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So205 Divorce Debate
 

So205 Divorce Debate

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So205 Divorce Debate So205 Divorce Debate Presentation Transcript

  • Divorce Should it be more difficult to obtain? What do you think?
  • In case you did not know…
    • Divorce:
    • noun1. a judicial declaration dissolving a marriage in whole or in part, esp. one that releases the husband and wife from all matrimonial obligations.
    Source: [http://dictionary.reference.com/dic?q=divorce&search=search]
  • Contrary to Popular Belief Source: [http://www.divorcereform.org/rates.html] 1991, 47% 1992, 48% 1993, 46% 1994, 46% 1995, 46% 1997, 43%, 1998, 42%, 1999, 41%, 2000, 41%, 2001, 40%, 2002, 38%
  • Trends Source: [http://www.biblenews1.com/marriage/marriags.htm#Total%20Marriages]
  • Did you know…?
    • 60 percent of marriages for couples between the ages of 20 and 25 end in divorce.
    • — National Center for Health Statistics
    • 50 percent of all marriages in which the brides are 25 or older result in a failed marriage.
    • — National Center for Health Statistics
  • Dollars for Divorce
    • Cost Determinants of a Divorce:
      • Whether your Divorce is adversarial or collaborative
      • How much you pay in attorney fees
      • If spouses battle over the custody of children
  • The Average Cost of a Divorce
    • The average cost of a divorce can range from between $1500 for an uncontested divorce to over $15,000 for a contested divorce.
    • Pro Se divorce can save you time and money if you are able to work with your spouse.
    http://www.womansdivorce.com/do-it-yourself-divorce.html
  • “ Till death due you part” ..or not
    • Communication Problems
    • Financial Issues
    • Forms of Abuse
    • Marital Infidelity
    • Sexual Problems
    Source: [http://www.scfamilylaw.com/2008/06/articles/divorce/the-main-reasons-people-divorce/]
  • Should divorce be more difficult to obtain?
    • Some say “yes.”
      • Negative effects on family and children
      • Financial hardships
      • What the experts are saying
    • Some say “no”
      • Victims of abusive relationships
      • Constitutional Right to seek happiness
      • Feminists
  • The effects of divorce on children.  
    • Do you think divorce has a negative effect on children? 
  • Stressors of the Divorce Process  
      • Stress of Initial separation 
      • Parental conflict 
      • Diminished parenting
      • Loss of important relationships
      • Economic opportunities 
      • Remarriage 
    Kelly, Jason B., and Robert E. Emery. "Children Adjustment Following Divorce: Risk and Resilience Perspectives." Family in Transition. 15 (2009). 210-228. 
  • Effects of Divorce on Children
      • loss of important relationships  
        • friends, family members, nonresident parent
      • inept parenting 
      •   economic-reduces standard of living 
      • possibility for changes in family and emotional relationships
        • step-families 
    Kelly, Jason B., and Robert E. Emery. "Children Adjustment Following Divorce: Risk and Resilience Perspectives." Family in Transition. 15 (2009). 210-228. 
  • Adolescents of Divorced Parents
      • Lower academic test scores 
      • Less parental involvement in education 
      • Two-three times more likely to drop out of school 
      • Risk for teen-pregnancy is doubled 
    Kelly, Jason B., and Robert E. Emery. "Children Adjustment Following Divorce: Risk and Resilience Perspectives." Family in Transition. 15 (2009). 210-228. 
  • Young Adults and Adults of  Divorced Parents  
      • Difficulty in intimate relationships
      • marry earlier and report more dissatisfaction with their marriages  
      • report feeling angry and having less close relationships to parents  
      •   less contact with parents when children become adults
      • More likely to get divorced themselves -repeats the cycle over
    Kelly, Jason B., and Robert E. Emery. "Children Adjustment Following Divorce: Risk and Resilience Perspectives." Family in Transition. 15 (2009). 210-228.
  • Wallerstein Study
    • -Longitudinal study following around 131 children whose parents were divorced
    • -FINDINGS:
        • almost 50% had serious long term psychological problems interfering with work and love lives 
        • Subset study of 26 children found they had problems with alcohol/drugs as teenagers 
        • as adults, they had unstable relationships, low education achievement, and anxiety about commitment 
  • Divorcing “for the sake of the children”
    • Who thinks that divorce should be made easier for the couple because of the negative effects it has on the children?
  • Why Stay Together?
