(Day 16, 349 more days to go) Do what you’re suppose to do, damn it.
Stories about Jermaine Jackson owing more than $90,ooo in back child support leaves me feeling so angry. Of course, I don’t believe that anyone should be behind on their payments because it just leaves people reason to believe that you don’t care about your responsibilities. It shows a sign of selfishness and carelessness that leaves the custodial parent to bear more responsibilities that should not be theirs in the first place.
In my opinion, parents who fall way behind on their child support payments are sending a personal message to the custodial parent. They know that the system can only do so much and will not enforce the order when they fall behind. The system is so jacked up that those parents end up going to face a judge that more than likely has heard it all. It leaves the judge no choice but to allow them to walk away without suspending their license or face jail time. People who find themselves dating someone who is behind on their payments must know that’s a strong indication that they don’t have a decent relationship with their child and there’s probably some baby mama drama so beware.
I’ve seen fathers and mothers who have dumped their financial responsibilities on the other parent leaving them no other option but to file for child support. I know firsthand. For very few parents, going to file for child support is the first and only option they want to explore. It wasn’t until two years later after breaking up with my child’s father before I decided to file. I tried my best to not involve the courts because it wasn’t an issue. I had a job and just wanted my daughter’s father to be in her life. It wasn’t until I accepted the fact that he was not going to make any attempts (even after making promises) to help physically, financially, or emotionally, I was left with no choice to put him on child support.
I never thought I would be in a position to do that. Forcing someone to take care of their child was just plain-old dumb to me. When I started to fall behind on my mortgage and car payments, he left me no choice especially after I made attempts to work out an arrangement prior to scheduling an appointment. It took the State a year to finally serve him with the paperwork and boy did I get an earful of excuses and blame. He felt like I was punishing him and that child support is the end of the world.
After all that trouble, he was finally court-ordered to pay $49.50 ($0.50 goes to the state for processing) a week. It’s not much but it comes in handy. I didn’t know it at the time I was filing that I was going to need it one day. At first when I was notified of the order amount, I couldn’t help but laugh. Now years later, I’m counting on it to help me get by since my unemployment benefits ended over 9 months ago. Had I not went through the process, I would be on what ever public assistance I could get.
Filing for child support is not for everyone and if you decide to go through the process don’t quit. If you quit, it’s too long of a process to start all over. For people who know the person is not going to pay, think of it as a bank account that’s overdrawn. At least you know it’s there. You never know if that person may start working or win the lottery, at least you know your child will be taken care of first after Uncle Sam takes his cut.
Like I always tell Melanie, “do what’s best for y-o-u” because no one is in your shoes and what may work for me may not work for you.
Written By: Maxx
(Source: Photograph is from: http://bestofmichaeljackson.jclondon.com/2011/01/08/oh-no-someone-call-the-us-embassy-we-just-heard-jermaine-jackson-might-be-stuck-in-africa/)