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Men: Don't be afraid to ask for support during divorce

People traditionally think of men as less emotional and more pragmatic than women. Many people also assume men are the breadwinners in a family and play a less active role in the lives of their children than mothers do.

However, these assumptions can be off-base and damaging. They often make men going through a divorce think that they don't need or qualify for various types of support, but that is simply not true.

Shifts in spousal, child support obligations

Couples today can look very different than those from older generations. Increasingly, husbands and wives both maintain careers outside the home; they share household duties; they play equal or nearly-equal roles in parenting. In some cases, traditional roles are reversed completely when a woman is the breadwinner and her husband leaves his job to manage the home and raise the kids.

In other words, it may be more common than ever for men to be in a position to request financial support during a divorce.

Recently, in fact, a survey of matrimonial lawyers revealed a noticeable increase in the number of cases involving men seeking spousal support from women. In that same survey, roughly 54 percent of respondents said they have seen an increase in mothers paying child support.  

This make sense, as more parents are sharing custody of their children, as opposed to arrangements where the mother receives primary custody and the father gets visitation. As such, child support payments are no longer an obligation reserved for fathers. 

Not just financial support

It's not just financial support that men may need when divorcing, either. Many men talk to a counselor or therapist for emotional support, as they are not immune to the fears, sadness and other difficult feelings that come with divorce. 

Legal support is also crucial for men going through a divorce. Most people have never been through this process before, and they don't know what to expect. However, working with an attorney can give anyone -- man or woman -- the guidance and confidence they need to make difficult decisions and pursue a fair outcome.

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