4 Reasons Why Divorce Is Harder For Guys

divorce The old saying goes that women are from Venus and men from Mars. When it comes to how men and women respond to divorce, that adage seems to hold true.

Research consistently shows that men tend to take a longer time to recover from divorce than women do. Getting past the roadblock of emotional devastation is challenging for everyone, but there are distinct differences in the ways in which men and women mourn the end of relationships.

Analyzing the reasons underlying those differences is complicated as every relationship – and the factors that lead to a relationship’s demise – is unique.

However, there are some recurring circumstances that often occur in divorces that seem to contribute to things being so tough for guys.

Increased health risks

The stress of divorce causes the long-term health risks men face to skyrocket. This includes increased rates of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, depression, suicide, substance abuse, and even cancer.

Unfortunately, societal norms often discourage men from taking care of their physical and mental health and that can lead to serious problems, even under normal circumstances.

If you’ve gone through a divorce, it is crucial to make smart decisions regarding your physical and mental well-being. That means eating right, exercising regularly, and seeking the support you need to help you maintain your mental health.

Second-string parent

When parents divorce, it is very likely that the mom is the one who will receive primary custody of the children. Although the shared parenting movement gains more steam each year, there are still far too many family courts that adhere to outdated notions regarding gender and parenting. In their mind, it is still the 1950s and it’s a mother’s job to stay home with the kids while the father goes off to work to provide financially for the family.

While a divorce changes the living situation for both spouses, dads are often dealt the additional blow of losing access to their children. This can cause an enormous identity crisis. They’re no longer a husband and they’re also told they’re a secondary parent.

It is also tragically common for one parent to try to turn the children against their ex in a process known as parental alienation.

Shocking heartbreak

One study found that women initiate divorce 70% of the time. That means men are much more likely to be caught off-guard by the breakup and that shock can feel like getting hit by a tsunami.

Additionally, the person asking for a divorce has likely had some time to plan and has probably already met with an attorney. That gives them a huge leg up as the divorce proceeds. Time is of the essence when it comes to divorce matters and if a person doesn’t act quickly they can easily get fleeced in the final settlement.

Financial burden

Guys are far more likely to be ordered to pay child support and/or alimony, which can be an enormous financial burden after you’ve just broken the bank to cover attorney fees, litigation costs, and other various expenses that come with divorce.

Depending on how the property division went down, you might have also lost half your assets, which is yet another huge adjustment.

It is clear that there are a number of different factors that result in divorce being so difficult for guys. Perhaps the most effective way to help with the recovery process is by taking the needed steps to protect yourself during the actually divorce.

If you’re heading for divorce, make sure contact a licensed family law attorney who focuses on men’s divorce to ensure that your rights, and the rights of your children, are protected.

Cordell & Cordell understands the concerns men face during divorce.

End of Content Icon

22 comments on “4 Reasons Why Divorce Is Harder For Guys

    Reading all these comments from men who have gone through divorce breaks my heart. Here I am with a husband who wants to divorce me, when I’ve tried so hard to make him happy. I left my friends, family and moved across the country because it’s what he wanted. I gave up my career with a pension because of that move. I do all the cleaning and cooking and errands and even got a full-time job at a good school to help pay the bills. All i’ve ever wanted is to be a mother but now that will never happen because i’m 33 and time is running out to start over. I wish my husband could see what he has in me but i’m afraid he never will.

    Like Eric said I feel like the biggest loser it’s been since sept 2013 we split I found my sons mother after being together for 10 years once again cheating I loved her also having my son w her always made me feel like I had to take her back when she always wound couple months after I caught her. But anyways since sept 2013 I lost my best friend also basically my son who is my world I became a addict n my life spiraled out of control I’m 30 years old n the past 4 years been a nightmare been in jail two diff times cause I went on probation n violations had me stuck for 3 months n 6 months I just want to be normal again I know I’m not that old have a gf but my addiction has ruined my life my mom loves me so much I live w my gmom who enables me gives me fentyal patches even when I tell her I’m tryin stop using I can’t leave or I would be homeless I just got put back on probation after gettin off last year while i finally thought I was gettin my life back starting having my son on weekends n soon as I got off I started using again n from once in while to every day dependant on opiates again I’m trying to detox as I speak I just want my old life back but can’t have it I need help I’m a mess if I can stay clean I actually am I good person I need to for myself my son n my gf. You ever try to hold down a job while shooting herion please don’t judge if u never walked in a addicts shoes. You would never know I’m a opiate addict I could fool you til you knew me for while I just want to be a normal person of society again thanks if you read

    I’m in divorce and I know I won’t get custody. I’ve been the “parent” in the marriage while mom was super indulgent. She has bought them off completely.

    She makes a lot more than me. So in any agreement, if she wants custody, I’m going to get her to agree to impose discipline and limit how much she can spend on them. This will keep her from buying them off.

    She also wants me to fund trusts even though there’s no requirement under state law (she was so dense here that she proposed her friends as trustees. WTF?). So I plan to tell her that I will but only if I get custody.

