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Conceptions Of Divorce

Conceptions Of Divorce Conceptions of Divorce Is marriage no more than the result of voluntary agreements between two private individuals? Is the lack of detail concerning marriage arrangements causing all the divorce debates? Does divorce cause problems or solve them? Why is marriage such a religious experience and divorce such a legal experience? Why do marriages take place under the eyes of God while divorces take place under the eyes of the law? I believe that it was because of my parents’ divorce that I have chosen to tackle such a controversial topic. In many ways, I am in search of my own opinion. My parents divorced through the no-fault system. My dad decided it was time to move on to another life I guess. The no-fault divorce is a form of divorce granted without blame being sought or established. Sometimes, I try to think of how my life would have turned out if they were still together.

I wonder if life would be any better. However, there are other days when I thank God for putting me through such troubling times; without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today. What troubles me with marriage/divorce issues is that one is dealt with while the other lies on the floor. Today, we discuss marriage, and we discuss divorce, but never both at the same time. Should we push premarital counseling, or should we make divorce harder? Why must we discuss one or the other and not both? There are so many questions concerning marriage and divorce, and that is why I’m writing to you.

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I hope to answer some questions you may have. Though you may not form an opinion about no-fault divorce, you should finish this article with a little satisfaction, knowing that you’ve seen both sides of the issue. There are many people who have spoken out about no-fault divorce and family relationships, but I will focus on two. In The Divorce Debate, Maggie Gallagher, a scholar at the Institute for American Values, tries to answer the question: What, if anything, can we do about the fact that at least half of our marriages fail? In another article, The Making of a Divorce Culture, Barbara Dafoe Whitehead discusses the idea that, Divorce has become an American way of life only as a result of recent and revolutionary change. I was very turned-off by Gallagher’s article. First, it starts off with what the author thinks should be a shared assumption; the assumption stated that divorce is harmful for children.

Not everyone believes that. She goes on by asking, What….can we do? Gallagher continues with her article by putting down other states because of their divorce stipulations. She says that they are not working. Yes, she did back that statement up with information from Judith Wallerstein’s book, Second Chance, and statistics from the Journal of Marriage and Family, but they were buried between the many instances in which she shared the views of her opposition. The way she recognized the reasoning behind the speedy spouse disposal or delayed backlash was a nice touch.

Unfortunately, Gallagher was so involved with trying to show the other side of things, she forgot to give the reasoning behind her own ideas. Through the entire article, she used negative words or phrases to express her feelings on divorce; they include: harmful, delayed backlash, speedy spouse removal, eliminating, marital wrongdoing, dissolve a marriage, bitter conflict, unhappy marriages, bleak times, punishments, messy and irrelevant, and torment. However, she never once suggested a solution for the problem of divorce. How can one argue with the ideas of others, if that person has no argument of their own? After reading the article, I was pretty confident that the author had not personally been through a divorce of her own. This alone, caused me to question her. I felt that a more personal article involving some of her own experiences would have been more convincing.

I realized that she was writing with a logical approach, but I believe an emotional one would have been better. Divorce is a topic that touches every person in so many different ways. If the article would have reached to the heart, it would have been more persuasive. Though I am unhappy with the way the topic was approached, I am sure that the essay was not quickly written. Their was a lot of research involved in this article. Gallagher explained how different states came up with different solutions for divorce.

She discussed the no-fault divorce and the waiting period before a divorce. Her statistic was a great bonus. Divorce is certainly a great topic for debate as we head into the new millennium. There are many assumptions made about divorce, both shared and unshared. Some people believe that divorce is always a bad thing, no matter what the situation.

Others believe it’s a matter of what is best for the children (if there are any). Gallagher challenges the assumption that no-fault [will]…..remake divorce into a kinder, gentler institution. Whitehead’s article was more impressive. In the second paragraph of the article, Whitehead uses a set of statistics to point out how divorce [has] moved from the margins to the mainstream of American life in the space of three decades. However, statistics are not her only form of support.

In her fifth paragraph, she starts to explain the new ideas that have come along with the revolution. She begins to explain how people today believe that there is a moral obligation to look after oneself. She elaborates on the statement through several of the following paragraphs. Whitehead discusses divorce as the working out of an inner life experience. In paragraph sixteen, she writes about no-fault divorce.

Around paragraph 22, divorce is looked at as a cause for some the economical changes in society. She ends her article with this statement: Divorce in America is not unique, but what we have made of divorce is uniquely American. The essay made several assumptions. One assumption she expanded on was one that discussed how society is becoming more in-tune with the idea of self-gratification. Though not everyone may agree, I do.

More and more people are worrying about themselves and what will happen to them in specific situations, rather than worrying about what will happen to everyone involved. One of the more recognizable assumptions made was one discussing how divorce has hurt children. This seems to be an assumption shared by many. Children of broken homes are deeply affected by divorce. The main question I want to pursue is this: Is no-fault divorce an easy way out, or is a healthy way of resolving difficult marriages? In the article Abolish No-Fault Divorce?, Representative Dalman expresses her position when she states, Two people take the vows of marriage, but under no-fault divorce laws, only one can dissolve the commitment. It’s easier to end a marriage than it is to break a contract for buying a household appliance.

Disposable marriage cheapens the commitment and degrades our vows of fidelity and lifelong love. Divorce rates across the nation have soared since the implementation of no-fault divorce standards in the early 1970s. (Ager 1) Dalman cont …


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