Note: Mumsnetters don't necessarily have the qualifications or experience to offer relationships counselling or to provide help in cases of domestic violence. Mumsnet can't be held responsible for any advice given on the site. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Where do I even start with this?! ExDP shocking revelations & debt nightmare...

(19 Posts)
Anskabel Mon 12-Nov-12 00:07:28

I was with my ex for over four years and for most of that time he lived with me in the house I'd owned for many years before I met him. Twice during that time he lost his job (once as a teacher after he had his CRB revoked due to "aggressive" behaviour towards a pupil, secondly from his "dream job" for gross-misconduct after he'd "brought the organisation into disrepute" by being extremely rude to one of the key stakeholders at a public networking event)...lovely man, I hear you thinking...

Anyway, during his periods of unemployment he couldn't pay his half of the mortgage / bills, meaning I was struggling to support the pair of us. Prior to us getting together, while studying for an MA, he'd clocked up a debt of several thousand pounds on a credit card of which he could only afford to pay the interest at a ridiculous APR of 40%, meaning money down the drain every month which could be going towards our future. My incredibly generous father (without being asked) decided to help us as a couple by paying off my ex's debt, on the proviso that my ex paid him back £100 a month (0% interest) until the debt was cleared. Ex paid one monthly payment, then "couldn't afford" any more, so he reckoned.

Fast forward a year and I made the sickening discovery (after ex left his email logged in on our shared computer) in a folder entitled "ties" (??!) numerous flirtatious messages / naked pictures, etc exchanged with OTHER MEN who he had been corresponding with through a site called Gaydar.com!!! (I'd innocently clicked on this ties folder because our neighbour had offered to make him a tie for our impending nuptials) I confronted him about it immediately and he had the audacity to blame me, saying he'd done it because I hadn't been very nice to him!! (Me being grouchy = him messaging men about sex - really??!) True, I may have been a bit snappy at times, but mainly because ex found any excuse not to make love to me: I'm tired/I need to let my dinner go down/You're not nice to me (yeah, that one again - making me believe it was MY fault, that I was unreasonable!!) Every time I'd asked him if there was something more to it, he'd held back the truth and was quite content to let me make the conclusion I was undesirable because I'd gained weight.

I called the wedding off, threw him out and told my parents (who were naturally horrified) but then, like a fool a week later I took him back - my self esteem was utterly eroded by this point. He'd persistently drummed it into me and I believed him that "no-one else would be able to put up with me" and because the evidence of his betrayal was over a year old at that point and he swore he'd never met any of these men in real life (which I do believe, the two men he was emailing lived in Australia) I agreed to try again, on the proviso that he stopped flying off the handle with me (same short fuse that got him the sack twice) and he made the effort to engage in some semblance of a sex life with me...

For about two weeks everything was great, but then he became distant and snappy again. That seed of suspicion had been sown and I had a dig back further through his emails (again, account left logged in on our shared computer) and found that he had been a member of Gaydar and exchanging emails with gay men - many of which referred to phone sex with these men - as early as 2006, which was before we even got together. I was livid, because he'd had me believe it was ME who had driven him to seek out the company of other men through my actions!! I'd long been aware of his so-called witch of an ex girlfriend (another bright highly educated home owning woman in her thirties like myself) who he had moved in with, only to be "made homeless" by her when she "accused him of being gay" and chucked him out. He'd truly had me believing that she was a paranoid psycho. Oh god, history repeating itself here, I thought, except only it only took her 9 months to figure out what a loser he was, it had taken me four years!!!

So I was all set to throw him out when I discovered that I was pregnant. I felt ready for motherhood and desperately (delusionally) wanted to make the relationship work for the sake of the child, but was unsure whether this was achievable and didn't know whether I could keep the baby (at this point I had been made redundant, was studying full time and ex wasn't working, so our situation was financially unstable.) I told him to keep schtum about the pregnancy until we had thought things through, but then off he went on his brother's stag do to Poland and told EVERYONE that I was pregnant and that he was ELATED. (None of his family had any idea about the gay thing)

Blind faith prevailing, I continued with the pregnancy, with the most horrendous morning sickness imaginable, but you'd think it was the ex that had the morning sickness with his horrendous mood swings - one minute telling me to "get a fucking abortion" / he didn't love me anymore / going through my bank statements because he thought I was "hiding something" (no apology when he realised I was hiding nothing)...the next minute saying he would be there for me "no matter what" and this was "the best thing" to ever happen to him...at the time when I needed him to be my rock more than anything it was all about "him", ie: demanding at 11pm when I'm throwing up and desperate to get some sleep that I complete job applications for him that are due in the next day because it's "in our best interests" and he can't do it himself because he is dyslexic...then telling me after I'd stayed up and written thousands of words of his behalf that he'd got the date wrong and the deadline had passed!!!!

