Spoiled Children of Divorce

Burning Down the House
May 26, 2010, 11:47 pm
Filed under: money, Uncategorized

A few months ago I heard an NPR show on the radio that was marketing a special type of divorce which provides therapy as well as legal advice.  The Lawyers and the Therapists are trying to create a special interest in counseling the parents about the children.

During the call-in segment a divorced woman called in to say that she had benefited greatly from the service.  She herself was a lawyer and she talked about all the different problems that come up in divorce and these mostly had to do with splitting assets.  A Lawyer or Therapist on the radio show end of the line reminded her that she had a daughter and at that time she said something about the child, sort of as an afterthought.  But,  it was sort of clear that the most important concerns were dealing with the material aspects of the split.  Of course, the woman was a lawyer, and lawyers are generally not the most emotionally complicated people on earth, you wouldn’t want one that was in most circumstances.  And on a practical level this is the wisest thing to do since most people are at war with each during a divorce and if you don’t fight for what you’ve built over the time of the relationship you may become destitute.

At any rate, I thought this was tragic.   What occurred to me was that if this same woman had gone through some other tragedy concerning her assets, her reaction would have been so much different and more humane.  If her house had burned down, for example, then the first thing that would have come out of her mouth would have been, “At least we are all okay. I still have my daughter. You really understand what is most precious in life during times like these.”

I think that this is where things are so much different for the children than they are for the parents.  Kids don’t understand the act of ownership.  For the child in either situation, the house has burned down.

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