TH_E_SALINA J jgURNAL_ T DIVORCE FAMILY SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 1996 AB Breaking up should be hard to do Family values groups seek laws making it harder to end marriage By LAURIE ASSEO The Associated Press WASHINGTON - When it comes to divorce, some people believe it should take two to tangle. After a generation of no-fault divorce in America, lawmakers in some states are being asked to make it harder for a husband or wife to walk away from a marriage when one spouse does not want to call it off. "Our divorce laws should not make it easy to walk away from personal responsibility and parental obligation," Michigan State Rep. Jessie Dalman says. Proposals in several states to make contested divorces more difficult to obtain are supported by conservative groups seeking to promote family values. "Why do we have state laws that favor divorce over marriage?'" says Randall Hekman, founder of the Michigan Family Forum. "We have two people entering into marriage till death do us part. Then government takes the side of the party who wants divorce," Hekman says. ;The Michigan proposal would revive, in contested divorce cases, the old requirement that one spouse show the other was "at fault" — such as being unfaithful, abusive, a drug user or someone Y PARENTING Best way to stop whining? Just ignore it Parents who give in reward child for improper behavior By KSU News Service ; MANHATTAN — It begins with the words "Mommy and Daddy, I want" and goes on and on and on. Of course, it usually takes place in public, before the largest number of strangers possible. A Kansas State University professor, who specializes in parent- child relationships, sympathizes with parents. But he says childhood whining can be stopped. "There's nothing worse then a 4- year-old who thinks they're boss," says Charles Smith, professor of family studies and human services. "But I think handling the problem of whining is one of the silnpler things to deal with." .'Smith says research shows whining has nothing to do with normal child development. Instead, whining is what's called an irrelevant behavior that parents are responsible for creating. .•"A child whines because they have learned that kind of repetitious, aggravating behavior gets them what they want," he says. "A parent has to realize they created this behavior and now they're going to have to suffer through it." Smith knows how grating child whining can be and how easy it is to give in. But do it once, he cautions, and you'll be hearing whining again soon. - "Every time a parent responds that way, you purchase a little bit of peace and quiet at a really great cost," he says. "The cost is a continuation and possible increase of the whining in the future." ''But verbal or physical punishment isn't the proper reaction to whining either. Smith says those kinds of reactions can also lead to continued and increased whining. '"Even punishment is a response, getting angry or getting upset is a response," he says. "That's the tough thing about eliminating the behavior." /Above all else, Smith says to ayoid giving in some times and not at others. That kind of inconsistency is the worst kind of reaction a parent can have. "That's worse than always giving in," he said. "That kind of response produces a child who is a big time whiner." So what is the proper reaction to whining? According to Smith, ignore it, as long as the child isn't breaking other rules or putting himself or others in harm's way. "You don't debate with the child, you don't rationalize with the child, you ignore it," he says. "That's hard because it can get on your nerves. But to'extinguish it, you have to totally ignore it." But be forewarned, you may be doing a lot of ignoring. Smith says anytime whining is ignored, the child's first response is to do it more often before they realize whining doesn't pay off. "The child is used to getting a response and now that it's being ignored, they're bewildered and confused," Smith says. "Whenever you get confused, you tend to want to persist in something that used to be successful." who deserts the marriage. That would be a big shift from current divorce laws. Every state has enacted some type of no-fault divorce law since California put the first one on the books in 1970. Under such laws, someone can get a divorce on the ground the marriage has broken down, without having to claim wrongdoing by the other spouse. No-fault divorces can be obtained even if one spouse does not agree to dissolve the marriage. The laws were enacted to take some of the acrimony out of divorce, although judges in many states still consider fault in dividing property and awarding child custody. A bad idea? Many lawyers who specialize in divorce think reviving a