All Articles Tagged "divorce"

Anthony Hamilton And Wife Tarshá Hamilton Announce Divorce

July 21st, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Anthony Hamilton


After nearly ten years of marriage, R&B crooner Anthony Hamilton and his wife, Tarshá Hamilton, have decided to end their marriage.

Tarshá’s publicist confirmed to Madame Noire Tuesday that the couple will continue to work together professionally on various music projects, but have opted to end their romantic relationship. And thankfully, the split appears to be an amicable one. Among the musical projects that the former couple intends to collaborate on is Tarshà’s debut album, Sounds Like Tarshá, which will be released on Pennie Bank Productions.

“Tarshá and Anthony’s greatest priorities are loving and raising their three children and are committed to co-parenting together,” a reprentative for Tarshá said in a statement.

In addition to pursuing musical aspirations, Tarshá will continue her works as an HIV/AIDS healthcare advocate.

Tarshá and Anthony met over twelve years ago when she auditioned to sing background for the platinum-selling recording artist. He proposed two years later. They share three sons. Anthony has three more sons from a previous relationship.

We’re definitely wishing Anthony and Tarshá the best in this new chapter of their lives.

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise


“It Was A Poor Decision” Celebrity Breakup Announcements That Left Us With Questions

July 13th, 2015 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Celebrity breakup announcements make it sound like everything is OK — until you hear the story behind them.

When It’s Just Too Damned Good To Leave

July 13th, 2015 - By Rich
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“You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind — or even a storm cloud on the horizon.” ~Bob Marley 

Love Lesson: Love Junkie Rehab! Kicking Your Ad-dic*%-tion.

“I don’t know why I can’t leave him. I know that I don’t love him and I want to leave but it’s just so damned good!”

My good friend Melanie was talking about her live-in boyfriend of three years. He was a demanding jerk who didn’t believe in her career. He was always too cheap or too broke to ever go anywhere, ever. The relationship was not moving toward the marriage that Mel wanted. This man never acknowledged her feelings or needs and she was totally over it.

So why was my educated, successful friend staying? Melanie insisted again that she really didn’t know why she was staying but I did. She was staying because like she said, he was her “BSE.” Best Sex Ever. “What should I do?” she asked, brushing back her fluffy curls. She was laughing and almost crying at the same time.

“Are you ready for my self-love coach diagnosis?” I asked. She nodded. “Mel, you are totally and completely a-dic*%-ted. We have been having this conversation for over a year now. You’re not quitting your addiction cold turkey so you need a step-down program.”

“You’re so right! I need a BSE Rehab,” she said. At this point we were both cracking up so hard that other folks in our favorite cheap dive restaurant near Penn Station were turning around. “Melanie, you know that anti-smoking patch? That’s what you need! A step down program and a Kasseim addiction patch.”

We were laughing but I know exactly where she was coming from. A-dic*%#-tion sounds funny but it’s not a barrel of blueberries when you’re in it. Just ask Melanie or the many other women who write to me about the exact same issue.

It sounds simple, right? If Melanie was being mistreated by this loser of a boyfriend, why not just walk out the door? It turns out that expecting Melanie to just leave is much like asking a heroin addict to just put down the needle. In some ways it can be more challenging because all of society agrees that no one should be on heroin. We live in a world that loves love. Everywhere you look romance is being pushed. Single women, especially black women, are told to settle or die alone.

What is love addiction?

Love addiction may not sound as destructive as being hooked on cocaine, meth, cigarettes, food or even sex but it can be. Love addiction stops your personal progress and can wreck lives all the same. If you’re in this situation, find a coach or therapist who specializes in co-dependency and get help. My friend and I were laughing because she takes her situation lightly but for many women this is no laughing matter. I recently advised a sex addict on my Essence Love Intervention column. Please find phone numbers to help at the end of this column if you are in dire need of help.

A true love addict can fall for anyone quickly and lust for the next feeding of their drug of choice. For others of us, we get addicted to specific people. You may have all “normal” relationships and then happen on someone who taps into your mind,  body and psyche in the perfect way to make you “a-dic*-ted.” The problem is not finding someone amazing and being all in. That’s fantastically wonderful. The issue is when the person or the relationship is not what you want. In these situations you want to leave and you can’t. When every phone call or booty call is your fix for the last time, you swear and it’s not, there is a problem. The challenge is when you literally crave that person, not any person, but you are jonesing for just that person. And like any drug it’s “just so good” when you “cop” his “junk.”

