So Terrence Howard finalized the divorce with his ex-wife Michelle and she hardly walked away with JACK! She did score $5,800 in spousal support per month for the next three years, which isn’t much for a semi-prominent actor like Howard. But when you think about it does she really deserve anything?
The couple stayed together for three years and for only one of those years were they actually in a relationship. The other two years were spent ironing out the details of their ensuing divorce. I would dare to say she made little direct contribution to his career, especially since, as of late, Terrence Howard has just begun to get his career back on track since its decline following his peak role in Iron Man back in 2008. The laws that determine alimony payments vary for each state and many times the results of court proceedings can derive from a variety of factors like how long you have been married, each person’s conduct during the marriage, and even who had the best divorce lawyer.
But if we set legalities aside and just consider what’s fair, should a woman that was around for such a short time in a relationship where no kids resulted be entitled to alimony? He worked his whole life to build a career and spent one measly year with her and now has to pay money to keep it moving. And furthermore she was the one that filed for the divorce. Can’t Michelle just go back to her commercial production job making her middle class income like the whole thing never happened? He keeps his money and everything he brought to the relationship, and she leaves with what she brought to the relationship?
My first thoughts on this subject were, “Please, she’s no Juanita Jordan (ex-wife of Michael Jordan), Maria Shriver (ex-wife of Arnold Schwarzenegger), or Heather Mills (ex-wife of Paul McCartney).” These women held their celebrity men down for years and took home some of the largest divorce settlements in history. And as Vanessa Bryant made clear, you don’t have to be the one “shootin’ in the gym,” to be entitled to half when there is a family involved. But Michelle has not been down for Terrence for long at all.
However, after really thinking about it, marriage is no joke when you decide to make that commitment to a person it has to be taken seriously because when it ends, you can’t just start over like the relationship never existed. Ideally you both had intentions on spending the rest of your lives together, so whether it’s one year or 100 years, trying to wiggle your way out through a divorce should be cumbersome and costly, since neither of you saw the promises you made all the way through.
Anyone who enters a marriage should know that if it ends they stand to lose money, that if they want to walk away it won’t be easy, and that if they aren’t fully invested in it they shouldn’t do it because it’s going to be difficult to get out. You have meshed so much of your lives together — emotions, family, money — that if you want to walk away, you might just consider going to counseling and working on your communication first. It’s not something that should just be done then undone.
So does Michelle Ghant deserve a pay day from her split with Terrence Howard? I’d say so. He has to pay her for the next three years and she gets a bicycle and a monthly stipend. I’m sure it’s not exactly what either of them wanted out of the deal, but it’s the price they have to pay for not getting it right.