Divorce is a life changing event, and its important to have a team of friends and professionals on your side
Stressful, traumatic, painful, depressing, heart-wrenching, these are often times used to describe the process of divorce. Think about it-most people on their wedding date-a very joyous occasion- don’t think they will one day be talking to a divorce attorney and coming up with a parenting plan for the children, dividing money and kitchen essentials. Because a divorce has a huge impact on a person (and the family), it is imperative to have the best team to support you. Divorce is a life changing event, and its important to have a team of friends and professionals on your side. It’s also important to have an outlet so that your mind can have a break from the divorce.
Here is a list of people that someone going through a divorce should consider having on their team:
The Divorce Lawyer: Its important to get recommendations and to interview attorneys. Many people “know” in their initial consult if that attorney is the right fit. A good attorney is someone who listens to you but is willing to steer you in the right direction. A good attorney will tell you what is reasonable and what is not reasonable. A good attorney should educate you-after all, divorce attorneys do this every day-you dont.
A therapist: There are no magic 8 balls that will tell us how long a divorce will take. I have had cases done and over in 2 weeks and others that have taken 2 years. Not to mention, many cases have post decree litigation (basically, issues that come up after the divorce which brings you back to court.) It’s always helpful to have a professional that will listen to all the feelings that come with a divorce.
A support system: Surround yourself with people who will lift you up. Be around people who see how great you are and can help you through this tough period. That being said, each divorce is different, and many people have their own opinions, so be careful about getting legal advice from your support system.
A financial planner: Every divorce leads to a financial change. Its best to have someone who can help you to financially plan for the future. Its important to have a financial planner involved early in the case. A financial plan can help you determine if it makes financial sense to keep the marital residence or where to invest the money you may be receiving. In addition, a financial planner can help determine a monthly budget.
An estate planning attorney: Most people who get divorced, do not have a Will, or if they do, the soon to be ex-spouse in the beneficiary of their assets. Its important to either have a Will drafted or updated when going through a divorce.
An exercise class: This is not exactly a person, but I have found that physical activity is a fantastic way to sustain or improve health and fitness while managing the stress of a divorce.Just as there are people or things you should have to help you sustain your mental stability during a divorce, there are things that you should stay away from:
Social Media: I dont mean to stay off social media entirely, but please dont post all the “nasty” things about your spouse. Remember, it can be used against you. In addition, many people “filter” their lives, and while they may seem happy, many people have their own struggles that are not shown in those family vacation photos.
Negative interactions with your soon to be ex-spouse: If you and your soon to be ex-spouse are unable to communicate, talk to your attorney about using a parenting app for all communication.
Engaging your child in the divorce process: If you have minor children, it is important to not discuss everything in the divorce with them. Some kids are curious and want to know where their divorce stands. While I believe its ok to tell them where you are at in the process, it is not ok to talk negatively about the other parent or to tell them what the “fights” are over.
Trying to lawyer with the help of the Internet: One can spend hours scrolling through chat pages or looking up legal advice using an internet browser. However, the best source of information should be your divorce attorney. Remember, you dont know all the facts of someone else divorce.
The goal for after your case is to feel peace, gratitude, and acceptance, and by taking the extra steps to putting together your team, a divorcing spouse can find peace, gratitude and acceptance in the divorce process.
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