What is “New Relationship Energy?”

There are very real physiological reasons that Melanie had issues walking away from her boyfriend. Our bodies are co-conspirators in lust, making us hooked to our intimacy partners. Our sexual hormones, testosterone and estrogen, drive the first stages of love.

My favorite love scientist Helen Fisher has broken love down into three stages: lust, attraction and attachment. Our body chemicals like adrenaline, dopamine and serotonin feed those in new stages of love with thoughts and hopes of the object of our affection. Our brain is rewarding our early stages of lust addiction, helping us to get hooked. Fisher says that “exactly the same system becomes active as when you take cocaine.”

So quitting someone you’re addicted to is like trying to get off drugs. When it feels to you like it physically hurts to separate yourself, it really does hurt. You’re not just imagining it

What does the love interest represent?

For those with come and go lovers, a part of the thrill can be the very rejection you despise. Every time you hook up and he doesn’t call you may want another chance to prove to him that you are worthy. His general unavailability, which would turn you away in a saner state of mind, keeps me hooked.

[Read: When You Just Can’t Walk Away]

Alternative lifestyle coach Zhahai Spring Stewart coined the term “New Relationship Energy” back in the 1980s. Stewart is an expert in polyamory along with his wife, relationship coach Elaine Cook. New Relationship Energy is that rush that we all feel when a new relationship begins. Forget oysters and chocolates. They say that New Relationship Energy is the “ultimate aphrodisiac.” The sexual and emotional rocket fuel from a new lover may last a few weeks or a few years but it always eventually wears off.

What are your triggers?

Like any addiction your triggers are probably whenever you’re feeling any extreme emotion: mad, glad, bad or sad. These are times to be on high alert. I’d also be hyper aware of when you’re ovulating. Hormones and horniness may make you more susceptible than usual. If you usually watch Sunday night TV together then that can be a trigger for that person who makes you feel high.

Should you step down or try to quit cold turkey?

Sherri Shepherd And Lamar Sally Reach Temporary Child Support Agreement

July 1st, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Lamar Sally's prenup amendments reportedly included guidelines for sex, fitness and submission.

Source: WENN

It’s been a long, dirty, nasty, messy road, but according to TMZ, Sherri Shepherd and her ex husband Lamar Sally have finally reached a divorce settlement.

The whole thing took so long because Lamar and Sherri were trying to reach an agreement on child support for the baby Lamar and Sherri chose to have through a surrogate.

While Sherri presumably won’t be involved in the rearing of the baby, the comedienne and media maven will pay $4,100 per month in child support. The amount will increase to $4,600 when the child turns 13.

Sherri has maintained that Sally defrauded her into getting a surrogate to carry the baby so he could profit off of her, despite their divorce.

That fraud claim still hasn’t been settled though.

So, this could be far from over.

If the court finds that Sally did indeed defraud Shepherd, the child support obligations will disappear.

Additionally, the couple had embryos in storage and Sherri wants them destroyed, while Lamar is still undecided. According to the settlement currently on the table, if Sally decides to bring the embryos to term, Sherri will not have to pay child support.

It’ll be interesting to see whether or not Sherri will be able to prove Lamar Sally defrauded her or not. Either way, we’ll be sure to keep you posted.

You Can Keep It: Stars Who Gave Up Millions And Got Nothing In The Divorce

June 24th, 2015 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Tumblr

Image Source: Tumblr

We always hear about celebrity wives who left a marriage with half, but what about those who took nothing in the divorce? These celebrities walked away with their freedom — and nothing else.

Divorced And Dating Your Ex

May 4th, 2015 - By Kweli Wright
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It’s purely gravitational, this natural pull to be with my ex-wife.

In the morning, I’ll fumble out of the bedroom and try to catch a glimpse of her putting on her makeup in the bathroom, the crackle and hiss of the baby monitor the only real sound in her whole damn house. I try to be sly about it but I know my slyness has worn away over time. Plus, f*ck it. What do I have to lose now?

I met Monica one sweaty August night more than a decade ago and married her like a freight train six weeks later. She was a western girl, born into the madness of a land called Utah.

We were like a magnificent cowboy movie from the start.

