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Massachusetts Finally Gives Marriage a Break

I live in the state that’s long been considered the worst in the country for divorced men. Not only have we had a long history of lifetime alimony, but the law was written in such a way that when a man or woman remarried, their available income was revised to include the new spouse’s earnings. Using this new higher total, alimony payments to the first spouse would be increased. The law proved harshest to men, who comprise most of the victims of this draconian law, but was outrageously unfair to all.

Today the governor will sign a new bill into law, one that appears to meet a standard of fairness for all parties. From the Boston Globe:

The measure adds some consistency to alimony judgments by curbing lifetime alimony payments and providing caps on the number of years a spouse can receive alimony. The legislation also allows judges more flexibility to make determinations based on a family’s specific circumstances.

…The new legislation makes fundamental changes to existing alimony law.

In most cases, it will put an end to lifetime alimony payments, instead capping the number of years of payment according to the length of marriage.

But family law attorneys are also hoping that the law will allow people divorcing from shorter marriages – people who previously would have received no alimony – to receive a brief period of payments, just enough to get them through the transition period after the divorce.

Under the new law, a judge can rule to end alimony payments if the recipient is living with a new partner in a marriage-like situation.

Rachel Biscardi, who represented the Women’s Bar Association on the task force, says she expects the new law will support marriage and encourage people to make their partnerships official.

“We wanted to make sure that people are not just trying to cohabitate just to avoid alimony,’’ Biscardi said. “We hope that this will make it so that people will get married if they wish to.’’

Emmanuel Dockter, a Boston-based divorce lawyer, said he expects the law will be a good thing for families because it will encourage spouses to reach a settlement rather than take their case to court.

“In the past, it’s been more logical that you take your case as far as you can, because there’s a huge chance that you can get what you want,’’ Dockter said.

Now all we need is for Massachusetts judges to behave rationally and fairly, which may be asking too much. Still, it’s a huge step forward and I welcome it.

Two other articles I liked last week about marriage:

Badger’s Spinster Math (scary)

Cracked.com’s 5 Ways You Know It’s Time to Get Married (funny and insightful, with an “awwww” moment)

  • Stingray

    I will be interested to see how sites around the manosphere react to this.  Especially, the sites who are far less women friendly.

  • http://ifconfig.blogspot.com Fred Woodbridge

    Support marriage: get and stay married.

  • http://www.yohami.com/blog/ YOHAMI

    family law attorneys are also hoping that the law will allow people divorcing from shorter marriages – people who previously would have received no alimony – to receive a brief period of payments, just enough to get them through the transition period after the divorce.

    No comments.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Yohami
      Yeah, not sure what that’s about, but I thought it was a good sign that the male activists are on board, and some greedy divorce lawyers are not.

  • http://gravatar.com/weezul Chris

    That’s a step in the right direction, I think. Not great (Yohami has pointed out why) but it’s something.

    Now if only California would start along the same path…

    Well, no.  Still not going to get married.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      That’s a step in the right direction, I think. Not great (Yohami has pointed out why) but it’s something.

      Well that sounds like cutting off your nose to spite your face. I’m no legal expert, but I’d say that the anti-alimony folks got about 90% of what they wanted with this deal. Here in Massachusetts we’re astounded this finally got done, and that there was broad agreement on the bill. It will be interesting to see how MA stacks up to other states with this new law in place.

  • namae nanka
  • namae nanka

    sorry, the first link should be:

  • ExNewYorker

    I guess beggars can’t be choosers.  A little fairer for men, I suppose…better than the current scenario.

    Of course, that a decent number of men still want to get married, even with such laws, is an indication of hope versus reality.  When I was at STEM Central, it was pretty interesting seeing that the limiting factor wasn’t lack of commitment minded men, but the fact that the similar age women weren’t interested in marriage. The world was their oyster, so to speak…

  • jim

    Problem is the pool of marriagable people is shrinking. And at 40 I wouldn’t even entertain the notion of marriage now. Too risky and many women (from a male’s POV) are not worthy of that kind of commitment. They’re simply too far gone and and becoming that way at younger and younger ages.

