit suicide.  If you don’t pay MEP than they take everything anyways.  What you don’t see MEP doing is trying to understand what the program really does to debtors – what it strips from them.   I meant sure its about the children but there has to be a better balance here. 

 

April 15, 2008

Into Extinction Day 81 (a brutal moment)

They called.  When I say they, I mean Maintenance Enforcement. 

“Hello Mr. Legalprison, this is Maintenance Enforcement calling.”  My throat was dry, they called me at work.  What if my co-workers found out that I was in prison?

 “Um, yes hello, this is Mr. Legalprison, what can I do for you?”

“Please verify this is you by providing your PIN or Social Security Number.” 

My Pin was actually a Prison a  number given to a prisoner for administrative and identification purposes.  Short of tatooing it on my arm, it was the number.  I gave the number.  I was a little behind on my MEP payments not much but enough to get their attention.  I submitted a proposal to catchup with the payments.  My proposal included selling all my personal property to pay them off.

“Mr. Legalprison, I looked over your letter of proposal and everything seems in order.  Lets not fall behind again shall we?” 

Wow – I proposed selling everything I had and they didn’t blink an eye.  As long as the money is paid, what do they care where it comes from. 

“No, no – I won’t fall behind again I promise.”  Hell, I had lost everything else during this, may as well throw in my pride and ego as well.

“Good, good Mr. Legalprison, why don’t you pay online so we can collect the money faster.”

“Um, sure whatever you want.”  What the hell was I going to say?  These people could throw you into prison and take your life away.

I had one more question.  I fell down on my knees (metaphorically speaking), “Could you please release my account so I can pay my bills and buy some food?”  I was begging now, I needed the money, I was tired of eating sugar packets from the coffee room.

Pause at the other end of the phone, I could hear typing going on.  “Well, I suppose that could be arranged, as long as you keep up with your payments.”

“I sure will MEP, I sure will, cause I likes to eat.”  This is what I was thinking.  It didn’t even dawn on her or MEP that my latest financial statement for my earnings was $30,000 less than what I used to make.  The amount for child support should have been adjusted to $1290 from the $1500 I was paying but because I was busy selling off everything I own to pay the outstanding amount, I lacked the resources to hire a lawyer to get it adjusted.  My spousal support payment would never be adjusted.  I could make $11 an hour I would still owe it.  Just shut the hell up and pay us.

April 12, 2008

Into Extinction Day 80 (the moments after you walk – run away)

Divorce – disassociate: part; cease or break association with;

You can never imagine.  You imagine the moment you do it.  You imagine going through it and telling her.  You imagine that moment but the problem is the moments right after.  You go through the motions and desperately don’t think about the past.  All the birthdays you were there for.   All the Christmas’s when you put up the tree with your kids.    Did you know that would be the very last birthday with your son?  Did you know that would be the very last Christmas with your children.  Did you know when you took that first step that absolutely everything would change – nothing would ever be the same again.

For the first few months you slip through your life.  You can’t define yourself in terms of you marriage anymore.  You need to find something, some meaning, and some direction.  Did you think this part would happen?  No, entire focus in the beginning was on the leaving not would happen afterwards.

You get to make all the decisions now.  You don’t have to check with anyone.  That’s freedom.  Where are you going to live?  What are you going to eat?  What are you going to do?

The price to be paid again and again is isolation.  To visit and see your children.  They don’t understand.  Should you tell them about the years of abuse?  The emasculation?  Should you ruin their view of their mom?  No you don’t, for a long time, you hold it all in.  There are times when one of your children is spending a few precious minutes with you, your angry and grief leaks out around the edges. 

The ex put constraints and parameters around visiting your own children – its final for you.  After years of her tyrannical rule no more.  You agree to no rules and for two long years you rarely if ever see your children.  The pain is long and is as sharp as knife, cutting into any memory you can think of.  Eventually the ex realizes you will never agree to any rules and she relents.  It is the first time in 18 years you can remember her letting anything go but in some ways it’s already too late.

You sat there in discovery, your lawyer and hers.  The stenographer sits quietly and the tape recorder making small noises.  This is the final time you ever want to see her and the question comes and you clarify it – “I am not looking for joint access to the children – she can have sole access.”  There you said, after a year of therapy, joint parenting is not an option.  You have lost.  You cannot even stand to be in the same room as her.

There is something you gain in the end, something you never expected.  After you have lost everything, your possessions, your children and your reason for being, you aren’t afraid of anything anymore.  What is there to be afraid of?

April 11, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 79 (good payor status)

It’s obvious to me that the individuals and the ministry running the Maintenance program haven’t been the in the program themselves.   First there the word “Enforcement” within the name of the program.   The word enforcement by its very nature assumes that if are you in the program, its not voluntary and you are going to need some type of negative jab or push with serious consequences to comply with the rules.  So as an individual forced into the program you already have the sense that you are a criminal and you have done something wrong. 

 

However like any criminal, if you behave yourself in the program you get a nice little treat.  As follows:

 

Good payor status

All files registered with MEP are monitored for their payment history. Over the years, MEP has noted that there are individuals who consistently fulfill their support obligations as directed by their order. For these individuals, MEP has created a “good payor status” that recognizes those files that have a history of successful payment arrangements.

 

MEP will be pleased to inform a debtor if his or her file has been awarded a “good payor status” within the Maintenance Enforcement Program.

 

Honestly, who gives 2 fucks about getting a gold star?  What would be the purpose?  I don’t want good payor status, just leave me alone.  Hell payor isn’t even a word in the English language.

 

It’s interesting that this ministry has such broad judicial powers such as:

 

Payments are due on the date specified for payment in the court order or agreement. All payments should be made on the due date so funds can be passed on to the debtor’s family in a timely manner. If payments are not made on time, late penalties will be charged and collection action will begin. Maintenance orders may be registered at the Personal Property Registry and at Land Titles. Federal, wage and non-wage support deduction notices or a motor vehicle restriction may also be placed.

 

If an account remains in default, staff may cancel clients’ driver’s licences and report their arrears to the credit bureau. Federal licences may also be witheld and accounts could be assessed to determine if a financial examination or a default hearing should be scheduled.

 

Of course, I could point out the numerous spelling mistakes in the above text but in accordance with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms see below.

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms came into force on April 17,1982. Section 15 of the Charter (equality rights) came into effect three years after the rest of the Charter, on April 17, 1985

Legal Rights

Everyone has the right to life, liberty, and security of the person, and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice.

Sections 7 to 14 set out rights that protect us in our dealings with the justice system. They ensure that individuals who are involved in legal proceedings are treated fairly, especially those charged with a criminal offence.

Section 7 guarantees the life, liberty and personal security of all Canadians. It also demands that governments respect the basic principles of justice whenever it intrudes on those rights. Section 7 often comes into play in criminal matters because an accused person clearly faces the risk that, if convicted, his or her liberty will be lost.

I would argue that the rights of the individual in the case of liberty are suspended without formal charges being filled.  Liberty being defined as “autonomy: immunity from arbitrary exercise of authority”.   The fact that the ministry can and does freeze banks accounts and cancels your passport severely limits personal freedom.  They will seize all assets.  This, in my opinion, has gone too far.

 

The Maintenance Enforcement Program initialed a survey back in 2006, with the following results:

 

  • Half of all debtors indicated they struggle to pay maintenance.
  • Two-thirds of debtors report being in bad debt.
  • Depression is significantly higher than known prevalence of depression in the province.
  • The majority of debtors believe the amount of maintenance they pay is unfair.
  • Sixty-two percent of debtors strongly agree or agree they felt trapped by the amount of maintenance they had to pay.

 

They (MEP) have this information since 2006 and examining the website and current rulings the first step of MEP is to bring the hammer down on the debtor.  It’s indicative of a strategy employed by this ministry to collect the monies owed no matter what.  Further to this comment what’s interesting about this survey is they don’t ask how many debtors’ committed suicide – seeing no way out of a situation that puts them deeper and deeper into debt. 

 

Let’s take my case for example:

  • I argued in court that my ex was much better educated than me.  She had a degree and several certifications.  I argued that the $40,000 a year she made was far below what she could actually earn.
  • She counter-argued that she could not get a better job because she was taking care of the children.  I lost this argument.
  • I argued the fact that she never did take adequate care of the children.  She was often away in long meetings or on trips.  Thereby the care was negligible.  I lost this argument too.

 

  • After I lost in court, I found out that the children are often left alone with no supervision.  You can’t win for losing.
  • What I don’t understand is why she wouldn’t want to get a higher paying job?  The money I pay her to sit on her ass won’t last forever – then what?  This is a mystery to me.

 

So you could argue that I am crying over my loss in court and you would be right.  I do want to do what is right but this, something is wrong here and I can’t quite figure out what – maybe the policy is too liberal or maybe I can’t stand being controlled like this.

April 10, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 78 (my day in court)

She sat behind a large desk.  She was wearing her official robes of office.  The black gown with a large white collar.  Her face was stern – ready for the business of the day.  The room was covered in warm wood paneled with lights set giving the room a warm glow.  There were no windows.  To the right of the judge sat the stenographer and to the judge’s left was the guard. 

 

My ex-wife’s lawyer was directly to my right as I sat in the visitor’s gallery.  I had done my research on this lawyer and she was a shark in every sense of the word and I knew I was in trouble.  She had passed the bar 15 years ago and had an incredible record for frying ex-husbands.  My ex was out for vengeance on a very large scale and I didn’t doubt for a second she would get it. 

 

My lawyer I found in the yellow pages.  I was short on time because my ex lawyer-ed up well before me.  My lawyer had a great little office with a few partners.  He cost me about $175/hour for discussions.  In the end, I formulated most of my defense.  I read through all the current books on judgments on divorce.  Actually, I knew I was screwed well before I went to court.  Because you see, my friends, the fact that she verbally and physically abused me for years matters not.  The fact of all the yelling and screaming matters not.  What matters are the facts.  And the facts are I make more money than her and she took care of the kids for me.  Okay I had a very different definition of what caring meant.

 

When she was laid off her job, I told her to find something she truly loved to do.  This was my gift to her.  I didn’t know that later this would turn up in court that I should support for the rest of her natural born life.

 

When we moved to a new city, she had me make a list of the pro’s and con’s.  Now she is excellent at getting people to do things.  She is the best individual I have seen at manipulation and integration.  I often said the Nazi’s couldn’t do a better job than her.  When one tactic doesn’t work she quickly switches to another, beating home, point after point.  These sessions were brutal and beat me down to the point where I said to yes to everything and anything.  In the final months of our “marriage” I removed everything from the house that meant anything to me.  Why did I this?  So she wouldn’t complain about how my artwork or anything else was cluttering up her life.  It was my silent protest.  Eventually anything I wanted for me, I stored in my SUV and kept it locked, never letting her in.  She commented, integrated, bullied, terrorized and tormented me for access to my vehicle.  I know what you are thinking, I am overstating it – no I am not.  It was the very last thing that was me, contained in that vehicle and I didn’t relent and I can’t tell you why.

 

Her methods were simple and effective.  She would ask a question, a genertic question – “When did you buy that mask?”  Making reference to a mask sitting on my back seat in the SUV I did not bring in because I didn’t want to be asked about it.  So having lived with here for over 13 years I knew no question from here was every simple.  The interrogation could last for hours.  She could out-last anybody with this method.  In the end, after years of this abuse, I simply didn’t care anymore about anything.  My life was easier this way.  If I didn’t care, the answer to her was always yes and there was no fighting.  I realized one day that I didn’t care if I lived or died, it simply didn’t matter anymore.  The choice became to stay with her and lose everything that I was or am or leave.  On leaving her, I knew, it would be violent.  I wasn’t wrong.

 

I stopped sleeping in the same room with her about a month before I left.  Initially, I slept in the basement, I didn’t mind – it was far away from her and it was quiet.  After the first week of sleeping, something woke me up at 2am, it was pitch black in the basement but I felt someone else was there.  I looked around.  There she was – standing over top of me, staring at me.  I had no idea how long she had been standing there.  I do know a chill ran up my spine.  “We need to talk”.  The chill continued.

 

When she latched onto something like an issue, no matter how long it took, she drove rentlessly to a resolution that satisfied her.  Thats the key it had to satisfy her – the answer.  It was like a cop drama.  You sit accused in a small room, on an uncomfortable steel chair, table in front of you, and a bare bulb is swinging back and forth over you.  They (the cops) keep you in there until they break you.  At that point, you would say anything or sign anything they wanted.  This is what is was like with her.  You reached a point in the battle, you knew you would never get your point across, you would never get her to understand, you would say or do anything to shut her up.  Promise anything.  I was broken.

 

That night in the basement, with a chill running up my spine, I said “no” and went back to sleep.  And as the month wore on I moved back upstairs into the spare room.  It was warmer however it was closer to her.  I was gearing up for the day I would move out and it did come.  I was in the spare room when she came up.

 

“Where are you going?”  “I am leaving.”  She stood there in the doorway, blocking it.  I asked her to move but she didn’t.  I just wanted to leave, to get the hell out of there and never see her again.  But she blocked the door.  I would have to go through her to get out.  “I will call the police.”  I intoned to her.  “Go ahead.” she said.  I moved towards her.  I hate fighting but there was nothing else left to do.  I later learned from her that she wanted me to fight her.  It was her way of showing how much she loved me.  Don’t try to put that together.  “Please move.”  Silence.  I reached over to move her.  This is what she was waiting for.  Her eyes flared.  She grabbed my shirt.  We struggled.  Now, I weigh a solid 200lbs and I could bench press over 200lbs and she was 105lbs and never worked out.  I thought this would be easy to move her.  She was giving me a run for my money and maybe my life.  My shirt tore in her hands and she left deep gouges down my back that quickly filled with blood.  As we fought, I was slammed agaisnt the door frame and wall several times.  Later I would discover deep purple bruises around my body.  My shirt was torn and with one final push I moved her out of the way.  She glared at me “bastard.”

 

I grabbed my clothes and went for the stairs.  As I went out the front door, something bounced off the back of my head, leaving me with stars.

 

For the next 6 months, I avoided all contact with her.  I paid for everything – the house, her car, and the other bills.  I ran up huge debt.  But it was worth it to not see her.  I eventually reached the point I had exhausted all my funds.  I laywered up. 

 

Sitting there in courtroom, 8 months later, I knew I was going to lose.  I am not used to losing when I have invested so much energy in it but I knew I would.  I had read all the current case law and I knew her.  When it comes to fighting, she is much better then me.  Besides she was angry with me and I should pay.  We (my lawyer and I) lost the first 3 motions quickly.  The judge was scowling at me and my lawyer, this wasn’t going to end well.  I was the criminal.  My ex kept her RRSP’s and any other monies.  Then an interesting motion was tabled by her lawyer.

 

“Motion to grant $300 per month for cat support.”  I shook my head – cat support?  Who the fuck sues for cat support?  The cat was a family pet but when I moved out I couldn’t take her because my rental wouldn’t allow it.  I guess when the ex moved out of the house, her rental wouldn’t allow it.  She has to put the cat up at a cat hotel and it was 3 big ones a month.  Who sues for cat support?  The one motion that was granted to me was this one, the judge disallowed it.  Thank god.

 

Her lawyer pulled up the pro’s and con’s list I had made when we first moved to a new city.   I had told the ex during the vacation that I had an offer to move to a new city and I wanted to take it.  It was a great career move.  However for the rest of the vacation, she hounded me, it was the worst, most miserable vacation I had been on.  I finally agreed to do the list to shut her up.  I did a list and on the list I said, “she would be totally dependant on me in the new city.”  Her lawyer was now waving that document like it was the Magna Carta.  Then her lawyer proceeded to pull every single birthday or I’m sorry card out and wave this as proof.  I mean, who does this?  All I was interested in was splitting 50/50 and going out seperate ways. 

 

In the end I lost it all.  I had to pay all the debt.  She kept the house full of furniture.  She was kind enough to invite me over to pick out stuff I wanted, but there was no way on God’s green earth I was going to be in the same room as her.  I also got to pay child support to a significant tune.  But the item that hurt the worst was I had to pay her for support.  The irony is huge for me.  I have to pay her for abusing me for 13 or 14 years of marriage.  It took me a long time to get past that one.

 

But I have to thank her.  After a couple years of therapy, one of the things the therapist said to me, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”  Which was a trite saying to me at the time but over time I realized that if I could survive 13 years of the ex, I could do anything.  Thank you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 9, 2008

Into Extinction – Day 77 (suck it up little man)

There are winners and there are losers (of course there are, whom I am kidding) in the divorce process.  And lets face it, if you make more money than your ex-partner, ex-spouse or whatever name you have dreamed up – you lose.  Well someone has to tell you.  It doesn’t matter if the last 5 years of your marriage was a living hell.  What you have to do is get a really good therapist for the next 2 years and you might get past it.  It doesn’t matter that you were verbally or physically abused.  She is 115lbs and you are over 200lbs, who are they going to believe and if you really want to go the distance with this one, you have to go to court.  You have to stand in  front of strangers, the lawyers and the judge and pour it all out.  Can’t do it?  Too humiliating?  Too bad – you lose.
____
The indignities don’t stop with the loss in court.  This is just the beginning.  She has the full weight and measure of the judicial system behind her (or him).  Whatever small scrap of dignity, self-respect or esteem you have left after the court is through with you is going to be stomped on.  Suck it up little man (or woman) – there are those in life who pay (you) and those who get paid.
The final card – once played by her is the most brutal of all – maintenance enforcement – stressing the enforcement part.  Maintenance Enforcement – with broad judicial powers swoops down from above.  They wield the righteous sword of justice.  They can and will take 60% of your income before you even see it.  They garnish your wages but its not so blatant anymore – you can volunteer but even that won’t matter, they can do it anyways.  They can and do suspend your drivers license, take any income tax refunds, lottery winnings (that $10 dollars you won at Bingo is forfeit); they seize money before you ever see it and they cancel your passport.
____
You see, my friend, it matters not if your personal circumstances have changed.  Lets say after all of this has happened to you, you fell into a deep depression and couldn’t handle your current job anymore.  You go out and find another job, less taxing and with less pay.  This is all very suspicious.  To change your court ordered and mandated payments will cost you another $3000 but of course if all your money is paying the current order, my friend, you are screwed.
____
You may live in Canada.  You may walk around like other people.  You might even vote, pay your taxes and drink occasionally but you are a prisoner.  The bars are there, for the government and the legal system will follow you, catch you, and wring every last dime from you.  The call will come to you one day.  It will be a pleasant voice, “Mr. Smith, we are calling to tell you we have suspended your drivers’ license.”  But, but, but you think – how will I get to work.  Then you find your bank account frozen.  Then your landlord or bank calls, ” So sorry, your cheque bounced, you need to vacate your current premise.”  Then your car payment, insurance, phone and everything else goes to hell.  You are on the street.  Such is the righteous sword of justice.  Don’t cry about it little man – pay up.  Of course there are options – fight it in court – oops, all your money is gone or frozen.  Okay, leave the country, become Mexican.  Ahh, they thought of that too, your passport is canceled.  They have put you in a tiny little prison.  You walk around every day, you look like everyone else except you are a prisoner.  There is no little hole you can crawl into, because they will find you.  You can, of course, jump off a bridge.  Hard to get money from a corpse.  Ah, there now you understand, you read about this in the papers all the time.  The ex so-and-so commits suicide.  It’s hard for them to collect money if you are dead.
___
More to follow….
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.