Divorce can be filled with dirt and drama, but will you let yours be as bad as a trashy TV show? That’s up to you!
Anyone else remember the Jerry Springer Show? Back in its heyday, it was known as a salacious and dirty stage for the dysfunctional elite to air their dirty laundry in the most public and shameful way. The show prided itself on parading the most bizarre combinations of people with axes to grind about infidelity, racism, paternity, and every imaginable fetish and proclivity known to man.
While probably mostly drug-fueled or staged, each episode gathered an audience to watch a spectacle of intense emotion. Most often, a massive fight would break out on stage. Chairs and fists were thrown, a blur of beeps to censor profanity made most of the verbal exchanges unintelligible, and spectators both laughed and gasped at the absurdity.
Whether you’re a fan or disgusted by this form of “entertainment,” it had a successful run. Why? People love assurance that other people’s lives are more messed up than their own. People love juicy and nasty gossip because it feeds their keen desire to be privy to other people’s most sensitive business, and gives them something to talk about with their friends.
If you’re getting a divorce, you have an important question to ask yourself: do you want your break-up and divorce to be worthy of its own Jerry Springer show?
Divorce is such ugly business, that it wouldn’t be hard to escalate to levels of greed, jealousy, hatred, and drama fit for a televised brawl fest. Divorce plays on our most base and primal instincts to fight when provoked and resort to low levels of morality to seek vengeance, clear our name, or attempt to feel better about our situation.
The “Jerry Springer Method of Divorce” is the natural and easy way of coping with the painful end of a long and meaningful relationship. It’s the fool’s way, the immature way, and anyone could do it. The question, again, is “do you want a Jerry Springer-worthy divorce?”
Are you going to be that couple, or that ex, who publicly dukes it out on social media or at your child’s school? Are you going to be “those people” who have the police called at every visitation exchange or who make a habit out of practicing sabotage and revenge by involving one another’s employers, child protective services, and so on just to “mess with” the other? Are you willing to spill every sordid detail of what he said and she did to win support and play dirty?
The temptation to tell the world how it really was, reveal every shocking and embarrassing personal detail, or to try to ruin an ex who has caused great pain and shame is immense!
Who wouldn’t want to even the score, inform the world of our side of the story, or release some pent up frustration? It requires great restraint and dignity to hold back from joining in on the mud-slinging madness!
Below is why you need to refrain from getting down and dirty during divorce:
You look like a fool. No two ways about it, though some may feel sympathy for you, the fact that you’re a part of the trashy antics of junior-high level sophistication makes you a joke rather than an example of grace under pressure.
You make your ex’s side seem more plausible. If your ex is accusing you of being a crazy bitch, then setting fire to all of his belongings in the parking lot of his work doesn’t help to portray you as the sweet wife who’s been done wrong. We know, we know, he probably pushed every button and would have made even Mother Teresa lose her cool! The point is, as horrible as an ex can be, we have to try to maintain our composure or we become as bad as they are! When we don’t act as they make us out to be, we’re not serving to prove their case. Instead, let them prove how awful they are!
You’re providing a free show for the public. Do you really want to be the subject of the hottest gossip in the rumor mill, the butt of others’ jokes, or the main attraction for gawkers? Decent people will become disgusted and turned off by the continuous drama churned out by your situation and will be less likely to take you seriously or respect you. The show created by a divorce played out in a pig’s pen will be for low lifers who get off from knowing someone else is capable of acting more stupid and with less class than they are!
You risk hurting your children. Your children may be too young to understand what their parents are screaming about or what the pictures and stories mean on social media; but, the damage created by dirty divorce tactics tarnish the reputation of the entire family and make your children an extension of the madness. They may be gossiped about or bullied as a result of your situation, and they really don’t need to know what dirty deeds mom and dad may or may not have committed.
You may damage your case in court or for custody. It takes two to tango. You can either join in on your ex’s divorce insanity, thereby making yourself also look like a nut, or you can let your ex prove to the world why you are lucky to be divorcing them. If you do partake in slinging mud, prepare to hear about it in court or to have to answer to your actions to the judge or Guardian Ad Litem. Is it worth it?
The bottom line is that you’re better than to get caught up in the knee jerk reaction of acting like, well, a jerk during your divorce! It’s not easy to always take the high road. You may not get to answer to every accusation or share a piece of your mind. What you will gain from conducting yourself like a dignified adult during this difficult time is the satisfaction of knowing that you are above childish and senseless behavior. Divorce is hard enough, so why allow yourself to continue to be humiliated and manipulated like a puppet by your ex.
Like all trying times in life, this too shall pass. You can at least feel some pride in knowing that there’s not an audience of onlookers snickering at your foolishness or that you haven’t contributed to causing your children more pain through your actions. Just because you’re invited to appear on the Jerry Springer Show doesn’t mean you have to accept. It’s up to you to decide whether or not to get dirty with the pigs!