‘Divorce is an option’: Why personalities believe legal separation saves lives

June 3, 2024 - 4:56 PM
This composite photo shows an image representing broken heart and Maxene Magalona. (Image from RDNE Stock project via Pexels; Maxine Magalona via Instagram)

Legal separation has been a recurring hot debate as celebrities and online users express their support for the ratification of absolute divorce in the Philippines.

Actress and daughter of late Filipino rapper Maxene Magalona spoke up on the legalization of separation in the Philippines via Instagram on Saturday, stating that “if couples who hate each other decide to stay and force to make the marriage work, their toxic energy will break and destroy the family even more.”

In her post which she started with quote “Stay for the kids”, the actress said that she believes that legalizing divorce would not only allow a couple’s freedom from a marred marriage but could also benefit children.

She also accompanied her post with a photo of her younger self.

“Whether we like it or not, children who are raised in dysfunctional and toxic homes will struggle with mental health issues when they grow up,” Maxene said.

“It’s time for the Philippines to heal. Please legalize divorce so that the broken and wounded families can have the chance to be free from pain and suffering and finally have inner peace,” the celebrity concluded her post, with hashtags “#WeDeserveDivorcePH” and “#1111″.

Maxene married her ex-husband Rob Mananquil in 2018 and confirmed their split in December 2022.

Online user and legal Attorney Darwin Tenaja, also expressed a pro-divorce stance, saying that divorce is an option and not a mandatory law for every married couple.

“It is funny that those who oppose divorce are product of successful marriages and typical Filipino family settings,” he wrote on Facebook on May 28.

“Walay problema if dili ta ganahan og divorce, [It’s not a problem if you don’t like divorce] but let’s give this option to those who badly need it and give them access to affordable divorce, eapil nalang pod annulment [since it’s cheaper compared to annulment],” Tenaja shared.

The price range of settling for annulment (which declares the marriage null and void) would cost around P150,000 to P300,000, according to Respicio & Co. Law Firm.

The House Bill 9349 was created to pass the Absolute Divorce Law in the Philippines, however, it has yet to be personally signed by House Secretary Reginald Velasco.

Since May 22, the proposal to legalize separation of marriage has garnered 131 favorable votes, 109 anti-divorce, and 20 representatives have abstained.

What the opposing side says

Aside from the Vatican, which is a heavily Catholic nation enclave in Italy, the Philippines is the only country that has yet to legalize divorce. Once passed into law, it would disband any broken marriage under allowable circumstances, and permit the separated couples to remarry.

Beyond the Senate, other Pinoys– specifically those who are religiously inclined– have also shared why the Philippines should protect the sanctity of marital relationships above all else.

 “Kahit maipasa na ang divorce sa Pilipinas, hinding hindi ko ididivorce ang aking asawa, maybahay, minamahal na si Marie Gay (Even if divorce is legal in the Philippines, I will never divorce my spouse, my homemaker, and my love, Marie Gay),” devoted Catholic Grant Javier said on Facebook.


Another Facebook user, Jade Mark Capiñanes, jokingly said that he is against divorce as a spoof.

“Kahit maipasa na ang divorce sa pilipinas, hinding-hindi ko idi-divorce ang aking asawa, maybahay, at minamahal na si maloi (Even if  divorce is legal in the Philippines, I will never divorce my spouse, my homemaker, and my love, Maloi),” the online user quipped.