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Personals ads and divorce - Life is strange...

Sep. 7th, 2006

05:24 pm - Personals ads and divorce

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Hi!

I saw this in a personals ad today:

Since I am soon to be divorced, I noticed. I'm sure I noticed it in much the same way that people shorter than 5'9" would have noticed the following line.

I've always looked at personals ads, ever since they were short and full of abbreviations like HPM, SWF and (a favorite) MGWPM. I've noticed a persistent disdain for women larger than about size 6, men shorter than about 5'9" (or shorter than 6'0", this one comes in a bimodal distribution), people with children, and divorced people. I've never understood the height thing, I have some understanding of the size thing, and I have no understanding of the divorce thing. I suppose I can understand if you're looking for a 24-year-old--divorce there often means the person is a flake. Bu plenty of sane, rational and loving people in their thirties have been through marriage and divorce, and as far as I can tell, are substantially better and wiser from the experience. But I also see both women and men in their thirties both requiring "single, not divorced or widowed" as their prospective mate's marital status... even some divorced people require this!

Thoughts?

Cheers! generalist

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Comments:

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From:jikme
Date:September 8th, 2006 02:41 am (UTC)
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It seems like a silly restriction to include. I never placed a personal ad, but I did some serious time as a SWF and wouldn't have held divorce against someone. I also wouldn't have listed a height restriction, having fallen pretty hard for some fellas who were my height (5'6") or shorter.

The only reason I'd be reluctant to date a divorced person was if he were really bitter and sour on relationships in general, but never-marrieds can be just as bad on that score.
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From:shadowsmark
Date:September 8th, 2006 05:33 am (UTC)
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Someone who's divorced is by definition a loser. I don't feel that way about individuals I know, but personal ads filter by group characteristics.

I was married to someone shorter than I am too. Not a big deal, but taller is definitely nicer!

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From:jymdyer
Date:September 8th, 2006 04:37 pm (UTC)

Loserness

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> Someone who's divorced is by definition a loser.

=v= Surely someone is more of a loser if they haven't bamboozledpersuaded anyone to marry them in the first place?

It would be fun to go on a first date with some of these personals-writers, just to disabuse them of their notions. "Naaw, ain't never gotten hitched. That's 7 women now who left me at the altar. 2 of them in the same week! What is it with you broads, anyhow?"
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From:sfo2lhr
Date:September 8th, 2006 06:32 am (UTC)
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It's been years since I dealt with personals ads, but it seems to me that things like that are actually useful, since it gives you additional clues about the person who placed the ad, and given the narrow bandwidth, every little bit counts. If someone specified "no divorced people" I'd zot them anyway (even though I am not divorced) since it's such a preposterous criterion & I figure we wouldn't get along.
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From:toxgunn
Date:September 8th, 2006 09:13 am (UTC)
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Fear of recidivism.
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From:generalist
Date:September 8th, 2006 05:02 pm (UTC)

"recividism"? Doesn't that have criminal connotations?

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From Merriam-Webster:

    recidivism
    One entry found for recidivism.
    Main Entry: re·cid·i·vism
    Pronunciation: ri-'si-d&-"vi-z&m
    Function: noun
    : a tendency to relapse into a previous condition or mode of behavior; especially : relapse into criminal behavior
    
So I guess divorce is practically criminal in your book?

But less tongue-in-cheek... some people do view divorce as a sin, and in at least some countries (Brazil, I think?) divorce is criminal. And there is some evidence that people who have once divorced are more likely to divorce again (but apparently it's more due to poor marital conflict management skills, not due to the prior divorce itself). You might also find this research on marriages interesting.

Cheers! generalist

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From:toxgunn
Date:September 8th, 2006 06:53 pm (UTC)

Re: "recividism"? Doesn't that have criminal connotations?

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Wasn't making value judgements, but it was the most succinct way to communicate the notion..;)

Thanks for the links - I'll definitely want to give them a read.

Good luck,
Tox
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From:hennepin
Date:September 8th, 2006 01:26 pm (UTC)
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Height and marriage history mean relatively little to me (unless the history reveals 3 previous marriages before the age of, say, 29.) Part of that is because I'm now in my 30s and the men I'm interested in at this point in my life will have (more than likely) had some experience behind them... and possibly even children. It's certainly not a deal breaker and anyone who says it is is severely limiting him/herself from finding someone worth knowing.
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From:jymdyer
Date:September 8th, 2006 04:38 pm (UTC)

MGWPM

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=v= Is that Mega-Giga-Words Per Minute?
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From:generalist
Date:September 8th, 2006 04:44 pm (UTC)

Re: MGWPM

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Well, I think it means (drum roll, please):

    Married Gay White Professional Male
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From:andybeals
Date:September 16th, 2006 06:57 am (UTC)
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If someone in her 40s hasn't been married yet and hasn't had a decently long LTR (at least one), and co-habbed, I'd start wondering WTFIGO with her.

(We really do have to sit down and split a six-pack!)
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