    Living in a very liberal college town, I see first hand what women do during their best years and they won’t ever recover from it. Know a just turned 21 year old, nice as can be, body to die for, looks good while she works serving drinks in a dimmed down bar. Happened to run into her in a convenience store and didn’t recognize her without her makeup. She looked at least 30, worn out and tired.

    As I said, the culture is chewing up people left and right and it’s not going to change anytime soon.

     

     

  • namae nanka

    “A little fairer for men, I suppose…better than the current scenario.”

    I don’t know how much it’s like the paternity leave(that’s enforced in norway) which is not really  as much about men-babies connection(and the subsequent pining for children by divorced fathers) but so that the “wage-gap” could be erased. IOW what equality benefits women.

    Women who earn more  and women who marry a divorced man should be finally relieved. Poor women with no prospects have been spurned. (or are they? as yohami points out)

    Ah well, two cats fight, the monkey gains something. Sometimes.

  • namae nanka

    and sorry for the deluge of comments; last, a blast from the past

    http://unknownmisandry.blogspot.com/2011/08/female-anti-misandry-legislators-judges.html

    “The tyranny of modern women, who demand, all rights and refuse all duties, who are marrying men only to lead a careless, workless and childless life, or to obtain a divorceand a lifelong alimony, this shameful tyranny is the underlying cause of all evils.”

    if you pay alimony, you should at least get housekeeping in return.

    ““Charlie Chaplin is one of our most ardent supporters abroad” Herr Kornblueh declared, “and since his divorce, he has written to us assuring our organization of his sympathy and emphasizing the necessity of a world wide movement for the emancipation of the oppressed husbands.”

    http://unknownmisandry.blogspot.com/2011/07/worlds-first-mens-rights-organization.html

  • Stingray

    I was so shocked by <a href=”http://www.daybydaycartoon.com/2011/09/25/”>this</a> that I spread it around a few other sites.  The message is leaking out there.

  • Stingray

    Oops, messed up the html.  Here is the page:

     

    http://www.daybydaycartoon.com/2011/09/25/

  • jamie

    This is great news.  It’s a small victory, yes, but a step towards making people and politicians aware of the injustices of the whole marriage system.  I just hope that the boys can quell their bitterness and keep fighting the good fight. (Yohami..)

  • 108spirits

    I just hope that the boys can quell their bitterness and keep fighting the good fight. (Yohami..)

    How nice, female shaming language plus responsibility shifting all in one short sentence.

     

  • Michael of Charlotte

    Rachel Biscardi, who represented the Women’s Bar Association on the task force, says she expects the new law will support marriage and encourage people to make their partnerships official.

    She can’t possibly believe this.

    Under the new law, a judge can rule to end alimony payments if the recipient is living with a new partner in a marriage-like situation.

    Any man who makes the mistake of looking into the Family Court law will laugh at this statement.  Notice it’s wording that they can, not that they will.  Being fair to men is not what happens in the Family Courts. 

    @Stingray,

    Yep, that’s the reality right there.

    Susan, please less of these articles.  If this article is your attempt to say, “See?  It’s safe for you men to marry,” then it’s falling on deaf ears.

  • jim

    Men seem to forget that they are and always will be the catch. I don’t care what a woman does for a living or how much money she makes. She will be miserable without the commitment of a man sometime in her life. But on a whole, they continuously shoot themselves in the foot by not realizing the feminist agenda, including laws, is preventing that. It’s what they want, do you not get it?

    I don’t know of one man who is keen to preventing any women from working. But I know whole boatload that refuse to get married. And their numbers are growing.

  • http://badgerhut.wordpress.com Badger

    “broad agreement on the bill”

    Shirley this is a Freudian slip, as it was only female support (from paying wives and second wives) that got this bill passed.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Shirley this is a Freudian slip, as it was only female support (from paying wives and second wives) that got this bill passed.

      I meant that the large task force the governor put together was considered unlikely to come up with any workable solution – way too many different perspectives. They surprised everyone when they produced a workable plan. You’re right though – second wives had a huge impact, and rightly so. Incentives drive behavior, so the more that women can see they’re being screwed by feminism, the faster they’ll fight it tooth and nail. Now we’ve got second wives hating the feminist lobby in Massachusetts. Works for me.

