College Visits

I mentioned previously that Rock Star and I are going on some college visits this week. I’m excited about them. I hope she enjoys herself.

I was feeling a lot of pressure to get them scheduled and done and I was kicking myself for waiting so long. Some people start as early as their junior year. I was thinking to myself, “Why in the hell didn’t I start this last year?” when the mobster so kindly reminded me that I was in no position to take her on any college visits her junior year.

Oh yeah! A lightbulb went off. Apparently, that year was so horrible I’ve erased it from my mind. Seriously though, at the beginning of her junior year I had no job and CF was paying no support. We had just been forced out of our house and moved 600 miles away. Both of my kids were transitioning into new schools. I was living off of savings. I was in no position to book plane tickets so that we could visit a college over 1000 miles away!

By December I was working two different part-time jobs, working up to 16 hours a day, and going in at obscenely early hours. I had no official time off and both of my jobs were retail jobs with weekend hours. Plus, I already needed to ask for several weekends off for court cases.

In January I began my full-time job. I had 8 days of vacation and had to hoard them for court days. I was still working 2 jobs. I was still getting up at 3:20 in the morning. I was still not receiving any support from CF. My two jobs made it possible for me to pay all of my bills and for us to eat.

In April I finally received back support and at that point college visits were the last thing on my mind. Seriously- I didn’t even think about it. Plus, I was still working two jobs and I still had to save up my days for upcoming court.

I got one full support check in May and from that point on, until December, CF paid small amounts whenever he wanted. A huge chunk of my back support went to pay my mother back. I paid off credit cards. And, of course, I did not receive steady support from him. I was in no financial position to take my daughter on college visits. Until January of this year.

So I’m trying hard not to beat myself up for not being on top of this. I’m not sure if she would have liked to have visited a couple more colleges. I know her first choice is the one we’re visiting this weekend. She’s trying to determine if she can tolerate the distance. I know a college visit won’t help with that, but maybe visiting the campus will help with her decision. If she falls in love with it she may decide she can tolerate the distance.

Why am I even writing about this? Because it’s yet another example of how cheating goes beyond husband and wife. It affects every member of the family. It has affected my daughter greatly.

It’s not just the college visits that didn’t take place until second semester of her senior year. It’s also the whole high school thing.

I know that high school, when put up against the rest of your life, is but a blip. Rock Star, however, had one hell of a blip back at her former school. It truly was a high school experience like the ones you see in the movies.

I also know that when you get right down to it she spent equal amounts of time at both schools. If she made fantastic friends at one school then she can make fantastic friends at another school, one would think. It hasn’t really panned out that way, though. I don’t know if she simply closed herself off because she was tired of losing people, or if things really were that different here. I do know, though, that she doesn’t have the same kind of friends she had back there. I don’t have girls spending the night and coming over all the time. She doesn’t meet up with friends before or after games. She doesn’t seem to spend much time with friends at all.

Her father took all of that away from her. For his own happiness.

It’s not all awful. We have a lot of good times, too. That doesn’t negate the fact that he stole a hell of a lot from her. He stole some of the best years of her life from her. He gave her everything a kid could want and then he snatched it away with only a few more years of her being supported by us remaining. He forced her to start a brand new life, leaving behind gymnastics and lifelong friends, only to turn around and force her to leave the new life behind. She no longer goes out with friends. She no longer has friends spending the night. I no longer hear her tell her teammates, “I love you! Miss you!” Her last senior night she spent crying because she had only me there, and didn’t have much to list on her senior bio because she didn’t start school here until the 11th grade. He left her in a life of poverty for a very long time. He walked away from her without a word, and all of his texts, to this day, are designed to try to make her feel guilty and to paint himself as a victim.

When people talk about affairs being a symptom of a bad marriage and not the actual problem, tell them about my daughter. When people say that kids are resilient and they’ll adjust, tell them about my daughter. When people say that no one should be forced to remain in an unhappy relationship and it’s no big deal to leave your spouse and kids, tell them about my daughter. When people tell you that they didn’t mean for their affair to happen, or that they just fell in love, or they can’t help who you fall in love with, or that they’re entitled to happiness, tell them about my daughter.

#RiseUp

9 thoughts on “College Visits

  1. How can you possibly afford out-of-state tuition? I’m always amazed when I hear people talking about visiting schools outside of their state? I must be doing it wrong. We couldn’t even afford the $450 to secure my daughter’s dorm room in state during the time of the divorce, much less anything else. We are crossing our fingers that she can go to community college in the Fall, one year late. Then, according to “Post Majority Support,” the expense has to be presented to the court (after it has been paid first to the school) and the court will decide how much each parent will contribute (although technically I will be the one who has to contribute 100% up front or whatever is left after pell grants, if those exist).

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    1. My daughter has excellent grades and has already been granted a lot of money in scholarships directly from the school in question. In addition, the difference between housing costs at that school versus pretty much any in school state is huge. The cost there is almost half of what I would pay here. That’s a huge help. I’m also getting my spousal and child support in a timely manner so that helps enormously. I fought for a good amount of spousal support even knowing I would be taxed on it because Virginia does not make parents pay for college and I knew he would never agree to it. Now I don’t need his help. She may end up having to take out a few loans as well, depending upon what she gets from the FAFSA.

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      1. Did you see how divorces with alimony forward of 2018 will not have to pay taxes on alimony? Nor can the alimony be deducted.

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      2. Yes, I saw that in December. Lucky people! My divorce was not final until the end of December but I don’t think it would have mattered. I’m pretty sure it was for divorces negotiated after January 1st. We had already been to trial and the judgement rendered.

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  2. If it helps at all, know that your daughter simply (not easily, but simply) started the process of becoming a woman earlier than most. She has been tried by fire and come out clean on the other side:

    1) She doesn’t see value in topical friendships or ingenuine proclamations of love to silly girls. She doesn’t WANT silly girls talking about stupid things in her house. She’s OVER it.
    2) She has herself a vehicle and a job.
    3) She knows the worth of things now and appreciates whatever she gets… *because* there was a time when she expected nothing ever again.

    She’ll use this common sense she’s learned to be that much further ahead of her peers. People mature through hardship. Shitty things happen to billions of people every day… she has gained a valuable perspective and seems very mature. Period. Not “for her age” but actually mature.

    Congratulations to Rockstar… “who crawled through a mile of shit and came out clean on the other side.” (<—credit to Shawshank Redemption)

    She's fine. She'll build the life she wants for herself and is lucky to have a mother to help provide her with the tools to do so.

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    1. Eh, maybe. She still thinks we’ve got the money of old most days, especially now that CF is paying what he’s supposed to be paying. I just hate the fact that she’s had to grow up so quickly. I also hate the fact that she has very few friends, is suffering from anxiety and I can’t find a fucking therapist for her to save my life, and that she has no real attachment to pretty much anything. This was never what I wanted for either of my kids.

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  3. I think your daughter will hit her full stride again in college. My college friends and I remain just as tight as my high school friends and I do. Rockstar’s senior year, perhaps, wasn’t all it could have been were she at her old school but college is a wonderful place to be thrown together with like-minded sisters 💕

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