In every other contract that we enter. Buying a house or car or a mobile phone. Once you are in you are in.
Just because you drive around the corner and find a better house, or a new model car or a better phone you are still stuck with the contract that you freely entered into.
There are no forced marriages in Australia. People make a choice. They enter into a life time contract which can differ internally according to the individuals involved.
This life time marriage contract, more often than not, works very well in the first stages. Give and Take, mutual interest, building finances together, often splitting roles in a very family cost efficient manner, bearing and raising children together, often with different roles of bread winner and sandwich maker. Overlapping and complimentary.
It used to be between a man and a woman, for better for worse, richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, for life.
Now it seems to be for “only while I feel like it.”
It is not really marriage at all.
Why is it that just one of the contracted marriage parties can simply say. “I am done.” Without any penalty for breach of the contract?
Why is it that violence by one party to the other is not a breach of the marriage contract?
Why is it that one party walking out on another, and perhaps the children, is not in breach of the marriage contract?
Why is it that a person who has invested their entire life into the mutual marriage contract with the right and proper belief that their spouse had the same lifetime commitment is not compensated by the breaching party?
Subject only to the paramount interests of the children I think it is time that these breaches were recognised again in Australian Family Law.
You break the contract. You should expect to pay the price.
You beat your spouse up, or you walk out on the family because you found a toy-boy or girl. Then you have breached your marriage contract.
You should not expect to get half the house or property.