7 Ways to Make Divorce Less Stressful
Divorce is a life adjustment and one of the biggest stressors for anyone going through it. As difficult as it is, there are some ways to make this life-changing time a bit more manageable.
Joryn Jenkins, an attorney with 35 years of courtroom experience who now focuses her practice on court-less divorce, and is author of War or Peace: Avoid The Destruction of Divorce Court, says these seven tips below will make divorce a much smoother and less stressful process.
- Acceptance and thinking of the future: You can’t do much about what has happened; however, you have a significant impact on how your life plays out after divorce. This is a fresh start; a new beginning. It’s an exciting time, not a depressing time. You can decide what happens in the next minute, hour, day, month and year after divorce by focusing on what you want instead of what you don’t want.
- Be Transparent: By freely disclosing information, you will gain your spouse’s trust, and you will save money by avoiding the other side having to search for information. When both sides are transparent and work together despite their differences, the divorce is finalized that much quicker and is less expensive.
- Be realistic: Divorcing spouses waste time and money arguing impossible positions. Try to see the big picture, and take time to view issues from your spouse’s perspective. Consider what your interests are, and don’t just take positions for the sake of taking a position.
- Do your homework: Any divorce takes a lot of hard work. You will need to prepare a financial affidavit, compile financial documents, review lengthy settlement offers, attend a parenting course, prepare for hearings and depositions, etc. The more work you do, the more that you will be committed to resolving the matter, and the less you will have to pay your attorneys and other professionals to do the work for you.
- Observe the Golden Rule: Treat your spouse as you would like to be treated. Don’t lie to, belittle, or ignore him or her. Don’t empty joint bank accounts, dissipate marital assets, or remove your spouse from insurances. Don’t file false police reports or contact child services unless your children really are in danger. Don’t post inappropriate pictures and comments on social media.
- Do the right thing for the kids: If you have kids, your divorce doesn’t end your relationship with your spouse. You will still have regular interaction with him or her and have to see him or her at future events like graduation and weddings. It is important to be as amicable as possible during your divorce so that you are able to be in the same room with one another in the future. If for no other reason, do it for your kids.
- Choose your divorce process. Understand that there are multiple divorce processes, and you are not required to litigate. Instead, you could mediate or negotiate your divorce collaboratively. Be sure to talk with an attorney who understands these different court-less options. And, before you hire an attorney, get a second opinion. But once you retain counsel, know that he or she has your best interests at heart even if he or she is telling you something that you don’t want to hear.