How to separate and maybe divorce

93 posts in this topic

Hello,

 

I'm a stay at home American mom during Elternzeit on the minimum 300 EUR Elterngeld. I'm really struggling with my husband from Vietnam.

 

It's hard for me to just say I want to get a divorce and do it right away. I'm thinking maybe a period of separation for contemplation would be a better first step.

 

However I really don't know how to separate right now, other than start searching for jobs, for an apartment and for daycare. 

 

I was wondering if there are any offices here in Munich that offer support, assistance or counseling for married moms who are considering separation and divorce like me.

 

There has been some violence and threats involved if that "helps".

 

Thank you.

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You’ll have to separate for a year before the divorce anyway. There is no “doing it right away”. 

 

If there is violence or threats, call the police every time. You’ll want all of that documented. 

 

If there is serious concern for your safety, get out and take the kids with you. 

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Quote

I was wondering if there are any offices here in Munich that offer support, assistance or counseling for married moms who are considering separation and divorce like me.

 

http://www.frauenhilfe-muenchen.de/beratungsstelle.php

https://www.caritas-nah-am-naechsten.de/psychologischer-dienst-fuer-auslaender

 

There are probably more options, but these are the ones I found first.

 

Quote

There has been some violence and threats involved if that "helps".

 

You need to keep your safety in mind and have a backup plan to leave at a moments notice.

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1 hour ago, MLmunich said:

I'm thinking maybe a period of separation for contemplation would be a better first step.

 

I see two possibilities:

  • take your child and go back home
  • stay in Germany

 

1. Go back to the US

What ties you to Germany?

 

Wouldn't it be easier and safer to just take your child (which should be around 8 months now?) and go home to the US and visit your mum?

That way, you would be safe immediately, and if you do decide to get a divorce, you could start the proceedings in the US and get it over with much faster.

You would then also have your mum to take care of your child, and it would be easier for you to get a job back home.

 

1 hour ago, MLmunich said:

However I really don't know how to separate right now, other than start searching for jobs, for an apartment and for daycare.

 

2. Stay in Germany

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it's very unlikely that you would get these things.

Nobody will rent to a single mother who has a monthly income of just 300€ and no certain job to go back to after Elternzeit.

A Krippenplatz is very hard to get in Munich: http://www.sueddeutsche.de/muenchen/krippenplatz-in-muenchen-protokoll-einer-schwierigen-suche-1.1959402#

 

If you can prove he was violent, the police would immediately throw him out of your flat and take his keys off him, at first for 4 days, if you apply in court for it, for up to 2 weeks, this called a Wohnungsverweishttps://fachanwaeltin-familienrecht-mannheim.de/2009/02/schutz-bei-haeuslicher-gewalt/

 

Please read my TT divorce wiki, for the procedure for a divorce in Germany: https://www.toytowngermany.com/wiki/Divorce_in_Germany

 

He's not that well off (around 40,000€? turnover in 2017, which translates into ??€ profit), so the Trennungsunterhalt would be very low, probably not enough to allow you to stay in your present flat.

Plus, as an added complication, he's self-employed, and it's very easy for self-employed to hide income, so you would probably not get any Trennungsunterhalt at all, sorry.

 

If you do the divorce in Germany, you will get shared custody and you will be obliged to stay in Germany until your child is 18, assuming he will also stay in Germany, since you would not be allowed to take the child away from its father.

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1 hour ago, Guest said:

If there is serious concern for your safety, get out and take the kids with you. 

 

I totally agree that the safety of you and the kid(s) is the top priority here, so you need to get yourself a plan.

 

As Jay said, be sure to call the police if you are treated violently - it might help to get a divorce through easier.

 

As for your plan, well, find out about the Frauenhaus options in Munich, and maybe even contact them for advice:

http://www.frauenhilfe-muenchen.de/  

- the website is in German, but I dare say that they would have somebody who speaks English there.

 

If at all possibly, save up some cash - if you need to get out of your home at a moments' notice, then you will need to be able to buy some "stuff" to tide you over.

 

Do you know any other American mums in Munich who might be able to help you when and if you have to leave?

 

Get some legal advice on how best to divorce this guy, if divocre is actually what you want. And be aware that a man who has abused a woman once will most definitely abuse her again - maybe not for a day, or a week, or even a month, but the time will come...

 

 

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Hello!

I agree with the other people whom answered.  Especially this comment by Robinson-  And be aware that a man who has abused a woman once will most definitely abuse her again - maybe not for a day, or a week, or even a month, but the time will come...

The most dangerous time for a woman is when the abusing husband finds out that she wants to leave him. Do you speak German? http://www.tusch.info/literatur/info-broschueren/#c783

On the right side of the page I linked are telephone numbers that can help you. If you don't know so much German:

The Violence against Women Support Hotline

Contactable 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, for free

The Violence against Women Support Hotline advises women affected by all forms of abuse: domestic and sexual abuse, forced marriage, people trafficking and genital mutilation.

Advice is provided anonymously, confidentially and with the help of interpreters in several languages.

The female advisors are qualified experts who are experienced in giving advice to women affected by violence. They provide a psychosocial initial consultation and crisis intervention and arrange contact with a local support institution where required.

