GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Lifestyle

May 7, 2013

Hopeful lottery winners want to share fortune with spouse

:Dear Abby: I’m responding to your request for comments about the letter from “Happily Single” (Feb. 13) and whether a divorce would be the first course of action upon winning the lottery. In a community-property state, a divorce AFTER winning wouldn’t legally protect you from having to share the spoils with your soon-to-be (and probably now bitter) ex-spouse.

My husband and I have talked at length about what we’d do if either of us won the Powerball jackpots, and no, divorce was NOT on the list. We’d start by consulting a lawyer/financial planner to find a way to protect our privacy before claiming the money.

I suspect the comments from “Happily’s” co-workers are evidence that unhappily marrieds group together — or enjoy complaining about their spouses. Either way, it’s sad. Studies show that complaining about a spouse significantly decreases one’s satisfaction in a relationship. While we all “vent” from time to time, if talking divorce is your first response to a jackpot win, then you’re in the wrong relationship.

:In It For The Long Haul

Dear In It: I hit the jackpot with the huge response I received about that letter. And the majority of readers said they would NOT divorce:

Dear Abby: I am a lottery winner, and I feel blessed and proud that I can take care of my wife the way she deserves. Within two minutes of my win I was on the phone with her, telling her to quit her stressful job. We now have a wonderful life, with more than we ever hoped for.

Satisfied In The Sunshine State

Dear Abby: I’m single, but that letter didn’t surprise me. I think a lot of people feel they must be married by a certain age, so they end up “settling.” Read some of the crazy lottery winner stories posted online, and you’ll see people trade in their spouses because they feel they can do better or “move up,” kind of like buying a bigger, better house. I’m not saying it’s right, but it happens.

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