Things came to a head when I went for my first appointment with the nurse - she asked me if my partner had been abusive towards me (apparently it's procedure to ask everyone this) I said no at first, but then she went on to clarify that didn't just mean physical abuse, it meant mental abuse - withholding money, false accusations, refusing to take responsibility for actions, Jekyll and Hyde personality...I finally saw the situation for what it was, realised there was no way I could have child with him and that if I didn't make a decision soon it would be too late. I then endured a weekend of hell playing the "happy couple" at his brother's wedding while he was foul to me before I told him there was no way I could keep the baby in our circumstances. He was surprisingly very grown up and supportive about it, and said he knew it was for the best as we could not afford to support a child. He promised he would be with me every step of the way and that we would still be together...

Then in the middle night ex did a complete u-turn, declared he "can't cope with this", next day hired a van, moved all his stuff out of my house and f*cked off back to his family 150 miles away!!! Overwhelmed by shock, I miscarried the baby the day before my operation was due...same day ex texts me saying it's "never to late for us or the baby". WTF???! Naturally I told him where to shove it. It then suited his conscience to tell anyone who would listen (including many of our mutual friends) that I was a heartless bitch who had killed our child, forced to do so by my dad who never thought he was good enough for me!!!

Anyway, that was May 2011 and although the weeks immediately after that were horrendous and I felt so betrayed and mad at myself for being so foolish as to tolerate him, by the end of the summer I realised that by leaving he had done me the BIGGEST FAVOUR of my life. My self confidence restored, I met an amazing man who I am still blissfully happy with who values me, makes me feel desired and has made me realise that I am not "difficult" at all and am actually incredibly chilled out when I'm treated with respect!!!

So, my dilemma is not how to get over the ex or how to heal the wounds, I have dealt with that. (I disclosed the backstory, so you might get an idea of how my vitriol towards this man is justified) My dilemma relates to the money exDP owes my Dad, who has since retired and is nowhere near as well off as he was before. Dad is so revolted with my ex he point blank refuses to contact him to chase up the repayments, but I lay awake at night feeling guilty that my Dad is out of pocket because of a man I chose to bring into our lives (my Dad has never made me feel bad about the situation, it's my conscience) I have contacted my ex by phone email AND letter at least a dozen times over the past 18 months (the only thing we have contact over) to request that out of courtesy he at least contacts my Dad to keep him informed of his current financial situation and when he intends to pay him back. My ex's response? "Tell your Dad to call me as I have no credit on my phone.' Pathetic!!!Dad claims he would rather write off the debt than have to speak to the bastard, but it's a hell of lot of money and recently my Mum has confided in me that they could really do with it, but my Dad is too proud to admit that to me.

So...do I have a legal leg to stand on regarding getting this money back or should I just let it go? And will I ever stop feeling so bitter about this situation when my ex is still tied to myself and my family through this debt?

caramelwaffle Mon 12-Nov-12 00:26:58

First of all: sorry for your loss.

You don't have a legal leg to stand on, no, but your father does.

From what is written, it is clear that you are unsure - and very unconfident - in how you should proceed.

Involve a third party; employ a solicitor to write a letter; take it out of your hands and ask for the money back that way.

Do you have evidence that he acknowledges the debt?

In all seriousness (if you have time) sit in at the public gallery at your local courts to see what types/standards of evidence are required to win a case.

Good luck

Anskabel Mon 12-Nov-12 00:38:16

Caramelwaffle - thanks for sticking with my post and replying, I know it was a long one!

Yes, I have saved emails where he acknowledges the debt, so I do have some evidence.

He has never said he refuses to pay it back, but there's always some excuse as to why he can't...

Good idea about the public gallery at the courts, I hadn't thought of that (used to be a reporter on the local paper which required to spend a lot of time in public gallery, but mainly coroners court depressingly, no experience if financial cases)

Do you know if there is anywhere I can go to seek free legal advice? I am still a full time mature student and pretty penniless at the moment, whereas ex's brother is a very successful solicitor and could probably present a very persuasive case on behalf for free!

Anskabel Mon 12-Nov-12 00:39:04

on his behalf I meant...

bringupthebabies Mon 12-Nov-12 00:44:42

You need evidence of the debt - did the twat give your DF a receipt of any sort? Is there any other kind of proof? would it shoe on card statement?

You sound like you went thro hell with a really vile and inadequate twat. I'm so sorry about the mc.

Do you think you might be more worried about it than your Dad though/ I expect he's just relieved you rid of x and with someone nice.

Anskabel Mon 12-Nov-12 00:55:59

Bringupthebabies - my DF has always taken pride in being the provider - I'm the only child and I know he would do to the ends of the earth for me, but he is not one to share his feelings with anyone but DM - on the surface it appears I am far more bothered about the money than DF, but through DM I know it has affected him deeply (the principle as much as the money)

Alas the twat did not give my a receipt of any sort - at the time there was unspoken trust - naive perhaps with hindsight, but myself and my family just aren't the kind of people who would let others down and I guess we hoped that anyone in our lives would abide by those standards.

I guess evidence of my DF clearing ex's debt would show on his bank statement, but the payment was made at the end of 2009, so I don't know if DF still has it / whether the bank still has a record of it...

itsallinmyhead Mon 12-Nov-12 00:57:06

The Citizens Advice Bureau should be your first point of call OP.

