Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Alpha Mail: Daughters of divorce

BL asks about the risks of divorced parents:
I have a question for Alpha Game that I would be interested in your thoughts on.  I think it is too politically incorrect to ask anyone else. I know that children of divorced parents have a higher chance of divorce. I was going to automatically eliminate all women who had divorced parents; however, I have been surprised at what a large percentage of women have divorced parents.  Would you recommend avoiding all women with divorced parents or what criterion would you judge them on?
A lot of women do have divorced parents and it is definitely a strike against them. However, not all divorces are created alike. I would consider divorced parents to be more of a yellow light than a red flag; it's important to learn why the parents are divorced, when the parents divorced, and what her relationships with her parents are like.

For example, my parents are divorced. But they divorced long after my formative years, when I was in my late thirties, after their marriage was subjected to extreme situational stress. So my upbringing, and my psychological attitude towards marriage and family, is more or less identical to the average individual whose family is intact. This sort of thing is going to be true of some women.

Other mitigating factors:
  • A good, healthy relationship with a father or step-father
  • A large extended family
  • Genuine (as opposed to cultural) Christianity
  • Young parents married out of necessity
  • Strong traditional orientation
  • High level of domestic skill 

Warning factors:
  • Bitterness
  • Feminism
  • Anger at either parent
  • Pride in mother's independence
  • Promiscuity, drug use, or tattoos
  • A tendency to be quarrelsome 
  • Predilection for romance novels and emoporn movies
Divorced parents are not an absolute red flag because we are not our parents, they are an influence, not a causal factor. But one should be quicker to next a woman whose parents are divorced than one would normally be and one should refrain from giving them any additional benefit of the doubt.

Don't pay much attention to her asserted opinion of divorce, unless she is convinced it was a good thing. Most women will talk about divorce being A Bad Thing, but that has very little significance with regards to the likelihood of her following her parents' example.

37 comments:

Jason said...

Probably also worth trying to figure out what she thinks of divorce. Does she lament it as a bad thing or does she understand why her parents did and think it was ok (in some sense).

I know kids of divorce in both camps, either they see marriage as something valuable, not entered into lightly and for life because they saw their parents crap all over it, or else the reverse, that they see it as disposable.

Also, as Vox said, high view of the mum, usually as a result of being raised by her and alienated from her father, is going to be a bad sign.

Probably learn the reason for the divorce and who initiated it.

Cataline Sergius said...

A big flying tall in the wind Red Flag is; was she raised by a divorced single mom.

I've never seen a girl like that have a successful marriage. It may happen but I've never seen it.

Even with the best will in the world, those girls simply don't have any kind of a template for a successful marriage. It's something they have to learn by experience in the real world. They may want a wedding but not a marriage.

An even bigger red flag with flashing lights on it is; the girl raised by a divorced single mom because the mom was incapable of marital fidelity.

Because that rotten apple never and I mean never falls far from the tree.

In this instance, always follow the advice of Lord Humongous, "Just walk away and there will be an end to the horror."

Owen said...

VD,
Excellent lists.

For example, my ex's parent divorced later in life. Yet, she embodies many of the warnings.

I don't know if this type of this would've woken me to the problems 15 years ago, or so. Regardless, the list is valuable.

Vox said...

Probably also worth trying to figure out what she thinks of divorce.

That's irrelevant. They pretty much all say it is bad and they would never want to go through it themselves. It tells you nothing, because women change their minds when circumstances change

Cail Corishev said...

Probably also worth trying to figure out what she thinks of divorce. Does she lament it as a bad thing or does she understand why her parents did and think it was ok (in some sense).

Just don't put too much credence in what she says about it. I've known women to say, "I would never, ever, ever get a divorce, because my parents did, and I know how much it hurt them and me," and they were as quick as anyone to pull the divorce trigger when they got unhaaaaappy. Even if she says divorce is bad, dig into why she thinks that. It may not be opposition to divorce, but resentment against her parents. If she talks about divorce being hated by God, bad for society in a broader sense, and that sort of thing, that could be a better sign.

Jeff Burton said...

I think it would be a good sign if she genuinely believed divorce and remarriage would land her in Hell.

Erik said...

