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  1. #1
    paigeSC Guest

    Can I sue for harassment, emotional distress?...

    What is the name of your state? South Carolina
    A year ago I was granted a divorce on the grounds of physical cruelty. What prompted the divorce was my (much overdue) decision to call the police after suffering a broken tailbone. My ex was arrested for CDV, and the charge was later changed to CDVHAN. He has since worked out a deal w/ the solicitor to have the charges dropped after he attends counseling.
    In an attempt to keep my sanity, I can force myself to see the "bright side"...my children don't have the stigma of their Father being in jail...continued alimony and child support...the problem I'm facing is his continued, relentless harassment and verbal abuse.
    The results of the physical injuries I suffered during 11 years in an abusive marriage are minor in comparisson to the deep scars caused by being told, daily, what a worthless loser I am. Infact, it wasn't the physical abuse that made me realize I had to get out, it was the realization that I had started to believe what he said about me! So I did it...got out! But it hasn't stopped...emails (9, today!) phone calls, and unexpected visits, threats, name-calling, lying to the children - and it's the same abuse as always.
    I have so much work to do on mysef to return to the confident, vibrant person I once was...but he's destroying me! I've been to counseling, but with 3 kids and no job, the money is just no longer there. Is there anything legal (civil) I can do to stop him...or get HIM to pay for the counseling needed...or at least send a message that I'm not the only one who sees his behavior as unacceptable? (And, after dealing w/ the solicitor re/ the CDV charges, I will NEVER again file criminal charges!)
    I could REALLy use some advice!
  2. #2
    kat1963 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Virginia
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    1,939
    “On every doormat there is a welcome sign” Stop letting yourself be a damn doormat! Just because he calls doesn’t mean you have to answer, just because he e-mails you doesn’t mean you have to read it! If he comes by & makes threats, call the police. That is what they are there for.

    Go TODAY and get a RESTRAINING ORDER against him. If he violates it, slap his butt in jail. Keep doing it until he gets the message. Taking yourself out of the line of fire is the first step to recovery. Sure the kids don’t need to see their Dad go to jail, but they also need to realize that there are consequences for actions and going to jail is one of them. Your sons don’t need to witness him treating you this way; they’ll start to think that DV is normal in relationships. You daughters don’t need to see him treating you this way; they’ll start to think that being treated like a doormat is what marriage is all about.

    They need YOU to be strong & independent. How about taking a few college classes (even if it’s pottery 101!!) or getting a job? Figure out what makes you happy then go for it full throttle. It sure beats sitting at home waiting for the next e-mail or phone call. Screw him. Learn to live.

    There is life after DV however no can make it happen but YOU. Take away his power.

    Good Luck!
    KAT
  3. #3
    paigeSC Guest

    I know you're right...

    Originally posted by kat1963
    “On every doormat there is a welcome sign” Stop letting yourself be a damn doormat! Just because he calls doesn’t mean you have to answer, just because he e-mails you doesn’t mean you have to read it!

    RESPONSE:Most of the incidents begin as (supposed) contact re/ the kids. While I have full custody, he does have visitation AND a team of high-paid attorneys!

    KAT: If he comes by & makes threats, call the police. That is what they are there for. Go TODAY and get a RESTRAINING ORDER against him. If he violates it, slap his butt in jail. Keep doing it until he gets the message.

    RESPONSE:First, let me say that the Sheriff's Duputies in my county are my heroes! They have been amazingly professional, understanding and compassionate! (With the exception of one...who obtained a warrant for stalking, and "slapped his butt in jail"! Unfortunately, this same deputy was completely unprepared at the preliminary hearing, and the charges were thrown out!) It took 18 months for the CDV charges to be dealt with - and during that time, I "fought the good fight"! I made reports, filed complaints, and before it was over, his (X's) arrest record included unlawful use of a telephone, harassment, criminal trespassing, and stalking. The solicitor lumped all these charges together w/ the CDV...and once his counseling is completed, they will all be dismissed. I will NOT go through all of that again!

    KAT:Taking yourself out of the line of fire is the first step to recovery. Sure the kids don’t need to see their Dad go to jail, but they also need to realize that there are consequences for actions and going to jail is one of them. Your sons don’t need to witness him treating you this way; they’ll start to think that DV is normal in relationships. You daughters don’t need to see him treating you this way; they’ll start to think that being treated like a doormat is what marriage is all about. They need YOU to be strong & independent.

    RESPONSE: Oh, Kat...I know, I know, and I know! If only it were that easy for me. It's as if the years of abuse have left me in this deep pit...my fault?...His fault?...I don't know. But, as much as I want to climb out...as hard as I try...I just keep getting kicked back down to the bottom! I don't have any fight left - I'm tired of losing!

    KAT:How about taking a few college classes (even if it’s pottery 101!!) or getting a job? Figure out what makes you happy then go for it full throttle. It sure beats sitting at home waiting for the next e-mail or phone call. Screw him. Learn to live.

    RESPONSE: Again, I know you're right. And again, it's not not that simple - I'm a freelance musician and private music teacher. The 'X' is also a musician, and the band director at the largest HS in the county. He has so many professional ties within the music community that it makes my continued involvement difficult - and often requires contact with him. (See, back to the bottom of that pit!)

    KAT:There is life after DV however no can make it happen but YOU. Take away his power.

    RESPONSE: I know you care...thanks! Hope you'll respond again!

    Good Luck!
    KAT
    RESPONSE
  4. #4
    Shutdown Guest
    As well as what you have been told so far, here are a couple of suggestions. Get a hearing to change the stipulations of the visitation order to take away his visitation. With his charges it should not be too hard. Change your phone number (the first time is free at most companies and at mine it is free to anyone getting harrasment phone calls) and as far as the email is concerned, block him. I don't think there is an email program out there that won't let you block emails. Record every conversation, but you must inform him that he is being recorded at the very begining of the conversation. Not doing so would get you in trouble. If you tell him he is being recorded, it might make him change his abusive ways on the phone. Better yet, get caller ID and just don't answer the phone when he calls. But get a job, it will make you feel a lot better about yourself. But somewhere along the line here you need to stop feeling like a victim all the time. I don't want to be harsh but Kat is right, what happens to you is only what you allow to happen. Best of luck!
  5. #5
    Pfaffing85690 Guest
    . Get a hearing to change the stipulations of the visitation order to take away his visitation. With his charges it should not be too hard.
    Sorry, but taking away his visitation and your problems with him are NOT related. Simply put, they are two separate issues.

    While you MAY be able to have the visitation order modified to a third-party exchange or supervised visitation, there is nothing in your post that would allow a judge to terminate HIS rights.
  6. #6
    Shutdown Guest
    Taking away the visitation was another way of her not having contact with him as she says he uses the time to abuse her more. I think your suggestion is better about the third party, but if that doesn't work don't you think a judge would deny visits with him having a criminal domestic violence charge hanging over his head and that he has made threats and is stalking her? I am curious, not challenging you. Here in California, it is very easy to get visitation cancelled for such things.
  7. #7
    Pfaffing85690 Guest
    It is not that easy in California based on the parents relationship. What is important is IF the child is involved.

    Third-party and supervised visitation is the first two options until they don't work. then visitation can be suspended or denied based on the recommendations of child services or the agency tasked with evaluations.

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