Legalize Divorce in the Philippines – Support HB 1799

It’s time to move forward into the modern era and away from medieval times. It’s time to give women more protection, empowerment and a better chance of having a happier and more fulfilling married life.

This could be achieved by legalizing divorce in the Philippines, which along with the Vatican City, is the only remaining country in the world where divorce is not provided for by law.

Let us not fool ourselves and turn a blind eye to the sad fact that many marriages in the Philippines are not successful and in most cases, the wives in this damaged marriages are still prisoners living in suffering, pain and sometimes in fear of their own lives.

Though Philippine society frowns upon broken marriages and husband and wives going their own separate ways, keeping them trapped in wedlock is not the solution. There must be a fair, authoritative and just mechanism in dealing with damaged marriages.

Such a mechanism is in the form of divorce that HB 1799 provides for. In the proposed bill’s explanatory note:

Not all circumstances and situations that cause the total breakdown of a marriage could be defined in this proposed measure. Thus, the bill also provides that divorce may be granted when the spouses suffer from irreconcilable differences that have caused the irreparable breakdown of the marriage. Spouses living in a state of irreparable marital conflict or discord should be given the opportunity to present their marital contrarieties in court and have those differences adjudged as constituting a substantial ground to put an end to the marriage

Keeping the couple together locked in their irreparable marriage, would not only mean more suffering for them but for their children as well.

If a marriage is in the rocks, the married couple or one of them could file for a petition for divorce which then gives them the opportunity to explain in court why they seek divorce. It gives the husband and especially the wife, equal opportunity to be heard and to speak without fear of retaliation from either side. Because in Philippine families, the wife is silenced by either her husband or her in-laws because marriage problems are tackled at home. And in that home, the wife is usually left with no one on her side. And even if the wife has raised valid concerns or reasons in support of her decision to leave her husband, it is overruled or ignored by the in-laws or elders whose advice often becomes the ruling on the matter. So the wife is left to sacrifice her dignity, her rights and freedoms, even her welfare as she remains trapped in an unhappy and broken marriage.

The abusive or erring husband goes on scot-free to repeat his misdeeds causing more suffering to the woman he swore to cherish and to hold, in sickness and in health, till death do they part.

So let’s give women the dignity, protection and empowerment they so deserve. Let us affirm that they too have an equal say about their marriage. If it can no longer be repaired, differences can no longer be reconciled, it is time to end the marriage.

Keeping the couple together locked in their irreparable marriage, would not only mean more suffering for them but for their children as well. The one roof that used to protect and shelter them would now become a prison of misery, suffering and harm both physically and psychologically.

With divorce, the aggrieved spouse now has a remedy to be free from the irreparable marriage. Be able to pursue a path of his or her choosing which will allow for healing and growth. Financial independence would be regained which will also offer the opportunity to focus earnings in raising or providing support for their children.

Divorce offers the opportunity to start a new life, be it by remarrying or remaining divorced. The rest of the world has given this opportunity to their citizens, let us join them in offering the same right, remedy and opportunity to our fellow Filipinos especially our women.

3 Replies to “Legalize Divorce in the Philippines – Support HB 1799”

  1. Our country is still rules by the church.. since the time of the spaniards..We are still plague by hypocricy of righteousness and norm yet many couples specially the women are the ones suffering by the spoiled lazy womanizing drunk smoking insecured filipino men plaguing our society. Enough is enough. High time we discipline our men to become better husbands, sons, children worthy of the title a gentleman.

  2. I’m single and a true blooded catholic. In my own rights I’m in favor for a Divorce Bill in our country.

    Annulment is really expensive and it could take years for the proceedings to be approved. This is not appropriate for the poor Filipinos and mostly the number of our population belonged to the middle and low class. Many of our fellow Filipinos are seeking freedom from there broken marriage. Why would you let two people be together if they can’t be together anymore? It’s a shame that you’re moving on in life for how many years. Physically you’re not together but in the law your still connected with each other which is not right. Yes! I’am a Catholic I still believe the sanctity of Marriage but definitely if two people can’t be together anymore they have the right for freedom. It’s not all about the religious stuff is about us being humans we have the choice in our life. To be free, to learn from our mistakes and move on in life. God created us in his image and likeness and we are created to have infinite potentials.

    If the church is afraid and protecting of Family Marriage to avoid violence. Then there’s no difference. Being not ready for a Married life can create chaos but also being in a married life where two people who can’t be together anymore can create more chaos as well. It’s the same thing no difference.

    If people have the right to Marry. Then people also have the right to be free from broken Marriages. This is Human Rights. The Right to be free.

    We are human beings. We are destined to forgive and love one another.

Leave a Reply