I point a heck of a lot of clients in that direction. I live in Greater Manchester & know here, the CAB will give first appointments via telephone to assess whether you have a case & to save you spending a day in the office waiting to be seen.

I'm really pleased to hear you've moved on & are happy.

I hope your dad can get his money back.

SundaeGirl Mon 12-Nov-12 01:00:20

Yes, your father has recourse in law and should be able to get back what he's owed plus interest (but I'm not sure about legal costs). He will need a solicitor.

Why would ex's brother put up a fight for him? I don't think he'd get very far.

God, but I'd never be able to let this go.

SundaeGirl Mon 12-Nov-12 01:02:28

How much did he lend? The bank statement showing the transfer from one bank to another, backed up by the emails/texts will probably be enough.

Anskabel Mon 12-Nov-12 01:10:43

SundaeGirl

Ex owes my dad £6200...

Ex's bro (despite being little bro) has always picked up the pieces for him when he's got in shit with work tribunals, etc. Maybe he wouldn't get very far this time, but ex never fails to delight in telling me: My brother's a solicitor, I will always get one over on you because of this, blah blah...

"I'd never be able to let this go" - me neither!!! Sometimes I worry I'm being obsessive about it, but it's justified in these circumstances, isn't it?

Anskabel Mon 12-Nov-12 01:13:53

Thanks ItsAllInMyHead - ex's bro is a solicitor based in Greater Manchester too, hmmm, small world...

I shall definitely phone the CAB to see where I stand...

mathanxiety Mon 12-Nov-12 01:27:29

So sorry for all you have gone through and well done for getting rid of him. NEVER take him back. My exH is gay (or perhaps Bi) and I recognise so much of what you describe in the course of the so called relationship.

Get to the CAB and get the names of solicitors who do free legal aid. Technically it would be your dad who is the claimant so he would have to go along with the legal plan. Some solicitors will give you a free half hour. Save time by getting as much paperwork/documentation as possible before you go.

mathanxiety Mon 12-Nov-12 01:29:23

My ex was (still is) a lawyer and took me to court, charged me with breach of our parenting agreement, wanted me held in contempt of court, and I represented myself against him -- and got his case thrown out (it was a ridiculous charge but still, I am not a lawyer). Little bro solicitor or not, he doesn't have a leg to stand on if there is a paper trail.

itsallinmyhead Mon 12-Nov-12 01:31:17

Well having his brother as his solicitor or no, you're doing the right thing.

Your df deserves his money back & your ex will get everything he deserves (eventually), Karma will make sure of that!

Please let us know how you get on.

Good luck.

SundaeGirl Mon 12-Nov-12 02:00:18

Ok, that's more than small claims.

So, what have you got? Was the money transferred from your father directly to your ex's acct? Get that bit of paper. Also get the bank statement from the first repayment. This is important as it will help show there was an arrangement.

What have you got in correspondence?

Nonnus Mon 12-Nov-12 06:22:52

If the debt is acknowledged in writing that is very helpful.

You could consider serving ex with a statutory demand. If he does not pay within 21 days (I think - could be 28), you can serve a bankruptcy petition on him. If he has the ability to pay and has a reason not to want to be bankrupted, that could help. However the downside is that if he is then bankrupted, the debt will be written off.

The other way is to go to court for a judgment against him and then enforce it. The real point is whether he has any assets to satisfy the judgment. No point going to the bother of getting a judgment if you cannot enforce it. If he has a job, you might be able to get a charging order against his income but be warned the court will allow him a reasonable amount ring fenced first to pay rent, food, bills and so on. If he is a low earner therefore you could end up with £5 a week for a very long time!

If your dad does make a claim he can probably charge interest at the statutory rate, which is 8% above base rate.

The CAB will be able to help you. Most court forms you can find on the Internet. Good luck.

TheHairyDieter Mon 12-Nov-12 06:30:25

Wow, he's a piece of work, isn't he? I felt exhausted just reading that. It's great that you have met someone else now you really need to move on.

Your DF trying to get his money back is probably more trouble that it's worth. It's only money - let it go. If you feel you need to, then you should pay your dad the money.

Don't contact your ex - leave him where he belongs. In the past.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 12-Nov-12 07:19:27

If your DF has evidence that the money was a loan rather than a gift and if he can demonstrate that there was clear intent on the part of your ex to pay him back then he has a reasonable claim on the debt. However.... if your ex is in big debts again and has no disposable income, there is a limit to how much your DF can expect to get back. It's really up to your DF to decide how to go forward and I'd suggest he gets legal advice.

Ultimately, it may be better for your whole family to leave this disturbed blood-sucker in the past & write off the money as the price of getting rid.

I took my ex to court for 10k that I leant him. The onus was on him to prove it was a gift not on me to prove it was a loan. I got my money awarded, plus interest and my fees -21k in total which ex is paying back to me monthly. I also have a hold on his property so if he sells his house I get my money back from the sale (don't know the correct legal term for that).

It was most definitely worth persuing, despite how stressful it was.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now