He’d got away scott free. He’d spent all the money, committed fraud and now he was happily shacked up with Yvonne while we suffered.
My work colleagues and friends were so supportive, even had a collection so I could take the kids out for a meal to cheer them up. ‘Thanks for all you’ve done,’ I smiled.
But every morning I woke up feeling sick, just waiting for the letter to arrive telling us we were losing the house.
‘It’s over,’ I told myself. ‘You did all you could but it wasn’t enough.’
My legal team urged me to appeal. But I wasn’t sure. ‘I don’t think I can bear to go through it all it all again,’ I said.
Only then I thought of the boys, Mum’s last words, all the friend’s who’d told me they’d known people left high and dry by their partners and I felt I had a duty. ‘Let’s give it another go,’ I agreed.
This March, exactly three years to the day that Mum died, I took my case to The Court of Appeal at the Royal Courts of Justice. I couldn’t help feeling apprehensive – what if they laid the blame at my door again?
But this time, the judges agreed Darren was guilty of concealing his affair knowing its disclosure would have significantly undermined his prospects of obtaining my consent to his proposal for a joint remortgage.
A week later, the judgement came:
‘Yessss!’ I cried as they agreed that I shouldn’t have my home taken because of Darren’s affair and absolved me from responsibility for the mortgage.
I was even happier when I learned the landmark decision could change the law to give protection to all wives and husbands who are cheated on by partners.
‘Nan would be so proud of you,’ Daryl said. And I knew he was right.
Looking back, I was so naive. When I was married to Darren I never so much as opened a bank statement so no wonder he thought he could get away with it. Not anymore!
I’d written off men after Darren but I’ve now got a new partner, Tony Spychalski, 40. We met through friends and he’s kind, genuine and trustworthy – the complete opposite to Darren. We’re now planning to finish those niggly DIY jobs, safe in the knowledge that the we’ll still have a roof over our heads at the end of them.
But even so, I’ll never let a man take care of my finances again and I’d urge other women to take control of their money, too. Trust me, I’ve learned the hard way.