Men Are Increasingly Becoming the Recipient of Spousal Support in California Divorces

According to, family law attorneys across the county are noticing a dramatic increase in the number of men receiving spousal support and alimony from their ex-wives.

“Advances in women’s rights and social equality are said to be the dominant reasons for the trend”, says Catie Young, a divorce attorney in San Diego, California. More women are now finding themselves to be the ‘breadwinners’ of the household and many men are becoming stay-at-home dads. At the same time, as women’s earning potential increases, dual income households are becoming more prevalent. In these households, it’s no longer the case that one individual carries the responsibility of earning as much money as possible in order to support the family. Men are therefore finding themselves with the unique option of working a lower income job of their choice and not necessarily one that makes more money for the sake of making more money.

Coupled with the social advances of women is the detachment to old values by many men. Historically, men have had little interest in seeking spousal support or alimony from their ex-wives. This is generally a tradition of pride, with the idea being that as a man you can take care of yourself and do not need the support of an ex-wife. Although this mindset is still common, men are becoming more accustomed to the idea of support when the numbers are put in front of them. The more their living situations are compromised by financial stressors, the more inclined to make a request for spousal support they become (this can be said for both men and women). Additionally, when child custody factors in, the inclination only intensifies. When the father is the primary or substantial auxiliary caretaker, the children’s post-divorce living situation weighs in heavily with regards to spousal support. Each parent obviously wants the best environment for their children to live and are more inclined to accept support for their best interest if nothing else–especially when the amount for child support is insufficient to provide an adequate lifestyle.

Ultimately, the legal purpose of spousal support and alimony for either party is to help either party maintain the standard of living established during the marriage following a divorce. For stay-at-home parents, this is especially important given that in order to stay at home and raise children, they must remove themselves from the workplace for a period of time thereby sacrificing potential career advancement. This sacrifice often inhibits earning potential when it is time to go back to work. The support they receive serves to offset that which they cannot earn and stabilize their lives as they adapt to being on their own.

As the socioeconomic dynamics of society evolve, traditional values, roles and ways of thinking will also evolve. Just as women adapt to equalities and societal advances, so do men to the securities and benefits our legal system has in place. When all is considered, it’s no wonder more men are taking advantage to spousal support and alimony laws.

If you are going through a divorce in San Diego and have questions regarding spousal support call the experienced Encinitas divorce lawyers of Griffith, Young & Lass today. 858-345-1720