Lindsay Marsh said she decided to take the pictures years ago to try and get her husband’s attention. She thought being able to share intimate pictures with him would help her marriage.
However, when her ex-husband asked to keep the books years later, which had messages written to him inside, she was shocked.
“There’s no way a judge is going to order that. You are, like, ‘Please ask for that in court, please look like an idiot and ask for that in court,’” Marsh said.
Marsh said she did not understand why her ex-husband would still want the personal gifts she gave him years ago.
“If things I wrote were so important to you, why didn’t you save all the anniversary cards and birthday cards and valentine’s day cards? Everything I wrote to you over the years, you did not keep any of those, but somehow these are really important.”
However, Judge Michael Edwards wrote in a ruling, “The Court orders that the parties are to turn these photos over to the person who took the pictures originally and produced the photo books. That person is then to do whatever it takes to modify the pages of the pictures so that any photographs of the Petitioner in lingerie, or that sort of thing, or even without clothing, are obscured and taken out, but the words are maintained for the memory’s sake.”
Marsh said her female friend, a professional photographer who took the original pictures, did not want to edit the pictures so she filed a motion asking the court to dismiss this specific ruling by the judge.
However, Marsh claims her ex-husband and his attorney submitted yet another request asking for the books. She said the judge then ordered her to give the books to a man she did not know to edit the pictures.
“I had five days to collect the books from the original photographer and drop them off to some stranger so that he could see these images because you cannot edit without seeing the images.”
When Marsh told the original photographer about the judge’s ruling, she told ABC4 News her friend gave in and decided to help her edit the pictures so that she would not have to hand her intimate photos over to a stranger. The photographer put big black boxes in front of her body, so only the messages are seen.
Despite her ex-husband no longer seeing her body, Marsh felt him having access to the intimate messages she wrote for him years ago still made her feel violated. The entire process of fighting so that her ex-husband’s attorney, the judge and the male photographer would not see her images, was humiliating, she said.
She is now calling for change, saying no woman should have to go through what she did during her divorce. She feels it should be up to the person who is in the intimate photographs to decide what happens to them.
“Women’s bodies aren’t property for people, or in my case, these three men — my ex-husband, his attorney and this judge — to decide what should be done with it and who should be able to see it.”
Marsh said the divorce has been finalized. However, according to the judge’s ruling, she is legally required to keep the original books until December. This gives her ex-husband a chance to object to any of the edits made in court before they are allowed to be thrown out.
Once the 90-day period ends, Marsh said she will be having a burning party.
ABC4 News reached out to Judge Michael Edwards for comment. The public information officer for the court said judges cannot comment on cases.
ABC4 News has also reached out to her ex-husband, but at the time of this publication, we have not received a response.