There wasn’t all that much thought involved the wedding. We didn’t sit around her mama’s kitchen table looking at catalogs of wedding gowns or catering menus or any of that sh*t. We spotted each other as the sun went down on a crazy desert town and we started firing at each other right away.

Close to the bone, that’s how I like my love affairs.

I know that now, because I was lucky enough to live through, to survive, our marriage — and divorce 10 years later — to come riding back up over the mesa of our years together with one badass sunset sinking down behind me. Most people spend their lifetimes in the back lots of their imagination wishing away what they have for something bigger to come along and sweep them away.

Most people simply dream of falling in love hard and fast and for real. But most people never even get a taste of it.

I’m not saying they don’t fall in love for real, that would be a stupid thing to say. I’d say I’m way more of a dreamer than a thinker, but even so: I never ever dreamed I could fall in love quite the way that Monica and I did. We found each other in a hail of bullets and arrows and we never once thought twice about jumping off that Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid cliff together.

Fact is, we were probably always the kind of people just looking for the damn cliff; we just needed a partner to take the leap alongside us.

Now, three kids and a divorce later — and with so much anger/laughter/sadness/joy/trash talk/dirty talk/Friday night couch pizza/HBO binge-watching/dog love/dog loss/money trouble/personality-crushing/soul-sucking/daily heart reincarnating/Sunday sunshine/bring me a beer-ness — behind us, I find myself watching her getting ready for work in the morning and I whisper to myself, “Dude. That’s your girlfriend. She’s a f*ckin’ hoot, too. Lucky bastard you are, bro.”

And it means more to me than anything I can tell you.

For me it’s purely gravitational, this natural pull to be with my ex-wife. I believe it took us killing something ‘legal and official’ in order to be able to stumble upon this reincarnated version of ourselves, of our thing together.

Love — or even the possibility of love — is fickle. And even when we were divorcing, I never wanted to be apart from her. She means too much to me. We click. And we’ve learned a lot about the art of staying clicked when the sh*t hits the fans.

These days, we keep two separate homes, two different economies, and we specialize in our three kids.

We’ve carved out a more satisfying scenario for ourselves this time around; in so many ways, we’re dating the person we lost long ago in the muddled confusion of a failed marriage. That’s pretty cool … and pretty damn rare.

Listen, all of this is like a supernova blowing up in my face and I dig it. I dig it because I don’t even have a sliver of the intelligence or the sage-like qualities that it would take for me to comprehend why my heart wants what it wants when the only thing it ever seems to want is the same thing that the signed divorce documents show that I didn’t really want anymore.

But divorce be damned, to hell with the formalities.

We are two cliff-jumping sons-of-bitches. And listen to me: there is real magic buried deep down inside the electrifying awkwardness that slams into us whenever we roll down the road in my Honda, some Radiohead CD going off, our kids rubbing snot into the seats like Roman blood into the ruins of something wonderful and real that will take time to appreciate.

Monica rolls her fingers up on mine and I look over at her and she holds back the teenager smile that she always holds back and I’m good, dude.

I could date a bunch of women, for the rest of my days, but I don’t suppose I’d ever wander back onto the set of a Western quite like this one.

Even when we tried to quit it, we couldn’t quit it. Even when we tried to roll the credits, the credits refused to roll. Look, no one in their right minds would ever give us a fighting chance at this point. But that’s why they ain’t us. Me and Monica, we’ll be fine. We were fine, we got un-fine, we found the fine again. True love, she rolls that way. I have to believe that; I do believe that.

Cue scene.

While the rest of the world dreams up another love story, we’ll be sitting there up on a rocky crop watching another payroll train all splayed out across another sunset valley.

There will be awkward silence for a sec and then we’ll find our way.

“Let’s rob it, yo,” my girlfriend will say as the rough warm wind kicks up hard across her pretty little knees. And I’ll just toss my cigarette like a badass and it’ll land on the back of a six-foot curled-up rattlesnake sleeping by a cactus. Then I’ll kind of say what needs to be said, what we’ve been saying all along, really.

“Oh yeah, baby,” I’ll tell her. “Let’s go rob us a train.”

Have you experienced being divorced and dating your ex? Would you consider dating your ex?

Thinking About Divorce?: Do These 10 Things First

April 29th, 2015 - By Kweli Wright
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Before you head to divorce court, make sure you’ve done all these things to save your relationship.

