No one expects that when they marry someone, that one day you’ll end up staring at divorce papers in disgust and anguish.
Although the divorce rate in America is going down, some marriages can’t work out for whatever reason. What’s important for you, your partner, and children is that you stay sane and safe.
Our experts have compiled a list of some of the best tips you can use for a peaceful divorce. Avoid making mistakes that can hurt you and your family emotionally and financially.
Go see a therapist
Even before you decide to file for divorce, going to see a therapist can save you thousands of dollars. Your lawyer is not a therapist.
Despite your lawyer being the person you should confide in, your lawyer cannot offer tools you’ll need for this emotional obstacle.
Seeing a therapist can help you work through resentments towards your ex, and set your priorities straight. Emotions will run high during this process, even in the most amicable divorces. Many people will begin the divorce process by believing it will be cut and dry, but will end up doing or saying something out of spite.
Seeing a therapist can also help you understand where and why the marriage did fall apart.
Get yourself financially ready
Getting divorced is already an expensive process. However, hiring your lawyer may be the least of your worries when it comes to finances. Many people forget that when they enter into a marriage, you also share all your finances with another person. Figuring out how you’re going to be able to sustain yourself and children after the divorce will prepare you for life after the divorce. Most of the tension in the divorce will be from your finances. A marriage means that you share all the income, debts, and assets with another person. Prepare yourself to have less income, and to allocate your financial burdens and assets.
Figure out how you want to separate
It’s no question that most people want their divorce to be as inexpensive as possible. This is why most people will opt to divorce through mediation. When you do get divorced, there are two options you have:
- Mediation: Reaching agreements and settlements outside of a court through a neutral third-party. This process will allow both parties to reach a fair consensus, and will cost significantly less. If mediations cannot find a resolution, couples will have to go through litigation.
- Collaborative Divorce: Both parties and their legal teams sign a Participation Agreement that states an agreement will be made without litigation. This ensures all legal proceedings stay out of the courtroom. Both parties can remain private and keep priorities straight. For couples with children, this option may be best.
If you’re divorcing your partner for their abusive behavior, you may need to go to court. A lawyer will recommend you file for a restraining order to protect you and your children. In order to get a full restraining order, you may need to go to court.
Set future goals and envision realistic lifestyle changes
It’s very easy to lose sight of what you actually want when you’re getting divorced. Be realistic and honest with yourself when you are planning your new future is vital. Figure out how to manage your children equally, and how you’ll plan for their future.
Remember to think of what their life might look like well into their adulthood, and how as parents you will need to support them. A therapist will also help you set those realistic expectations, and give you tools for having difficult conversations about your children.
Let your lawyer do all the talking
Aside from your children’s well-being, do not talk to your partner about the divorce and the divorce proceedings. Let your legal team do all the talking. Couples going through a divorce will often say things out of spite or things they may not mean. This can get you or your partner in a lot of trouble.
It’s best to leave the drama out the legal proceedings and save your resentments for your therapist. This will also help you stay on-track to attain your future goals instead of making rash decisions. If you do begin to feel frustrated during negotiations, take a moment away from the proceedings to collect yourself.
Even if your partner decides to say or do hurtful things, there’s no reason to sink to their level. It’s your lawyer’s job to protect you, your family, and future goals. During this emotional and stressful time, you need to stay vigilant and focused. Letting your soon-to-be-ex partner cause more drama for you and your family is the last thing that’ll help anyone. Remember that at one point you did hold a lot of feelings for your partner, and they’re most likely hurting too.
You could offer your partner to attend therapy with you so they can relieve the resentments they have towards you in a healthy and respectful manner. Avoiding unnecessary confrontation will also help maintain a civil relationship with your partner after the divorced is finalized.
Know what you’re getting into
There’s a lot we didn’t cover about getting divorced in this article. And like every marriage, every divorce is different. Talking to a lawyer can give you some insight into other options and factors you may want to look into. Our Premier Partners at My Case Helper can help you navigate this difficult situation.