Thursday, June 28, 2012

Child support can be squandered

Here is the latest bad newspaper advice:
Dear Annie: I've been a stepmother to two lovely girls, now 12 and 17, ... yet in both cases, it's rare that the child support actually reaches the child.

The amount of child support each mother receives is fair, but is being used incorrectly. The girls continuously need clothes, shoes, haircuts, coats, money for school activities, you name it. It's like my husband is paying child support twice for each child.

My question is this: If the conversation falls on deaf ears with both mothers, is it OK to explain the financial situation to the girls?... — North Carolina Stepmom

Dear Stepmom: To be supportive. Do not involve the children in your dispute over child support. This is not their fault, and they shouldn't be put in the middle of unhappy parents. If your husband feels the support payments are not being used to cover the girls' necessities, he needs to document what he spends for these things and then talk to his lawyer and ask that the support payments be reduced.
No, that is not the law. I hate to say it, but the law does not require the moms to spend the child support money on the girls. The dad can document it all he wants for his lawyer, but it will not make any difference. California law says that the mom can spend the child support money however she pleases, and does not have to spend a dime of it on the kids.

Annie is echoing bad advice that is commonly given by court personnel, but is making some unwarranted assumptions. The letter does not say that there is a dispute over child support, or that anyone was suggesting that the girls were at fault, or that the parents are unhappy, or that the girls might be put in the middle of the parents.

If the dad is paying child support, as well as buying clothes and other necessities for his girls, then the girls should be told. They should not be allowed to think that the dad is neglecting them. I had a Jewish psychologist tell me that I should not tell my kids that I am paying child support. It seemed to be some weird Jewish belief of his. It certainly was not based on any psychological knowledge, because I asked him. The overwhelming evidence is that kids don't like it if they think that their dad has abandoned them, and is not contributing to their well-being. This was another example of a supposed expert giving advice based on his own personal prejudices, and contrary to the generally accepted published knowledge.


Anonymous said...

It seemed to be some weird Jewish belief of his.

What made it seem to be some weird Jewish beleif of his ? Are you simply speculating about this ?

George said...

I guess it could have also been a Satanic belief. I am giving him the benefit of the doubt.

Anonymous said...

Yes, it could have been, but what makes you think it seemed to be some weird Jewish belief of his ?

You must have some type of reason, right ? You have to have based it on something. You wouldn't just pull it out of thin air to take a shot at someone you just guess is a Jew, without even having any knowledge of his religion, would you ?

George said...

No, I did not just pull it out of thin air. I tried really hard to get him to explain his reasoning. And all I ever got was that he was a Jew who hates Christians and who will use his power to punish those he does not like. If you have any other info about him, please post it.

Anonymous said...

He said that he was a Jew who hates Christians, etc. ?

Did he ever even mention anything about Jews or Christians rr?

Anonymous said...

Yep, pulled out of thin air.

And all I ever got was that he was a Jew who hates Christians and who will use his power to punish those he does not like.

What's "all I ever got" mean ?

Anonymous said...

It seemed to be some weird Jewish belief of his. It certainly was not based on any psychological knowledge, because I asked him.

So because you asked him if it was based on one thing, it then means that it was based on some weird Jewish belief, right ?

George said...

If you have some additional info about him, then please post it.

Anonymous said...

Why don't you post some additional information about him that supports what you're saying about what he's done and why ?

Anonymous said...

I have an idea. Let's take the discussion about the doctor to a different venue and discuss the child support and what Annie told the mother.

Anonymous said...

We have the same problem with our children. I am the step mother of 2 beautiful boys. We don't see that the kids get any benefit from our child support. They never have clothes that fit. They don't get haircuts unless we take them. We have to buy school supplies and clothes or they just won't have any. I understand that in some cases that the mother has to use the child support money to pay for housing, transportation and food. Those are the results that are sometimes forgotten. However, their mother receives a HUD grant that pays her rent and most of her utilities, she receives food stamps (that her income is really too high for but am I gonna take food out of the kids mouth?. Honestly I have no idea where our child support goes in this case. We used to give the kids allowance for doing chores and to promote responsible behavior when they were with us on the weekends. When we asked how they spent their allowance, they said they gave it to their mother because she never has any money. We no longer send them home with cash but take them to buy ice cream or they can save it to buy a new toy or video game. It is unfortunate that their is no accounting system. When the non-custodial parent's child support is set, they take into account what the USDA says it costs to raise a child. They are paying their portion for their housing, education, school activities and supplies and even technology items like a computer, tablet and cell phone. We shouldn't have to be paying twice.

Ian Miller said...

When I met my ex wife I was working two jobs. She had four sons from previous relationships. We got married and she insisted on moving all the time. In 2001 we were living in New York State. I was working and the bills were paid. One day she dumps the boys with family and runs off to Florida to live with some guy. New York in all its wisdom hit me for child support. I was still paying two years after we divorced( on my petition). So its okay for a biological parent to walk out on their kids and pay NOTHING. Yeah in New York the stepparent can be hit for support and they have no rights. I have appealed the case through New York and to Governor Andrew Cuomo. Now thats real justice.