Thinking about throwing in the marriage towel? I get it — that thing is often sweaty, dirty and tired. But before you give up on your relationship, be sure to exhaust all of your resources for saving your coupledom. Dr. Stephanie Knarr of The Relationship Repair Shop shares on a few tips to keep your marriage from hitting the rocks.

1. Log a complaint.

“Most marriages are on the rocks because one (or both) spouses have not resolved each other’s relationship complaints,” says Dr. Stephanie. She advises couples to visit the “Customer Service Counter” for their marriages and literally log complaints with each another like a car in a repair shop.

2. Ring the alarm.

Dr. Stephanie encourages couples to ring the alarm bell which is necessary to give each other an opportunity to resolve their relationship complaints.

3. Be specific.

“Tell your partner what resolutions you need to see in order stay in the relationship,” says Dr. Stephanie. Consider it your wish list or your needs list, but either way, be clear about what you need from your relationship and be prepared to listen to your partner’s needs as well.

4. Make your actions speak louder than words.

Get their attention with your behavior because some people do not react to words, explains Dr. Stephanie. “For example, tell them you are going to take some space for the weekend or for a few days to give them time to think about your complaints and your resolutions,” she suggests.

5. Give an ultimatum.

“Sometimes an ultimatum can be a positive step,” says Dr. Stephanie. “Explain that you need changes and resolutions to happen or you may leave permanently,” she explains. “Taking these steps is ringing the alarm bell because you have told your partner you are thinking about ending the relationship — and you have told them exactly why.”

6. Visit a marriage counselor.

Make like Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick (yes, the reality couple) and get yourselves to a marriage counselor, pronto. “Even if your spouse won’t go, it’s a great idea for you to go alone to discuss possible changes that you can make to change the dynamics in your marriage,” explains Dr. Stephanie.

“I have coached people to make behavioral changes in their marriage that have ultimately led to better outcomes, even while meeting with me individually.”

7. Be the change you want to see.

“Remember, for marriage and family relationships to change, it’s normal for one person to push for the change to occur while the other person resists,” she says. “In some cases, you have to be willing to withstand conflict and resistance in order to see the changes you desire.”

8. Be persistent.

“Some people have only filed a complaint one time even though they are ready to end the marriage over it,” says Dr. Stephanie. “But you are worthy of receiving good service at the Marriage Customer Service Counter! So keep filing your complaint until it gets resolved.”

9. Focus on the outcome.

With all this talk about complaints, it’s easy for couples to get trapped into thinking that complaining just to complain is productive. Instead, Dr. Stephanie advises couples to log the complaint but focus on the outcome of the behavior they hope to see changed. “I encourage people to keep the complaint brief — and to focus instead on asking for the desired resolution,” she explains.

10. Re-frame whining.

Dr. Stephanie is adamant that complaining, fighting and whining can have a positive purpose in a marriage. “Whining actually has a positive side,” write Dr. Stephanie on her blog. “This may seem silly, but some of this stuff is a part of intimacy.” She encourages her clients to use the 5:1 ratio suggested by Dr. John Gottman and to be sure to have 5 positive interactions with one’s spouse (like a hug or a compliment) for every 1 negative one.


Originally posted at

Dating After Divorce: Are you Ready? 11 Questions to Ask Yourself

April 7th, 2015 - By Rich
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Before my divorce was even final, before the ink and the tears had dried, there was another “d-word” that I was preparing myself for– dating. Just like the divorce itself, I knew it was something that I wanted to do; something that I probably needed to do, but I didn’t know where to begin, or more importantly, if I was really ready.

After diving into the dating pool headfirst and somehow landing on my behind, I had to get up on my feet, dry myself off and ask myself some important questions. Questions that anyone getting out of a marriage — or any long-term relationship for that matter — should consider before moving on.

Dating After Divorce: Are you Ready? 11 Questions to Ask Yourself

Mine, His, Ours: Is Parental Gatekeeping Child Abuse?

April 6th, 2015 - By Rich
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Parental gatekeeping isn’t a term that you hear too often, but we see examples of it every day.

Let’s say a couple gets divorced. They have three children together. The mother has primary physical custody or placement, but the two have worked out a visitation schedule that gives the father ample time with the kids. Everything is going well for a while, but one day, the parents have a disagreement. To get back at her ex, the mother decides to keep him from seeing the kids; either by telling him flat out, issuing an ultimatum, or  creating an excuse for her to have them for a longer period of time.

