More From Wisconsin: A Ban on Divorce?

This just in: the state of Wisconsin is trying to make me have a stroke.

In defense of the bill that proposes a “public education” campaign maligning single parents for their alleged contributions to child abuse (previously discussed here), Wisconsin state representative Don Pridemore is saying that no one should ever be allowed to choose to get divorced– not even women abused by their husbands. Essentially, he states that these women should sit down and think about why they got married in the first place, and that should pretty much take care of the issue.

Now, I don’t generally take issue with people taking a personal stand against divorce. To each their own, and freedom of speech, and all that. Just because divorce was the right choice for me doesn’t mean it’s the right choice for everyone, and it’s certainly not a decision to be taken lightly.

But… saying that divorce shouldn’t be allowed to be an option for anyone– even for people in abusive relationships? You can’t be serious. Who are these guys, anyway? What exactly qualifies them to speak for (and give orders to) battered women?

Hey, Pridemore and Grothman? Yeah, I’m talking to you. I know you think you’re standing up for your beliefs and trying to make America a better place and defend the innocent children from all of us loose, divorced women or whatever. But listen, there’s a reason these things aren’t politically correct to say. It’s because they’re a bunch of judgmental, discriminatory bullsh*t. If children that result from abusive marriages need defending, I’m fairly certain it’s from the men who are beating their mothers and not from the women who are strong enough to stand up and walk away.

Pridemore states that children are more likely to go “astray” without the disciplinary influence of a father in the home. What is this, Little House on the F*cking Prairie? Sure, okay. Let’s just conveniently ignore all of the actual research about children and divorce and just throw around a bunch of outdated, misogynistic opinions, because that means more than science and psychology anyway, right? Forget the studies that show that it’s not divorce itself, but the way divorce is handled, that has the most influence on the psychological development of a child. Forget the common-sense truth that a child is better off in a single parent home than in a dual-parent home where they’re being abused. Actual facts are so lame and boring. Those don’t get you votes or publicity. Am I right?

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe there’s an important document somewhere in this country’s history that states that we all have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Well, Pridemore, I’m pretty sure “liberty” includes the right to find your way out of a failed marriage, and I wouldn’t have my happiness if I hadn’t had the right to get divorced, so how about you mind your own business and back up off it, already.


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  1. by Erinn

    On March 20, 2012 at 6:59 pm


    That’s all I can do, because you’ve said it all.

  2. by Deirdre

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:17 pm

    This is beyond stupid it’s becoming scary how politicians are attempting to take basic rights away from women.

  3. by Trisha Ide

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:20 pm

    I wrote Grothman myself and gave him a piece of my mind. I explained how I am one of those abused woman who did leave my abuser with our child! It was the best thing I did for us! I am now happily married with baby #3 on the way. My daughter’s father is still abusing his new girlfriend that he has 2 other children with. I got an response telling me that there are always other options! Are you serious? Counseling and jail time didnt work. What other option is there Mr. Know it all? I could not believe the that Grothman actually wants this bill to pass! He must be insane to think that it will!

  4. by Stefanie

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:21 pm

    How incredibly upsetting. What could be his reasoning? Women in abusive relationships have a hard enough time breaking free from the abuse – they don’t need guilt trips making them think they deserve abuse, or worse, that it’s their fault!
    Divorce is not something to be taken lightly, but it should be determined by those in the marriage, not by a government official!
    Children of a single, happy, well adjusted parent would be in a much better place to have a good life than children of two parents in a bad relationship. You can’t tell me that a father who is physically present and abusive is better than a single mom showing her child all the love and support she knows how!
    PS – I can’t imagine the reasoning there. As someone who has a strong Christian faith, I can say even the Bible says there are circumstances for divorce – God doesn’t want anyone to be in a damaging relationship.

  5. by venessa petrelus

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:21 pm

    You both have some nerve ! Trying to prevent people from getting divorced…. I left an abusive marriage with my two girls who then were 2 and 3…. This after a night were my ex beat the crap out of me and I nearly died!!! You both need to mind your business and let people decide what’s right for them… If it is divorce then so be it…. But you both can not prevent or pass a law that tells people what they can and can’t do…. Get these two people and throw them out of office!!!

  6. by jen

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm

    completely agree! the gop has gone crazy! I have to believe that these people will be voted out by intelligent, informed people who don’t believe in all these attacks on woman!

  7. by Elisabeth

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    And to think I was actually contemplating moving back to my roots… Northern Illinois or slightly cheaper Southern Wisconsin… Going to cross Wisconsin off my list right now!

  8. by Andrea

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:26 pm

    I live in this state and all I can say is I am very dissapointed in our politicans.

