For many men going through a divorce, there isn’t much room to maneuver; all you can do is manage your expectations. More often than not, the house is transferred to the wife, and the husband has to pay maintenance for the children and potentially loses all meaningful contact with them. It is therefore not uncommon for the man to feel like he has lost everything he has spent his life working towards.

The situation can feel even worse if the man feels his wife was to “blame” for the breakdown of the marriage, particularly if the grounds for divorce was adultery. It is acceptable to feel like this “fault” should be taken into account during the process. To understand why divorce impacts men so differently, it is necessary to distinguish three separate issues. One of them is the divorce process itself which concludes when the decree absolute is granted.

The second issue is the process of dividing the marital assets and the financial provisions for each spouse and any underage children. This process is often described as Ancillary Relief even though it is one of the most contested aspects of the entire process and can go on years after the decree absolute has been granted.

The third issue relates to any children in the marriage. This process deals with issues like custody of children, absentee parents if any and contact arrangements. In most cases, matters about children are amicably resolved since most parents want the best for their children. In cases where there are disputes, and the court is asked to decide, the proceedings are often lengthy and bitter.

The Divorce Proceedings

The law can establish grounds to end a marriage, which it has, but because the law can’t force a couple to work out their differences, it can be tough to defend a divorce. The fact that a divorce petition has been filed means that at least one of the parties thinks the marriage cannot be saved. Although there are some limited circumstances under which one spouse can prevent the other from filing for divorce, the instances are rare. For this reason, a vast majority of husbands are unable to stop their wives from filing for divorce.

Even if you choose to defend the divorce petition, the legal cost will make it nonsensical also if the circumstances are exceptional. This means that if your wife wants a divorce, they can get a decree absolute and there is nothing you can do to prevent the process.

This is a critical aspect to consider especially because it will affect other issues of the marriage. For example, when a court dissolves a marriage, it has the unlimited power to divide up all the marital assets in any way it sees fit. It is not an arbitrary process, but it one neither party cannot prevent. And when you consider it has not been possible in the UK to get a legally binding prenuptial agreement, it is entirely possible for one party to force and divorce and then petition the court to divide up the martial aspects.

As it is right now, legally, these shortfalls cannot be avoided by any spouse although they tend to affect the husband more often than the wife.

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