Can I contest my husbands reason for divorce

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  • #45950 Report

    Midlands mom


    I separated from my husband of 27 years and left our family home due to his drinking and domestic violence, 2 years ago. We have 4 children and they live with me. When we left, I always had every intention of going back as I thought he would sort his drinking out and he promised he would.

    For the past year of so, we have been trying to work it out. We lived separately but I have always tried to make us a family again. A few weeks ago I recieved divorce papers from him and he has used, being separated for 2 years, the reason for divorce. I never wanted one and have always made it clear to him. Only up until a few months ago we were still moving back.

    I don’t want a divorce but he clearly does. So I won’t contest it, but I do not agree with his reason because its not true.

    I’m worried I have to agree to this, because if I contest his reason, I will have to pay for it. He doesn’t support me financially, so I am claiming as a single parent on universal credit.

    Please, any advice would be appreciated

    Thank you

    #45954 Report


    Should he not be paying you child maintenance x4 for these past 2 years??

    Also, has he put an X in the box where it says that YOU have to pay for his Court expenses? :S

    #46012 Report

    Midlands mom

    Hi, he says he wont pay child maintenance because I left him. Now and again he might give me some money,  but not often at all. When I ask for support, he seems to think I will spend it on myself or the bills.

    And no, he hasn’t asked for me to pay


    #46123 Report


    I just wrote a reply but it got automatically deleted because I had 2 links in it.

    Here it goes again:

    Child Maintenance has got nothing to do with whose fault the separation or divorce is. It’s all about providing financially for your common children, especially when they don’t live with you. So he has to pay an amount every month, assuming he has any income (no one can make him pay, if he has nothing). Just search for the Government’s Child Maintenance payments calculator. Payment can be retrospective, you are free to agree between yourselves (although I understand he is not very cooperative!).

    Regarding the reason for divorce, it sounds like the real reason should be (his) unreasonable behaviour (drinking and domestic violence), but that requires you providing a few examples of this. Also, by saying that you want to stay married to him and trying to be a family again, you are automatically saying (both to him and to any Courts) that his behaviour is not that unreasonable after all. So you need to be careful about that. Would it be safe for you and your kids to live with him again, even if he wanted to? Do you really want to give up the peace and hopefully safety you have now that you live somewhere else? Have you heard of the Freedom Programme? Google it, it’s a paid-for course but it has some extremely useful free diagrams / descriptions of controlling behaviour.

    Take good care and be kind to yourself xx

    #46124 Report

    Midlands mom

    Hi con1

    Thank you for your response, I do appreciate it. I did want to work it out, that’s why I left..I left my home, not my marriage. But I realised up until not long ago he was never going to change. So That obviously is not happening now, I don’t want to contest the divorce, but I don’t agree with the reason. It isn’t fair that I had to leave my home with our children because of alcohol and domestic violence, yet my husband can file for divorce and I just have to agree with his reason, so all the abuse myself and our kids went through, and still do, didn’t matter?? Because it mattered to us..  My kids have self harmed, had counselling because of their dads drinking….we still get abuse now from him…but if I want to contest his reason for him divorcing me, then I have to pay for it, which I obviously can not. I’m sorry for the long response, I’m just upset that’s all.

    And yes I have actually done the freedom programme. Family services suggested I did it. But I don’t think I was in the right mind set at the time.

    Again thank you so much for your response

    Take care also 🤗

    #46153 Report


    It’s heart-breaking to read that your kids have self-harmed :(((  Poor little guys, trying to make sense of it all. And of course I’m so sorry for all YOU have been through. It’s not fair and it’s no way to live. It’s fantastic that you managed to escape. Nothing wrong with “leaving your marriage” if your husband was not honouring it. Indeed, these people never change, however much you want them to and whatever sacrifices you make.

    I understand your frustration about the reason. I was wondering whether Women’s Aid or such charities can help you with some legal advice or even representation? If you don’t have any income or are struggling, there should be a way to get legal counsel for free?? I hope! I don’t know if it makes you feel any better, but the 2-year thing, like the 5-year thing is mainly a formality. So it’s just stating the fact that you have been living separately for 2 years without any need to specify why you actually had to get the hell out of there. The biggest gift to your children seems to me (a complete outsider who knows nothing!) to be that you got out of a hellish situation – alive. That’s all you needed to do and you succeeded. The box that was ticked on the petition is not that important in comparison. In a way he made your life easier by lodging the divorce petition, because it saved you the struggle of doing it yourself. That was lucky. What if he didn’t want a divorce and you were stuck in this situation forever?!

    I wish I could help with the pain and anger you are feeling, but all I can say is you did the absolute right thing, so get that divorce going and start a new chapter in your life and your kids’ lives. I root for you! <span class=”emoji”>🤗</span><span class=”emoji”>🤗</span>

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