Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Stop That Clock

I don’t like to see people divorce. That's just one reason I don’t like to see people get married when they aren't prepared to be spouses or aren't right for each other. For followers of Christ, divorce is allowed (certainly not commanded) for unfaithfulness, which can translate into the "A"s – adultery, abandonment, abuse, and addiction. I would also include fraud in that. Abuse isn't a husband telling a wife she has enough shoes or that she should probably skip that extra scoop of ice cream. Abuse involves physical force, terrorizing, etc. Addiction doesn't mean that your husband likes to play video games or masturbate to nude pictures of adult women when he's sexually rejected. Addiction means drinking himself into a stupor repeatedly, spending the savings on crack, etc.

While divorce is never the ideal (the ideal would be not marrying the wrong person in the first place), if divorce is justified and almost certain, the laws of your state may behoove you to avoid delay. In states like the one I'm in, two more days of marriage mean one more day of alimony, and ten years of marriage means lifetime alimony.

With that in mind, check out the plight of "Broken Heart in Michigan" writing in to Dear Margo:

I am a 24-year-old male who’s been going through a pretty tough time for quite a while. I’m a former serviceman who got married during my military tour. While I was still in, I had to be away for a period of two weeks, unable to leave my command. I was able to call my wife every day when my daily shifts were over, and everything seemed to be OK. However, when I was finally able to return home, the house was cleaned out, except for my uniforms and very few other objects.
At least she didn't mess with his head while he was at his command. I'll give her that.

A letter was on the counter stating she had left for her home state to be with another man. Six months later, I was discharged and returned to my own home state. All of this happened three years ago.
When he was 21. That was young to marry.

Since then, we have been in limited contact via email, and every time the topic of divorce comes up, she gets dodgy and disappears for weeks if not months. At one point, she sent me a package of divorce papers from the state we were married in,
I wonder which state that is? It matters.

and I filled them out on my end and sent them back to the state’s court system. However, nothing happened with the proceedings. I again filed for divorce through my home state and had her “served.” She blatantly refused to answer them, and the courts will do nothing until she does. What can I do? I need to move on.
I don't know how things work in Michigan*, and neither does Dear Margo. She tells him to get a lawyer, and that's good advice. The marriage can't be anywhere near the ten year mark, but it is possible that she's trying to extend his alimony requirement. She could also be lowering his credit rating. This is a case of abandonment and there's no good reason to delay. He obviously made a mistake marrying her.

*When the Muslims take over the state, he may be able to marry four women and get them beheaded if they get out of line.

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