"That's irrelevant. They pretty much all say it is bad and they would never want to go through it themselves. It tells you nothing, because women change their minds when circumstances change"

Agreed. If anything, consider her loud, almost defensive, proclamations of the sanctity of marriage to be yet another warning bell. I would also add that if there is even a hint that she "remembers" the circumstances of her parents' divorce much differently than her other family members, it's time to next. "Well, duh," you might say, but it can be very easy for young Gammas and Deltas to rationalize these things, particularly if the circumstances involve tales of "abuse."

SarahsDaughter said...

In our personal sphere, if the woman lived primarily with her father the marriages have lasted (going on 20 years now). For my husband, my parent's divorce was a yellow light like Vox said, what helped was that my mother died before we met. He knew I would be looking to his successfully married mother for wifely advice and not turning to my feminist, twice-divorced mother.

He brought me around his family early to see what my reaction was to a large, intact, loud, family orientated, farming family. I showed no pretentiousness and was quite comfortable around them and passed that test.

Sadly it took 15 years before I could honestly say divorce wasn't an option on the table (it wasn't the 15 years that did it, it was an immersion into the Bible, blogs such as these, and my own personal relationship with God that did it). So even with my mother having died, even with his large intact family and his mother mentoring me, even being Christian (Churchian) I'm ashamed to admit, it took a lot more for me to root out there being a back door option if things got too difficult.

Owen said...

Probably also worth trying to figure out what she thinks of divorce.

My ex said she'd never divorce and, in the midst of our marriage when she started to bring it up, she said she could see us remaining "good friends."

She filed false abuse charges, successfully (at first) alienated my first child from me, and committed multiple crimes in her effort to continue to cast me as a villain.

As Roosh or Rollo or some wise blogger noted, whenever a woman provides an opinion of any kind, mentally tack on, "right now" at the end.

"I hate divorce...right now."

buzzardist said...

Well, of course divorce is A Bad Thing. That Bad Thing was done to her way back when her parents split up and destroyed her emotionally.

But as soon as she is unhappy in a relationship, divorce becomes A Good Thing, or, at the very least, The Right Thing. It matters not one bit if she will ruin her own kids emotionally in the same way she was ruined.

All that matters is her own emotional state right now. Divorce was A Bad Thing when it hurt her emotionally. Divorce is A Good Thing when it responds to her current unhappiness. Divorce is The Right Thing when it gets her out of responsibilities that make her uncomfortable.

b1bae96e-6447-11e3-b6bb-000f20980440 said...

A woman's relationship with her biological father seems to be the biggest predictor of your success with her in a marriage.

Divorce is just one of the many opportunities for that relationship to be destroyed.

Trust said...

Women must convince potential husbands of their uncompromising commitment if they want a beta bux marriage. So they just express disdain for divorce beforehand. When their goal perspective shifts from getting married to getting resources and shedding responsibilities, their view on divorce (which does both) will change. It's all in the perspective.

Before women call that sexist, keep in mind women regularly call men out on acting more interested pre sex than post sex. Why they consider it an evil sex strategy but an acceptable marriage strategy is the real question they should answer.

Rabbi B said...

"Even with the best will in the world, those girls simply don't have any kind of a template for a successful marriage. It's something they have to learn by experience in the real world. They may want a wedding but not a marriage."

Couldn't agree more. (with your entire comment, BTW).

Having served as a rabbi for over twenty years or so, I have also made a general observation about members who were divorced and not re-married or were on their second or third marriages: they were generally selfish and unable to handle any type of conflict in a proper manner (their way or no way) and soon became non-members when things were not going their way, usually after covertly (or overtly) fomenting discord among other members for a period of time.

I have ten children ranging in age from 5 to 21. Just barely short of match-making, my children know that their parents are going to be very involved in helping them select and approve a mate for them. Among a number of things, one of our criteria is that their potential husband and or wife will not be from a divorced home.

Marriage is about commitment and faithfulness bound by words we said to one another and to G-d, and nothing undermines and mocks these values like divorce, which is merely a symptom of something deeper. Divorce makes an impression, and children are impressionable. I am under no illusion that avoiding potential mates that are products of divorce is a fail safe for an easy marriage. Marriage is hard no matter what; but that doesn't mean we shouldn't try to the very best of our ability to give our children an optimal start on that most difficult of roads.

