Spoiled Children of Divorce


Successful Women More Likely To Get a Divorce

An article, “Top jobs lead to divorce for women, but not for men” at World Economic Forum (weforum.org) discusses how successful women are more likely to get divorced than successful men. Variables leading to this are discussed in the article. Couples are less likely to divorce if they share parental leave, for example. They almost got around to discussing the effects of this on the kids… If a child’s parents are successful probably the child doesn’t see much of them so I guess divorce isn’t that big of a deal for them, is it?



U.S. Census Data on Child Support

The U.S. Census does extensive work to track what kinds of financial support children receive from separated parents. It looks like the latest tabulated results are from 2015. Can’t say I can interpret them very easily but appreciate reading all the different categories. I think that non-custodial parents spend as much on gifts as they do on food. And, either way, that might not be much.

I remember the check coming sometime in the middle of the month. I remember being called Child #2 and my older brother was called Child #1. I remember the bartering over who will get the tax deductions this year. I remember being left alone in the house with boxes of cereal and gallons of ice cream to eat. I remember eating from my Mother’s doggie bags from her dates. I remember my Step-Mother bragging about how decadent the restaurant was that she and my Father had recently eaten at. I remember my Step-Sister ordering the Lobster to screw my Father out of his money.

https://www.census.gov/data/tables/2015/demo/families/p60-262-tables.html



Child Custody Battle is Allegedly Reason for 2015 Roden Family Murders in Ohio

After about 3 years’ investigation law enforcement arrested 4 family members for the 2015 murders of 8 family members in Ohio. At the time it seemed obvious that the murders were drug related as pot farms were found at three of the four homes where victims were found.

Daily Beast article here.

Instead, guess what? It was a custody battle. The lives of three of the children living in the homes were spared. Their parents and grandparents were murdered execution style while they slept. The alleged murderers are from the Wagner clan:  George “Billy” Wagner III, Angela Wagner, George Wagner IV, Edward “Jake” Wagner. They had been planned for months and then moved to Alaska after the murders. Two grandmothers were arrested as accomplices.

Jake was an ex-boyfriend of Hanna Roden. They shared a 3 year old daughter. Hanna had just given birth to a daughter 5 days before and at age 19 was one of the victims. Jake thought he was also the newborn’s father.

Remember the lyrics “You only hurt the ones you love….” Family Court is the most violent court there is. Most mass murders are family related. Apparently potheads aren’t as non violent as they are made out to be. And there isn’t as much publicity about family problems as there are about drug dealing because the press has kept pretty silent.

From the article:

“According to Governor Mike DeWine (article says DeWine is Attorny General but I don’t think that’s correct). … “‘This is just the most bizarre story I’ve ever seen in being involved in law enforcement,’ …. adding that the defendants had an “obsession” with custody and controlling children connected to the victims.”

“In April 2016, eight members of the Rhoden family—ranging in age from 16 to 44—were found shot and killed in their beds in four different homes. Three of those houses had large marijuana farms, authorities said.”

 



Memoirs About Growing Up in Divorce

For some reason I suddenly became aware that there are several memoirs written by Children of Divorce. Just in case you need company during the Holidays…

(I haven’t read any of them yet)

Susan Thomas
In Spite of Everything

Clair Dederer
Poser

Mark Crandall
Eulogy of Childhood Memories

Amanda Stern
Little Panic: Dispatches from an Anxious Life



Okay, So if Mom’s Stressed, You’re Stressed, unless it involves Divorce and Then You’re Fine, Just Fine. But, Mom’s Still Stressed
August 30, 2018, 12:30 am
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Psychiatrist finds that trauma crosses generations.



Let The Kids Decide…
July 24, 2018, 9:42 pm
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Here’s a link to a Yahoo story about a man whose wife took off 15 years ago leaving him with 3 small children to raise. Two of the children are graduating from college. The Mother wants to show up for their graduation after all these years. This is a very common story and there are hundreds of responses in the comments section. Most responders say to let the kids decide whether Mom attends. I didn’t read through all the responses but was impressed by the fact that no child from a divorced family who has actually experienced what it feels like to be on the receiving end of this situation has chimed in. If they did they would probably be axed to death by the social media commenters. No one said anything like there is no easy answer here. How stressful for the kids to live with this. And children of divorce just want to enjoy life without this stuff constantly blowing up in their faces. This is 15 years down the line. Can’t the Mother just ask to go out with the kids and have coffee? Why does she have to show up for a major event?

Here’s an article from Psychology Today about parent-child reunification. The returning parent is called the Alienated Parent. It seems to center around parents who are just getting out of jail and trying to bond with their children. That’s a much different scenario.

Wonder if there is a forum online for adult children to get together and discuss how it feels and what happened. I remember a movie called The Hours where Meryl Streep plays a woman who left her family. It was a life or death decision. Again, the emphasis is on the parent’s feelings. For the kids it seems to be just a “damned if you do and damned if you don’t” type of situation.



Exemplary Children of Divorce – James Ellroy
June 11, 2018, 11:47 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Don’t know why I found out about two crime novelists/Children of Divorce at the same time. Good things happen in pairs, I guess. Both novelists are centered in California.

Along with Raymond Chandler, James Ellroy, is another great classic who has written The Black Dahlia, L.A. Confidential, and the awesome Child of Divorce/Murder My Dark Places. This last one is the result of working with a detective for 15 months on the cold case of his mother who was raped and murdered.

Like Chandler, Ellroy didn’t start writing until he was much older. He has suffered from Alcoholism, Depression, Drug Addiction, Homelessness and a Criminal Past.

There are many interviews on the Internet with Ellroy which I recommend. Here is one from the TV News show 60 Minutes. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dI0rpNoSLwA.

I think Ellroy’s parents divorced when he was seven years old, but am not positive on that because for some reason I didn’t write it down. The parents were given split custody. James lived with his Mother, a nurse, during the week and with his Father on 3 week-ends a month. He preferred living with his Father. In My Dark Places, there is a really eerie description of how he felt nothing after his Mother’s death and was happy to be able to finally live with his Father. There are humorous and sad descriptions of typical parental alienation games between parents. His Father called his Mother a whore and his Mother called his Father something else. Can’t remember, but Ellroy couldn’t have become a good writer without these words, no doubt.

Didn’t know that there were previous divorce boom’s in California but apparently there were. California just sort of “booms” a lot with Gold, Real Estate, Movies, Immigration, Divorce. In addition to the 70’s divorce boom which blew the small town where I grew up there was one in the 1950s. According to the CDC there was also a boom in the 1920’s. “In 1956 my mother moved us from West Hollywood to Santa Monica. I enrolled in a cut-rate private school called Children’s Paradise. The place was a dump site for disturbed kids of divorce. “A flurry of single moms hit the gate at 5:10. I developed a yen for women in their late thirties.” (My Mother’s Killer by James Ellroy, gg.com, July 8, 2007). The town, El Monte, place of where Elroy was living with his Mom, was called “The City of Divorced Women.” (p. 25).

My Dark Places is mainly about Ellroy dealing with his complicated feelings for his Mother. Her murder led him to obsession with crime. Reading about crime and committing it. He apparently had an obsession with older women even before that which led to his first novel The Black Dahlia which is about an unsolved murder of a beautiful woman in L.A. just like his Mother.

I suppose the Child of Divorce part of the story comes from the complexity of feelings for his Mother as a result of the stress from the Divorce. It is just not recognized as a catalyst, so maybe it wasn’t.

Here is a nice tribute of his feelings for her which is posted at the beginning of the book. I think a lot of us can relate to us especially when dealing with the grief of our parents’ deaths: