Bill in Massachusetts could make Sex during Divorce Illegal


Bill in Massachusetts could make Sex during Divorce Illegal

If caught red handed between the sheets during your divorce, the law could have something to say about that if a new bill in Massachusetts passes, as it could make sex during divorce illegal. One stipulation of the proposed law is that you must have children living in the house with you and the divorce hasn’t been finalized yet. So after the divorce is finalized it’s perfectly legal to bring someone home if children are in the house, but it isn’t legal if divorce proceedings aren’t final? What kind of logic is that?

If a judge signs off on this tryst then you are off the hook, according to the bill. Wake a judge up in the middle of the night and see what kind of mood he is in to put his signature on an order like that. The bill actually reads like this “In divorce, separation, or 209A proceedings involving children and a marital home, the party remaining in the home shall not conduct a dating or sexual relationship within the home until a divorce is final and all financial and custody issues are resolved, unless the express permission is granted by the courts.”

State Sen. Richard Ross (R) filed the bill in the early months of 2013. He did so for a constituent of his Wrentham Selectman Robert Leclair. This bill was extended in March and will be on the floor of the state legislature in June. Senator Ross filed it on behalf of his constituent but according to a report he does not “support it.” Leclair, once the president of Fathers United for Equal Justice and having gone through a bitter divorce, is the primary architect and promoter of this bill. According to Russia Today, Leclair spoke of the bill saying that the bill would safeguard children during the divorce process. This law would have to be approved by the state legislature and the governor in order to be passed into law, a prospect that seems rather unlikely.

Certainly this bill will have personal liberty advocates up in arms. But it seems to be merely a way for a powerful man to publicly humiliate his wife by way of forcing a politician to propose an unjust or quixotic bill. This bill is a waste of state legislature’s time and the taxpayer’s money. In addition, bills such as this make a mockery of the legislative process. Certainly everyone except Leclair finds this utterly ridiculous. We’ll see if a defamation suit is filed by his ex-wife in the aftermath of this menagerie. For advice on getting through your divorce read, Conscious Divorce: Ending a Marriage with Integrity by Susan Allison.

Will we See Online Marriage Counseling to Stop Divorce?


Will we See Online Marriage Counseling to Stop Divorce?

We see all kinds of online options today. There’s online shopping, music, videos, social media, apps that do just about everything, even online dating. In fact, one study showed that those marriages where the people met online suffered less divorce than their offline counterparts. Today lots of people looking for a therapist seek out Google rather than asking their physician as was done in the olden days. So if we see all kinds of communications and commerce happening online, will we see online marriage counseling to stop divorce? The problem is that doing counseling over the phone, via Skype, Google Hangouts or Facetime is illegal. Though practitioners say that the breakthroughs one experiences in therapy can be had via electronic media and have just as much impact as those that occur face-to-face, it’s the law that’s getting in the way for this to happen. Many state laws prohibit therapy treatment to occur across state lines. Each psychologist’s license is issued by the state where they reside. The legal consequences of practicing therapy across state lines bar most if not all therapists from doing so. Even within some states, administering therapy via Skype or some other electronic media is illegal unless the client had an in-person offline professional relationship with the therapist previous to the use of Skype.

However we may see online therapy and marriage counseling in the near future. Recently in New York a proposed change in the law would extend the ability to use tele-health as a legal option for healthcare providers. The Federation of State Medical Boards would make electronic media such as Skype available for medical health treatment. The technology has come so far and communication technology’s cost cutting would also greatly benefit the healthcare industry. But what psychologists are hoping is that this will set up a precedent where someday therapy may be available over the internet as well. There is one healthcare establishment currently in America that is offering therapy over the phone and online, the Veteran’s Administration, commonly known as the VA. A lot of veterans come from rural areas where few mental health resources are available. These veterans, now returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, have serious issues that they need to work through, including many reported to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Colorado based therapist Susan Heitler, Ph.D. recently wrote in Psychology Today, “To their credit, the Veterans Administration has launched forth to become a leader in tele-mental Health.” Former undersecretary of health for the US Department of Veterans Affairs Robert Petzel, MD testified that the VA has administered to almost 500,000 veterans tele-health and tele-mental health services, distributed through 750 out-patient clinics and 150 medical centers nationwide.