  9. by D

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    Some abusive marriages depending on how bad the abuse is can lead to death or lifelong effects.. And if a person is strong enough to get out and walk away before their life ends thats amazing so they just need to bk the fuck off it.

  10. by P Uncapher

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    Ok asshole. You must be a spouse abuser to think that this is even acceptable in todays society. I believe the children and the abused persons right come first! Go see a psychiatrist and then go to jail!

  11. by theresa

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:37 pm

    So you think it’s ok for a woman or a man and the children to stay in a marriage that a spouse is abusive. When all realty the children suffer the most. Children learn what they are taught so why not go ahead a bring up more children in today’s society to become abusive because thats what u are saying when u say divorce shouldn’t happen no matter what. Well than you are a crock of shit. You need to be talking about how to make society better for our children than wanting them to grow up in that environment and become their parents because thats what they have learn.

  12. by Melanie

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:43 pm

    GREAT article. My parents divorced when I was 5. I am 31 now and am glad they did. My brother and I would have been miserable in a home where 2 people hated each othe

  13. by Jamie

    On March 20, 2012 at 8:55 pm

    I mean come on Wisconsin now i know another reason i want to move. You can’t be stupid enough to think this bill will actually pass. there are so many women killed by their abusers why don’t you politicians put the murder weapons in your hands. you are just as bad as the abuser.

  14. by Devon

    On March 20, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    I can hit this from a different angle. I was the kid who grew up in an abusive house. The abuse wasn’t “as bad” for me as it was for my mom, but the kids all got their share of the physical and emotional crap. They did counseling. They did police reports. And my parents stayed together until I was 18 and my father finally left (seriously, the best thing he ever did for all of us). Where did that “ideal childhood experience” get me? A lot of f*cked up reactions to normal things and a fortune in therapy.

    Yup, that was definitely better for me than having only one stressed but relatively stable parent… (*please note sarcasm there if it didn’t come through in my typing)

  15. by Heather

    On March 20, 2012 at 9:28 pm

    Seriously??? what is this world coming to?? what is this gut thinking when he asks why get married then?? does he think we get abused then marry the guy that abused us?? hmmm NOt how it went for me anyways… and saying there are other options…what other options are there when jail, counseling,anger management,rehab, medication doesn’t work??? when seperating for a period of time doesn’t work??? there are no other options than divorce unless of course this maniac is talking about the option of staying married and dealing w/ it until there is no more life to be beaten out of you..this guy is as big as a monster as those abusers out there..horrible..I really don’t see this bill passing….I would sure hope not!!

  16. by lexi

    On March 20, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    As completly against divorce I am, I completly dissagree with this atempt at banning divorce. If you were to ask me if I agree with banning divorce I would seriously consider it. Only because I think we live in an instant gratification society, if my husband isnt making my happy anymore then I will just divorce him. As opposed to working it out dealing with a bit of unhappieness for a while to produce a relationship that has stood the test of each of the vows we took when it began. For good time and BAD, for rich or POOR, in sickness and health, TIL DEATH DO WE PART. And after that you have a legacy to leave your kids, grandkids and great grandkids that will last so much longer than your satisfaction from divorce will last. My parents are divorced and it wasnt them that suffered from the divorce but it was me that was left to deal with the aftermath which in my opinion is nothing short of emotional abuse from both parents. But on this subject of divorce even from an abusive relationship, even I as a far right conservative, is obscene and should not be allowed.

  17. by Tammy Ritchie

    On March 20, 2012 at 9:43 pm

    My biological aunt left a drunkenly abusive husband and it was the best decision she ever made! My cousin told me when we were kids that when he was 3 he saw his daddy beating up on his mommy. She taught him that hitting your wife was unacceptable (a lesson he takes to heart to this day). She went on to marry my uncle who is a supportive, loving and all around great guy. They have two great kids and have been married for almost 25 years. The ex-husband died of cirrosis of the liver a few year ago because he wouldn’t stop drinking. My mom wasn’t as smart as my aunt. She didn’t leave my dad who is a manipulative sexual deviant. Neither one of them are in my life because I not only wanted to spare myself and my husband (who would like to beat the tar out of him for sexually abusing me) but also to protect our 3-year-old daughter. I don’t want our daughter to come to us and say, “Mommy! Daddy!! Grandpa touched me down here with his pee-pee.” I don’t want her to be stuck in a car alone while my parents went out drinking and smoking their crack. Fortunately she will not have to rely on them when she has appendicitis otherwise they’ll leave her at home alone while they went out partying!!! It was a good thing that I had a small intestinal infection (they went off to a comedy club with their beeper off after they swore it would be on if I needed them… Yes I was alone) otherwise I’d be dead!!! I wish my mom had come to her senses years ago and divorce my a-hole dad for my sake!!! Too bad my mother didn’t love me as much as she loves that loser!

