My step-daughter met her (now ex) boyfriend 8 years ago. He was a bit of a wild child but she settled him down and they carried on, with nothing more than the usual tumbles every relationship entails. They got their own place and so on. Then she got pregnant and he got a very good job in construction because he wanted her to be able not to work when the little one arrived. Then cracks started appearing, his behaviour changed and they had a few rough patches. I had my suspicions about the symptoms for his behaviour but he denied it. I put a lot of time into him and he seemed to come good. Anyway it seemed to be back to normal, they had their son and so on. They bought a car, but she had to get a loan as he had a bad credit rating (legacy of his bad ways). For the new house, he paid the rent, she had the power in her name. All seemed good.
Fast forward to last December, I pulled her and the grandson out of there into our place. It turned out he had got sacked from his job, and spent all his payout on online gambling and substances. I had to stump up 1500 to pay their outstanding bills. He stayed in the house, refusing to leave and racked up another 650 in power in a month which he refused to pay and she wore that. Long story short, he is in gaol for offences against her, she is now in her own subsidised place with the little fella on welfare with help from us and her father (she really wanted her own place so the lad had normality, living with us was a bit cramped). However the ex left her with the car loan (he pranged the car so it needs fixing so we cant sell it), the electricity bill and 6K in credit cards. He has no intention of paying any child support either.
He is now playing hard ball about custody of the child, and his mum is funding him a lawyer, although with 30 yrs law enforcement I'll go toe to toe with him in a court no worries. But the stress of the situation is really taking a toll on my poor wife who is due important surgery which will cost even with insurance and she is scared we can't afford it. (I've put my foot down though and arranged it all, the money, I love my wife.)
Today my step-daughter broke down to her father, after paying the minimum on the debt he left her, and her weekly groceries she had 100 left to last her 12 more days until her next welfare.
So I had negotiated with the power company but they would not help with the payments, I tried to sort out her credit card but on paper she can't afford a cheaper rate one. She can't use the car but it costs her each month in repayments. Her phone is overdue and about to be cut off. I know she has been really careful and we had been taking her some stuff when she needed it, but she had kept from us the truth of how bad she was doing.
Her dad has taken care of the phone bill and other small debts, but I have decided I will be taking a loan out to get rid of the credit card for her (not telling the wife, she don't need the stress), and I'll call in a few favours to fix the car to get rid of it.
I estimate I'll be out about 10K shortly which is my savings and the rest via a loan. Not long ago, I found the bank had devalued our home by over 100K due to a falling property market as well so that cut our equity to about enough to buy a tin of Humbrol…
I know my problems pale in comparison to other folks, but I usually just keep things to myself (old school, stubborn, cynical copper). This time, the financial situation of the house devaluation, my darling wife's health and stress levels, and the need to help my step-daughter with money and legal issues has worn me down and I just needed to whine to someone about it.
Thanks for listening.