Divorce seems to bring out the wise guru in everyone. There are certain times in life when you are moving through a big life transition when it seems like everyone around you is full of advice. Divorce is one of those times. You may get some good advice, and you may get suggestions that are useless, but keep in mind that the people around you, if they have gone through a divorce themselves are just trying to be helpful. When we think about the best advice to offer those who are going through a divorce, here is what comes to mind:
1. It’s never worth the fight.
Once you both decide that the marriage is over, it is over. Putting up a fight, trying to make things difficult for the other party, stalling, being disagreeable – these tactics do nothing but run up your attorney fees. As a Columbia divorce attorney, it is not in my best interest to advise you not to fight it out. However, as someone who has represented countless couples as they duke it out over trivial matters, I feel obligated to tell you that fighting will not give you the satisfaction you think it will. Eventually, the divorce will end, and you will have gained nothing but a hefty bill for legal services.
Resolve to be as reasonable as you can be. Don’t put up a fight just to make life difficult for your ex, and learn the value of compromise.
2. Get your finances in order.
Make sure that you have copies of all the financial records, bank statements, credit card statements and any other documents pertaining to your finances. Know how much you owe on your credit cards and all the other marital debt as soon as possible before your file for divorce. You will need this information when you meet with the mediator, and it is vital that you have an accurate picture of your finance before the negotiating starts.
3. Do not use the divorce to seek revenge.
If you can adopt the mindset of learning from your mistakes and moving on, it will help diffuse the latent urge to find ways to get back at your spouse for all the perceived wrongs done to you. Talk it out with a therapist, your pastor, or the bartender and let it go. Focus your energy on resolving the divorce with as little drama as possible so that you can move on with your life.
4. Make choices with your child’s best interests in mind.
Do not make your child suffer, feel left out and stuck in the middle of your divorce. They did not choose to get a divorce and break up the family, so do not make them pay for it with the misery that comes when their parents are fighting all the time, and neglecting their needs. Focusing on your child is a good distraction from the angst of divorce.
5. Do not ignore self-care during the divorce.
You must take care of yourself first before you will be able to take care of anyone else. Find ways to reduce the stress in your life and learn how to respond more effectively to the stress that you can’t eliminate. Take time for yourself so that you can heal and process everything that is coming at you in your life.
You are not going to be in pain forever. Eventually, the sadness, the feelings of betrayal and the anger will subside and life will go on, but first you must survive the divorce. The most valuable bit of advice might be to get solid legal advice from a divorce attorney before you make a move. Interview a few attorneys until you find one that you have a rapport with, that you trust and who knows how to get the results you are looking for.
The decision to divorce is rarely an easy one to make, but when you have finally decided to act, the Franklin and Columbia divorce attorneys at the Law Offices of Adrian H. Altshuler & Associates are here to support you. Please call (615) 412-1121 or complete our contact form to schedule a consultation today. We serve clients from our offices in Brentwood, Franklin and Columbia.