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Help :( - Carers UK Forum

Help :(

All about money

I have been the full time carer for my wife for 9 years and provided the care for our children for 6 and 3 respectively. Our relationship has been strained and difficult over the years mostly due to our terrible housing problems. We waited almost 2 years for adaptations, during which she told me that when the stress was done we could sit down and talk about things properly.

A week after adaptations were finally finished a social worker came to the house and told me that she wanted me gone. She had no love for me and was just stringing me along to provide care for her. I couldn't believe it and now we are getting divorced.

However because the house is a joint tenancy I can't apply for rehousing, she will get the house according to Social Services because its been adapted. She cannot care for the kids and she has never been that bothered with doing the care, instead letting me do everything from school runs to nappy changes. Now she is claiming direct payments and her family are going to live in with her which means she will have almost guaranteed custody of our children.

I do not know what to do next, I am looking at homelessness, unemployment after I gave up everything to care for her and now the loss of my children who will be looked after by a succession of strange carers, other family.

I have had legal advice but since she seems to have the support of Social Services there is not much I can do.

Any help gratefully accepted Image thankyou
I can totally understand the situation you are in, as I went through something similar.
I was not married to my partner so I had to ask the court to grant me parental responsibility (I take it that you were married when the children were born) if that is the case you already have parental responsibility. If you are homeless now, the first thing your going to have to do is find yourself somewhere to live, I know it's going to be hard but you will never get a residency order without it and it would be pointless asking for one. If you are in the marital home stay put until you are ordered to leave. Do not believe everything you hear from social services there are other government departments that are better qualified to decide what is in the best interests of the children in the event of a family break up like cafcass You will need to see cafcass http://www.cafcass.gov.uk/ (children and family court Advisory and support service) just google cafcass. They will ask you about your relationship with your wife and the children (they are not interested in mud slinging) their only real interest is what is best for the children. ( I take it that the social services that you and your wife delt with were from adult social services and not child social services?) if so I doubt their opinion would cut much ice with the court, however cafcass deal with situations like yours everyday and they are who the judge is more likely to listen to. If you and the mother of your children cannot come to an agreement what is in the best interest of the children your next step is court, in court the kids come first cafcass will write a report that you get to see and so does the judge, the parents come a distant second any other relative is a very distant third if they are heard at all. You may feel that you should be the resident parent as your wife is unable to care for the children, this will be up to the judge and cafcass. Having the children looked after by social services and other relatives as your wife is unable to care for the children may well not be in the childrens best interest. I know it's a crappy situation you find yourself in, it cost me £17,000 over the years first to get contact and then for every extra bit of contact as my ex would not agree to anything unless I took her to court. Please feel free to pm me if you want.
Hi Big Rob, here's a big (((Hug))) for you. I don't know anything about custody etc. but I certainly feel really sorry for you, the way you have been treated by your OH is simply horrible. If you have been main carer for the children, then surely that situation should continue in the best interests of the children? I would suggest that you keep a diary of what you do/she does each day. Try really, really hard to keep your temper throughout it all. As she has already shown how cunning she can be, then don't let her goad you into losing your temper so that she can then use that against you. Also is her condition going to improve or decline? That might influence the decision maker.
Hi Big Rob, just saying hello and welcome. I can't help at all I'm sorry with your dreadful situation and the way that you have been treated. The other posts have given good advice. I want to wish you luck and hope that there can be a happy outcome for you.
that is just awful bigbob...and can happen to anyone of us to be honest..we forget that the person we care for can also want out of the situation ....you are married , and as far i remember when advising couples on their housing rights , matrimonial law takes president over everything, including housing rights. social services are bullies and make you believe they have all the knowledge and they know best, they don't . you have equal rights to the home , the children and the finances , its just after 9 years of putting others first , you have lost your way , now you have to fight in your own corner , muster the energy and stand up for your rights....but i agree...stay calm and dont give anyone any excuse to use it against you . sending you positive thoughts .
Thank you all for the replies, a lot of people are supporting me and the first thing they all say is "But you do everything for the kids".

This of course means nothing when I am homeless. We have a joint tenancy and yes, it is adult services that she deals with. My solicitor has explained the cafcass process but he is worried by the seemingly random mind changes by adult services over acceptable care and thinks that they are just trying to make sure they protect the £45000 odd they just spent on adaptations which in the new situation would never have happened.

I am not leaving the house until they evict me but my wife has decided to seize the fact she has been promised the house as her reason to hang onto the kids even thought it will eventually mean they are looked after by a string of random carers and extended family.

Another big problem I am facing is that because I left university to care for her and have been ever since, (Love makes fools of us all) I have no job or money of my own to fall back on (she has left our joint account overdrawn by the thousands). Neither of us can claim legal aid and it is only because of our parents we have solicitors. I can't just go out and rent and I have been told that without the child custody issue being sorted, as a single man I would be lucky to get a room in a hostel. Job wise I would be looking at entering the job market at 30 with no qualifications, experience or car (she persuaded me to give up mine and use her mobility one). It is hard to keep positive with so many things piled against me. In the meantime she is being rather smug and actually giving the children attention which they are loving.

Thank you for all the advice so far
Hello BigRob, I can't add anything to the advice already given. Just wanted to say hello, and wish you luck.
Hi bigrob.
What an awful situation to be in. I cant help with the legal stuff, but I know what it is like to return to work. I had to return to work, though not for the same reason as yourself. I too have a university degree, but I had to swallow my pride and do anything available. I signed up with an agency and my first job was cleaning toilets Image . I worked up from there, working in kitchens, cleaning offices etc etc and now have work using my qualifications.
Why not start by registering with a care agency and become a care worker? I would say that you have excellent experience and many disabled men may well be glad of a male carer.
Open a new bank account - just in your name and have the wages paid into that account, so that it is completely separate from your wife.
Then you will have to step back and allow other people to care for your wife. This will be the difficult bit, but if that is what she wants, then its best that it starts now.
Once you have a steady wage you could start to look around for somewhere to live - but dont be in too much of a hurry to move out, you need to find out your legal position re your shared home.
Good luck
Hello Big Rob,

Sound advice re above, just wanted to give you a big (((hug))), and offer you a little support in your awful situation. Stay calm, detached, focused on what you have to do, don't be drawn into arguments, look only to what is best for your lovely children. They most definitely need you whether you and your wife are together or not. I always looked at the effect my relationship with my husband (my caree) had on our children. They were 9 and 13 when my husband's mental health became an issue. Such was his paranoia and believed malevolence towards me, he had me down as Satan, but I always told the children that 'dad was poorly', I still got him the help, I told the children to love their dad, and in the end they coped better. Please do the same for your kids, don't tear strips of their mum in front of them....though I don't think you sound the type to do this anyway, bite your tongue if goaded, it's hard for someone to hurt you if you act out of common decency and love.

Take care, you are most definitely not alone. xxx
ouch poor you but in the long run she will be the loser she will end up lonely and you will find someone more deserving of you ,he who laughs last laughs longest.