BM's stepdaughter

lovehadleyJuly 18, 2010

BM's DH has a 12 yr old DD. (or is she 11? I can't remember. Pretty sure she is 12 but either way...)

This DD is not his bio-daughter. Not sure what the history was but he basically dated her mother, then they broke up, then they got back together several years later, and this little girl was 2-3 yrs old at the time.

He knew she was not his (so I've heard from BM)but loved her mom and married her, and signed the birth certificate. I guess no man had been there when the baby was born and when this guy married her mom, he wanted to be the father, so they did an affidavit of paternity, and he "as good as adopted her."

So then they ended up getting divorced and he has had 30-40% custody. He has her about 2-3 nights a week on average; in the last few years, he has been working out of town a lot, being gone for 6-8 weeks at a time, so his schedule has been strained and the ex-wife is not pleased.

He has always had to pay $380/month in child support.

Well--shocker here--now that he and BM had two more kids, and BM doesn't work, they cannot afford the child support.

So BM asked DH the other day if she could talk to ME about a step family issue. DH said "absolutely not, inappropriate." And that is when she rambled this whole thing out.

Apparently, a law was passed in our state in 2009 that says it doesn't matter if a father is on the birth certificate, if he is not the bio-father, he can get out of child support. BUT this comes with losing all paternal rights.

Now:

A) I am not sure this is accurate. Given the fact that this man is the ONLY dad the girl has known AND the fact that he's been her dad for ten years, I don't know that this law would help him. I am thinking it has more to do with someone who signs the birth certificate NOT KNOWING he is not the bio-father. This guy obviously knew.

B.) I think this is crap!

This is, apparently all BM's doing. She was complaining to DH that they can't afford the $380 plus $100 for back support. Well no _____ sherlock! You had not one, but TWO more babies, so between the two of you, you've got four kids! And you don't work and your DH has no real skills or career. Until something changes--you are never going to get ahead.

So her answer is this?

Apparently, her DH is on board and has gone to his ex wife and begged her to let him out of the child support--he owes it to HER, not the state--but she won't. She turned him over to child support enforcement a year ago and then his license was suspended, yada yada.

UGH. So I get that they're struggling but I think this is just so awful. In short, BM was telling DH that her hubby is going to tell his daughter he's not her bio-dad (she doesn't know) and that he hopes her mom will still let him be in her life.

BARF. It makes me sick. In essence--he is choosing saving a few hundred dolllars a month over his DAUGHTER. AND---you know---he could get another job, a second job, or he could try to get a modification in support or, ya know, BM could (gasp) work! There are options other than THIS here.

DH pretty much told BM just that and said there was no way she needed to discuss any of this with me, and that she is NOT to even attempt to contact me.

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justmetoo

Yep, correct, this stinks. Speaks volumes towards the selfish 'It's all about me, screw those kids' attitude seen in so many stepfamilies if money becomes an issue. I've never understood why some people think the 'old kids' can be written off just because they want to have 'new kids'.

It happens. The horse's behind my oldest daughter married really did sign off paternal rights to his two boys just to get out of support payments (which were peanuts...like $50 a month) and the fact their BM put lien on his truck. What an upstanding guy, huh?

Wonder how your BM would feel if this BF of hers took off and decided to write off the two children they have together? Your SS and this little girl should have been the consideration first and foremost BEFORE reproducing more children. Then if one can afford additional children and all be treated fairly and provided for...think about having more.

It's really no different than a married long term couple, they think real hard about adding kids to the home if they can't afford it.

No clue what state you are in, but in mine, yes CSE works with several methods of hunting down and collecting support and they have gotten very aggressive. Suspend driver's license, professional licenses, can't apply and recieve simple things like hunter's and fishing licenses, sieze any type of tax refund checks or award setlements and they have a 'deadbeat' parent page online for those owing over x amount.

Just because I'm curious, how in the world did you reply to BM when she poored this all out to you?

    Bookmark   July 18, 2010 at 10:50AM
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imamommy

ugh! that nauseated me.... how utterly disgusting!

I'd love to know what state so I can find the law she is talking about. I can tell you how the CA law (that I think is similar) works... or what I understand it to be. (since I am not an attorney, I can't say it's 100% fact)

Several years ago, they opened a window of opportunity for men that were named & legally declared the father of a child by default, to challenge the default ruling. The default usually happened when baby is born & the mother gets any state assistance, the DA goes after the father named on the birth certificate. If there is no name on the birth certificate, the mother must give the DA the name of the father or if there is more than one, all the names. Then the DA goes down the list. I assume they start with the ones they have the most information on, but I don't really know what order they use. But if they file court papers to get the guy in court (for a DNA test) & he is "legally" served, but does not respond to the court papers, the court would make a 'default' judgment, declaring him to be the father. They would order support & there were men that had no idea they had been named 'baby daddy' until they had their license suspended.. because they were never actually served. The temporary law allowed the default ruling to be vacated (thrown out) if they could prove they were not the father (through DNA) and would relieve them of back child support that was owed, however they could not get any money that was already paid back. BUT, they could not get out of it if they had a parent/child relationship with the child. The law may have been intended to help men that were NOT aware of a child because they never actually received notice, but were being held financially responsible for a child that may not even be his. If the DNA test proved he is the father, then obviously they would not get the default judgment vacated. The court recognizes that it's detrimental to a child to cut off someone that has a parent/child relationship with the child, even if DNA proves he is not the biological father. The older the child, the more detrimental it is... so, it's much more acceptable when the child is a baby (or very young). Also, the court usually won't allow a man to remove himself once he has accepted paternity, unless there is another man to take his place... so in the situation you describe, I would assume the court would want the name of the actual biological father so they can go after him for support before they would allow her current husband off the hook. (and his ex could claim it would be detrimental to her daughter to lose the only father she's ever known... and the court may just agree & it would make him look like a first class JERK!) ~I have seen courts INCREASE the support amount when a decrease is requested... ~

