What happens when you no longer need your spouse for financial support, you're working yourself to death, and he's sitting around the house pursuing his interests and acting like one of the kids? You're doing the 60-hour work week, most of the housework, and coordinating everyone's schedule. He's on Cloud 9. Hmmm. Could life after divorce be the reward at the end of a disappointing marriage? Does the husband step up more after divorce than he ever did during the marriage?
Here's an excerpt from "The Weaker Sex: How Long Until I Vote You Off the Island?":
To answer this question, join me for a dinner party in Los Angeles. Have some white sangria and some pesto hummus—they’re from Whole Foods. To set the scene: we, this evening’s chorus, are divorced professional mothers (DPMs) who have adjusted, several years in, to life after marriage. Our children are fine. Their success no doubt owes a great deal to our largely graduate-level educations and our upper-middle-class income bracket, in which, interestingly, divorce is as rare now as it was in the 1950s. Although none of our exes initially welcomed divorce, in practice we’ve found our joint-custody arrangements to be surprisingly stable. Not to get too Ayn Rand on you, but although utopian thinking, nostalgic sentimentality, and even fear of confrontation may cloud communication during marriage, in post-marriage, both parties are forced to be realistic and rigorously accountable regarding kids’ schools, lessons, and pickups and drop-offs, and of course the finances. This clarity has, in turn, sparked a new appreciation for the benefits our children’s fathers bring. How happily our exes whisk the kids off to wholesome activities like swimming and camping and baseball, as we DPMs enjoy a lazy terrace supper together, easy in the knowledge that afterward we can go home, get into our flannel nightgowns, knit, and watch The Cheese Nun without being, to anyone, a colossal disappointment.
“To our exes,” says our hostess, Kate, lifting a glass.
“Hear, hear,” we reply, lifting ours.
Surprisingly (or perhaps, not surprisingly), husbands can be much more valuable allies as ex-husbands than they ever were while in the marriage. Intrigued? Read the whole entertaining and seriously informative story byAt that moment, the front door blows open. Enter Annette, the only woman still in her original marriage, an hour late. She’s texted ahead her drink order and is thus handed a stiff vodka diet tonic with a wedge of lemon, as she launches into the story of … the lightbulb.