    • Often, couples stay together for the children
    • Usually these parents are children of a divorce
      • Don’t want to make the same mistake
    • Fail to realize…
      • Can get divorced differently than their parents did
      • Spare their children much of what they experienced
    • Staying together may have a negative impact on the children
  • Children Of Divorce Statistics
    • Researchers have found many benefits for children and youth who are raised by parents in healthy marriages, compared to unhealthy marriages, including the following:
    • More likely to attend college
    • More likely to succeed academically
    • Physically healthier
    • Emotionally healthier
    • Less likely to attempt or commit suicide
    • Demonstrate less behavioral problems in school
    • Less likely to be a victim of physical or sexual abuse
    • Less likely to abuse drugs or alcohol
    • Less likely to commit delinquent behaviors
    • Have a better relationship with their mothers and fathers
    • Decreases their chances of divorcing when they get married
    • Less likely to become pregnant as a teenager,
    • or impregnate someone.
    • Less likely to be sexually active as teenagers
    • Less likely to contract STD's
    • Less likely to be raised in poverty
    [Source: Why Marriage Matters, Second Edition: Twenty-Six Conclusions from the Social Sciences, September 2005.]
  • Children Experience the Divorce
    • Not necessary for a mother and father
    • to be "in love" to be good parents and
    • to raise healthy children.
    • Negatively impacted by loveless, tense,
    • angry environment
    • Can cause depression
    • Victims of abuse
    • When one stays in an unhappy or even
    • abusive marriage, children come to believe
    • that relationships are experiences that entail
    • suffering and pain
    • Does not teach children how to become emotionally literate;
    • or encourage them to treat others with consideration.
        • bullying and manipulation.
    [Source: http://www.proactivechange.com/divorce/advice/misguided.htm]
  • Sticking to the Marriage
    • Who thinks that if people stick to a marriage, they can make it work?
  • Sticking to the Marriage:   "Marriage Is a Movie, Not a Snapshot"
    • "I believe that marriage can be saved.  I don't think of marriage as failing as much as I think it's changing.  I think that changing expectations of men, women, and the economic shifts change the roles of many couples in marriage.  Husbands may be the stay at home dad as their wife is out in the workforce, or both husband and wife can be out in the workforce together doing everything they can in this hard economic time. I think that while this may not be the ideal for every couple, as more and more families begin to adapting to the changing roles and situation in their lives, marriage will also adapt."
    •                                              
    Online blog comment based on Skolnick's article - "Grounds for Marriage: How Relationships Succeed or Fail" http://lauratherese5.blogspot.com/
  • Sticking to the Marriage:  It's What Most People Want
    • - Since the 1970s, when no-fault divorce laws were sweeping the nation, 42 percent of Americans wanted divorce to be "more difficult," compared with 32 percent who wanted it to be "easier." 
    • - Today, Americans are even more supportive of tougher divorce laws. In 2002, for instance, 49 percent said they wanted divorce to be "more difficult," while 26 percent wanted it to be "easier."
    "Breaking up isn't hard enough to do" - divorce reform - 2/04. Smart Marriages® (smartmarriages.com
  • Sticking to the Marriage:  Covenant Marriage
    • Covenant marriage is a harder-to-get-into, harder-to-end form of marriage that couples can sign up for. 
    • To obtain a covenant-marriage license, couples must have premarital counseling and agree that they will seek marriage counseling should problems arise. 
    • Covenant couples can divorce, but it takes longer (at least two years, instead of six months) and divorces are granted only if there's been abuse, adultery, imprisonment, abandonment or two years' separation.
    "Breaking up isn't hard enough to do" - divorce reform - 2/04. Smart Marriages® (smartmarriages.com)
  • Sticking to the Marriage:  It's What Experts Say
    • "The vast majority of troubled marriages can become happy"  
    •  
    • "So many times, in the 11th hour, they do what it takes to turn things around."  
    • "In my mind, all problems are solvable until proven otherwise."
    •                                                         
    •                                                                      - Michele Weiner-Davis
    "Breaking up isn't hard enough to do" - divorce reform - 2/04. Smart Marriages® (smartmarriages.com)
  • Sticking to the Marriage:  What to Try Instead
    • Before jumping to divorce, consider the following:
      • Have you gone to marriage counseling?
      • Have you and your spouse taken the time to talk and isolate the real problems of the marriage? 
      • Do you really listen to each other or just nag, complain and tune out? 
