The verbally abusive husband and other dark little marriage secrets

When people get divorced, outsiders are always looking for a reason why, and fingers are always going to be pointed by someone.
I’ve been reading other blogs about Tinsley Mortimer’s divorce from Topper Mortimer, and there is some insinuation that she was “having an affair with some guy in England.” I think I read it on the Observer.com. comments section  (by the way someone took a chunk of one of our Tinsley Posts “How to get a divorce without wrecking the kids” and uploaded it on New York Observer.com and did not credit us which was slightly upsetting!) but I can’t be sure exactly where I read it. I am sure it is just speculation anyhow. People like to speculate about New York Socialites like Tinsley Mortimer, Olivia Palermo, Fabiola Beracasa, and Byrdie Dell. It doesn’t mean that any of it is true.
BTW: There are also insinuations that Tinsley and Topper “fought  a lot” and that it was not a “good environment for kids.” This was also  on Observer.com. But I don’t know. Tinsley and Topper have apparently been friends since they went to the Lawrenceville School (a boarding school) in New Jersey and, according to Radar, “got married at 18 even though their parents forced them to annul the marriage.”  (They married again in 2002 at twenty-six years old.)
Usually couples like that, high school sweethearts, are buddies, very compatible and marry each other because they get along so famously. So if they are getting a divorce seven years later, I don’t think it was from fighting.
But what do I know?
But as far as the law goes, a party can definitely get a divorce on the basis of adultery if they can prove it ( in New York). They can also get a divorce on the basis of cruelty. Cruelty can also involve verbal abuse. Calling your wife or husband choice names is a form of verbal abuse and could rise to the level of satisfying the “grounds” requirement in New York. Oh, I am not suggesting that either Topper or Tinsley verbally abused each other. I am speaking generally now, not about them.
Once again, New York is a “fault” jurisdiction, unlike, say, Connecticut and, I believe, New Jersey, which are “no fault.” What that means is that in a jurisdiction that is “no fault” it doesn’t matter who did what. You can get a divorce on the basis of “irreconcilable differences.”
In New York, that’s a no go. You have to prove who did what. You have to prove grounds. Once you prove grounds, however, it usually does not impact how much you will actually get in “equitable distribution.” Not unless what the other party did was so “egregious” that it ” shocked the conscience” of the court.
I don’t know anything about Tinsley’s divorce and whether there was verbal abuse or adultery or what. But they are reportedly separated, so something obviously went wrong. And maybe they were both culpable. Who knows?
What I do know is that many wives come in complaining that their husbands use very abusive language to them. Sometimes, I am shocked by what they tell me. I wonder, perhaps a bit naively: how can someone say that to the person they love? People say a lot of terrible things when they are angry. I know this. And it doesn’t mean they don’t love you, necessarily.
But someone who has a pattern of degrading their spouse with abusive words, language and tone, can be sued for divorce in New York. Because, sometimes, the words hurt more than if they had hit you in the face, you know? Words can harm. And nobody should have to put up with verbal abuse and other “dark little marriage secrets.”
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