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More Same Sex Marriage Means More Same Sex Divorce

Written by Jackie Pilossoph. Posted in coping with divorce, newly separated


same sex marriage



same sex marriage




With the recent Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage, I have to believe: More same sex marriage will lead to more same sex divorce. In this week’s Love Essentially, published yesterday in Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press, I explore what the ruling means for divorce, and possible ways to cope.


Gay Marriage Ruling Brings Gay Divorce Questions To Mind  by Jackie Pilossoph

Hearing about the Supreme Court’s ruling last week to make same-sex marriage a right nationwide got me thinking.

While I loved seeing reaction photos in the news – the huge smiles, the excitement, the cheers, the expressions of hope – one very negative word is lurking in the back of my mind: divorce.

I don’t say that because I’m a pessimistic person or because I’m trying to ruin anyone’s newfound joy, but rather because the reality is, more marriages almost certainly will lead to more divorces.
Meighan Harmon is a divorce attorney and senior partner at Chicago law firm Schiller DuCanto & Fleck. I asked Harmon what the Supreme Court’s decision meant for divorce from a legal standpoint.

“The complexity and lack of clarity on how same-sex marriages are treated state by state is now gone,” said Harmon, who has been a divorce attorney for 19 years. “In other words, the recent Supreme Court ruling helps make divorce possible for same-sex couples who might move to a state that previously didn’t acknowledge same-sex marriage.”

Harmon said the likely outcome is that many of those states will have legislation going forward either accepting the right for gay marriage or at a minimum acknowledging same-sex marriages that occur in other states.

“You are no longer going to have a situation where someone is in legal no mans land should they want to get divorced,” she said.
I’m divorced, and what I can say to any couple, same-sex or not, is that divorce is an incredibly tragic, difficult and painful experience. Divorce not only hits you from a legal standpoint, but can devastate finances, impact children in a negative way, and worst of all, tear at your gut emotionally, leaving incredibly deep scars that really never heal completely.

Am I saying that divorced people don’t end up happy? Absolutely not. I can honestly say that I feel fulfilled, happy and at peace with my life. I’ll even go so far as to use the word blissful! But, it took a long time to get here.

Nine years ago, when I was going through my divorce, here were some thoughts that were going through my head:

• I am going broke.

• How am I going to get a full-time job when I’ve been out of the workforce for 11 years? I should never have given up my lucrative career to be a stay-at-home mom.

• Why do I feel like I’m at war with the man I promised to love until death do us part?

No man will ever love me or want to have sex with me again.

• My kids are going to cry and tell me they miss daddy every day for the rest of their lives.

• My ex is going to live happily ever after with his new girlfriend and I’m going to end up alone.

• I feel lonely and isolated.

• I’m old, flabby, and badly in need of Botox.
That was rock bottom. But I have to say, as bad as it got, it didn’t take long to start feeling better. Even in the first few months, things started getting easier.

To what do I credit the quick improvement? Click here to read the rest of the article, published yesterday in Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press.

Amicable Turned Ugly Divorce: 9 Reasons It Could Happen

Written by Jackie Pilossoph. Posted in divorce advice, divorce anger, drinking and alcoholism, newly separated, relationship with ex


ugly divorce






When someone tells me they are going through “an amicable” divorce, I tend to feel skeptical. While I’d like to think it’s possible to have a friendly divorce, I have a hard time believing it will stay that way, just because amicable and the division of assets, along with a child custody schedule just don’t go hand in hand. Also, let’s not forget the elements of resentment, anger, hurt and fear that are part of every divorce.


Often times, divorces start out amicable. “We’re not going to be like all those other people,” a couple will say. “We respect each other and we both want this, so let’s set an example and show everyone that it’s possible to have a friendly breakup,” they might say. But then, reality sets in. Something happens and someone gets mad, which results in offsetting the course. All of a sudden, the divorce turns really ugly.


Here are some possible reasons for an amicable turned ugly divorce:


  1. One person finds out the other person is dating someone. Perhaps the number one reason a divorce goes south. Even if the man or woman was the one who wanted the divorce, the minute their soon to be ex gets a girlfriend (or boyfriend) they go ballistic and get insanely angry and jealous. It doesn’t make sense, but it really does happen a lot.


  1. Someone’s attorney talks them into going for more money. Be very careful when choosing your attorney and make sure you trust him/her. I have seen attorneys blow deals that were put together by two consenting adults, because the attorney –in his or her defense—was trying to get the person more money. In other words, he or she felt they were just doing their job, but it backfired. I’m not saying don’t listen to your attorney’s advice, but everything has to be weighed. Is it worth it to walk out of the marriage with a little less money if it’s going to help keep things smooth and settle quicker?


  1. One of the people finds out from someone in the community that the other cheated while they were married. Gossip after a breakup happens all the time. It can be really hurtful.


  1. Friends and family begin to talk negatively about the spouse. They might say things like, “I would hate him if I were you.or “I never liked the way he treated you.” The person getting divorced starts to think about it and gets resentful, or feels like they SHOULD hate their soon to be ex—like it’s expected or something.


  1. Resentment starts to build and one or both people start thinking about the past. Where do you think the phrase, “He took the best years of my life” came from?



  1. Reality sets in and people realize it’s for real.


  1. One or both people get scared, which always drives anger. Being afraid causes people to get angry and mean. It’s just a fact.


  1. One person becomes unhappy, either at work or in another relationship, and focuses the anger and frustration on the soon-to-be ex. Someone who is miserable will take it out on someone close to him/her and what better person to do that than their soon-to-be ex? They start to blame the person for everything negative in their life.


  1. One person develops an addiction. People who have addictions blame everyone else for their problems and refuse to take accountability for anything that goes wrong. An alcoholic might tell their spouse, “You’re the reason I drink,” or “You’re the reason we’re getting divorced,” and “My life will be so much better once you are out of it.”


If a divorce turns ugly, it can be exhausting, upsetting, and basically a roller coaster ride that goes from bad to worse. Plus, it doesn’t stop even after the divorce decree is signed and the divorce is official.


How do you deal? Try your very very hardest to keep the emotion out of the divorce. Treat it like a business deal and don’t take anything personal. Remember, a lot of times, when you read lawyer jargon, it was written by your ex’s attorney-not your ex.


The other thing to do is try to enjoy something out of every day. Because an ugly divorce means lots of unpredictability and bombs dropped. It feels uneasy and creepy and scary. So, since there’s nothing you can do to change that, focus on enjoying your days in some way, with your kids, with your career, with your family, and with your own life. Grab some kind of enjoyment every single day. (everyone should do that-not just people going through ugly divorces!)


Lastly, remember that your divorce wiill someday end, and hopefully your ugly divorce will turn into an amicable post divorce relationship.



Coming Soon!



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