There are different rabbinic views on a prenuptial agreement based on halacha, but this is the only viable solution to date to prevent women from becoming agunot. It prevents the monetary blackmail that occurs in many divorce situations, such as yours. Bottom line: there is no reason why a failed marriage should result in poverty in addition to all of the emotional pain that one suffers from. Monetary blackmail is a terrible circumstance to be involved in. Once someone becomes intertwined in a bad marriage, they often cannot extricate themselves – at least not without significant monetary loss.
This is an embarrassment to our klal, as we do not condone blackmail of any kind. However, no one has found a way to fully protect the victim from these kinds of abuses. A halachically-sanctioned prenuptial agreement will help protect all involved parties.
Hatzlachah in your quest for happiness.Dr. Yael Respler
About the Author: Dr. Yael Respler is a psychotherapist in private practice who provides marital, dating and family counseling. Dr. Respler also deals with problems relating to marital intimacy. Letters may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. To schedule an appointment, please call 917-751-4887. Dr. Orit Respler-Herman, a child psychologist, co-authors this column and is now in private practice providing complete pychological evaluations as well as child and adolescent therapy. She can be reached at 917-679-1612. Previous columns can be viewed at www.jewishpress.com and archives of Dr. Respler’s radio shows can be found at www.dryaelrespler.com.
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