Regardless of whether the notion of a divorce arises suddenly or has been imminent for years, the event serves as a dramatic ending of an important chapter of a woman’s life. This major transition carries with it numerous obstacles and hardships but, with the aid of the right resources, it is possible to move on and to move forward in a life that is both full and happy after divorce.
When the person with whom you have shared some of your most intimate moments and most cherished memories is suddenly removed from your life, an intense emotional reaction is to be expected. Depending on the circumstances, the first feelings may include apprehension, fear, anger, guilt, sadness that leads to depression, denial and disbelief.
It is important to evaluate and recognize these emotions for what they are and to avoid masking them throughout the course of the divorce. Though difficult, admitting to yourself that you are experiencing these intense feelings is the first step to acceptance of the transition itself. Time spent with a counselor or psychologist can help immensely in this endeavor. Reach out to compassionate professionals who are eager to help, such as the experienced women of Women’s Divorce Resource.
While a divorce can certainly be carried out without the help of a divorce lawyer, often times seeking the assistance of an attorney is well worth the cost. During this emotional time an attorney can help take the burden of navigating the often complex legal system and allow you to focus on your own emotional well being during this time of change. All divorce lawyers are not the same, however so it is important to review numerous options before making your decision to hire. Brian Moskowitz, who is a divorced, single parent himself, understands “how important it is to protect, your assets, your dignity, and your children” while still being sensitive to the situation at hand.
For many women, the financial burden of divorce is nearly as painful as the emotional separation from their spouse. Aside from the actual cost of the divorce itself, they worry about how they are going to support themselves and their children, as well as whether or not their current income source will be sufficient. Financial independence is crucial to long term happiness in life. Fortunately, there are ways to ensure that this independence develops and is sustained, even during and after divorce.
If you’re in debt, as an alarming number of Americans are, addressing money owed to creditors should be a top priority. Improving your credit will enable you to obtain the things in life that you truly need, such as a vehicle and a place to live. Start by considering the lifestyle you lead and the purchases you make. For example, it may have been feasible to buy more expensive clothing or food while you were married, but the reduction in income generally calls for a reduction in expenses. A portion of money you will save by reevaluating your budget can be used to decrease your debt over time and thereby improve your credit score. Try to keep cash with you at all times to prevent overspending on a debit or credit card. Support groups and online forums can help divorcing women move past their financial problems through the compassion, empathy and experience of others.
The inclusion of children in any case of divorce always complicates matters for both parents, but the emotional toll is often more heavily felt by women. It is important to remember to keep the well-being of the child or children at the forefront of your mind, even when difficult and emotionally charged circumstances make it hard to focus on anything other than the divorce. Depending on age, children will have different needs throughout the process. Be open, honest and understanding when your children ask questions. They may experience a wide range of feelings that surprise you, such as guilt, fear and shame. If possible, seek out counseling from a professional with experience in helping children of divorce, as these specialists may be able to offer you tips on how to communicate together more effectively.
Custody is a major issue for the majority of divorcing couples. In many cases, an amicable agreement can be reached before the divorce is even taken to court. If this is the case, be sure to get a signed copy of the agreement from your ex-spouse. Though this may seem harsh or unnecessary in a lot of situations, the amount and severity of the emotion experienced during the split should not be underestimated by either party.
If you are granted full custody of your children, your spouse may be required to pay child support. The amount will be decided at a hearing in which both of you are present and sign a decree. More information about child support and custody can be obtained through your state’s family court system.
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