fault requirement is a bad idea. "I don't think you can force people to live together, and even if you could, you can't make them be nice to each other," says Fred Morganroth, chairman of the Michigan bar association's family-law section. It is true the divorce rate has risen sharply since the late 1960s, but only about 15 percent of the increase can be attributed to no- fault divorce, Morganroth says. The American Bar Association's national family law section surveyed its members and found that 84 percent opposed a return to fault-based divorces, even though such a change might boost busi- ness for them. "This would be the 'lawyer relief act' to litigate fault." said attorney Randy J. Fuerst of Lake Charles, La. "Putting fault back in divorce, our survey shows, would only intensify the acrimony and litigation and tearing apart of children that no-fault was initially designed to ease," said Ira Lurvey, a Los Angeles lawyer and head of the ABA's family-law section. Besides Michigan, limits on no- fault have been proposed in several states, including Iowa. Proposals in Colorado, Washington and West Virginia would let couples sign contracts making their marriages harder to dissolve. Dalman's proposal would allow no-fault divorce for couples who agree to split up. But couples with children would have to go through counseling on the effects divorce might have on their child. When one spouse opposes divorce, the one seeking a breakup could file for a legal separation and get a no-fault divorce after four years. For anything quicker, the one seeking divorce would have to show he or she was the victim of wrqngdoing. "We need to put some stops in the road to have (couples in troubled marriages) see if they could somehow resolve some of their conflicts," Dalman said. Morganroth contends that Dalman's proposal would increase the cost of divorce and give abusive spouses the power to wrest financial or child-custody concessions as conditions for agreeing to a divorce. SOLID OAK ••'•sBMW! TABLE it CHAIRS The holidays are near! Ei\joy a new table and chair set for your family gatherings! See how our quality oak furniture can beautify your home! FREE FINANCING AVAILABLE FOREVER OAK - Holiday Decorations arriving daily. Decorate your home " Handcmfted Oat Furniture & Accents ' 1-800-86.I-H29 823-9729 619C. Crawford • Elmore Center Monday-Friday 10-6 Sat 10-4 oday! 67th District Jhanks for the privilege of serving Committed tO Principles Not Politics the 67th District the last 4 years. As f always, i am available for your • Cutting Property Taxes • Controlling Spending questions and concerns. 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Claflin • Salina Some of the many reasons to vote for Senator Ben Vidncksen Proven, Effective Leadership Born & Raised in the 24th District Chairs Two Important Committees: Transportation Committee & Joint Committee on StateJBuilding Construction Strong Supporter of Childrens Issues Strong Supporter of Education Consistently votes for Lower Taxes Supports Lower Property Taxes Supports Welfare Reform Voted Against Same Sex Marriage Seniority with Committee Leaderships Voted to Lower Taxes on New Home Supports Local Control of Schools Introduced and Passed Expanded Public Transportation for Elderly Voted to Repeal Legislative Pension JPlan Worked Successfully for a New National Guard Training Center in Salina Worked with Salina Airport Authority & Chamber of Commerce for K-State Salina and Expansion InlroiEa^ Ban Smoking in Schools Banning Smoking in State Capitol Endorsedfby the Kansas Farm Bureau Endorsed by the Kansas Livestock Association Endorsed by Kansas Chamber of Commerce and Industry and other Business Organizations. Named Number One Supporter of Tourism Promotion in Kansas J6 Supports the Public Right to Vote on Constitutional Amendments Worked on Strategic Planning & Action Grant Program that Became Law For Smaller Cities Including Salina Endorsed by Taxpayer Organizations Will See that Highway 81 f our _L ane is completed to Nebraska Will Continue to Work on the Growth of K-State Salina Will Continue to Work with the Kansas Highway Patrol Training Center at Salina and its Expansion Has Credibility Among His Peers Will Always Be Honest and Forthright Vice/Chair Kansas Turnpike Authority Dedicated to Work For Each Individual Voter is not all talk. His actions in the Kansas Senate have provided our community with a strong voice that has responded to the needs for greater economic growth in North Central Kansas. Let's return Ben's effective and proven voice back to l| Topeka to represent our needs and concerns. ££ AW. Adv. Paid for by Ben Vidricksen Ji>r Senate, Al Schwan, Chair., Mary Libv, Titus. ^*^'
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