When it comes to relationships, things are not always as they seem. It may seem as though your parents are in a happy marriage because they have been married for decades. You may think you know a lot about divorce because of what your friends have told you.
There are actually a lot of myths surrounding marriage and divorce. The laws vary from state to state. Plus, what you see on TV or read about in articles or books is not always accurate. And what your friend or family member experienced in their divorce is not indicative of the overall process.
Every marriage and divorce is different. What happened to your loved one will not necessarily happen to you. There are so many elements and circumstances involved in relationships. It can be hard to keep your information straight. It is time to separate fact from fiction. Here are some common myths you should know about.
Men are More Likely to Initiate Divorce
Men often seem unhappy in their marriages. They may talk about how their wives nag a lot or have gained weight since the wedding. Many men also engage in behavior that leads to divorce, such as drinking, drug abuse, and infidelity.
However, men are not usually the ones initiating the divorce. In fact, women are much more likely than men to initiate divorce, with 69% of heterosexual divorces initiated by the female partner.
This is often because women face most of the burdens of marriage. Many work on top of caring for children, doing the majority of the household chores, and taking on much more of the mental load. Why would a man want to divorce? He’s got it made!
Long-Lasting Marriages are Happy
This may be the case in some marriages, but studies show that most marriages have some sort of underlying unhappiness involved. A marriage that has lasted 50 or more years has weathered many storms. Once a couple reaches their retirement years, happiness tends to decrease. Some couples stay together because they feel they are too old to start over. Others focus on their happiness and decide to file for a gray divorce.
Divorces are Always Ugly
Divorces portrayed on TV are always nasty because, well, TV is dramatic. It is not as much fun to see a couple working through their differences and divorcing amicably through mediation. Florida is a no-fault divorce state, so couples are not required to give a reason why the marriage is over. They can simply cite irreconcilable differences. This helps to minimize the drama involved with blaming or faulting one partner for a failed marriage. Having to fight things out in court is not the norm, so if you want to divorce amicably, it is possible.
Divorce Harms a Child for Life
Many couples are afraid to divorce because they are scared of the possible harm it could cause their children. While many children suffer long-term issues from their parents’ divorce, it is likely because of how the divorce was handled. Many parents use their children as pawns in a divorce. They blame their children for the end of the marriage. They disregard their child’s feelings, causing them to feel isolated. They may turn to alcohol and drugs and do poorly in school. These issues happen when parents do not put their children first in a divorce.
Mothers Always Get Custody of the Children
This was true in the past, which is probably why men have been hesitant to get a divorce when children were involved. But nowadays, it is equal ground. Mothers and fathers have the same rights. Most courts push for joint or shared custody, allowing for a 50/50 share of the children. Ultimately, it depends on the best interests of the child. In most cases, children benefit from having both parents in their lives. One parent will not get sole custody unless there are extreme circumstances involved, such as substance abuse, physical abuse, neglect, or incarceration.
Your Personal Bank Accounts Will Not Be Split in a Divorce
People often think that if they open bank accounts in their own name, then the contents are solely theirs and not subject to split in a divorce. This is not true. It has nothing to do with titling and everything to do with timing. If the money was in an account before you got married, then it will likely remain yours in a divorce, as long as you did not use the money to pay for marital expenses. Otherwise, it could be considered marital property.
Life is Worse After Divorce
Life is not always easy after divorce. You are going from possibly two incomes down to one. Living on your own is not cheap, so there are likely going to be financial issues once you are on your own. However, it is not all doom and gloom. After a time, divorce almost always leads to something better. Maybe you are leaving an abusive relationship. Perhaps you are sick of being in a rut and want to be happy again.
Divorce can have a positive impact on your life. You will have time to pursue your passions and not have to worry about making someone else happy. You could find true love. You could gain a lot of freedom and confidence.
Seek Legal Help
You may think you know a lot about divorce, but a lot of what you know is simply not true. Divorce is not always a straightforward process, as it is hard to separate fact from fiction.
Count on Broward County divorce attorney Scott J. Stadler to give you the facts straight. We want to give you the right information so you can divorce with ease. To schedule a consultation, call our office at (954) 346-6464 or fill out the online form.