  18. by Keagan

    On March 20, 2012 at 9:53 pm

    Let be clear here – no one other than these idiots and maybe a few others want this bill to pass – no one. It is just a stupid bill. It will not pass. No one in WI is like this other than the few crazies. I believe this guy is known for making up stupid bills anyways so at least lets all realize that wisconsin isn’t that bad. And lets also refrain from saying this is the GOP. A bill like this would be death to any candidate – the GOP won’t be associating with this. Just a couple crazies on the side that just happen to say theyre GOP.

  19. by Melissa

    On March 20, 2012 at 10:49 pm

    I was a child who was raised around domestic violence and child abuse. I knew from an early age that I didn’t want the cycle to be repeated due to the emotional and psychological trauma. However, I married a guy that I thought was okay until our first child was born. He ended up beating me and calling me names. I have made several protection orders that didn’t mean anything to him. Even anger management didn’t help him. No matter what I told the judge, he was still ordered to take those classes. During our multiple separations, he repeatedly cheated with other women. I have divorced him and glad that I had done so because I didn’t want our two children to be around to see that. I am now happily married to a wonderful husband who shares the same exact beliefs that I do. We have a wonderful 2 year old that won’t see any type of abuse. Those two men should be ashamed of themselves!! There is only so much you can do in an abusive relationship to make it work. I’ve tried and it fell apart quicker than I could grasp it. I just wonder how they would feel after women or men lose their lives to their abuser?! It makes me sick that politicians would go to great lengths to control people!!

  20. by Katherine Brinson

    On March 21, 2012 at 12:15 am

    This obvious idiot, is, and I will put money on it, most likely a wife abuser. That is the only explanation that could possibly make any sense! You know what I am talking about…all those sanctimonious politicians spouting off on family values, blah, blah, and then having a mistress and list of prositutes on the state expense account. Self-righteous religious fanatics telling people how to live and judging them, and all the while stealing, lying and cheating the very congregation they are “guiding”. This so called politician is a NUT, and surely will not get re-elected, or someone is asleep at the wheel down in Wisconsin!

  21. by Joy

    On March 21, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    I was fortunate to not have a abusive father but my mom divorcing my sperm donor is the best decision she made. My father is an acoholic, can’t keep it in his pants, pill popping, thief kind of guy that I didn’t meet till I was 16 when I stayed with him for 2 weeks cuz my mom wanted us to meet him. Then when I was 18 for some odd reason she got back with him for a little while, where he would steal my money her money. His mother came and stayed with us for a while and he was stealing her medicine. Would accuse me of stealing money from his mom but I was never home and had a job. I am glad he was never there and now that he isnt there. I wouldn’t of been the same. Also, when my mom was with him all she did was drink.

  22. by jen

    On March 26, 2012 at 10:38 pm

    ok I understand making it so everyone must take marriage & family counseling before making the decision on getting a divorce because divorce rates are too high, but to say no one can get a divorce is taking away their freedom.. can we pass a bill against dumb congress?

  23. by Nicole

    On March 28, 2012 at 10:54 am

    I live in WI and I absolutely HATE the political climate these days! The Republicans know they are all going to be recalled and/or replaced in the next election so they are jamming through as many conservative social issue bills as possible before that happens! Somehow we allowed all these crazy people into our legislature and now we’re paying the price!

    As a fairly young mom, and a mom of a special-needs child (whose Medicaid was cut by our lovely state) I am hoping things turn around in Wisconsin soon or my family will seriously be considering a move to another state!

  24. by Anna

    On March 28, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    Amen Stefanie….lets just teach our daughters they should just accept abuse and deal with it. Bully tactics by men and gov’t. To me, no logical person would promote that ignorance, unless they are trying to save the state money from food stamps, wic etc..since a 2 income household does make more, its less burden on them, n makes it look like focus is how they saved moNey. Since they don’t go after the dirt bags for lack of child support. it has nothing to do with marriage institution. My son is graduating with honors n full schlorship..without a father influence, on waitress lwages, no welfare or food stamps. Hes very well adjusted mr. congressman.

  25. by Charity

    On April 5, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    This guy is a He-Man Woman Hater.

  26. by myth buster

    On May 6, 2012 at 1:01 am

    Sounds good to me- you can separate, but you can’t divorce. Same policy as the Catholic Church (you can get a civil divorce if you need one to protect the kids, but the Church still considers you married, so you are NOT free to remarry). So go ahead and get a restraining order against that abusive spouse, but that doesn’t mean you need a divorce.