NPR recently did a story about the benefits of tele-health and tele-mental health. CBS’s New York affiliate also did a piece on online help for couples. Still, beware. If you do find a counselor or online therapist, do not use their services. They are not operating legally and are minimally trained, if at all. Still, online therapy can certainly help couples just as any other therapy would. What’s more, couples could punch in together, say through Google Hangouts, with the therapist while at lunch at work, and don’t have to miss an appointment when they are on a business trip, in the hospital for something minor and so on. When looking for a marriage counselor, make sure to seek out a licensed, reputable professional that both of you feel comfortable opening up to. Make sure they have experience dealing with the problems with which you and your spouse are facing. Marriage education is one inexpensive way to deal with typical marriage problems. Resources can be found online or in your local library or bookstore. Marriage counseling, however, is dealing with a couple’s particular issues and so varies greatly. Though marriage counseling via Skype and other methods continues to be illegal, initial thoughts from both the VA and counselors show that it will be a very effective method in addressing couple’s issues. Online marriage counseling and coaching should be here in the near future. But if you can’t wait that long, in the meantime pick up a copy of The Power of Two by Susan Heitler, Ph.D.

You’ll Regret Getting Revenge


You’ll Regret Getting Revenge

Almost everyone has a revenge fantasy against the one that broke their heart and dragged it through the mud. But in real life they seem at the same time funny but also sad. And how do people reflect on the woman pulling them off? For instance, there was a Canadian woman who sold all of her husband’s belongings on Craigslist. One line she included in the post “Don’t come too early (like he did).” This, at the same time again, seems funny and sad. But does she look dignified in the breakup? Or does this act of revenge take her down a couple of pegs, too? Women sometimes take pleasure in thinking up dramatic revenge plots to get even with their monstrous exes. But isn’t the best revenge living well and showing him what they are missing? These actual plots, though so fulfilling at the time, just make you look desperate, conniving and twisted. While the ex looks more attractive in consequence because would a girl really go through all that trouble if he wasn’t worth it? You definitely don’t want a revenge scheme blowing up in your face, dragging you into court, embarrassing you on the internet which could affect your job and future dating prospects. It’s better to let the revenge fantasies stay in their realm.

You could make him feel as if he was justified in whatever he did. Because if you stoop to his level you are no longer above him. What does it say about how you handle hard times? Your job may see the video on Facebook let’s say and have second thoughts about you. How does this reflect on the company? Does it also mean you can’t handle work related crises? You don’t want them questioning your every move from now on. You could even get fired depending on how far you go. It could affect your future love life, too. A man who wants to marry a great girl knows that hard times are bound to come. But when he sees her taking part in some elaborate revenge plot he automatically takes her off his potential list. He doesn’t think she can handle things and he never wants to be in her sights. You don’t want to come off as undatable. Though this breakup does look like the end of the world, your life will go on after this and he will likely fade into the background. But any revenge ploy you try to pull off may follow you or make guys act like you are garlic and they are the vampires. Though that analogy may seem amusing, you’ll eventually want to be approached by guys and this could get in the way. For a lighthearted look into stories of divorce and revenge, read Breakup Cocktail: 5 Parts Laughter, 1 Part Healing and a Twist of Revenge by Barbara Kingsley Singer.

During A Divorce, Your Spouse Does Not Have The Right To Use Your Credit Card(s)

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Protecting your credit will be crucial during your divorce.  Once you’ve started the divorce process, your spouse no longer has the right to use your credit card(s).  Any finances that may be allocated to your ex will be decided upon by the court system and it is illegal for your ex to use any credit cards that are under your name only.  Your ex may claim that he or she needs the funds to pay for household items, things for the children, and so forth, but it’s your choice whether or not to allow your ex to use your funds in this manner.

If you allow your ex to use your credit or debit card(s) to purchase limitless items for whatever purpose, it will be difficult to get credit for that money you spent later when the topics of alimony or equitable distribution arise.  You’re better off financially to allow the legal system to decide how much money you should give your ex by way of alimony, child support, or both, opposed to giving free access to your personal funds.

If you have joint accounts with your ex and want to protect your finances, you can request a temporary order from the court that can help you do this.  The separation of joint accounts will come later once equitable distribution has been decided and a court order has been made.