He protested, “You can’t take the kids. It will kill my mother.”
“Your mother? I am not divorcing your mother.” I snapped back at him. “I want my life back and I want our kids safe from your sexual antics and casual encounters with men that you bring to your home. I don’t think our children are safe at your home.”
And that was the fight that launched a custody battle. Of course the Gay Husband still loves his children, but he wants more to please his mom by ensuring that her grandchildren remain close. He promptly changed his pleadings and is now asking for custody to thwart my efforts to leave town. GH wants his mommy to be happy.
I can’t even believe that I am participating in this absurd process. What reasonable person would think that he is a proper and fit parent to care for our children? I guess I am going to find out if one exists.
I’ve asked that this whole charade be fast tracked and that we get a court appointed representative involved in determining custody. GH and I can’t come to terms and agree on who is a better and fit parent for our children and I am not inclined to drag it out and let it go to a trial. That would be expensive and take too long. I want a decision made so that I can start to pick up the shards of my life and piece it all back together. I am not going to be able to do that without our children. I plan to take them and relocate to my hometown, to be near my family and my support system, but most importantly to get the kids away from this ‘adult’ behavior and give them the educational, cultural and social opportunities that they just can’t get here in Mapdot, USA.
She showed up with her notebook. Unannounced and unceremonious. I however was expecting her. Not because I am psychic or anything, but because I was told that the Gaurdian Ad Litem would come to do a ‘site visit.’ I was also told that she may visit where we work, socialize, and she can call personal references. She may even show up at the kids’ events to observe the environment. No stone should expect to be unturned.
A ‘site visit’ sounds so clinical and impersonal. She was coming to my home. To the home where GH and I remodeled, redecorated and poured our love into to to make it livable for our family. To now have it called a ‘site’ reduces it to what it really is – walls that are shelter for the kids and me. It is the site of where I confronted GH about his lifestyle. It has been reduced to the fallout shelter where the kids and I now take shelter, waiting for this process to end and the next phase of our life to begin. I guess calling it a ‘site’ is fairly accurate now.
The Guardian Ad Litem arrived to ensure that the children have adequate living space and are safe. It’s her job to look out for their welfare, and that involves judging us as parents and our ability to provide a safe environment. I don’t fear my scores on this test and am confident that I can provide for my kids’ physical, emotional and social needs. GH, I think he wants to do that, but the reality is that he constantly makes bad decisions. His primary motives are pleasing his penis and then his mother all else falls in line behind that. After those two are served, he focuses on his children. Since he’s moved out, he’s been quite active on the gay websites and quite the social entertainer at the winery and his home. His parenting has been outsourced to his family.
My day to day life with the children remains the same. We sleep in the same beds we always have slept in. We cook and eat in the same kitchen we always have and to an outsider looking in, that sense of normalcy for the kids has remained the same. This site is still their home. It houses all their toys, books and childhood memories. My social life remains focused on the kids and my adult time is spent with the parents of my children’s friends. Lately my only ‘adult entertainment’ has been emailing with GI Joe, and that poses zero risk to the kids.
The office interview and the site visit has kicked off this war. We are going head to head. Really, I should not be shocked by the process or the extent that GH and his mom will go to win. Regardless, I am confident. I am a sane, reliable parent. I continue to provide healthcare, education, supervision, meals, love and hours of consoling to our children. I want that to be recognized. So even though I feel like I am being scrutinized, I find it comforting because I expect that the Guardian is going through the same process with GH.
She is going to visit his ‘site,’ which the kids accurately call a shanty. I expect that she will notice that he provides shelter but safety is questionable. His home is located down a rural country road that includes directions, “turn off the paved road onto the gravel…” His home is located so that he can entertain men and his lifestyle can go unnoticed. Coincidentally that also means that should a jealous spouse find her husband in the shanty with GH, she could unload a shotgun and it would go unnoticed. That is not where I want my children to spend any time.
Also, as a reasonable person, she must conclude that having our daughter’s bed in the same bedroom as the GH’s may not be the best arrangement. Our son’s bed is a mattress on a floor in a different bedroom. GH didn’t take the care to duplicate the comfortable surroundings our kids enjoyed at home. By the looks of the photos the kids show me and the descriptions, it sounds more like a flop house.
GH’s mom has gone overboard to compensate. She’s been cooking meals for GH and my kids, doing their laundry and stepping it up to ensure that all is spic and span for the Guardian’s visit. Apparently she’s fighting the only way she can – with cleaning supplies. She has not quite realized that she is not going to get custody and all the efforts that she puts forth demonstrate that her son is even more incapacitated in the realm of parenting.
It is laughable. The extent to which he is going to demonstrate he is involved in our kids day to day life is now on display for the town to see (and the guardian, should she happen to visit). He’s rallied his family to show up at our sons’ ball games, so now our son has his own large cheering section! Good for our son, but the motives are highly suspect.
The guardian will call our witnesses, who will each testify that we are suitable and sane parents. I am confident his mother has prepared all the town to proclaim that GH is a stand up citizen and that it would destroy our children to be uprooted. My allies will assert that I am a better parent and that our kids will be surrounded by loving family in their new location. Our witnesses will essentially cancel each other out.
Now the biggest decision of our children’s lives will be made by a woman who will have over the course of her investigation, spent just a fraction of a month with them. She’ll have a few hours of interviews, observations and reviewing documents. In the end, it will take her a few hours to write her report and issue her recommendation which the court will follow. In a matter of weeks, this war will be over.
I fear for the safety of our children while in his care and I will fight to the end to protect them but I have no notion that there will be any winner in this war.