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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Oh, Forgiveness, Where Art Thou?

By Susan Knight

Just when I thought I was getting ready to climb the Forgiveness Step, I find myself still sitting, dawdling, even teetering on the edge of the Courage Step.

I look down and see my old friend, the Anger Step, looming up at me, beckoning.

It's a quick hop down to Anger and I've jumped to it many times in the last four years or so. I can't help myself.

Sometimes, when things go wrong, or when news of my unrepentant ex comes up, I easily seek out my old friend, Anger.

Anger is part of the terrible-awful flashbacks I get from time to time. Anger triggers them in its own resourceful way.

It could be worry about my finances. Will I have enough to pay off my growing credit card bill that I've been using to buy a few extra things this summer? And I worry because my ex doesn't do what he says he will in that regard.

Now I'm asking for help here--opinions. If I was supposed to get a sum from him, say, like, half of a yearly bonus, would I get half of the bonus, or have to wait until he pays the federal, state, local governments, social security and other sundrie taxes, then I get half of what is left?

And if you were to pay your wife alimony, say half of your bonus, would you pay half of the bonus, or half of the net of the bonus? Keep in mind I have yet to pay taxes on this alimony and he gets a tax break for alimony on his income taxes.

I end up paying taxes twice. I'm paying taxes for where he lives and works. I don't live there or work there. Should I have to pay?

I'm just asking.

There might be someone who reads here that will know the answer to this.
Keep in mind, my only alimony is half of his bonus. He was getting quarterly bonuses and now seems to only get one bonus a year. At least that's what he sends me the remains of.

I'd like to know.

I'm perched, ready to jump to Anger soon. I've become adept at jumping around Anger and Resentment and back to Abuse, because I feel like I'm being taken advantage of again.

Do I jump back to the Courage Step and see if I should get the lawyer again and open up another can of worms? Or do I just let him get away with this and let him think he can take advantage of me, as always?

Getting ready to hop. Someone please stop me.


Jeanette said...

Brilliant analogy of the different steps we hop on and off of in recovery. I say jump to the courage step and fight for what is rightfully yours. Its also drawing a line in the sand when it comes to your ex taking advantage of you. I say pray for the strength and then go for it.

Susan said...

Wow, Jeanette. Thanks for the confidence boost. My friends have been my strength.
I have a letter I've been composing in my mind for a few weeks.
I guess I just have to knuckle down and get it out of me.
Thanks again for your support.

Anonymous said...

I’m not a CPA, but alimony is normally deductible to the payor and taxable to the recipient. If this is your situation then I suggest he should pay on the gross, not the after-tax net.

Also, if your alimony was raised as an offset due to a marital asset settlement where assets could not be sold (i.e. your home), then you may be able to recapture the paying spouse's deduction. Receiving a settlement on marital assets should not be taxable to you. Here is a reference on this:

Finally, I agree completely with Jeanette. Stand your ground. Given the financial history you mentioned, there is no reason to believe he will be fair or honest. Ask for tax returns and bank statements. If he balks, ask your attorney to request these.

Good luck!

Kent Anderson

Susan said...

Thanks for your comment.
It has been a year since I got a lawyer the last time. It makes me scared and mad to have to do it again.
Maybe I'll let you look over that letter I am composing in my mind. I should get it down on paper.
I appreciate your advice.