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Marriage and divorce trends continue to shift

Newspapers, magazines and websites were filled with stories about how divorce rates continue to rise in 2019 for couples who are age 50 or above. This contrasts the overall rate going down since the 1980s with a drop of 18% between 2008 and 2016.

These are part of the broader topic of overall marriage trends. The reasons for this shift are cultural, generational and also quite interesting.

Is it time to create an online dating profile?

Some who file for divorce cannot wait to get back to dating, while others have zero interest. Most will likely be somewhere between these two poles, so it is worth contemplating. Those who want to get back out there may have some experience in creating a dating profile for one of the various platforms. Perhaps it was even an online dating profile that introduced you to your future ex.

Those were likely more carefree times with no kids and maybe fewer employment demands, so reentering the dating scene probably involves presenting a different person -- ideally, one who is older and wiser but still funny, smart and attractive.

When is it appropriate to modify the divorce decree?

Change is one of the few consistencies in life for families. The needs of the children change over time as they seemingly go overnight from a child barely walking to a college athlete. The parents also go through life changes where the person who filed for divorce may be very different than the person today.

Divorce decrees that have custody, maintenance or support agreements reflect many of the most common changes in circumstances that families face, but it still may be necessary to modify them. It could come a few years after the split or at a date further down the line.

Dads, daughters and parenting

One of the most challenging and rewarding roles that men face is parenting a teen-aged daughter. This can be most jarring when the girl goes from "daddy's little girl" who excelled in school and extracurricular activities to a situation where father and daughter do not want to be in the same room. Developmentally, this is predictable as daughters navigate puberty and the developmental state that psychologists label "individuation."

The fact that other fathers face this challenge may offer some consolation, but it does not make it easier, particularly if parents are divorced. It's a fact that the process for maturing is not a smooth one, punctuated at times by a daughter's meltdowns and complete indifference.

7 behaviors that hurt a marriage

Every marriage is different, and so are the signs that it is breaking apart. While common reasons for divorce include infidelity, money troubles and growing apart, other subtle behaviors also spell trouble. These can manifest themselves in a general sense of contempt for the spouse. When this happens, the marriage is in trouble.

This may simmer for years

Family court judge caught trying to seal her divorce records

A judge in Northern Kentucky outside of Cincinnati recently made national news for sealing her divorce records. The family law judge lived in Kenton County, Kentucky, but filed in Grant County, which is an hour south. There was no reason offered by the judge for sealing her records, but it is more common for the wealthy or high-profile cases where litigation is involved. One of the cornerstones of our legal system is that all events that take place in court are public records by default, but a request to seal them can be made by the parties involved, which the judge takes under advisement but usually allows. One way to avoid leaving public records is to avoid litigation by using mediation or some other alternative.

As is often the case with local celebrities or public officials, a local newspaper petitioned to have the records unsealed. In this case, the judge is a public employee who ruled on cases involving hundreds of Northern Kentucky families. She bases her decisions on couples’ most personal information, yet she sought to keep her divorce private. Despite attempting to seal the court records, nothing unsavory was brought to light when the records were unsealed.

How to tell the children you are getting divorced

The single hardest task of getting divorced is often breaking the news to the children. Children count on parents to provide love, security and stability to their lives. Unfortunately, news of a change to this dynamic causes a seismic shift that affects the family's foundation.

According to family therapists, it is essential to tell the children in an age-appropriate matter. Ideally, the initial conversation should also lay the groundwork for future discussions as the kids each process the news in their way. If all goes well, it will be the new foundation from which to build the new two-household dynamic.

Tech help for co-parenting

It seems that the tech-savvy can find an app for everything. So it should come as no surprise that designers have tackled the question of how to deal with the complexities of divorce. There is now a bounty of apps and web services out there to help keep the family functioning.

Co-parent tips for saving money

Raising children is a rewarding proposition, but it is also an expensive one. Rarely more so if the parents are no longer married or never were. Strategic coordination for paying for expenses may not be for everyone, but the benefits may outweigh deficits when it comes to the bottom line.

A couple’s financial responsibility is often spelled out in divorce decree, which outlines the financial obligations contributed by each spouse, including child support, spousal maintenance, dividing assets, and debts. However, coming up with a plan to minimize or pool expenses will likely be something that will have an element of trial and error as parents find the right approach.

More women are paying alimony

The gender divide regarding pay scale still needs to be bridged in some companies. Nevertheless, the equal pay for the same work is increasingly common, perhaps with the U.S. National Women’s Soccer Team and the #MeToo movement pushing the culture scale further into balance.

Equal pay means obligations

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