Marriage is one of the world’s oldest institutions, designed to unite a man and woman into a single household that can reproduce. That is the traditional purpose for marriage and that continues today, and many parts of the world now recognize same-sex marriage as well. Same-sex households often adopt children. Meanwhile, it is also common in the 21st century for Americans to file for divorce, and a number of reasons may prompt a divorce, whether for a low-income household or a divorce for business owners. Some divorces, such as a divorce for business owners, may involve a lot of assets that both sides will fight over, and divorce lawyers may be hired by both sides. A messy divorce, whether a divorce for business owners or otherwise, may involve child custody lawyers and the child him/herself may speak up on where they want to live after the divorce.
Why Divorce Happens
There are a number of reasons why a married couple may divorce, some of them more dramatic than others. In fact, many surveys and studies have been done to determine why Americans divorce, and the most common reason was sheer infidelity, when one spouse cheats on the other. Both men and women do this, though not always for the same reasons. Finding out that your spouse had an affair may very well prompt a divorce, whether for low-income households or a divorce for doctors or a divorce for business owners. It may be (somewhat sentimentally) argued that no amount of money or business success can soothe an affair’s impact in a marriage. Meanwhile, another common reason for divorce is if a spouse is abusing drugs or alcohol, as abusing these substances may lead to personality changes and violent behavior. That, and drug and alcohol abuse has a major financial impact on the household, owing to a loss of a job and financing that substance abuse habit. Other divorces may happen because of violent abuse or verbal abuse, whether or not drugs and alcohol are involved.
Some reasons for divorce are much less dramatic, but no less valid for it. In some cases, divorce takes place due to a simple lack of compatibility with each other, such as very different lifestyle or spending habits or a lack of personal interest. Studies suggest that couples who date for three or more years before marriage have much lower odds of divorce than a couple who married before a full year of dating. This gives both people time to understand each other better and test for compatibility.
Going Through a Divorce
No one enjoys a divorce, but a spouse may find very good reasons to start a divorce and dissolve an abusive household. In some cases, the spouse who is filing for divorce may even relocate to another residence during this proceeding, and keep that address secret from the other spouse for privacy and security. This may be done if the other spouse is violent or otherwise harmful, and the relocating spouse may take their under-18 children with them, too. Either way, the spouse filing for divorce may turn to local divorce law firms and get consultations from the attorneys who work there (this may or may not incur a fee) and hire one. The spouse may interact with their other spouse entirely through their lawyer, though the other spouse may very well hire their own lawyer in response. Both spouses, via their lawyer, may contest the property and money involved in the household, and this may be a messy affair in households with a lot of assets, including children. It may be noted that children aged 12 and over may speak privately with the case’s judge about where they want to live afterwards.
In the case of much less messy divorces, such as one with minimal assets (and no children) and a lack of abuse between spouses, a lawyer might not even be needed. For these relatively clean and simple divorces, a mediator or arbitrator may act as the neutral third party, and that party will help both spouses come up with productive and helpful ideas on how to handle the divorce. This may be done for a small household with minimal assets, where a lack of personal compatibility prompted the divorce.