Trust said...

The biggest predictor of divorce i have seen in wives is her making sour faces when her husband is talking.

This predictor doesn't hold in dating or engagement. Wives who do this to their husbands were usually girlfriends who were good to their men.

If a girl makes sour faces when her father is talking or being discussed, look out. It indicates disdain for the role.

2870b918-77c0-11e3-b9bd-000bcdcb8a73 said...

Seems to me Vox's list of warning factors applies whether her parents are divorced or not.

It will be interesting to see how my niece's marriage turns out (too early to tell yet, it's been less than a year). Her parents were divorced when she was 2, but she had an excellent relationship with both her dad (my brother) and her mom. Her mom's second marriage lasted until her death, and my niece is still close with her stepfather and his family. I don't see any of the warning signs in her.

dalrock said...

Don't pay much attention to her asserted opinion of divorce, unless she is convinced it was a good thing. Most women will talk about divorce being A Bad Thing, but that has very little significance with regards to the likelihood of her following her parents' example.

One test I would offer is to ask her what she would teach your future children about divorce. Would she teach them that "Sometimes marriages just don't work out", etc? Or would she teach them that divorce is unacceptable (with depending on your faith perhaps some very selective and well defined exceptions)?

As I've written about before, when our daughter was around 4 years old we were at a Thanksgiving dinner and one of the kids there told her his parents were divorced because "sometimes mommies and daddies stop loving each other". We didn't know what was up, but our daughter was terrified for several days and kept looking for reassurance that my wife and I still loved each other. Once we found out what had happened, we explained that the boy was mistaken, and his mommy was a brat who broke their family because she was unhappy. Once our daughter understood that her home wasn't at risk for the fate that befell the poor boy, she slept fine at nights.

Tell a prospective wife about this story you read on the internet and see how she responds. Specifically, look to see who she instinctively protects when she hears the story. Does she instinctively want to protect the innocent girl, or the guilty woman?

Nothing is foolproof, but this should help cut through the stock BS. It also sets the frame for you to teach your young children from the beginning about the seriousness of marriage, which would not only make pulling a Jenny Erickson much harder but also give them a strong foundation for lifelong sexual morality.

ajw308 said...

The biggest predictor of divorce i have seen in wives is her making sour faces when her husband is talking.
If she's making public displays of contempt like that, just imagine what she's doing and saying when she's alone with her husband.

Practically said...

My husband and I come from intact families who struggled to remain so. Those examples and EXPECTATIONS have helped see us through those difficult times in our marriage. The Red Flag of Divorced Parents is one my daughter has been instructed to watch out for in potential mate, it is one of three she has. Through no fault of their own, divorce has damage and severely lessened the chance of a lasting good marriage for many young men as well as young women.

Trust said...

@ ajw308 said... If she's making public displays of contempt like that, just imagine what she's doing and saying when she's alone with her husband.
_____

True. Yet, there is something particularly dangerous about one's willingness to publicly disrespect, mock, or humiliate.

And for those who say "respect is earned," I remind them that should have been affirmed before the wedding.

SarahsDaughter said...

And for those who say "respect is earned," I remind them that should have been affirmed before the wedding.

If it is a Christian marriage, respect is earned by being the husband and nothing else. If a woman is a Christian there should be no denial of the very clear words written on the pages of her Bible.

If a woman believes the respect she'd give her husband is based on something he does to earn it, she will maintain a divorce back up plan.

Cail Corishev said...

If you don't mind leading the witness, you could test a woman by saying something like, "I'm no fan of divorce, but I admit I know some divorced couples who seem to get along better now than when they were married..." and see where she goes with that. If she says anything like, "Yeah, sometimes divorce really is for the best for everyone involved," that's a big red flag, because if anyone else's divorce could be "for the best," so can hers be someday.

That's especially true if she's talking about her parents' divorce, but it's worth checking her general attitude about it outside her own family too.

If you find a girl who responds with, "No, divorce is always wrong. A vow is a vow, no matter how tough things may get," you just might have found a unicorn. Proceed with caution, but proceed!

rycamor said...

