Which is better, Adultery or Divorce?

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Which is better, Adultery or Divorce?

When in a dysfunctional marriage where you both feel a real relationship is out of the question, but you decide to stay together for financial reasons, for the sake of the children or because it’s too painful or burdensome to get divorced, in this situation it’s difficult to know how to proceed. Is adultery then the only way forward? Or should they just go ahead and get divorced? In the long run, which is better, adultery or divorce? Each person and couple in this unfortunate predicament must evaluate carefully how they each feel, using their values, judgment and beliefs in order to decide what is best for them. So then since everyone is different, we can’t ask which is better in a large blanket statement, since everyone must evaluate for themselves. But in general, which of the two alternatives is morally a better choice, adultery or divorce? This is not in terms of a bilateral divorce where both parties decide to get divorced. Nor is it unilateral where one person wants a divorce but the other does not. This is when one person is interested in taking part in a romantic and physical relationship with another outside the marriage.

From an ethical standpoint divorce is a far better choice as it does not involve deception. If you are in a loveless marriage but decide to stay together for financial reasons but are childless talk to your spouse about having an open marriage. At least if there is a way to communicate honestly about things, perhaps there is a chance not of reconciling the relationship but the mutual respect that both people shared. If the couple has children, it’s a much thornier issue. They will find out sooner or later that mommy or daddy has someone else. So how do you counteract this? Divorce would be the better option there. Or perhaps separation if the financial burden is too much. If this is a high conflict relationship get out. High conflict homes are the worst environments to raise children in. It would be much better to have two divorced but happier, well-adjusted homes than one miserable one together. The deception part of adultery, especially if it’s long term or serial adultery is the worst part. It shows a grave disrespect for the other person. Like it or not when we marry we attach ourselves to a legal and social union. It may not be easy when marriage falls apart. If you are in this situation, learn to talk to one another and solve things so you can find mutual happiness in some way. See what can be worked out. Give respect and expect it in return. Sooner or later all the tumblers will fall into place. To learn more about adultery in marriage read, Parents Who Cheat: How Children and Adults are Affected When Their Parents are Unfaithful by Ana Nogales, Ph.D.

Are you the Chick on the Side?

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Are you the Chick on the Side?

Are you dating someone who is acting funny? There are lots of players out there. If you are looking for a long term relationship you don’t want to waste your time. And there are lots of smooth players out there that will make you feel as if you are the only one, when in reality they are balancing a bunch of different girls at one time. So what are the warning signs? How do you know when you are the chick on the side?

First, have you ever been invited to his place? Do you even know where he lives? It’s okay if you two have just started dating. But after a couple of months or so, if you haven’t seen where a guy lives it’s just plain weird. He may live with someone or he has so many girls in and out that he doesn’t want to risk someone leaving something and tipping off one of his dates. He could also live with a woman and he’s afraid of tipping her off. He could also be embarrassed by where he lives, especially if you make more than him. What about his social networking sites? Are you two friends on Facebook, Twitter and so on? If not, does he have some excuse why not or does he say he doesn’t use these sites? If so, he may not want his main squeeze to be aware of you, so he locks down his sites or, if he’s a player, doesn’t use them for anyone but his closest inner circle to keep from being caught.

Is your guy territorial about his phone? If he takes all his calls in another room, turns the volume way down so you can’t hear it, and always has it locked than he may have someone else. He knows that his phone is one of the weak points, and an easy way to get caught, and so has minimized the chance of you overhearing something that will break the whole thing wide open. Does this guy make time for you? If he only texts you late at night, is always busy, and calls and texts intermittently, sometimes days later, then you are probably the chick on the side. A man makes time for the woman he’s interested in. So if he’s acting this way he is making time for her, not for you. If he has a really busy schedule however, he’s in medical school, receiving intense training, or some other career that is hogging all of his time, or if he’s an intense workaholic perhaps he’s committed to his job rather than another woman. Then you have to discover whether or not you can date someone who has limited time to spend on the relationship.

Does your guy plan everything out? If you want to meet unplanned for a lunch date, or you invite him somewhere right out of the blue can he go? If all of your dates are planned days or even weeks in advance, if he is never available on the fly this is bad news. He probably has to lie to his main squeeze to see you and can’t get away. Plan something spontaneous and enticing and see if he takes the bate or still refuses. Look for more than one warning sign. See if you can catch him. Or ask him directly if he’s seeing someone else. Don’t waste your time with someone who won’t make you the focus of his love life. Find someone who will. You are so worth it. For more advice read, Don’t Hate the Player, Learn the Game: How to Spot Ineligible Eligible Bachelors by Lyn Lewis, Ph.D.

Should we be Happy about the High Divorce Rate?

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Should we be Happy about the High Divorce Rate?

According to the U.S. Census Bureau data, our sour mood on marriage has been sustained for three consecutive years in a row, 2009-2012 with signs that it hasn’t abated. We’ll see what the newest numbers bring. The number of divorces in 2012 reached a record-high of 2.4 million. Not only are we ending more marriages but fewer are being created according to the National Center for Family and Marriage Research. Their findings show the marriage rate is down a whopping 60%.

If you are a believer in marriage, even hoping it’s coming for you, these stats can put you down in the dumps. But just like with every thunderhead the clearest sunny day follows. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, all this divorcing is good for the economy. Two separated people have to get two separate houses, or at least two distinct places to live. That means new leases or mortgages and more money flowing into the economy. That’s good for everyone else. The bad news? There isn’t much benefit to the individual.

Single women are the biggest growing demographic in the economy. They are also buying houses in droves according to the U.S. Association of Realtors. Richard R. Peterso, author of the book Women, Work, and Divorce recently said that, “Divorced and never-married women are more likely to work and to work more hours per year, and are less likely to withdraw from the labor force, than married women.” According to investment website LearnVest.com those who are single shell out more for the privilege of living alone, $67,000 more over six decades.

A recent story in The Atlantic stated that women can expect to make one million dollars more if you take taxes, healthcare and other things such as this into consideration. Though a bad economy usually increases divorce rates, due to the strain it puts on couples, some experts believe lots of people are staying separated, cohabitating instead of getting married and altogether avoiding divorce. Only with time will we see what actually happened to marriage due to the Great Recession.

The Aftereffects of Cheating on a Marriage

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The Aftereffects of Cheating on a Marriage

Once you find out about cheating, it can cut you so deep that it feels as though the pain will never go away. If you are the cheater you start to realize how getting sucked up in the moment can have tremendous consequences on your life. But what are the real aftereffects of cheating on a marriage? If you are staying together, it means trying to pick up the pieces and reestablish trust, no easy feat there. You may feel like you are in jail or constantly on trial in your own house. If you are the victim of cheating you’ll feel like you’re living with a criminal, someone who reminds you constantly of the betrayal, someone you are always suspicious of no matter what they are doing. It’s hard to reestablish trust and it takes lots of time.

If you aren’t staying together, realize that unless the assets were used to conduct an affair, no fault divorce laws in every state means that cheating has no legal bearing on the separation of assets. In Florida the law is such that if a husband was meeting a lover, let’s say at a hotel room using his and his wife’s shared account, if she can prove it she can recoup that money. Adultery may come into play in a custody battle if the lawyer can prove that it shows evidence of that person being a bad parent.

The psychological aftereffects of cheating after divorce are low self-esteem, anxiety, anger and the need for revenge, depression and for some a disconnect from reality. Sometimes you realize the affair all of a sudden and it ends the marriage. Sometimes it’s one person’s dirty little secret that the other knows about, but tolerates for a time. But sooner or later enough is enough. Either way when you find out you’ve been cheated on the pain can be overwhelming. And when it leads to a divorce it is compounded, especially if it is a long, drawn out and painful divorce with fighting over the assets or custody of the children.

Lots of people need to rest after that, reconnect with themselves, their friends, and their family. They have to get used to being divorced and being single again. There are lots of adjustments to be made. Where will you live? Do you have to go back to work? There’s the need for validation which usually comes from dating again or a rebound relationship. Am I attractive? Will others find me sexy? Sooner or later everyone gets over infidelity even if it leads to divorce. It’s a painful journey but light is at the end of that tunnel. Usually things fall into place in the long run. For more help with recovering from an affair, read the book, Transcending Post-Infidelity Stress Disorder (PISD): The Six Stages of Healing by Dennis C. Ortman, Ph.D.

Harsh but True Reasons not to Have Kids

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Harsh but True Reasons not to Have Kids

Everyone knows all the good reasons to have children. From carrying on the family name, to bringing a completely new life into the world, to seeing the most beautiful parts of your partner and you developing in a new human being, it can be a pretty incredible experience. Lots of people get caught up in these lofty ideas however and ignore the harsh reality, the sad but true reasons many people chose not to have kids. One reason is that they are so expensive. You can go broke trying to pay for a child. One study found that having a child in America in the end costs the same as a new home. If you and your sweetie are barely squeaking out a living consider the cost before having a baby.

A psychological reason is that you will likely cause some sort of trauma to the child, like it or not, that you and they will have to live with for the rest of their lives. No one is perfect. And in fact the harder you try to be the perfect parent the more overbearing you’ll be, and the more likely to hurt your child. In this, a lot of children grow up to resent their parents. So you put all of your time, money and energy into someone who grows up to resent you? How is that even close to fair?

If you are planning to have a prosperous career or follow your passion, your energy won’t be on your kids. Likewise if you are too career minded your kids will suffer. It’s hard to have complete focus and energy on something. But when your energy is so separated than you can’t throw everything you have into something and see the most success. Another problem, you won’t have any privacy anymore, at least until they move out. And the way this economy is going that can be decades later. Everything will have to be planned around your kids. Your life as you know it will cease to exist. You can’t exactly have a life of your own anymore.

Your kid will act poorly at some point, even the best behaved. It will reflect poorly on you. Yet you will still be required to love your child. Certainly it’s important to evaluate your desire, maturity level, and the desire and the maturity level of your partner, and even your financial and living situation before deciding to have children. You have to be ready to give your everything to them. Your first concern has to be them, or else they won’t turn out right and everything will come crashing down. Certainly there are no perfect parents. If it’s the right path for you, you just have to try your best. For more advice read, Complete Without Kids: An Insider’s Guide to Childfree Living by Choice or by Chance by Ellen L. Walker, Ph.D.