The law in our country is designed well. We are lucky to have a good system in place that helps to execute these laws well. It is not easy to get away with crimes in our country. Like any other citizen, I was also aware of these factors, but I did not know that there are certain laws made keeping my gender in mind. Apart from a parking ticket here and there, I never had any interaction with ‘law’ so to speak. My life was more about getting my job done; meeting up with friends, saving up money and all of the usual that a 20 year old girl is concerned with.
I was not born with a silver spoon and so when I was getting married there was no need to draw up a pre-nup. We married without any legal issues at all and went off for our honeymoon. I continued with my job at the bank and my husband went back to running his cab services. Both us lead very busy lives and both decided that children were not for us and so I went ahead and had an IUD inserted to keep pregnancy at bay. You can imagine my surprise when I missed my period and my gynecologist whom I went to for a regular checkup congratulated me saying I was pregnant. My first response was that I wanted the child aborted, this of course changed over the next two or three days. My doctor asked me think over it for a few days since I had time on my hands. She spoke to me about how aborting the first baby might not be a good idea. I was given some material to read. After talking to my husband and discussing with him, I decided I was going to keep the baby.
Again to me it was just a baby and had nothing to do with anything legal. Oh! How mistaken I was. Once the baby was born, things began to get complicated in our relationship. Who was going to spend what on the child? Her clothes, her food, her nanny and even down to her diapers, my husband and I argued about everything. So far we had been dividing all the costs. The house was mine, I had inherited it from my mother, but my husband was paying for any renovations we had made since we were married. Grocery bills were paid by me but he paid for the utilities: water and electricity and also phones and Internet in the house. Somehow money had never been an issue before. Suddenly once the baby was born, things became really complicated and rather badly.
My husband would keep referring to Elsa as ‘your daughter’ and I would make my skin crawl. He was picky about even a penny that he may have to spend on her. One day in a fight he yelled that he never wanted to have a baby and would have nothing to do with it. The statement just broke me inside. I loved Elsa tremendously and having to live with someone who hated her so was just not possible for me. After days of consideration and trying to talk to my husband with a cool mind, I realized that I was going to have to end my marriage if I wanted to give my daughter a loving home.
I just did not know where to begin. Had no idea what my rights were. If my husband could ask for a part of the home that I had inherited from my mother or not? Everything was sheer confusion. I did not even know where I was going to be able to find a divorce lawyer. I did not want to ask someone since I wanted to know my options before anyone found out what I was planning to do. I began by searching the net to see what kind of information is available there. Apparently quite a lot. http://www.singlemom.com/free-legal-answers/ and http://www.singlemom.com/basic-legal-recommendations-for-women/ are two links I really found useful. There was so much information here and the links that I could follow to move on with my research. I found information on how to contact a lawyer and keep it quite. I met up with a few lawyers and then based on my comfort level chose one. She walked me through the entire process and informed me about how long the process could take. I remember the lawyer saying that my husband may move for joint custody and I was laughing at the notion. I wish she would, was my reply.
Of course nothing of the sort happened. I filed for divorce and also asked for full custody of Elsa. While my husband fought me tooth and nail on every financial issue, including the house, he had no problems with me getting full custody. We came to an agreement that if I did not ask for child custody, then he would not continue to fight for a part of the house. It was my mother’s home and I did not want to have to sell it because of this divorce.
The entire divorce proceedings lasted for about 18 months. There was a lot of mess created and all I can say is at the end of the day things got sorted out. I am much happier with Elsa in my life and being a single mom to her that I was when I had to fight her father of every little right of hers. I do agree that having a baby is a big decision. Once you are a mother there is no going back to being anything else since your kid will always come first.