There is good news in the marriage world. Across the country, divorce rates are on the decline. In fact, New York Daily News reports that divorce rates are the lowest they have been in 35 years.
Some couples are unsure if divorce is the right answer to their problems and want to legally separate to experience what it would be like to live apart before making a final decision. Other couples are sure they want a divorce, but would like a legal separation first because of financial or other benefits of a legal separation. Some couples also would like to live apart because religious or other reasons prevent them from getting a divorce.
There are many reasons why a married couple may decide to legally separate and many often do without going the route of a legal separation. It may help to know what makes a legal separation different from simply living apart and what benefits it can offer.
There are many reasons why a divorce isn't something you want to rush into. In some courts, a judge will even require a couple to sit on a divorce petition for a specified length of time before proceeding to confirm this is truly the direction they want to go. It makes sense. A divorce can be a time-consuming and draining ordeal and should not be entered into lightly. Once it is done, it is done, and the orders put in place are legal and binding.
A legal separation is another option instead of filing for divorce. When spouses no longer wish to reside in the same home, but aren't ready or do not want to divorce, yet want to have their legal rights protected, a legal separation can be sought. Most issues that can be settled during a divorce can also be resolved during a legal separation. The only difference is that unlike a divorce, the parties involved in a legal separation are still legally married and, therefore, cannot remarry.
A survey conducted to promote a television show may not be the most scientific poll ever done. But a survey released on behalf of the show “The Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce” does raise interesting questions about whether it is ever truly over for many once-married people.
Last month, we discussed the legal process and requirements for becoming legally separated in New York State. Some readers may have been left wondering why a married couple would want to enter into this marital status. It must seem to many that it lacks many of the advantages of marriage, while not allowing a final break like divorce can.
Divorce is not for every couple in Buffalo. Some people object to divorce for religious or personal reasons, but nevertheless no longer wish to live with their spouse. Others are considering divorce, but want to live apart for a while first, perhaps while working with their spouse to try to repair their marriage.
"We are staying together for the sake of the kids." That is a statement that used to be heard often decades ago. It may be used by some still today. But many experts question whether parents really do their children any favors by staying together when their marriage is on the rocks.
Traditional marriage vows have been repeated so many times that, to many of us, they are a cliche: for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health. Truth be told, vows are only words until they are put into practice. And when things go from "in health" to "in sickness," it can put a real strain on a marriage.