I married a girl whose parents divorced when she was young (blame leans heavily toward the father, due to many affairs). Been together 16 years, and I still believe she is a better catch than most of the girls I dated from intact families. However, she does meet most mitigating factors on the list above, and zero of the warning ones.

The most important question to ask yourself about a prospective wife: is she just a product of her environment, or has she made the right choices in spite of it? The childhood was a yellow flag for me but when I considered how she had faced life and relationships, I felt it was worth the risk.

Bob said...

Check this shit out: http://news.sky.com/story/1385587/pregnancy-drink-case-no-compensation-for-child

"In their unanimous ruling the judges said: "The central reason is that we have held that a mother who is pregnant and who drinks to excess, despite knowledge of the potential harmful consequence to the child of doing so, is not guilty of a criminal offence under our law if her child is subsequently born damaged as a result."

"The UK's highest courts have recognised that women must be able to make their own decisions about their pregnancies.""


That's downright fucking child abuse. How the hell can they just act as if it's all fine and dandy, when it's an absolute fact that drinking and smoking while pregnant can harm the baby.

SO many women are going to be like, "YES! Free Disability money and attention!" and intentionally do it. Heck my mum's friend has a healthy baby boy, and she's CONSTANTLY trying to get the social services to find something wrong with him, making up he has allsorts of learning troubles etc (he hasn't), purely so she can get more benefits money.


If a man harms a child, it's outright deplorable, but a woman can leave it affected for life, intentionally, and when it's at it's most vulnerable, when it hasn't even been FUCKING BORN, and it's "her decision" as being responsible "must not affect her lifestyle" apparently..

1sexistpig2another said...

If you're a Christian determined to marry in the US, you need to do some serious vetting.

Here are some things you should probably consider before marriage:

Is she:
- a bible believing Christian?
- obedient to and showing honor to her parents?
- of a mind that a wife should submit to her husband in everything?
- the product of a good relationship with her dad?
- a virgin or having a super low N count?
- the product of a culture/environment that truly looks down on divorce?
- not a divorcee?
- not a single mother?
- family oriented and not career oriented?
- able to at some point see when she is wrong?
- able to accept responsibility and apologize when she is wrong?
- able and willing to cook, clean, and take care of domestic necessities?
- not looking for a "soul mate" but for a husband (and knows the difference)?
- debt free or close to it?

And then you need to make her good and mad so that you will get a better idea of what she will be like after she has the government's gun pointed at your head. Usually in the US all you have to do is disagree with her.

Trust said...

@Bob " If a man harms a child, it's outright deplorable, but a woman can leave it affected for life, intentionally, and when it's at it's most vulnerable, when it hasn't even been FUCKING BORN, and it's "her decision" as being responsible "must not affect her lifestyle" apparently.."

Warren Farrell pointed out that a man ins 25 times more likely to go to prison for fondly a child than a woman is for killing or maiming one.

Feather Blade said...

I've been rejected for (among other things) having divorced parents. I don't blame the guy - it's his prerogative to set the criteria by which he would judge a woman's suitability. And juggling holidays between two sets of in-laws is bad enough - who wants to deal with the 3 or 4 sets divorce (and remarriage) can bring into the picture?

However... children have no say in whether their parents get divorced. It's unjust use the actions of people over whom the candidate has no control as the sole and automatic reason for rejecting the candidate.

Iowahine said...

Feather Blade - However... children have no say in whether their parents get divorced. It's unjust use the actions of people over whom the candidate has no control as the sole and automatic reason for rejecting the candidate.

That hasn't been suggested here.

Unknown said...

Feather Blade: It is not fair, but it is prudent in this world. A child has no say in their height, yet we reject those too short (or too tall). A child has no say in their general intelligence level, and yet the clever would usually never consider marrying someone with a 95 IQ (or less), thereby forgoing about 40% or so of the population. A child has no say in the neighborhood they live in, the schools they attend, etc., and yet these generally help to mold their personality. And yet we consider it prudent to avoid people from certain neighborhoods.

Yes it truly is unfair that "the sins of the father" are visited on the children, but life is not fair. I personally have stayed in a relationship, despite great mental, emotional, and financial hardship, with a woman who is in all likelihood either bi-polar or a histrionic personality disorder (or other b-cluster personality disorder). Rightly or wrongly, I have chosen to commit to a family as a model for what is expected in this world; perhaps I will have been wrong, but when questioned by my adult children in many years, I can stand and say I did everything in my power to keep us together.