    Well….you all hit the nail on the head again, what you said in the article is correct. I’m 8 years out from the D crap stuff and finally doing well. But the experience laves a lasting impression. But life does get better, and you have to do the right things to get yourself back on track. Don’t procrastinate in thinking it work out, once a woman has made up her mind to divorce she will never change her mind. Its a done deal, get a good men’s attorneys, if you don’t then expect to get ran over ! Wake Up * Stay Alert * Be Your Best 🙂

    I’m still in the separation beginnings of divorce and can’t even fathom what’s going to happen to me…….ive most everything already…my wife my best friend….my kids…my beautiful new grand baby….a whole family of relatives….im so lost I can hardly work or sleep…..i kno I’m to blame for her wanting to leave but I was still blindsided….i miss my life…….so cold….why bother trying…im the biggest loser…i hate me

    Eric. C’mon buddy. You sound like I did 5 years ago. Things will get better. Just think positive. My wife left for a mutual friend and they got married last year. Left when my kids were 3 and 5. I played the angry, revenge card for 2 years. Don’t do that. Makes you look awful to people and the kids see you differently. Now we are really civil and my kids couldn’t be happier. Just keep your head up. If you ever need advice, let me know. I remember feeling like everybody was against me and having nowhere to turn.

    Never give up send a card or photo, every Holday don’t leave one out!! My son fought for 5 years now their a Happy Family

    Not exactly true. Reword it to……the person that got hit with the divorce without any fore knowledge Is devastated and hurt much more even if it’s the woman.

    Child support is not a tax. It’s not a punishment. It’s not a fee. It’s financial assistance for your CHILDREN. We would never make it in my household if my ex-husband didn’t pay his child support. He pays it late often but it eventually gets here and because he does, my children go to preschool and daycare and I can do MY job. Buck up, guys. Do your part.

    As a Divorced Man I can’t say how right you are. Divorce is the worst thing my girls have ever experienced. I became a singe dad of two little girls after my divorce from their mom. It helps but it hurts too.

    Dear Sara,
    Your theory is called entitlement. If you were working together as a mother and a father. There should not ever be child support. Like you stated…. “MY CHILDREN”… that statement defines who you are.. it takes a mother and a father to create as it should take both to provide. Do your part….

    Thank you for the clarity, the entitlement part of everything is what’s most annoying.

    Norms have shown to favor women in custody battles, with little to no logic of how things will actually play out.

    If a man is willing and able to provide for the children without the help of the mother, and she must depend on child support just to survive, wouldn’t it be in the best interest of the child to award the father custody? For the amounts that I have seen some women get for one child, I have provided for a family of 7, including 3 adults, and I was the only taxable income in the house.

    I don’t know your situation precisely so this is a general statement not necassarily directed at you, unless it fits: but most men want to be more involved with their children than just being a paycheck. In many cases, a paycheck that mothers spend on mani/pedi’s, travel, shoes, going out, etc! To deprive a father of custody, and therefore run up the amount of child support owed, is criminal and hurts the children. Fathers are taxed on the amount they pay in support, and mothers receive that money tax free. This is backwards. Child support should be tax deductible for fathers and taxable income for mothers. The courts have given preferential treatment to women for as long as there has been divorce, and it’s time for that to change. Accountability on the part of the recipient (whether mother OR father), tax credit for the payer (again, father or mother), and fairness in the amount owed. I know too many recipients who intentionally work crappy jobs to keep the income levels with their ex out of balance. The system is broken and needs to be overhauled.

    I told my attorney I had zero interest in receiving child support from day one. I still needed to pay for them to draft up the form just for me to deny it. It is absolutely a fee similar to a tax, and can be a punishment. I wouldn’t wish harm or loss on any individual but I do wonder. If the child support caused your ex to commit suicide, how would you feel about it then? However more likely, what if he died in a tragic car accident? How would you get your children to day care and preschool then? I’m just saying I took no part in the child support corruption. I’d rather be wisely preparing for the future without depending on my ex than be bitter about the past.

    Their part would be 50/50 joint custody. That’s the best possible scenario for the children and the parents in a second best world. That does not include monetary compensation for one parent to another IMO. Your situation may be different, but divorce is a decision two people make collectively. When a man concedes his rights to parent he should pay, but if he wants to parent and the mother wants money over her children’s father to spend time with his kids, that’s just plain wrong.

    It’s been 3 years since mine and my devastating reality is no contact with my kids $50K in 2 attorneys flat broke and parental alienation with no kids why don’t attorneys help use men? THEY ARE ALL TALK!!!

    I got or is still getting that exact same treatment. No sure what to tell you but I’ve had 2 attorneys lay an egg also. Still can’t see my kids.

    Your “FOUR REASONS” hardly covers the truth of the damage the courts do to fathers. #5: The fathers are denied custody as a tradition because the courts/judges profit via “incentives” from the child support collection agency.
    #6: The child support collection agency profits from “reimbursements” from the FEDERAL child support agency.
    7: When calculating how much each parent must pay for child support, the mothers get $20,000 off their income “for self-subsistence”. Fathers do not get ANY “self-subsistence” discount. That guarantees that dad will have the higher income amount, and mom will get sole custody.
    #8: Some men, who are not the natural father of the child in question, are forced to pay child support for that child.
    #9: Some mothers earn their child support awards by statutory rape of under-age children, or by self-impregnation with stolen sperm.

    Well said Shawn! Exactly what happened to me! Overall, I will be strong and move forward! In 6 years I will have not only have my SSDI income but my military pension and a part-time job.

    My daughters will come around I hope and pray. They have been strong since 9/11/2001 with Daddy traveling so much…I miss them BIG-TIME.

    My ex is passive aggressive, insecure and has suffered from a mid-life crisis I guess? I respect her privacy and will NOT interfere with their relationship withe mother-daughters. My daughters are lucky to have her.

    All in all not a pleasant experience.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *