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Tammy: Melissa Left Me With $4 To My Name

7/9/2010 9:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Melissa Etheridge has left Tammy Lynn Michaels and the two children they have together high and dry ... this according to Tammy’s lawyer Steven Knowles. But Melissa says Tammy is delusional.


Knowles tells TMZ Tammy has a grand total of $4 to her name ... adding, "Melissa has not been treating Tammy or the children as if they are a wife and children, financially and otherwise."

Knowles says Melissa has not given Tammy or the kids a penny since the breakup … and she is now destitute.

TMZ broke the story, Melissa filed for dissolution of her domestic partnership with Tammy last week.

On Tuesday, Tammy filed her own legal docs … but she is asking for a dissolution of marriage. According to Knowles, even though Tammy and Melissa were not legally married in California, “They were married in their own eyes and in the eyes of the world … and Melissa was the first to say they were, in fact, married.”

BTW – Tammy is asking for spousal support – something she can't get if she is not “married.”

As we first told you, Melissa wants joint custody … but Tammy is asking for full legal and physical custody.

Knowles tells us Melissa can't possibly be a participant in the custody agreement because her schedule makes it impossible to be a meaningful parent.

Melissa's lawyer, Neal Hersh, tells TMZ, "Melissa is paying all of Tammy's expenses, which totals tens of thousands of dollars per month."



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I used to be a diehard Melissa fan but not anymore. This isn't the first time that she's tossed her partner aside for a younger version. She's a player.

Unfortunately, there's kids involved and for that reason alone, Melissa needs to step up and compensate Tammy for giving up her acting career, having THEIR kids and taking care of their home while she was off playing rock star. And Melissa, make no mistake...they're your kids too!

If gay marriage were legal, Melissa wouldn't get to cherry pick her legal obligations. Right now, she's playing both sides of the fence. All over the right to get married in happy times. Now that things have gone south, she's jumping on the 'Well we're not married so I don't owe her anything' bandwagon.

Really disappointing to see such a prominent leader in the gay community behave in such a petty and spiteful way. No more Melissa CD's or concerts for me from now on.

1570 days ago


how can millissa e, schedule be so full,only thing she can be doing is singing in some karoke bars...and to the other lady,,get off your butt and get a damn job

1570 days ago


Welcome the the real world.

1570 days ago


Good for nothing carpet munchers.

1570 days ago

Illinois person    

So, how long were these two together? You mean in all of that time Tammy made no financial plans for herself? What is her claim to fame? Shall we assume she doesn't work? I agree with the person's comment about "welcome to the real word". There are millions of single parents out there working job after job and praying their support check arrives in the mail. Yet they don't have a voice to speak out a la Tammy. Melissa's the one with the career so if Tammy was just keeping her life on hold waiting for Melissa to bring the bacon home then that was her choice. As for the comment about Ellen, well at least she's living the American dream. A good job, plenty of money and if she wants to share it all with a woman well - welcome to America. Funny #21 makes a snide comment about Ellen but I'd put her charity work (and financial givings) up against his any ole' day of the week. She (Ellen), like Oprah, has it and she doesn't hesitate to share and give it back to the less fortunate.
If Tammy has been living these years with Melissa waiting for her to throw a few crumbs her way well those crumbs are about to get a whole lot fewer. Meanwhile, for those calling Melissa a lesbo, going to hell and other names - she's never denied the fact that's she gay. It's the 21ST CENTURY OUT THERE PEOPLE. SO I WONDER IF YOU'D WANT AMERICA STANDING IN JUDGMENT OF YOU AS YOU GO THROUGH THE TUNNELS OF LIFE? HAVE PEOPLE CALL YOU VULGAR NAMES BECAUSE OF THE PERSON YOU'VE CHOSEN TO SPEND TIME WITH?
Yeah she's gay, SO???????????????? I mean if you don't like her or anyone else in this business who's gay, don't buy their music, don't see their movies, don't watch their TV shows, don't go to their concerts. You know those born again Christians and the like (some) are hardly above all you know! Can you say Jimmy Swaggart? Can you say Jim Baker? How about ole' what's his name, the senator from Montana, who likes to frequent bathrooms all while denying it every step of the way? Hell, even some of our own presidents are well-known male whores. Look at Tiger Woods he likes a good whore or 15 when he thinks no one's looking. So people like Melissa and Ellen have had a few high profile relationships that didn't work out - big whoops!

1570 days ago


LMAO! All I can do is laugh. #12 & #15 are dead on! I just feel awful for the kids; they should have never been brought into that dysfunctional mess! These cases are growing by the day.
You can date whom ever you please.
But when it comes to marriage and children stick with gods plan!

And stop with gay rights already! You are not handicapped; this is not your race or religion. Being gay is a sexual prefrence.. a choice!!!! If you think you were born that way then maybe you are handicapped!

1570 days ago

get real    

Here is an idea, get a job a support your kids

1570 days ago



You should read Familial Homophobia by Sarah Schulman. Melissa is being homophobic by using laws that deny gays and lesbians equal rights. Tammy was a spouse in all senses of the word.


1570 days ago


Lesbo's are crazy women!! They both look like men, that's gross.
Get in your Jeep, and go play softball and get over it.

1570 days ago


Er Frankie (#26), wrong website. Perez doesn't live here. But I definitely agree with you.

1570 days ago


bitter breakup, monetary and custodial issues...proof that gay marriage is JUST like hetero marriage.

1570 days ago


Amazing what happens when people treat children like puppies and have them because they "WANT" one. Guess what, having kids is not about you at all - it's about them and only what's best for them. This is why same-sex and single parents (by choice) are nothing but selfish narcissists. What's best for the kids is to have a balance that can best be reached by a man and a woman.

1570 days ago


She doesn't have to prove they were married to get support. Come out from under your rock, TMZ, and research the palimony rulings. She could get millions.

1570 days ago


Before I say what I am about to say, let me just start with this: I in no way whatsoever have a problem with gay people. I believe that everyone has the right to love and marry whoever they want. With that said, I have read and heard many, many times over the years both of them say that they in their eyes, they are married. They filed a domestic partnership because they missed the window of legal homosexual marriage. So, NOW that Melissa wants out of it, NOW she is saying that they were never legally married so she doesn’t have to do what every other married couple had to do when they divorce. Melissa was the breadwinner and Tammy was the stay at home mom. If this were a legal marriage, Melissa would be bound by law to pay alimony and most likely child support. Being that she has always been an advocate for equal rights for gays, she’s being a huge hypocrite now saying that she shouldn’t have to. Melissa has FOUR kids by two different mothers. The last girlfriend, during their split, said that Melissa rarely spent time with her kids so she could focus on her music. If this were a man, he’d have been labeled a deadbeat. Melissa is a deadbeat “dad” and if she wants equality, then she should have to pay the woman who carried and gave birth to her children! Tammy is the one taking care of them and she’s been the one taking care of them! You can’t scream for equal rights, then use the laws AGAINST homosexual marriage to work for you at the same time. It’s kind of messed up. Tammy Lynn for the Win!!!

1570 days ago


Paying her bills is not money--it is control. Keep in mind Tammy is the stay at home mom raising the children (probably what Tammy and Melissa wanted initially), and therefore has not liquid money. My mom alway taught me to have some money of your own, not to be kept by your husband (or in this case partner) to always be able to buy a coffee if you want to and not have to justify it to anyone.
I am guessing before the separation cash money to buy those little things was not an issue. It is wrong for Melissa to think that paying her bills (read the family support payment) is enough to pay for the little extras. And yes, Tammy could go and get a job - ABSOLUTELY -but then the cost of childcare will need to be added to the mix.

Very sad Melissa.
Hope you or your lawyers read this.

1570 days ago
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