Ask Paul B: Divorced Dad’s Money, Mom’s Time, Kids’ Money Store


Dear Paul B,

I have SOME situation here. I have three kids with Ms. Congeniality. We are divorced about 5 1/2 years and I pay “plenty” to keep this kids in a very comfortable lifestyle, often way too comfortable. I am eager to please them, but I need to take a different tact here. When they come visit me, I am often asked to “cough up” even MORE money for them to take home. There have been times that they want to go home if I am not compliant to their financial requests. I think their Mother may have a “dependency” of some kind, and I feel like an idiot feeding into that addiction. I pay her $7800 a month, and I take care of our remaining mortgage commitment. There must be ample funds to live a very nice life in an above average middle income neighborhood. I have been told that my ex has had four cosmetic surgeries as well. But, I really don’t appreciate this shake down by two of my three kids whenever they see me. I feel like telling them that the “money store” is closed, when they are here, and that spending time with me should be an option, and not a punishment.

Al K

Dear Al,

You are acting like an idiot and an Enabler all at once. You must NOT submit to your kids’ demands of cash or clash. You are their father, and spending time with you on “your terms” is the only alternative. Take them out, plan activities, and show them that you care for them and love them. After a short while they will understand what love is all about, without the financial considerations. You pay plenty to their Mom, and if you are privy to their Mom’s substance abuse, then you need to consult your lawyer. This could jeopardize your kids safety….

— Paul B.


ASK PAUL B! usually appears on Thursday evenings, but occasionally appears on other days or times so the article might be introduced to new readers.

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