Instant celebrity status or a job with high demands can take a toll on a marriage. Perhaps no one knows that better than a group of women known as the Astrowives — the wives of the astronauts who went on the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo space missions. In order for their husbands to receive a good flight position, they were expected to put on a supportive front, cooperate with the media, and live their lives in front of the camera while their husbands ventured into space.
A recently published book explores the 30 marriages of the astronauts and their wives — all but seven of which ultimately ended in divorce. While society has changed dramatically since the days of the Astrowives, divorce still has a profound impact on a family and on the financial security of people just as it did then. The process of divorce is often intimidating, as it involves not just the distribution of family assets and the determination of future support, but also the determination of parenting time and legal responsibilities for children of the marriage.
High-asset divorces may be particularly complex if they involve division of businesses, intellectual property, the valuation of additional real property, retirement accounts and investment assets. Media interest in the divorces of those who are well known locally, regionally or even nationally may also complicate matters.
One way people facing divorce can navigate the situation is through collaborative law — a process in which divorcing spouses seek an amicable resolution to the divorce. Each spouse, along with his or her attorney, signs an agreement stating the intent to resolve all of the issues of the divorce without the need for a trial. The attorneys agree to remove themselves from the case if it does, in fact, go to trial, providing further incentive for the two sides to work together on a resolution outside of the courtroom.
Source: Australian Broadcasting Corporation, “The forgotten story of the Astrowives,” Jackie May, July 26, 2013