When they finally work things out, or when the mother decides to let go of the issue — whichever comes first — she finally lets the father see his kids. But weeks later, there’s another disagreement, and in retaliation, the mom takes even more time away from dad.

See where we’re going here?
Sound familiar?

That, my friends, is parental gatekeeping.

Restrictive gatekeeping is supposed to be used for a child’s protection. For example, if dad is drinking heavily or there are concerns about some kind of neglect or abuse, mom (or whomever the custodial parent is) has the right to restrict contact and/or communication with the kids to keep them from harm. When there’s no suspected endangerment to the children, though, the power is being misused. And according to some, this misuse of parental gatekeeping is considered child abuse.

Consider this…

The first time the kids are kept away from their father, it’s not a huge deal. When they see each other again, they pick up right where they left off and all is right with the world again. But as the number of times they’re kept apart increases, the more the children get used to him not being around, and in some cases, think that it’s because he doesn’t want to see them. They’re hurt. Resentful. And sooner or later, the relationship between the father and the children becomes strained…possibly to a point where it’s irreparable.

It’s not physical abuse, but it’s definitely psychologically damaging; and in many states that’s equivalent to serious physical harm, and the parent could end up losing custody altogether.

In some states, like the state of California, that kind of unreasonable gatekeeping is punishable; especially if it includes a false accusation of substance abuse, neglect or abuse against the non-custodial parent, but it’s not looked at as a form of child abuse. It could, however, result in a change in the custody agreement. California Family Code 3028 allows for compensation when a parent has been “thwarted by the other parent when attempting to exercise custody or visitation rights contemplated by a custody or visitation order, including, but not limited to, an order for joint physical custody, or by a written or oral agreement between the parents.”

Meaning: The mother could end up having to pay the father a minimum of $100 plus his legal fees; share physical custody; or worse, custody could be awarded to the the father if the judge decides that he’s the parent who’s more likely to allow the child “frequent and continuing contact with the noncustodial parent.”

Is this the better option?

Where do you stand on the issue? Should unreasonable parental gatekeeping be considered a form of serious child abuse in every state? Tell us what you think!

Judge Allows Woman To Serve Husband With Divorce Papers On Facebook

April 6th, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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There are many creative ways to serve a person with court papers. Just last week, the Internet was buzzing after footage began circulating of Tyga being served at his sneaker launch event by a man who purchased two pairs of sneakers and posed for a photograph with the rapper. Dude even got his sneaker box signed. However, as funny as that was, it doesn’t top how Ellanora Baidoo of Brooklyn has been granted permission to serve her estranged husband with divorce papers.

According to The New York Daily News, Baidoo, 26, who works as a nurse, “is granted permission serve defendant with the divorce summons using a private message through Facebook” by Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Matthew Cooper.

Baidoo married Sena Blood-Dzraku in 2009 in a civil ceremony; however, things quickly fell apart when Baidoo realized that her new husband wouldn’t be following through with his promise to give her a traditional Ghanaian wedding ceremony. Both Baidoo and Blood-Dzraku are from Ghana.

“She wanted their families there,” said Baidoo’s attorney Andrew Spinnell.

Due to Blood-Dzraku’s failure to keep his promise, the union was never consummated and the pair never lived together as husband and wife. The two kept in touch by phone and Facebook, but that was the extent of their interaction with one another.

The “last address plaintiff has for defendant is an apartment that he vacated in 2011,” Cooper said. Baidoo “has spoken with defendant by telephone on occasion and he has told her that he has no fixed address and no place of employment. He has also refused to make himself available to be served with divorce papers.”

The “post office has no forwarding address for him, there is no billing address linked to his prepaid cell phone, and the Department of Motor Vehicles has no record of him,” Cooper’s ruling explains.

The divorce summons will be sent by Spinnell through Baidoo’s Facebook account.

“This transmittal shall be repeated by plaintiff’s attorney to defendant once a week for three consecutive weeks or until acknowledged” by Blood-Dzraku.

“I think it’s new law, and it’s necessary,” said Spinnell. “We tried everything, including hiring a private detective — and nothing.”

The first Facebook message was sent to Blood-Dzraku last week. So far, he hasn’t responded.

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise