Beth - posted on 06/24/2011 ( 5 moms have responded )
We always hear all of this talk about "deadbeat dads", but what about deadbeat BM's?? I wish they got just as much attention and were treated equally to the deadbeat dad!
Three years ago we went to court over custody of my special needs stepson who has some mild learning disabilities. He requires extra tutoring and occupational therapy, plus he needed to be in some kind of extracurricular activity. He ordered that she was to pay 40% of the costs and my husband to pay 60%. Well, we paid all of the bills upfront and billed her and then she had 30 days to pay us. For the first couple of years, she did pay us mostly consistently, but my husband would always have to ask or remind her. Then in 2009, custody changed to my husband. No child support order was entered outside of the costs of his "extra" expenses. Since she was paying us pretty regularly for his "extra" expenses at that time, my husband did not pursue child support. Then, last summer, she got fired from her summer job and she didn't pay us anymore. After that, it was hit or miss as to whether she paid us and she racked up about $550 worth of debt to us that my husband has never gone after. Instead, he went through the child support enforcement and went to court to have an order for child support including her portion of his "extra" expenses and it is garnished from her check every month, so now we don't have to rely on her to pay us whenever she feels like it.
But now we found out yesterday that the BM is taking us back to court for a modification of child support. The current order has only been in place for 4 months and it took 1.5 years just to get this woman to pay anything on a regular basis since now they garnish it straight from her check! She wants to modify child support now because she doesn't have a summer job and because her job in the school cafeteria is going to a part time status. I don't see why she should be able to lower her payments just based on that. First, all school employees have the option of being paid on a 12 month schedule or a 10 month schedule. She chooses the 10 month schedule, so it is her choice not to receive any income over the summer. Plus, she knows she will be out of work for 2 months ever summer, so she should be planning for it. It's not a shock. Second, her job going down to 25 hours a week is not an excuse, either, in my book. I mean, even without child support, she would have to get another job because she would not be able to support herself 25/hours per week worth of pay working in a school cafeteria.
She has told my husband before that since we both work full time and we have two incomes, that she should not have to pay child support because she makes so much less. The problem is, she makes less because she chooses to make less. She stays in her job and doesn't try to pick up any part time work or even just find a different full time job that may pay her the same, but give her 40 hours a week all year round! When she had custody of him and my husband had custody of their older son, he still paid her child support plus the 60% of his "extra' expenses on top of that. He never went back and got a modification, he WANTED to support his child. This woman would refuse to take her older son to get a $10 haircut because "it was his father's responsibility". She has done nothing but deny her oldest opportunities because of her unwillingness to pay for her children.
My prayer is that when we do return to court for this, that the judge sees right through her and treats her no differently than he would treat a deadbeat dad. I pray he tells her that she needs to work full time, just like the rest of us, and pay child support!