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Deadbeat dad makes life difficult for single mom

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Sal Dimiceli | January 8, 2014

Dear W.C.,

I am worried about my children. I work full-time at a low wage job. My wage does not cover all my rent, utilities, child care, gas and food. My ex-husband is three months behind in his child support. This has made it impossible for me to provide for my children with just my paycheck. I have fallen behind in both our rent and utilities. Why do so many men start a family, bring children into the world, then feel they can just walk away with no obligation to provide for them. Could you please help my children and I?

Dear Readers,

I went to visit this desperate mother and children. Once the mother was certain of my identity I was invited in to the small apartment. The two children were shy about company but their curiosity soon took over. The mother introduced me to the children. After a brief conversation with the whole family and lots of questions, the mother set them up at the table to play with clay while we talked in the living room. I noticed she kept a watchful eye on them. Good parents are attentive to their children's needs.

We got right to work going over her budget and financial situation. The mother worked full-time, yet was paid a very low wage. She definitely fell into the category of the working poor. Her hard work was not compensated by a fair wage or benefits. By the time she paid for child care, food and gas for the car she did not have enough for all her rent and utilities. The mother had no problem keeping up with her expenses when her ex-husband was paying child support. Since he had stopped paying over the last three months she had fallen farther and farther in debt. I asked if she knew where he was at this time and she said she did. I asked the mother if her ex-husband was working. She said, "He has been at the same job for years but he may be laid off or changed jobs without notifying child support. His problem is he likes to impress women. Whenever he has a new one or two women in his life he will buy them expensive gifts and take them out on the town." I was surprised by the comment about two women but not by his selfishness causing his children to endure financial hardship. She looked very uncomfortable and had tears in her eyes talking about her ex-husband's bad habits. She told me her ex-sister in-law was still close to her and the children. The sister-in-law would tell her about her ex-husband's affairs.

I asked the mother if she had gone to the child support agency to enforce his child support. She said she had not due to the ex-husband having threatened her in the past. She also spoke about an incident where the ex-husband had even choked her to the point of nearly fainting. After getting the mother to share with me some additional information on the ex-husband, I told her I would be back as soon as I could. She told me her ex-sister in-law said her ex-husband was living dual lives with two different women. The ex-sister in-law even had the addresses.

I went to one of the two addresses where the ex-husband lived with two different women, according to the ex-sister in-law. At the first address the door was answered by a woman but the ex-husband was not there. I informed the woman that the ex-husband's children were having financial hardship and it was imperative that he contact me. I could smell alcohol on the woman's breath and  could tell she was nearly drunk, but sober enough to ask, "What children? Are you telling me he has kids?" I said, "Yes, and if he's not here he may be at his other address." Of course, this set her off, yelling, "What other address?" I held the piece of paper up that was given to me and read off the address. Normally I do not get involved but when a woman is choked and the children are left to suffer, I cannot stand by and ignore the situation.

I arrived at the second address and this time I was in luck. The second woman answered and yelled into the apartment to the ex-husband, telling him he had a visitor. When he came to the door I told him who I was. I told him his children were having a hard time since he stopped paying his child support. The second woman was listening in disbelief. Before he could even react I informed him I knew where he was now working. I reminded him of his legal and moral obligation to pay child support, and informed him I was aware of his psychological threats and physical attacks made against his wife. I showed him some photos, several in fact of myself and The Time Is Now to Help supporters. I told him he had to catch upon his child support, his wife was filing a complaint with authorities and I was going to stand by his children. By then the first woman I visited pulled up with another person driving her. I could see the torment on the ex's face. I asked him if he was going to live up to his commitment to his children. He sheepishly said, "Yes, I will." I reminded him that I would be following up and making sure he fulfilled his commitment. With that I left him to the mess he had created for himself with his selfish lifestyle and abandonment of his children.

The next day I met with the mother. She said her ex-husband had stopped by and given her a check for the three months of child support in arrears. She said, "My ex-husband said he had met you. What happened?" I told her, "I informed him of his neglect of the children and the authorities are going to be informed of his threats to you." She looked relieved and actually smiled when she said, "Thank you." With relief of poverty the mother and children will continue to have a place to call home.   

Health & Happiness, God Bless Everyone,

W.C./Sal   

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