There are no real winners in a nasty divorce fought out in a courtroom.
But someone inevitably loses more.
In the battle between Dina Matos and former New Jersey Gov. James McGreevey, she just lost the right to $2,500 a month in alimony after her ex-husband claimed he was too poor to pay it. Despite how impoverished these two are in providing parental leadership, they will share joint custody of their 6-year-old daughter, and McGreevey will pay $1,075 a month in child support.
Matos stood at the podium next to her husband when he resigned in 2004 following the acknowledgment that he was "a gay American." The couple separated soon after, in 2005.
Union County Superior Court Judge Karen Cassidy blasted the couple for their conduct since splitting.
In her written ruling, she criticized the dueling duo for airing "dirty laundry" during the divorce trial.
"Especially, in a matter as high profile as this, the court was disappointed that much of the testimony, particularly as it related to public figures within the State of New Jersey, and the dirty laundry associated therewith, needed to be aired in the public and in the press," Cassidy wrote.
"The McGreeveys clearly had agendas. As previously addressed, their anger seemed to override any ability to testify credibly or to be reasonable."
Cassidy also ruled that Matos is not entitled to income from McGreevey's tell-all book, "The Confession." (Perhaps her book will be "I Confess. I Didn't Marry For Love But Want Him To Pay For It.")
However, in dividing their marital assets, Cassidy ruled that McGreevey owes Matos $109,000, representing half their various bank and investment holdings.
The judge rejected Matos's claims that her ex-husband should compensate her for the 13 months she missed of the perks of the governor's office. Hello? Even bringing this up begs the question of why she married him in the first place.
Matos had said that McGreevey was purposely not working to spite her. The judge noted that, when you have a wealthy boyfriend, as McGreevey now does, he can rely on his lover's largesse.
Matos issued a statement following the ruling. "Although the victimization continues, I am stronger for the experience," she said. McGreevey has not yet commented.
We at FWW, however, hope that they will put this battle behind them and remember that they are still connected to each other through their daughter. Maybe now they'll act like grown-ups and consider the little girl's interests besides their own.