The NYT article, How Divorce Lost its Cachet, discussed the decrease in the number of divorces for this generation of Americans – that correct I said “decrease”. It gives some very interesting theories. The one I like the best suggests that we represent the first generation of children for whom divorce was not stigmatized. Even in the Catholic School I attended, there were many – students and teachers, who were at some level involved in a divorce and therefore we, children of the 70’s and 80’s, would not get end up in that situation and re-live their parent’s “sloppy divorces.”
The thing that really drove me to post and discuss this article is dealing with custody matters. As someone who does a reasonable amount of divorce, there is nothing more difficult than dealing with a contentious custody issue. The article quotes Joanna Roth, a Harvard-educated lawyer who aptly states “since the 1990s, we’ve been trying to come up with a process that is more emotionally humane and accounts for the interests of children…” She continues by acknowledging that most parents have their children foremost in their minds. I sadly have my doubts.
I think most parents’ intentions are aimed at good when it comes to the children; but often their actions go astray. If you fight over every second of the child’s time, I believe it isn’t fair to the children or to you. Sure, in many instances one parent is more suited to deal with the day to day child rearing. (Sorry dads, but traditional roles suggest that it is mom.) However as people get their “sea legs” the roles will change and parents should look to as close to equal time as possible when possible.
The fighting will stop – it always does. When it does, let’s not leave a field of casualties behind.