Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Time Out, New York

My legal battles began in July, when my ex filed a motion seeking full custody of our children. But the battleground was laid a year ago this week, when my ex discovered coverage of One Life, Take Two in Time Out, New York’s annual “Secret Lives” issue.

This week, Time Out, New York pays a brief visit to those featured last year. Of yours truly, readers learn:

When the article appeared, the worst thing that could have happened happened: My ex-wife discovered it and sued for full custody of our kids. I contacted the Sexual Freedom Legal Defense and Education Fund, which reviewed my case and set up a legal fund, making it possible to get a great attorney and preserve joint physical custody. On the one hand, having a sex blog and an unhappy ex-wife with deep pockets is a volatile combination. On the other, had I not had this blog I wouldn’t have had a community of readers that has made it possible to fight this battle.

Welcome to those first visiting this blog courtesy of Time Out, New York. My apologies for the current dearth of sex one would hope to find in a “sex blog.” I’ve kept this blog for four-and-a-half years, charting my new life after marriage. My aim has been to tell stories that address family as well as sexuality—custody, domesticity, childhood, parenting, dating, bisexuality, romance and sex have all been themes—to show that all can be openly discussed as weaves in the fabric of real life.

When the custody case began, I voluntarily closed my blog’s previous content and now post on matters concerning the ongoing case. I apologize for going Lenny Bruce on my readers—when busted for obscenity, he turned his performances into tedious discussions of the resulting trials. Don’t worry: this story doesn’t end with Dustin Hoffman sprawled on a bathroom floor. But a year in, it’s fair to wonder: where does it end?

I recently read Saul Bellow’s Humboldt’s Gift, and was struck by an observation the narrator made about his perpetual legal disputes with his ex-wife. He mused that protracted post-divorce court cases are really just extensions of the preceding marriages. So long as a couple is fighting, they are still together.

This year, we’ve been through an exhaustive process, some of it documented in previous posts. Meetings with lawyers, court appearances, psychiatric evaluations, free speech negotiations, all while cutting check after check. My ex had spent twenty-five thousand dollars prior to filing the original motion, and that seems eons ago.

Our attorneys had an important conference on Inauguration Day. Watching President Obama’s speech as I waited to hear the outcome, I was struck by the everyday applications of these words: “People will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy.”

A Bellovian rehash of a failed marriage is simply destructive. There are good and constructive ways to build on collaborative relationships as co-parents. I look forward to moving ahead on those.

Make an ANONYMOUS, TAX-DEDUCTIBLE contribution to Jefferson’s legal defense by visiting the Sexual Freedom Defense and Education Fund at:

Sexual Freedom Legal Defense and Education Fund

Please remember to specify that your donation is earmarked for the Jefferson Legal Defense Fund. The Sexual Freedom Legal Defense and Education Fund affirms that these earmarked donations are tax deductible.

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