  • Celestine

    Too risky and many women  are not worthy of that kind of commitment. Poor women with no prospects have been spurned.

  • Anonymous

    @ Jim

    Don’t really understand your line of reasoning. Marriage is only one form of commitment. :)

    Also, what is the long-term aim of this marriage strike? Generally? Most young women (i.e the next crop of brides 18-26) aren’t that keen on marriage in my experience so I’m a tad perplexed on *who* exactly is being penalised. The only ones who cared for marriage were the religious girls and they don’t have a problem getting hubbies seeing as their demographic marries the earliest, sires the most kids and has the lowest divorce rates. The secular majority brag about not wanting kids or to marry early, if at all nowadays.

    Stalemate maybe?

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Isabel

      The only ones who cared for marriage were the religious girls and they don’t have a problem getting hubbies seeing as their demographic marries the earliest, sires the most kids and has the lowest divorce rates. The secular majority brag about not wanting kids or to marry early, if at all nowadays.

      Really? I’m not sure if it’s different in the UK, but nearly all American women say they want to marry. I do agree that few are marrying early, i.e. <23. The average age of marriage for a college-educated woman is now 28 in the U.S., so certainly in college few women are thinking in terms of marriage. The problem for many women is that they go from "not thinking about that at all right now" to "OMG I'm still single" in a heartbeat. It's as if they flip a switch, yet fail to connect outcomes with the strategy they're been pursuing, either purposely or by default.

  • Isabel

    Anonymous 21# is mine. The layout keeps freezing and switching to the mobile edition. :/

    Wonder how it ties in with hook up fatigue though.

  • http://lgfonevolution.blogspot.com Mats

    How long until the feminist lobby cries “descrimination” ?

  • Quiny

    Thanks for sharing us your insight about marriage.. I really enjoyed reading your article.. Keep up the good work!

  • stillcode

    Westerners who still desire marriage can always marry a foreigner to reduce their risk. As far as Americans are concerned, I believe that the Immigration and Naturalization Services noted a couple of years ago that foreign marriages have a lower divorce risk than domestic marriages, roughly 20% vs 45%.

    Of course, the only way to avoid divorce completely is to not get married in the first place.

    This Massachusetts reform of alimony law is a step in the right direction, but if encouraging marriage is the goal of these law makers nothing less than the complete abolishing of alimony will be needed. Even then, there will be many other hurdles to overcome.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @stillcode

      This Massachusetts reform of alimony law is a step in the right direction, but if encouraging marriage is the goal of these law makers nothing less than the complete abolishing of alimony will be needed. Even then, there will be many other hurdles to overcome.

      I think that’s true for men with strong views about men’s rights, but that’s still obviously not a large enough group to have made a significant difference in MA, even under the old laws:

      Percentage of men married:
      MA: 50%
      US: 52%

      Percentage of men divorced:
      MA: 8%
      US: 9%
      (Pew Research, 2008)

      Massachusetts, along with NY, has the highest median age at first marriage in the country, but a low divorce rate. The rate per 1,000 pop. in MA is 3.4% vs. 6.8% nationally (2002).
      (CDC, 2002).

  • http://unknownmisandry.blogspot.com/ St. Estephe

    For some backround on the 100-year-struggle against alimony injustice in the US, see: http://unknownmisandry.blogspot.com/2011/09/alimony-racket-quotations.html

  • Isabel

    @ Susan

    I don’t know how to quote anymore!

    But yeah. From talking to friends, acquaintances and women in general, marriage is out of fashion. You forget that unlike America, we’re very secular. We may be a Christian nation ‘on the record’ but at best, we’re at cultural Christians only. We’re also the kids of the divorce friendly generation so it’s not uncommon to hear someone cite childhood misery as a reason to boycott marriage.

    Boys with all the trappings of sex without commitment + feminist girls = long-term cohabitation

    Also, almost half of all British children are born out of wedlock:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/5056489/Nearly-half-of-children-born-out-of-wedlock-official-figures-show.html

    So there is no Great Wall or cats for women to be afraid of anymore as the stigma just isn’t there really.

  • Ted

    Wow.  So if we follow the UK, we can look forward to more births out of wedlock, single mothers using tax dollars to raise kids, and more dead beat dads.

