Originally Posted by DraftyAiresMum
Thank you, gunslinger. I'm just kind of numb about it at this point. I'm more worried about actually getting down there and back for the appearance than anything. My car, while it would make it, is old and would not be safe on the freeway (it's an '86 Ford Escort GT). My boyfriend's truck, while a nice ride, is a big Dodge diesel, so will probably end up costing me $100-150 in fuel. The only reason I'm not worried about the hotel is because I work for a national hotel chain and got my hotel room on the cheap, but it's not a very well-rated hotel and it's kind of in a rough part of town.
I also don't want to see or speak to my ex-husband. Just something I don't want to deal with, especially in front of a courtroom full of people.
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Do you have an attorney? I don't think I'd go into this without one and you'd be at a huge disadvantage should you appear unrepresented.
As I've mentioned earlier, I was divorced young and in those days men seldom got custody so I kind of understand how the situation must look to you.
As I'm not an attorney and not qualified to give any legal advice except to hire one I have appeared in court once or twice and can share some of the things I've learned.
Dress nice, not elaborate but well enough to uphold the dignity of the court. No blue jeans, tea shirts or tennis shoes. You are somebody so show them.
Yes sir, yes ma'am. Be polite. Don't interject and wait for your turn to speak. Be courteous.
Make no excuses but explain the circumstances. Obviously you have some regrets and I don't think it hurts to humble ones self over any regrets we might have.
You also have some things you'd like the court to grant you. State those things you'd like.
Keep your dignity intact. You can't undo what's already been done but you can work to change things. Things might come out that hurt your feelings but don't be snarky.
No matter how it comes out it's not the end of the world and there's another day tomorrow.
I think one of the things you really need to do is speak to the boys dad. You don't have to kiss his butt, but be civil and try to find something you like about him......even if it's his shoes.
You two have a common interest, that being the child. Try to move on from an adversarial relationship and bolster your position by being nice and keeping things civil. I think this is the one thing that could help you the most.
You're probably going to have to pay something. I suspect the judge might ask you what you can afford to pay.
In closing, I've been through this myself. I walked around bitter and mad at the world for about 3 years or so I guess. I found peace with it all when I realized there was only so much I could do about it and none of it was in my control.
Frankly, this was one of the saddest, darkest chapters in my life. It was one of the hardest things I ever had to learn to live with. It got better over time and now seems like a distant memory. No hearts ever broken that can't be mended. Love yourself. Be humble, be patient, and be kind.
Above all, remember, no matter what happens, this isn't the last play in the game.