Does Divorce Affect Men and Women Differently?
While gender norms may not always apply, it is generally true that men and women handle certain aspects of life, especially big events and changes, differently. Men and women often face a number of restrictions and obligations from society which can alter the way they are expected to face trials and tribulations like divorce. The ways in which others expect you to handle a divorce can have a significant impact on how you cope, even if you aren’t aware of it. Gender certainly does not define a person, but it can contribute to the way in which they were raised to handle issues, the expectations society may impose on them, and the ways their friends and family expect them to respond.
The concerns for men and women during divorce typically vary depending on their role in the marriage they once shared. For example, in a marriage with children, it is still more common for women to stay home while men act as the central breadwinner. While this is not always true, and many women remain in the workforce after having children, it is still more common for mothers to remain at home. So, in the event of a divorce, mothers may face serious concerns for their financial welfare, and that of their children.
Statistically speaking, divorced mothers face serious financial concerns after a divorce than do single dads. Nearly 90% of divorced mothers have custody of their children, and 65% of divorced mothers receive no financial support from the father. On top of that, 60% of all people under the poverty line in the United States are divorced women and their children. For this reason, one of the biggest concerns for most women in a divorce is how they will find financial stability.
Besides the issues of parenting after divorce, women also tend to handle the financial toll of divorce differently. Again, this isn’t true for all women, but most women have an easier time expressing their emotions and processing the feelings that come with a divorce when compared to men. Men have proven, through numerous psychological studies, to bottle up their emotions, more often than not. This can make the emotional difficulties of a divorce more overwhelming for men, as they often do not know how to cope.
Although research shows divorced men typically remarry more quickly than divorced women, studies also show that men may suffer more on a personal scale. Men are usually more prone to associating themselves as the head of their family, and in a divorce, when that family circle takes a new shape, he may feel like a failure as a man. This isn’t true in all cases, but for some men these feelings of failure and loss can lead to depression and other issues with confidence and identity.
The ways in which men and women handle their divorce may also reflect on how they maintain other relationships, specifically the connections to their children. Women may be more aware of their emotional state, and that of those around them, making it more likely that they will seek to communicate with their children about their feelings. Men, on the other hand, may not have a firm grasp of their own emotional state, let alone that of their children. For this reason, and the fact that mothers do retain custody more often than fathers, it is likely that the divorced mother will concentrate more on her relationship with her kids.
Whether you fit these generalizations or not, it is important to acknowledge that everyone copes with divorce differently. If you are having any difficulties dealing with your divorce, reach out to trusted friends and family, or consider seeing a therapist. There is no shame in asking for help when you need it, both personally and legally. In order to make the process as easy as possible for you and your family, our divorce lawyers are here to help.
Contact Hedayati Law Group, P.C. to schedule your free consultation.