I was talking to one of my married mom friends at the park about how Halle Berry has been ordered to pay her ex Gabriel Aubry $16,000 a month in child support. My friend thinks this is crazy and that Berry's ex is being greedy. (She works extremely hard as a SAHM and I have tremendous respect for her, but her husband is fortunate enough to comfortably provide for their family). As a single working mom who collects child support from her son's absent father, I don't actually think Aubry is being greedy—even though, man, $16K???
But, the key word is "ordered" and that means a judge laid down the law. Child support isn't a favor or hush money to keep a parent quiet. Child support provides basic needs that include health insurance and work-related daycare. And what a lot of people don't realize is that it's based on the income or earning ability of each parent.
Sure, $16K sounds like a boat load of money and completely inflated when it comes to caring for just one child (ONE CHILD), but Berry is an Academy Award-winning actress and Aubry is a model. Obviously Berry is out-earning him, so it would make sense that she pay him the ordered figure, despite its number of zeroes. The judge likely took into account that their young daughter is used to a type of lifestyle because of her mom's wealth.
If you read the mom-next-door's child support order, you probably wouldn't bat an eye, because it would seem more reasonable; but, again, payments are based on the incomes of the two people who made the baby together. Being a parent, whether or not you even, sheesh, parent is a huge financial responsibility.
For those parents with court orders to pay child support, it's even more real because it's monitored by a probation department. Not paying child support is considered breaking the law and can include fines (better known in the child support world as arrears) or worse—jail time. Wages can be garnished and liens can be put on property if a parent doesn't pay.
Don't get me wrong, I'm annoyed with the news of Berry having to fork over $16K in child support, too, but for another reason. Why is this my business, your business, or some celeb rag's business? I don't agree that this should be public record. This is a private family matter and my friend and I shouldn't have even had the knowledge of this case to discuss in the park while our kids ran around in rubber wood chips.
What do you think? Chime in!