Managing Divorce With Children
Divorce is never easy. It can be a painful situation for everyone involved, especially children. Divorce attorney Paul Seabrook likens the process to a house fire. It can catch children by surprise, creating a sudden need for an emergency response team to do damage control and help everyone come to terms with what’s happening. Paul shares five ways to help ensure as much peace and stability as possible when managing divorce with children.
Deal with domestic violence immediately
If there is currently domestic violence present in the relationship – be it physical or verbal – or if the possibility of it exists, your attorney needs to be made aware of it immediately. This is especially true if children are involved in the abuse. Steps can be taken to help you stand up for yourself and your children and assert your rights in the relationship without fear of reprisal.
Hope for the best, prepare for the worst
Divorce can bring out the worst in people, so it’s important to be prepared. Desperation to avoid high child support payments or to ensure more time with children can cause generally good people to try to manipulate the situation to their advantage. It’s also important to remember that even if your spouse is playing fair, they might have an attorney willing to pull out every trick in the book to help their client. If you’re prepared for poor behavior, you’ll stay more grounded and able to be there for your children.
Protect your children’s eyes and ears
It’s natural to harbor resentment towards your spouse through the divorce process and beyond, but it is crucial not to disparage them in front of your children. Children may be on their phones, doing homework, or seem lost in video games, but they’re listening. They can hear if you’re complaining on the phone to friends or relatives or vice versa and the effects of this can be devastating. If this is becoming a problem in your situation, gather family and friends and let them know that you won’t tolerate disparagement of the other parent in front of the children. Ask them to hold you accountable as well.
Have the right perspective
Again, resentment is natural, and it can be difficult to let go of anger and the desire to “win” the divorce. But refusal to budge on certain issues, dragging out the process, lengthy courtroom litigation, and the like can have lasting negative effects on your children. Change your mindset and see a “win” as a chance at a new life – a chance to get past a relationship that is making you both miserable and move on with your life. This way you can focus your energy, time, and resources on giving your children the best life possible.
Keep the process moving
The quickest way through the divorce process is when both parties and attorneys are reasonable and diligently work towards settlement. Mediation is a great way to reach a settlement faster and save money on attorney fees by avoiding litigation. To help avoid the other party from using mediation to simply prolong the process, it’s important that your attorney puts the case on track to go to a judge. Having a court date set can motivate the other party to settle, and if mediation is not successful, you don’t have to wait extra time for the court process to begin. Keeping the process as short as possible means less stress on you and your children.
For those contemplating divorce, but worried about attorney costs, Paul has put together a comprehensive Do-It-Yourself Divorce Course that can be found at www.seabrooklawoffices.com. If you’ve been through a divorce and need financial advice to put your life back together, Gates Pass Advisors is here for you. We look forward to helping you – and your children – live your best day, every day.
If you would like to speak with Esther or Erik about this subject or any other related finance subject:
CFP® , Certified Financial Transitionist®
Founder and CEO, Gates Pass Advisors
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CFA, Certified Financial Transitionist®
Associate Advisor, Gates Pass Advisors
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