**In CA, if you have a PO box & don't change the card on file when you move from the address listed on it, then you can still be "legally" served at that address, even if you haven't lived there for years & the people that do live there have no idea who you are. As long as it can be proven that you were served at the address where you still receive mail, it is legal. (So, that is my WARNING from a process server to anyone in CA, to make sure you complete your change of address card so the Post Office knows you don't live at your old address.... otherwise you may not know when someone files a lawsuit against you & it could be bogus)**

    Bookmark   July 18, 2010 at 11:17AM
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sweeby

Ugh is right!
(But kudos to your Hubby for blocking BM's attempt to drag you into this! Seems he's finally getting it!)

Of course it's a sleazy, worm-like thing to do.
But sadly, it's not that surprising that they'd try to do it...

    Bookmark   July 18, 2010 at 12:48PM
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lovehadley

Ima, it's Missouri.

I would love to know what law she is referencing, too!

Justmetoo, I didn't respond because it wasn't me she told. She called DH and had the gall to ask him if she could either a) have my cell phone number (hahaha) or if I could call her from my husband's cell phone? She wanted to ask me my thoughts "as a stepmother."

Well, no way would I ever consider getting involved with her on any level, least of all that one, again.

DH told her it was completely inappropriate and that's when she dumped it all on him. He just said to her pretty much what I said to you guys:

"It's the wrong approach."

"You guys decided to have two more kids, now you have to figure out a way to make it all work."

"If the c/s is that much of a strain and he's really making a lot less, try to get a modification."

"Get another job, get a second job, downsize your house, etc."

In short--trying to get out of his paternal responsibilities is the last thing he should be doing.

It's wrong, wrong, wrong. On so many levels.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2010 at 2:22PM
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justmetoo

I think this is what BM was talking about and it is along similar lines of what Ima suggested. Don't think BM really understands the usage and meaning of what she thinks she does...

Have a hunch she's grasping at straws in her attempt to get her BF off CS and his committment to the child.

In link scroll down to the 8 July 2009 story on the right hand side. At bottom of 'news' article of subject is actual link to actual Senate bill.

As an aside, snooping around the linked to site were other interesting tidbits about Missouri CS ect.

Here is a link that might be useful: the law?

    Bookmark   July 18, 2010 at 7:19PM
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imamommy

I haven't read the link (I will tonight) but public policy is for children to have the right to both parents & to be financially supported by both parents. A man that claims to be a father & accepts the role of father, knowing he is NOT the father, may be held to the fire more than a man that is led to believe he is the father by the mother & just never questioned it...

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 12:05AM
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mattie_gt

her hubby is going to tell his daughter he's not her bio-dad (she doesn't know) and that he hopes her mom will still let him be in her life. What a loathsome excuse for a human being. So he thought that it would be fun to be a Dad, but now that it is inconvenient for him (Heavens! He might have to start using birth control and/or get a second job! The horror!) he is not only going to renege on his promise to be a father to this little girl, he is also going to tell her that, by the way, he's not really her father after all. As if that's not bad enough, on top of that he's going to throw all the responsibility for the consequences of his actions on the little girl and her mother (he hopes that Mom will still let him be in her life - so long as "being in her life" means on his terms, and his terms mean the all play but no pay part of being a parent). So if he does weasel out of paying support, and Mom, understandably in my opinion, tells him to get bent, then it's all her and not him at all - he would have been a Dad, really, except the mean Mom wouldn't let him. How contemptible.

On a slightly less judgmental note, I knew guys (when we were all younger) who did things like this (the agreeing to support someone else's child part). Even though I was young then as well, it struck me as a very foolish thing to just jump into without really thinking it through. The couple of guys I knew who did that were well-meaning guys, if not very good at long range planning. It's so easy to promise you'll always be Daddy to a cute toddler when you're in your early twenties and still living at home with your parents or living with the mother whom you're in love with. It's not so easy when that cute toddler is a not always well-behaved twelve year old, you've got a couple kids who are biologically yours, and a GF or wife (or both) who are complaining about how your "real" children are going without while you pay for a kid who's "not even yours". And the same way that some women don't seem to grasp the concept that their cute little babies will not stay as cute little babies, some guys don't seem to understand that their life will change, but a promise to be a parent should not.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 8:26AM
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ashley1979

Yeah...that is totally not cool. Poor little girl!

According to DH, when he and SD's BM got married, his son was 10 year old, and his son's mother and stepfather brought him down to be in the wedding. He was 10 years old.

The stepfather wanted to 'talk' to DH. He started out wanting DH to give up his rights, which DH emphatically refused. Then he moved to raising CS, which DH responded that he had no problem with that, but that he would start expecting the son to visit more than twice a year. Finally, the stepfather stopped the demands, but told the son that DH wanted to have him aborted, which is a lie (DH is pro-life).

So, at graduation, his son asked him about it. Poor guy! Can you imagine someone telling you that your father wanted to have you killed rather than be a parent? Turns out the mother and SF couldn't have any kids of their own so he felt he was entitled to DH's son. He was just as bad as BM. He did more damage to DH's son than could ever be fixed.

Point being, it is much more permenant to go through the child.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 3:32PM
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