Why alimony shouldn’t be gender biased

In an Illinois marriage, couples often compromise on which of their careers they will make their decisions based on. Pay, benefits and location are often factors that lead to valuing the job of one spouse over the other. When it comes time to make changes, such as staying home with a child or moving across the country, the spouse with the less lucrative position may be the one who leaves the workplace altogether, or finds whatever job is available to suit the circumstances. Once this is done, it can have a lasting effect on a career.

According to Forbes magazine, now that women have become primary breadwinners in nearly half of marriages, divorce may leave men with limited options for successfully supporting themselves. Even so, it is often assumed that while a woman in this position will of course seek spousal support, a man will not. This may be due in part to cultural norms and gender expectations. Some claim it is not socially acceptable for a man to request support from a woman, but many believe this line of thinking is sexist.

Reuters notes that stigmas regarding alimony are beginning to disappear, though. Already, alimony laws are not geared toward a specific gender, and instead address relevant factors such as earning potential. Many see alimony as a solution to the financial hardship that a man may go through if he is unable to further his education or receive training to restore his ability to support himself. In some cases, a couple may want to agree to a divorce settlement that takes this need into account, rather than arranging for ongoing alimony payments, but for others, spousal support remains a viable and preferable solution.

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