Save Marriages- Reform No Fault Divorce Laws

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A year and a half ago I would have never thought I would be writing this.  I knew nothing about divorce.  I was married and had two small children.  Then I found out, my husband wanted out.  

We had a normal engagement and wedding.  He willfully proposed, promised in front of God and all our family and friends to stand by me, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, all the days of our lives.  We had two wonderful children together.  Everything was mutually agreed upon in our marriage and in our decison to have children.  But with no fault divorce laws, it only takes one person to force change upon the entire family.

I have spent the last 18 months trying to find a way to deny a divorce. There is no way.  Despite it being against my religion, damaging to my children, financially destroying, and against my personal beliefs, I have no way to stand up for what I believe in.  What is worse, my children have been taken from me part time because the courts believe in allowing equal time to each parent, no matter what.  There is "no fault."  I have been forced to sign documents, that I would have never signed, to protect the time I do have with my children. Also, I was told that if I act "emotionally" about losing my husband and children, the courts will deem me unfit to parent, and I could lose custoday all together.  I ask you, if losing your family isn't worth getting emotionally involved over and fighting for, what is?

Which brings me to this petition.  In some cases, if both parties mutually agree on divorce, the current system works.  But in cases like mine, where one party wants to uphold their marriage promises and believes in not giving up, we have no rights, no way to fight.  The system does not work.  No fault divorce laws are unconsitutional.   The spouse trying to preserve the marriage – loses every time.  The only issues you can negotiate are terms of the divorce, such as custody and property division.  Both the 5th and 14th Amendments guarantee that “no person be deprived of life, liberty or property without the due process of law.”  Yet how can there be “due process,” if the person trying to preserve the marriage always loses?  Why shouldn’t both spouses have a voice on divorce?  Marriage was entered into willingly by two people, and shouldn’t be terminated unless both agree. 

To put it differently, the law should penalize marital misconduct, not reward it. It should encourage marriage preservation, not its destruction, promoted by current No Fault Divorce Laws .

From 1969, when California’s then Gov. Ronald Reagan signed the first No Fault law, until 1975, when most states passed copycat laws, the number of divorces shot up from 639,000 to 1,036,000.

A divorced man will live 10 years less than a married man, a woman, four years less. On average, each divorce involves one child. A child of divorce is three times as likely as one from an intact home to be expelled from school or to become pregnant as a teenager, six times as apt to grow up in poverty or to commit suicide, and is three times more likely to end up in jail by age 30.

I ask you, please sign this petition to have the State of Ohio reform its divorce laws and truly put children, families, and marriages first.  Give myself, and other people fighting for thier marriges, a voice and a chance to stand up for what they believe in.  



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