Cover Image: Now What?

Now What?

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“Now What? Navigating an Unimaginable Divorce” (2020) is a courageous and riveting account of author Nancy Steven’s experience in the aftermath of an adversarial divorce. Nancy Stevens had always felt secure within her 46 year marriage, as she and her husband Roi began to prepare for retirement at their historical family home in Seattle, Washington. Roi, was a retired Army Officer, who had been injured in combat while serving in Vietnam, and was later deployed to Korea. Nancy and their children followed Roi to various post assignments throughout his military career for over two decades until he retired from the Army, and became a successful businessman. 

In an instant, Nancy’s life of comfort and stability would end. It was terribly odd that Roi hid behind his highly offensive and aggressive mistress, allowed her to speak for him, and rarely offered an explanation for his outrageous behavior and immoral conduct. Roi lavished the mistress with expensive jewelry, gifts, meals and a vacation abroad with marital funds. Obviously, Roi wasn’t the respectable veteran businessman he pretended to be among family, friends, and in his community.
From across the country in Virginia, Roi had indirectly involved his adult children in his shameful affair—this would eventually cost him every remaining shred of his dignity and self-respect. Without hesitation, Roi lost his faithful wife and family that once loved and supported him. It was very disheartening, disturbing, and sad. By that time, Nancy was in her late 60’s, and was discarded like a used car for a newer model. 

As a former military spouse, Nancy was legally entitled to alimony and nearly half of Roi’s military pension, plus medical, post exchange, and commissary privileges. Although Roi knew this as fact, it never stopped him from attempting to cheat and defraud Nancy at every turn. As the bills and debt from her attorney fees mounted, Nancy struggled to make sense of the injustice stacked against her. In sharing her shocking story, Nancy also offers practical tips and helpful advice to others.  I wish her the best.  ** With thanks to Clovercroft Publishing via NetGalley for the DDC for the purpose of review.
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I've always wondered if the 1% of the general population stats are narcissistic were correct and this may help with my theory that they're probably much higher.
I'm sorry to say but I believe we may have married the same man or at least brothers.
I know your pain just not to the same level of time as I bolted after 7 yrs but hung on till 11 yrs to gain access to social security benefits as I calculated I did the time I may as well be compensated.
So much of what you noted here resonated especially with regards to legal action, manipulation, false accusations, alimony, etc.
The only area I'd disagree was in the noting that after 10k (If I remember correctly) that arrears are considered a felony charge. My child support was in arrears to the tune of 15k while he continued to wine and dine and had the audacity to then file a special relief claim saying he wasn't able to enjoy his own home that he paid mortgage on because his wife and three kids had exclusive rights via Protection from Abuse Order. The special relief was dropped due to being illegal. The arrears were wiped away upon the corrupt judge awarding him 20k in arrears forcing me to pay back my abuser 5k from my own child support arrears. The family court systems are so corrupt in Northeastern Pennsylvania that they are a joke. He was given so much preferential treatment that at one point the judge held up court for his own arrival for a court appointed hearing being he worked a block from the White House. Money and privilege combined with connections is worth its weight in gold.
Unlike your situation I was left bankrupt, homeless, and long term unemployed without income, assets or savings.
In your case you seemed to have a home, income, assets, credit to fall back upon without the worry of medical issues however, with my situation I had three minor kids -my eldest born med disabled-we had no income, home, or employment & lived off credit for our first payment of 100 dollars after a year and a half of waiting.
No alimony here as I was told it would be wiser to go with child support because it would be a longer payout time but when you mentioned paying taxes upon it that may also have been a factor.
I had four attorneys (one for pfa, one for bankruptcy, the other two for divorce/child support) and it took 4 years to complete.
My ex spouse was like yours in contempt of court multiple times but in the end we finally had to settle because I was dependent upon his income for survival so the excitement over putting him in jail didn't resonate because I gave up my masters to raise my kids as I had medical complications from the start with a placenta abruption that resulted in vater syndrome son via emergency c section and two more high risks elective sections after that which resulted in my parts being shipped far , far away.
To say I wish you didn't have to experience this unimaginable heartbreak after 45 yrs of marriage is an understatement.
The feeling of playing detective is quite familiar -though I never hired a private investigator- I was left wondering if he hid assets in Cayman Islands and beyond.
In addition, you had filed the divorce first so you were able to have the upper hand but in my case the child support was needed to live as homemaker so I had to file that first.
For the readers-brownie points- are awarded to the first to file and you're seen in a more favorable light when you do.
I would've loved to go the route you did in following through with adultery as I had the proof of the multiple affairs including the adoption of two kids (with one during our marriage) but wasn't able to bring it up during a no-fault since he filed.
All in all I will note this -you have to pick your battles carefully-and know the law in your state.
Everyone thinks they'll come out with a land rover and a diamond but in many cases you leave with a lump of coal.
In addition, know who you are dealing with prior to leaving the marriage. If it's a toxic individual who will delay and have the legalities become costly you're wiser to take what you can and save your sanity.
Your story will help so many and I'm so glad you told it.
For anyone dealing with malignant narcissist, sociopaths, psychopaths, and domestic violence please visit my fb page: The Lost Self Life After Narcissism.
For more information on the Divorcing a Narcissist that I wrote via Linked In:
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Really Nancy, really?

First off thanks to NetGallery, Nancy Steve, and Ingram Publisher Services and Baker & Taylor for allowing me to read this incredible ARC.

WOWWWW what a roller coaster ride Nancy. During the whole read I genuinely felt like a friend was telling their divorce story.  I really have to say that mid way throughout the book i had to set it down because of all the stress i was having. I was so enraged and had so much anxiety because i could not fathom that a person would act this way.

Seriously i was hoping some time along the way Nancy would catch a break. I literally felt like i had to set my phone down because i would strangle Roi. I hate him, i know hate is a strong word, but it's so hard to say otherwise to think different because he is just so selfish, self centered, ungrateful, and mean. I was very much hoping that towards the end there would be some resolution HaHa but nope... i have to say i was a little disappointed there since i was waiting for some justice and not just the foreclosure on his house*cries a bit*. 

I have to say i know the beginning parts were difficult to write since the beginning feelings of when someone has duped you hurts and your're vulnerable. Well i do have to say that I loved seeing Nancy grow, though i wish she were not so nice at times. Crazy to see how someone you're known forever can just flip and treat them so cruel.

Such an emotional roller coaster! I loved it!
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This story kept getting worse and worse for the author....I kept rooting for her and her children. 
What scum her ex and his mistress are.

Thanks to author, publisher and Netgalley for the chance to read this book. While I got the book for free, it had no bearing on the rating I gave it.
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This book details a prolonged and complicated divorce from the perspective of the person being dumped out of the blue by her cheating husband. A would be handbook for potential divorce victims, Nancy Stevens' book is written in a  straight forward, no nonsense style which makes it highly readable.
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