  • Isabel

    Actually, Ted, the non-chavette single mothers provide most things out of their own pocket. I have noticed that some do tend to rely on the child’s grandparents who have adequate savings, time and pensions whilst they work. I wouldn’t call the fathers dead beats either. The couples are still together remember? So it’s just two unmarried people raising a child! Tax credits as it said in the article, not so much welfare.

    The really destructive aspect comes out when the same occurs in very deprived areas where the mums don’t really work and the dads are feckless layabouts. Kind of similar to black America’s issues atm if that makes sense?

  • Jonny

    This change in MA law is a step in common sense, but we have already legislated marriage out of the conscienceness of most men and women and the culture has taken children out of the marriage equation for most couples. So the only thing remaining is the dress and the wedding ceremony that still give women the quivers. Maybe if more women stop demanding a ring and traditions that no longer hold any value that they will get married as a civil act. At least this is the least they should hope for unless marriage is completely out of the picture. Funny to read how feminists seem to want to encourage marriage even in a small way long after they destroyed it. I suppose its a small step back. People shouldn’t flock to it like moths to a light. Funny how the unconventional now likes the conventional sort of like gay marriage (in some states) these days. The blind leading the blind.

  • Jonny

    I just noticed that none of the quotes are from clery or religious institutions. Were they consulted at all? Did feminists finally throw they support for marriage after destroying it?

  • Ted

    @Isabel – Maybe its a regional thing, but most of the single mothers around Pittsburgh are truly single, because they either don’t know who the father is, or the father left/was kicked out/whatever and the mother ends up on food stamps and welfare, which is paid for by my tax dollars.  On top of it, those kids end up raised by the school system as the mother is either too busy trying to survive or doesn’t care about the kids other than the extra income they get her, and they grow up to be criminals and thugs.

    And in the US, it isn’t a “black/minority” thing anymore.  In certain areas, it is all about economic class, not the color of your skin.

    In a nutshell, the educated and responsible people aren’t really having many/any kids, and the irresponsible and under educated are breeding like rabbits.  And everything from family court system to welfare promote this bad behavior.

  • jim

    Considering what I’ve seen of the ladette culture in the UK, who in their right mind would marry that? Most of them are pictured plastered all over the magazine pages passed out in the street and in filth. Good job molding them in “respectable” women.

    Women don’t have to want to marry. But I guarantee you that at some point they will want to settle down. Good luck with the broke UK government financing that. Maybe a Muslim will straighten you out with a little Sharia. And good luck in the USA where they are accountable for 62 trillion in spending. Feminism is over ladies. You’re done and the discord and hate you sowed in society will come back. Too bad it’s going to take the innocent women down with you.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Feminism is over ladies. You’re done and the discord and hate you sowed in society will come back. Too bad it’s going to take the innocent women down with you.

      This is not a feminist site. This comment is unnecessarily aggressive toward the women who read here, most of whom are the innocent women you refer to. I really don’t see how it’s helpful to gloat over 20 year olds.

  • http://www.yohami.com/blog/ YOHAMI
  • jim

    Problem with that aspect Yohami is it leaves broken homes and poor women on the dole in many cases. And as I said, broke governments cannot continue to finance it. And if you think feminist are going to ensure government handouts while they themselves hold mostly glorified government welfare jobs that suck the wealth out of the nation and who are financed by the likes of me, then I got waterfront beach property to sell you in Iowa. Game is just about over.

  • Isabel

    @ Jim

    LOL. Yeah, right. Sharia law is opposed by every single man and his dog in Europe.

    Why do you think we have the English Defence League? Arab Spring? Anders Breivik? Not even our Muslim friends are that hot on it seeing as the Saudis are granting women the right to vote before the next general election and have just built the world’s largest university for women only. If anything feminism is spreading. I prefer Susan’s way of looking it as a gradual but assured restructuring brought about by bad experiences and lessons learnt. No need to import a swashbucklin’ Caliphate that couldn’t even thrive in its host country, never mind here. -_-

    And you do realise that you would be forced to convert under their rule or pay more tax than you do currently to your feminist overlords? Have fun combatting licentious hedonism with fascism after everything Europe went through in the 20th century! Looool.

    @ Ted

    So what do you think we should do about it? Ban no-fault divorce and alimony altogether? Restrict welfare for all but the most neediest in society?

    I don’t believe men who say American women are skanks or unworthy of marriage but I do think we need to provide greater incentives for men and make marriage a safe haven again instead of the dodgy gamble it is today. One of the things the Conservatives got right was proposing tax breaks and monetary perks for married couples. :)

  • Ted

    @ Isabel – getting rid of no-fault divorce as it exists in the US today would be a great start.  I for the life of me can’t figure out how a “no-fault” divorce can even occur?  It has to be somebodies fault!  Of course, it didn’t help that adultery is now essentially sanctioned by the state since it is no longer illegal, and no longer grounds for divorce.  My opinion?  If you cheated, the divorce is YOUR fault.  If you both cheated?  I hope you didn’t have children because you are both morally corrupt.

    As far as alimony goes, unless a recently divorced wife has not worked a day in her life since getting married, I don’t see why she should get paid to LEAVE a marriage.  If its about the children, how about let them stay with the father that is making more money and can provide them with a better standard of living?  I’m not about trying to “stick it” to women, but frankly there are very, very few negatives for a women that decides to abandon her marriage for whatever reason.  She has little to no incentive to try harder to make it work when she can simply be granted a no-fault divorce with child support and alimony pretty much by default.

    I’m no bible thumper, and in fact I don’t even consider myself a “holiday” Catholic these days.  But honestly, I believe that as a society we were much more secure when we feared God as a country.  If the UK is as secular as you describe, then the US will be following soon as we continue to push faith out of public life.  I don’t believe that any one religion is the answer, but it seems to me if we have nothing to believe in, no higher power to answer to, we pretty much devolve into the lowest forms of humanity.

  • Isabel

    @ Ted

    Snap. I’ve always been skeptical of no-fault divorce. It’s just a fancier way of saying “I’m bored, my vows meant nothing, toodles bitch!” in my eyes. And I don’t understand why a grown woman with (presumably) an education and the ability to vote, marry, buy and own property etc cannot function as she did before she got married. Bit silly imo.

     

    “I’m no bible thumper, and in fact I don’t even consider myself a “holiday” Catholic these days. But honestly, I believe that as a society we were much more secure when we feared God as a country. If the UK is as secular as you describe, then the US will be following soon as we continue to push faith out of public life. I don’t believe that any one religion is the answer, but it seems to me if we have nothing to believe in, no higher power to answer to, we pretty much devolve into the lowest forms of humanity.”

     

    Nah, don’t agree at all. You don’t need a higher being to separate right from wrong. The state and the church shouldn’t even be aware of each other as far as I’m concerned. Plus, the most religious societies (bar possibly Israel? not sure haha) are far from enlightened or moral in their application of law. I reckon it’s that kind of responsibility shifting that allows people to take liberties.  If you need a God to tell you not to kill me or claim everything I own in court….then I’d be kinda concerned. ¬_¬

     

     

     

  • Anacaona

    I don’t believe that any one religion is the answer, but it seems to me if we have nothing to believe in, no higher power to answer to, we pretty much devolve into the lowest forms of humanity.

    When you don’t believe in God you believe in everything else…say a gay fashion designer I know.

  • Ted

    Isabel – we will have to agree to disagree on the morality issue.  I think you give people way too much credit.   People in general behave because they fear the repercussions if they don’t.  I do NOT believe that people are inherently good and moral, I believe they act good and moral because they do not want to deal with the backlash of NOT being good and moral.  And I honestly believe that the main reason more people are not murdered everyday is because people fear jail.  Unfortunelty, for many of the people living at the bottom of society, jail isn’t such a bad thing as at least you have a roof over your head and hot meals.  And you get to hang out with like minded people.

    So maybe its all about outlook.  I believe people are self serving at the core.  With no concern for repercussions, we would all simply act like the animals we are by nature. In nature, there is no morality.

  • Ted

    and I AM very concerned for exactly the reason you mention.  Without God or something to fear, there really isn’t much to keep people from taking what is mine simply because they want it.  For now its the law (and the fact that here in the US, you never know who has guns handy…) that keep this from happening.  I promise you there are people that would turn to thievery and murder in a split second if they knew they could get away with it.