SarahsDaughter said...

That hasn't been suggested here.

Exactly.

Histrionics like that are the signs men should be looking for when considering dating a woman from a divorced home.

Men have not, historically, been "unjust" about such things. Feather Blade, you've been around long enough to know better that out of necessity, some men are becoming more discriminate in who they'll marry because of the legal system that is unjust. This is not natural for most of them or very comfortable. Most men love indiscriminately and are completely unfamiliar with vetting potential mates and making difficult decisions to not get involved with them due to potential of long term consequences. Remember, they are the true romantics - a quality that has proven detrimental to them under the feminist injustice system operating in the West today.

Iowahine said...

Unknown,

In reality, many of us parents fall into the category of having persevered through struggles, doubts, and imperfection, hoping our children will benefit at least from our model of perseverance and commitment. The jury's out for a lot of us, but I believe staying together for the children, not grudgingly, but working toward personal accountability is the right action. I agree, regardless of your adult children's reaction, you did the right. I thought this even before I was a believer, but know it with more confidence as a believer.

Rabbi B said...

"Usually in the US all you have to do is disagree with her. "

Or, in the words of those great Canadian philosophers, The Guess Who:

American woman gonna mess your mind

American woman, stay away from me
American woman, mama, let me be
Don't come a-hangin' around my door
I don't wanna see your face no more
I got more important things to do
Than spend my time growin' old with you
Now woman, I said stay away
American woman, listen what I say

Feather Blade said...

That hasn't been suggested here.

Iowahine: unless I have greatly misread the quoted original post, that is exactly what the questioner was asking.

As you will note, I stated that if a man wishes to use a woman's divorced parents as a reason among other to reject her, then that is his business. Each man must decide for himself how much potential dysfunction he is willing to put up with. As a sole and automatic reason, especially if she is otherwise undamaged and suitable, is unjust.

And Unknown's points are both well taken (though I said nothing about fairness), and not in disagreement with anything I've said.

Histrionics
Sarahsdaughter: No, Herd Mare! don't bite me, I promise I'll be good~!

SarahsDaughter said...

Sarahsdaughter: No, Herd Mare! don't bite me, I promise I'll be good~!

attagirl!

Now do demonstrate some wisdom in acknowledging that Vox's answer to the question posed of him was eloquently answered in a manner you should be satisfied with. To assert your opinion to what the questioner has been vacillating about to be unjust is unnecessary. The rules to the game are changing dear, men do not need to concern themselves with women's opinions of justice.

Cail Corishev said...

Feather Blade, let me boil it down, and I think you'll see the problem:

Vox: Having divorced parents is a yellow flag -- not an automatic disqualifying red flag, but one concern to consider among many.
Others: Hear, hear.
Featherblade: I see what you're saying, but having divorced parents shouldn't be "the sole and automatic reason for rejecting the candidate."
Iowahine: "That hasn't been suggested here."

Perhaps you were agreeing rather than objecting, but that's not how it sounded. No one, and especially not the original question or answer, had suggested what you responded to, so what did "however" mean there?

Freedom Fighter said...

I agree with these thoughts! Are there exceptions? I know of one. He married a woman who was raised by her divorced mother. His wife had also had several relationships prior. Eight years later, though a rocky road, they are doing well. She had to deal with her rejection issues (father). They both had to deal with her past. They both cheated. They both forgave. Each had the opportunity to exit. Each chose to stay. There are no kids so that was not the motivation. They stayed because the gauntlet they endured caused them to lay down all illusions about themselves and each other. And as you suggested, their Christian walk is real, relational, and not religious.

Iowahine said...

Feather Blade,

The bottom line is VD has not stated that a daughter of divorce be automatically rejected as a marriage candidate for the sole reason of being a child of divorce. That would be a red flag; he said it's a yellow flag and then provided questions for consideration.

We're all free to do as we wish, as you've noted. Any criteria one uses to cull marriage candidates could be considered unfair (no men under 6 feet, no red heads, no salary below $100k, etc.). Prescreening is done all the time. What should and shouldn't be is irrelevant.

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