A college-age reader wrote me the following email that I thought readers might find of interest:
Dear Dr. Smith,
My sister will likely divorce. She teetered for some time. They seem firm on the decision now. I support her and the husband – as a brother and brother-in-law, but keep objectivity in my stance, especially in front of my neices and nephew. At one moment, in re-reading your book on my Kindle App, I recalled my sister saying, “Well, if things go wrong, I can still take the kids.” I lost some respect for this woman, my sister, talking in such bias and tacit projected vengeful tones of her current husband (likely ex) through ‘taking’ the kids.
From this inference, probable to assert not an isolated case, how much do heterosexual women – in full knowledge – abuse the legal system prior to litigation proceedings?
I know university-aged – my age -women that openly talk to male and female friends of threatening boyfriends with sexual assault if they get out of line. One guy friend had this happen two years ago. I’m appalled both ethically and emotionally at the gall of even serious verbalizations of such behaviour. I have more stories, but fear a harangue.
I wrote him back a short response:
Thank you for writing and for reading the Kindle version of my book. I think that you are correct, women do know that they can get back up from the legal system if “things go wrong.” It does not happen every time but for the most part, women get the kids in 82 percent of the cases of divorce. I read recently that the party in a marriage who files for divorce is generally the person who believes they will get the kids and that is generally the wife. Women file for around 70% of the divorces so this makes sense.
It seems, at least in my experience that most women like your sister or the university -aged women you mention have no idea that what they are saying is cruel, sexist and is essentially blackmail in that they use the state and the legal system to keep men in line. They see themselves as “nonviolent” and/or victims while using the government etc. to do their dirty work for them….
I, too, am appalled at this behavior and believe it is why we must all work together to change the way that the legal system and the culture treat men. Thanks again for writing.
I also think that women get away with this type of behavior because no one will call them on it. The legal system doesn’t care and the culture almost encourages it.
What other ways can women use the legal system in this way? Have you or someone you know ever experienced this? How did you cope or deal with it?