  • Jonny

    The problem for many women is that they go from “not thinking about that at all right now” to “OMG I’m still single” in a heartbeat. It’s as if they flip a switch, yet fail to connect outcomes with the strategy they’re been pursuing, either purposely or by default.

    This is so obvious, yet not obvious to the women affected by the problem. A woman can’t go from single and carefree to married and bound in one big jump. The change is gradual and over many many years. If a woman wants to marry, she should give herself 5 years from singlehood to marriage. During the initial 1 to 2 years, her behavior should be one of a married woman such as discerning, faithful, and useful. Then as she meets men who are the marrying type, they will see her as the wife that they want to be with. Of course, women who wait until well after 30 will have a hard time of this. Her experience disqualifies her from further consideration unless, of course, she has low or no body counts.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Jonny

      During the initial 1 to 2 years, her behavior should be one of a married woman such as discerning, faithful, and useful.

      I really, really like this. It’s a good prescription for women throughout their lives. It’s not all they can or should be, but these are excellent values.

      Her experience disqualifies her from further consideration unless, of course, she has low or no body counts.

      LOL, I haven’t heard the phrase “body counts” before, but I like it. Better than “partner counts” which always sounds awkward and even PC in a weird way.

  • Anacaona

    @Jonny

    You should read Dalrock’s blog he has a lot of analysis of how women assume that marriage is an easy thing to achieve at any moment they want to and they don’t need any prerequisites because the same that are having sex with them will commit they moment they ask them “to put a ring on it” that is why you see this disconnect of young women going all “I don’t want to get married” for as log as possible because they assume is a sure thing waiting for them. Which it again feminism indoctrination at work demonizing marriage as an oppressive boring institutions only to be taken after you had “fun” and pregnancy something easily achieved even if you are 40. There is a lot of cultural noise covering the real truth of how things actually work.

  • http://www.marriedmansexlife.com Athol Kay: Married Man Sex Life

    I think that’s a lot of improvement for MA law. It was frankly insane alimony laws there before now.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Athol
      Hello friend! I know you’re in the same position I am. So many blogs, so little time to comment. I’m delighted you stopped by, thanks.

  • C

    I am glad that they just made adjustments to the alimony laws instead of getting rid of them all together. In many cases alimony is fair and reasonable.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @C

      In many cases alimony is fair and reasonable.

      That is certainly true. I remember when Jack Welch threw over his wife of many years for Suzy Wetlaufer. I hoped she would take him for a huge sum.

      Each case is different. What is not fair is a man’s paying alimony to a woman who doesn’t really need financial assistance. Or a man’s second wife paying alimony to a first wife. Or a first wife cohabiting with a partner for 10+ years while continuing to receive alimony, just because she hasn’t legally remarried. The new law remedies much of this unfairness.

  • PioneerValleyWoman

    Ms. Walsh:

    You’re right though – second wives had a huge impact, and rightly so. Incentives drive behavior, so the more that women can see they’re being screwed by feminism, the faster they’ll fight it tooth and nail. Now we’ve got second wives hating the feminist lobby in Massachusetts. Works for me.

    My reply:

    I would be curious to know when the laws/practices being reformed were first passed/implemented–in the 1970s or before?  It seems to me that feminists in the 1970s would not have been behind the idea of permanent alimony–equal treatment for them means women must be less dependent on men; instead, it seems the traditionalists would have wanted it, ie., if the laws/practices predate the 1970s. 

    Prior to the 1970s, I would bet the traditionalist protectionist impulse would have prevailed.  Here, I mean traditionalists as women who married young, never worked and who thus could not support themselves well in the current workplace.  It seems first wives were presumed to fit into this rubric, thus the challenges of first wives getting all these protections when they might not need it, or they were able to game the system, as you described it:  “What is not fair is a man’s paying alimony to a woman who doesn’t really need financial assistance. Or a man’s second wife paying alimony to a first wife. Or a first wife cohabiting with a partner for 10+ years while continuing to receive alimony, just because she hasn’t legally remarried. The new law remedies much of this unfairness.”

