In Saturday’s Wall Street Journal there was a featured article about the rise in popularity of the prenuptial agreement. According to a 2006 survey sponsored by the matrimonial lawyers group, “80% of matrimonial lawyers said they had seen an increase in couples signing [prenups] in recent years.” Many of the people signing them, however, are part of the Baby Boomer generation. These couples endured the recent financial crisis, when the Dow fell over 50% over two years and home values declined. Finances have always played a prevalent role in marriage, but the Boomer generation has this factor conflated with their excessive rate of divorce. “Almost 40% of boomers who have been married have gone through at least one divorce, according to 2004 Census data, the most recent available, while only about 30% of all people who have been married have been divorced. By their 50th birthday, 27% of boomers have moved on to their second or third marriage.”
I don’t think any cultural critic would seriously suggest that an increased rate in divorce is a great contribution to society. I am always saddened to see the rate of divorce in the US. However, I have chosen to be optimistic since I believe this news has a few silver linings. For one, a prenuptial agreement entails the breaking down of assets. It’s nice to see that women, who are increasingly more college educated and autonomous, will be able to have a pre-arranged financial stake spelt out for them in a contract. The fact that many women prompt this negotiation is a great indication towards their empowerment.The same women who would have a vested interest in retaining their assets are typically college-educated ones who already have a divorce rate hovering in the low-20’s. A straightforward way to delegate compensation if they abandon their potentially-lucrative careers to raise children is an insurance policy.
My parents are not divorced and my mother is a college graduate with a career. However, I know many friends who have parents that married young and, typically, mothers with no higher education or job experience. Divorce tends to leave these women in a significantly less favorable position, and amplifies any disdain. A clear “plan of action” would, if done properly, later aide the party less capable of accruing capital in the marriage.
I hope the normalization of prenuptial agreements may spark a healthy trend with many in my “Millennial” Generation. Prenuptial agreements used to be something that the rich and famous would forge to protect their earnings. A conversation about finances, though admittedly a very difficult one to bring up, at least acknowledges realistic possibilities and gives a sobering “worst case scenario.” The alternative, of course, having ones livelihood subject to a judicial process, is not always congruous and fair. With a rise in popularity, this will hopefully sound less unromantic. Of course, children who are the product of a divorced marriage are much more likely to incur one themselves. Yet my generation seems to be marrying later on in life – which helps decrease the likelihood of divorce. With an amiable agreement on the premises of a relationship beforehand, hopefully the decision to marry the “right” person will be more clear and correct than ever before.
A disturbing video appears to show that two LA gangsters are now mercenaries fighting on behalf of Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad. Calling themselves “Wino” and “Creeper,” the two gang member. […]
Thanks to the recent Winter Olympics, the city of Sochi has two gorgeous ice hockey arenas. However, it doesn’t have an ice hockey team to play in them. These arenas are just two of Sochi’s many. […]