      • How well do you compromise and try to find time for enjoying quality time together? 
      • How productive or destructive are your methods of fighting? 
      • Do you kiss and make up without holding grudges? 
      • Are you teammates working toward the same goals? 
      • Are you both willing to work on your issues together?
    "Should I Divorce" http://www.womansdivorce.com/should-I-divorce.html
  • Constitutional Rights
    • Do you think that no-fault divorces are Constitutional?
  • Divorce and Law
    • The transformation of divorce laws in the 1970s was not unique to the U.S. However...
    • .. . the breadth of the freedom to divorce in the U.S. remains unusual in a wider international context.
    • Americans see access to divorce as a matter of individual right. Despite the fact that...
    • ... the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights         do not articulate a right to divorce.
    Estin, Ann Laquer. "The Supreme Court And The Right To Divorce In The United States. 2005
  • Divorce and Law
    • Most states allow for a "no-fault" divorce g
    • 22 states offer "no-fault" divorce only.
    Estin, Ann Laquer. "The Supreme Court And The Right To Divorce In The United States. 2005
  • Divorce and Law
    • Divorces for “soft” reasons
    • No-Fault Divorce = Unilateral Divorce
        • 80% of divorces are unwanted by one spouse.
        • Four out of five marriages end unilaterally.
    • No Fault ≠ a "mutual agreement'
        • It is still a "lawsuit"
          • Legal action ⇒ petition
          • Plaintiff ⇒ petitioner
          • Defendant ⇒ respondent
          • Hearing is still required
    Furstenberg, Franka and Andrew Cherlin. “Divided Families.” 1991. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press
  • Divorce and Law
    •   No Fault Divorce is Unconstitutional.
        • Both the 5th and the 14th Amendment guarantee that “ no person be deprived of life, liberty or property without the due process of law, nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of law .”
    • No-fault divorce deprives
        • U.S. defendants of their
        • Constitutional rights.
    Furstenberg, Franka and Andrew Cherlin. “Divided Families.” 1991. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
  • Divorce and Law
    •   Reasons for liberalizing divorce laws:
      • Divorce was on the rise under the fault.
      • People saying and doing whatever was necessary to get around the law
      • Hostility, collusion, and perjury.
      • No law has the power to force people to stay together if they don’t want to .
    Furstenberg, Franka and Andrew Cherlin. “Divided Families.” 1991. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
  • Divorce and Law
    •   Empirical evidence:
      • Liberal divorce laws do not increase divorce rates.
      • Spouses less likely to “invest in their marriage.”
      • Easy divorce ≠ easy marriage.
      • Divorce easy to obtain = decline in rates of domestic violence and spousal homicide.
    Wolfers, Justin and Katherine S. Spaht. "Finding Fault With No-Fault Divorce?" 2006. DEBATE CLUB
  • The Feminist Argument: Women gaining financial independence
    • Do you feel that modern-day women must depend on their husbands for financial support?
  • Janet Z. Giele: A Look at Changing Family Forms
    • The idea of the traditional family with 2 parents, one working husband and a housewife has drastically been reformed
    • The modern economy has liberated women: now have the “right to higher education, entry into the professions, and elective franchise”
    • Prediction made, Richard Easterlin; after the large cultural shift to women entering the work force during the 1950’s and 60’s, they will return to the home in the 80’s..this prediction never came true!
    • The labor market is becoming increasingly equal opportunity for men and women
    • The education market is becoming increasingly equal opportunity for men and women
    • As the gender gap decreases, the salary gap also decreases
      • -many jobs are now available to women that can easily support her and her children in a small home
  • Janet Z. Giele: Women become self-sufficient
    • Iris Young: argues that many of the traditional roles of a housewife such as nonprofit caretaking and charitable activities do not contribute to a private market
      • Individualism is stressed as the greatest contribution so that divorced women do not depend on the government public for support
    • An increasing withdrawal from volunteer work and charity activities within the community has contributed to a rise from 41 to 58% of women in the labor force from 1970-1990
  • Synovate Study of Women and their feelings of financial independence
    • Nearly two-thirds (64%) of women in America feel financially independent
      • ‘ Financial independence is about not being dependent on my husband or partner for money’ (41%).
      • ‘ Financial independence is about living debt free’ (30%).
      • ‘ Financial independence is about being able to afford the things I want without worrying about the cost’ (18%).
  • Changing Statistics: Women in the Workforce
    • Percentage of single mothers in workforce: in 1980: 52 in 1990: 55.2 in 1995: 57.5 in 1998: 72.5 * Statistical Abstract of the U.S. 
    • -Women accounted for 51% of all workers in the high-paying management, professional, and related occupations
    • -Women comprised 46% of the total U.S. labor force and are projected to account for 47% of the labor force in 2016
    • *U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics
    • Median income of married couples with wife in labor force  in 1970: $ 47,707 in 1997: $ 60,669 without wife in labor force  in 1970: $ 36,157 in 1997: $ 36,027 with female-headed household
    • (no husband present) in 1970: $ 19, 792 in 1997: $ 21,023 * Statistical Abstract of the U.S. 
  • Economic Stress
    • Do you think there is a financial burden placed on a couple getting divorced?
  • Economic Stress Its effect on women and children
      • The economic status of women fall at an average of 30% in the first year after a divorce.
    •  
      • After a divorce, women and children almost always experience a drop in income level and standard of living, comparable to that suffered during the Great Depression.
    •  
      • Typically, women bear the brunt of the economic and childbearing responsibilities. Overwhelmingly, men do not contribute their fair share, although they believe that they do.
    •  
      •   45% of families headed by mothers were living at the poverty level, compared with 7% of two-parent families. Thus, mother-headed families are 6 times as likely to live at the poverty level than two-parent families.
     
  • Economic Stress Coming to Grips with the Financial Fear Factor
      • From the state's point of view, the process is essentially legal and financial.
      • Stress over money issues is virtually unavoidable in divorce. If you are not financially sophisticated, the stress can be almost unbearable.
      •  
      • Typically, one spouse has primary responsibility for the generation and disposition of income. And typically, that partner is the husband. In contrast, the wife may not have paid sufficient attention to what the family's assets really are, where they are, and what they are worth.
  • Economic Stress Its effect on women and children
      • The economic status of women fall at an average of 30% in the first year after a divorce.
    •  
      • After a divorce, women and children almost always experience a drop in income level and standard of living, comparable to that suffered during the Great Depression
  • Economic Stress Its effect on women and children (continued)
      • Typically, women bear the brunt of the economic and childbearing responsibilities.
      • Overwhelmingly, men do not contribute their fair share, although they believe that they do.
      •   45% of families headed by mothers were living at the poverty level, compared with 7% of two-parent families.
      • Mother-headed families are 6 times as likely to live at the poverty level than two-parent families.
    http://www.children.smartlibrary.org/ newinterface/segment.cfmsegment= 1935&table_of_contents=1506
  • Economic Stress The Cost of Divorce
    •    "Separate the finances from the emotions. Think about the divorce as a business deal and what is best for you. Formulate goals and work toward them."   - Ginita Wall of San Diego, a Certified Public Accountant who specializes in divorce.
      • Divorce is a $28 billion-a-year industry with an average cost of about $20,000.
      • According to several attorneys nationwide, the more complicated and emotional the divorce, the more expensive it will be.
      • Spouses can work together and try to settle all major issues outside the courtroom or they can leave it up to the attorneys and judge and pay the expense of not being able to put their differences aside.
    The Cost of a Divorce by Kevin McDonald http://www.bankrate.com/brm/news/advice/19990903a.asp
  • Economic Stress The Cost of Divorce
    • There are short-term and long-term costs to consider:
    • Short Term costs:
      • Cost of a lawyer--> Most lawyers charge an hourly rate, between $100 and $450 an hour.
      • Lawyer related fees: initial court filing fee, process serving and subpoenas.
      • If the case goes to trial, then allow for daily court fees for witness preparation, temporary orders and discovery.
      • Some lawyers charge for faxing, photocopying, travel expenses and phone calls.
      •  
    • Long Term costs:
      • Without the help of your ex-spouse, it's virtually impossible to maintain your previous standard of living when your income is cut in half, maybe more.
      •   Factor in the issues of child support, child custody, and division of marital property.
      How Much Should I Expect My Divorce to Cost? By Cathey Meyer, About.com http://divorcesupport.about.com/od/canyouafford todivorce/f/divorce_cost.htm
  • Ring Pops & Suckers
    • Who got a ring pop?
    • Who got a sucker?
  • How to avoid being a “sucker”
    • Couples therapy
    • Open marriages
    • Polygamy
    • Trial Separation
    • Make time
    • Pick your battles