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @PVW
      What you say makes sense, you are probably correct. I haven’t studied the history of the law, nor have I carefully tracked the feminist response to the change in the law, if there’s been one. As such, I spoke out of turn there. I assumed that feminists would be opposed because men’s rights groups were very active in getting the law changed, but it is only an assumption. The most vocal dissent I saw was actually from divorce lawyers, who obviously stand to lose income if there is less battling over assets.

  • dragnet

    While this is an decent development, let’s not forget that change was only brought about because the new spouses of ex-husbands were being victimized and forced to contribute to the alimony paid to ex-wives. When men alone were being victimized by these archaic and abusive statutes nothing at all was done. No one cared a whit.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @dragnet

      When men alone were being victimized by these archaic and abusive statutes nothing at all was done. No one cared a whit.

      True, which just proves that men are not going to be successful without help from women. The MRAs need women, it’s obvious. It’s one of the reasons I wrote this post – I want women to be aware of what’s going on. When I have discussed the alimony issue with my highly educated and well-informed women friends, they’ve been largely unaware of MA law, even though the Globe has given it some attention. None of them have been through divorce, so they had no personal stake in the matter. They would much sooner listen to me than an angry divorced man.

  • 108spirits

    True, which just proves that men are not going to be successful without help from women. The MRAs need women, it’s obvious.

    Only the ones who are currently stuck with a woman. As more & more men refuse to commit & marry, it won’t be the case anymore. Most of men’s current problems with the system will be gone when they discover that they don’t need women, and it’s actually the other way around.

     

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @108spirits
      True, if MGTOW they will be shielded from the laws entirely. But I believe that will always be a small minority. The impact would be huge – say, 10% of men choosing that. But most men will still seek out women for sex and companionship, if not for marriage.

  • Doug1

    Alimony should be abolished in this age of high rates of no fault divorce about 2.5 times as often initiated by women as men (with many divorce attorneys saying that in college educated couples with kids its more like 90% of the time the wife really being the one pushing for it).

    In 2007 96% of alimony was paid by men to women.

    Women graduate from college now at an almost 50% greater rate than men, and can have jobs and careers at essentially all levels of the workplace.   Women are usually married to men who make more than they do, but that’s due to 1) female status and income potential hypergamy and 2) female preference for working less compared to men, and considering job satisfaction and working conditions relatively higher on their scale compared to income than men do.  This later is related to the fact that women earning more and especially earning more than their husbands is way down the list of factors that attract men to women and in fact the later can be and often is a negative for the large majority of men.   The reverse is true in factors that attract women to men as marriage partners.

    When marriages end women are no longer doing anything for their ex husbands.  Why should he have to something for her.  Why does he owe her the standard of living she became accustomed to when she was living with him, providing him wifely services including sex, and so on?  If she wants that same standard of living to continue she should continue giving those things to him in a satisfactory fashion, or find another man of comparable or greater income to provide that standard of living for her, in supplementation of her own earning abilities.

     

     

  • Doug1

    Texas is so far as I know the best state in the union for men in divorce.  It’s really MUCH better than most or really nearly all.

    1)      They strongly disfavor alimony regardless of the earnings gap between the ex spouses and rarely grant it for more than three years.

    2)      Although the percentages of child support=also stealth alimony for one and two children of 20% and 25% are fairly typical (though the 25% for two is lower than most states), what isn’t typical at all is that those percentages are applied to AFTER ALL TAXES income only.  In fact it’s the only state that does that, that I have discovered.   Note that this will not lower the child support ex wives get from lower earners compared to other states much, but it will be MUCH fairer to upper middle class and above earning men, who are relatively screwed the most in most states.  The really rich tend to get judicial or other caps on how much they pay in most states, so the percentage of their actual after tax income they have to pay is less than for the upper upper middle class.   Further those percentages are caped by being applied to the first $7500 a month income only, which for very high earners is a very big deal.  California and NY have caps as well but way up there at $300k and iirc $400k a year income respectively.

    3)      On division of really large wealth earned in the marriage they follow most states in dividing that in half absent a prenup, but they do enforce prenups that differ greatly from this.     Further they don’t include property acquired prior to the marriage as some states tend to do.