Acquaintances, relatives and specialists supporting women can also contact the Support Hotline.

The advisory service is available to anyone seeking help, irrespective of social and ethnic origin, religion as well as sexual orientation and identity, and includes lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersexual and queer people (LGBTIQ).

Talk to us. Together we find answers

How to contact us: 08000 116 016

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Violence is an absolute "no-go" , I would contact professional help and they will help you and your child/ren. Just my thoughts as soon as you are out of this dangerous abusive situation the better. You can sort out all the divorce stuff with support after you have left the abuser.  Please do take care of your child/ren and yourself.

 

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18 hours ago, PandaMunich said:

1. Go back to the US

What ties you to Germany?

 

Wouldn't it be easier and safer to just take your child (which should be around 8 months now?) and go home to the US and visit your mum?

That way, you would be safe immediately, and if you do decide to get a divorce, you could start the proceedings in the US and get it over with much faster.

You would then also have your mum to take care of your child, and it would be easier for you to get a job back home.

 

 

Can she just pick up the kid and leave without her husband's permission?  Assuming it's his kid too.  These days, the approval of a non travelling parent is normally needed in order to travel with a child.  If he gets wind of her preparing to divorce him, he can file for divorce first and accuse her of marital kidnapping.  According to the Hague agreement, US authorities may give her the choice of returning to Germany with the child or sending the child to Germany alone.

 

Other than that, if she tells him she's going on vacation and he suspects nothing and she then turns her back and files for divorce in the US before he can, he might be out of luck.

 

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6 minutes ago, LeonG said:

if she tells him she's going on vacation and he suspects nothing and she then turns her back and files for divorce in the US before he can, he might be out of luck.

 

Exactly.

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We don‘t know the whole story and we‘re recommending she kidnap her child and force the father to either move to the US or never see his kid again?

 

 

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34 minutes ago, Guest said:

We don‘t know the whole story and we‘re recommending she kidnap her child and force the father to either move to the US or never see his kid again?

 

Thank you, my thoughts into words.

 

SP, suggesting someone moves to a place of safety is not similar to suggesting they move half way round the globe. 

 

edit to add - Panda's list is quite stark. If they stay then it is going to be tough for mum and child, but if they go that is a very final thing to do to the father and the child.

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28 minutes ago, SpiderPig said:

Hang on... you told her to get out and take the kid...

 

Thats kidnapping too!

 

 

If there was serious concern for her safety. That‘s not kidnapping, that’s leaving a situation rather than letting it escalate. 

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1 hour ago, SpiderPig said:

The police could make a restraining order and HE must leave!!  

 

Yes, for all of 4 dayshttps://www.gewaltgegenfrauen.de/wohnungsverweis/

Which can be extended to up to 2 weeks if in parallel she initiates a court proceeding against him because of the violence.

They may even do one of their famous Gefährderansprachen: "You are not allowed to beat your wife. Don't do it again.", much good that will do.

 

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I’m with panda. If he’s abusive, why should you stay? Go back home to safety and process the divorce from there. There are so many cases of women dying at the hands of their abusive husbands/partners, here in Germany as well. 

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On ‎05‎.‎02‎.‎2018‎ ‎19‎:‎34‎:‎02, MLmunich said:

There has been some violence and threats involved if that "helps".

 

This is what we know about the violence and threats. Unless OP wants to delve into that deeper, it doesn't sound like it is something she is really worried about, rather would use it to her advantage if possible. Perhaps he violently kicked a wall and threatened to eat her pudding. We just don't know.

 

I agree (as I have stated) that if her safety is a serious concern here, she should get out. I think it's a bit flimsy and premature to be suggesting she should kidnap the kid and cut the father out of the child's life.

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This is a dilemma faced by plenty of people who move for love and/or come from different countries.  In the case of divorce, where should they live?  In one case, the single parent could be kidnapping the child from the other parent and completely cutting them out of the child's life and in another, the single parent may be leaving an abusive partner for their own good and wanting to seek support from their family back home.

 

In this case, if she does go to the US on a visit and file for divorce there, she is essentially cutting the father out of the child's life because the US will not give him a visa to live there just because he has an American child.  Visitation will completely be on her terms.  However, if she stays, she will be stuck in Germany more or less until the child is 18, without family support and possibly at the mercy of an abusive ex whom she will have to continue dealing with because of visitation.

 

 

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Thank you all for your input and support. It's been a turbulent relationship with cultural differences. I feel a bit embarrassed sharing online but wanted to know my options as we were having another fight and I worried it was going to get out of hand.

 

Somehow it just passed like a storm, and there seems to be hope again. All relationships are a challenge, but intercultural ones may be even harder. 

 

A friend suggested I read Die Weiße Massai because it reminded her a little of my situation. I read the plot summary and it sounded similar, albeit German vs. rural Kenyan cultures colliding instead of American vs. rural Vietnamese cultures. Unfortunately it ends in divorce, and I find that depressing.

 

I'm going to continue sticking it out for now. I'm not in a physically abusive relationship but the fight had become so heated that I feared it was going to turn into one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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As long as you really feel that you and your child are safe, then that's fine, but if things ever change, at least you have some contact information now, and know where to go.

I hope you never reach the stage of having to leave.

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