College support from NCP and other college issues...very long
I just finished reading through another thread, about how a BD was wanting to stop support when the kid graduated high school. Several ladies were upset that their former husbands would not contribute to the kids college education. I am one of the lucky ones - it is in our support agreement that he will pay one third of college for my kids, with the expectation that I pay a third, and the kids pay a third themselves. My DH does not have to pay support for his kids after high school, unless he chooses to do so.
Some states require college support , but many states dont. It makes mothers furious when their ex's cut off support at 18. I get it. We all need help to send our kids to college. But studies have shown over and over, that the likelyhood of voluntary college support directly relates to how the NCP is treated in his kids lives. In short, he is much more likely to contribute if the relationship with the custodial parent is easy, there has been little fighting over the kids through the years, and the CP has done everything she can to keep the relationship strong for the kids.
We are in this position now, where one of the Skids will be attending college next fall . She is turning 18 in the spring, and at that time, we are going to reduce the child support to reflect the fact that only one child is still underage. Support will go from 1800 per month, to 1200 for the last remaining child, so it is still a nice chunk of change.
My DH's ex has spent the last 12 years badmouthing my DH. She still hates him , even after all this time. She has insisted the kids call their stepfather dad and their father by his first name ( but she hit the roof when one of the kids called me mom) She has taken DH to court for an increase in support, and lost, and then went all apeshit, telling the kids their father is cheating them out of support, and that he is a deadbeat, even though he has NEVER been so much as late, and pays 1800 per month. Dh has paid for class rings, and school trips, and summer camps, and drivers ed, and all transportation costs, all in addition to child support. He was not ordered to pay for those things, he did it because he loves his kids. In all these years, the ex has never had anything good to say about DH, and calls him that bastard in front of her kids. She still calls screaming at him about things that happen at our home on his visitation time. If he says no to a request from her, she tells the kids that it is his fault that they cant do something, even though he rarely says no, and only with a very good reason. DH has never gotten a call on his birthday. He has never gotten an Xmas gift. He has never gotten a Fathers day gift or card.
So, now SD is aging out of support and going to college. Sd is a mediocre student, barely passing in some areas, but does well in others. The state she lives in offers a full tuition scholarship to all students who can get a 20 on the ACT, but SD can only manage, so far ,a 17. A 17 on the ACT will get her free tuition to a community college, but SD doesnt want to go to CC because then she would have to live at home. SD says she wants to be a nurse, and she does well in her allied health classes, but her grades in Math and Science are horribly low.. c and d. She hates math. She hates science. She hates English. No one has discussed this with her, because the ex is a nurse, and by god, SD is going to be a nurse too. I finally sat her down and showed her the prerequistes she would have to take to get into a four year nursing program...nothing but science and math, and I pointed out to her that she had to have at least a 3.0 gpa in those prereqs just to apply to the nursing school...and that it was highly competitive and she is not likely to get in.
SD was horrified at the idea of two more years of math and science. She said she really doesnt want to be a nurse, she wants to persue the other interest that she has ( that she is actually good at and has the grades to prove it). Her problem is the only school with that program is a CC and she doesnt want to live at home. I found her two colleges that have the program that she is good at. They have scholarships available for her as well, and yes, she would live on campus. Problem is, they are in OUR state, not her mothers. In her mothers, she has to take the course at a CC. She was all excited because she found a program that she wants to study, and could live on campus to do so. Then she went home to talk to her mother...
Mom said that SD is going to nursing school, and that is that, because mom doesnt want her studying the other area. Mom refuses to pay anything at all if SD doesnt go to the program mom chooses. Keep in mind, SD doesnt have a hope in hell of getting into a four year program with her grades. She just isnt talented in that area. SD may not even get the tuition scholarship, so that cost will have to be paid.
Our plan has been to pay one third, same as with my kids. We think that mom should pay a third, since she and her new hubby have a high income and our household standards of living are roughly equal. We also think SD should have to pay for a third, either through loans or summer jobs, and that she should have to have a part time job during the school year of 10-15 hours a week to pay for her spending money. We are, however, willing to contribute, even though it is not required by law, and even though SD isnt really 4 year college material . We think her best option would be to attend the CC in her state, live at home, and we would buy her a car and pay the expenses for that, plus give her 4 hundred per month for expenses. That way she would come out with no debt. We are also willing to pay the third, if she attends the program she wants for the other area, even without the tuition scholarship, because we know she will do well at it.
What we arent willing to do, is pay her tuition at a four year college in her state , if she takes nursing. If she doesnt have the ACT score to get the scholarship that is free to all students in her state, then she isnt going to succeed in a highly competitive program, where the cut off for people accepted after prereqs was a 3.6 last year, particularly since the prereqs are math and science. Who wants to bet that when we refuse to pay tuition to a four year nursing program, we are going to be called deadbeats and blamed for it?
Now the latest is, mom has found SD a nursing program at a CC that will take her, and has on campus living. The problem is, it is in another state, and out of state tuition costs will apply. There is no way we are going to be willing to pay out of state tuition, so that is going to cause issues. We will pay 400 per month, plus one third of books and dorm, but that is it. The sad part is, even though DH is willing to contribute, it will never be enough for the ex, and he will be badmouthed for it. SD will not be greatful, and will blame dadddddy because she has to live at home, or get a job, or take out loans.
I feel badly for my DH. He loves his daughter, but unless he does exactly what mom and SD want, he gets painted as the bad guy and they will have a temper tantrum and cut him out of their lives. Mom will get all the thanks, Dad will get nothing but the bill.
So ladies, sometimes it isnt because dad doesnt want to pay. It is because he has been put down, left out of decisions, marginalized and critisized for years, and made to feel damned no matter what he does. Just had to get this off my chest.