So understanding that his wife wants a divorce my friend has some things he needs to do to better prepare himself in the event that final day comes with divorce papers being signed and the marriage is officially over. For him, his marriage ending is both a blessing and an emotional crisis at the same time.
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Here are the four things I told him to put some serious thought into before he starts marching down that divorce pathway. All of the four items listed below are going to be critical in how he deals with the emotional and financial aftermath of this inevitable marital separation.
So, my wife wants a divorce. Now what?
Think about your kids.
Like most couples who have been married longer than five years my friend and his wife have kids. This is one time in your life where you need to put others before yourself: your kids need to be the first thought and consideration when it comes to negotiating any divorce settlement.
Both you and your wife need to take some serious time to explain to your kids why you are separating and emphasize that your kids have nothing to do with your decision to be apart. Also you need to prepare your kids for the possible joint custody situation that most divorces end up being when kids are involved.
Kids are fairly resilient and can cope fairly well through most things. But unfortunately, the emotional stress placed upon the family caused by a divorce can have incredible impact on a young person’s psyche and feelings of self-worth for decades. This must be considered when going through the divorce process and both he and his wife need to be very cognizant of this fact.
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Protect yourself and go see an attorney.
All divorces end badly. They may start out friendly and amicable, but once an attorney gets involved things have a tendency to go sour pretty fast. My advice to my friend was to immediately go see an attorney to ensure he was protecting himself, his kids and his hard earned financial resources from a potentially moneygrubbing ex-wife.
The divorce process seems to bring out the worst in all of us. As much as his wife seems to be a real sweet woman I can almost guess that within a matter of days, after she speaks to her attorney, that sweetness will dissipate and be replaced by someone who will be in an aggressive, “everything is mine, you owe me this and that” soon to be ex.
Meeting with a divorce attorney will enable him to take the most correct legal steps to ensure he is not taken advantage of during the divorce process. Also having an attorney will give him a person who will be his spokesman and hopefully remove any emotional dialogue that would be best presented by a un-emotional spokesperson on his behalf. The attorney will prove vastly useful as the negotiator and legal guardian in my friend’s pursuit of a divorce.
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Seek out your support network.
I also told my friend he needed to make sure he was surrounded by positive people who are supportive of his efforts of surviving this potentially difficult divorce process. There is nothing worse than going through an emotional breakup, along with the potential of losing your kids… and then possibly losing some, or most, of your financial assets due to a divorce.
By having others around you who are supportive and can take up some of the empty space your spouse once inhabited the survivability of going through a highly emotional and stressful divorce process can be a much easier thing to navigate. Going it alone without a good support network will mean you will carry the burden of dealing with a very emotionally stressful situation all on your own.
Pick up the phone, call some old friends and get reacquainted. Talk to your brother you have not spoken to in the last three years. Take your dad out for a cup of coffee and tell him your situation. Most, if not all of these people will be sympathetic and empathetic to your situation and thus will become part of your support network that you will desperately need as you move forward with the divorce.
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Establish a vibrant social life.
On top of reestablishing your support network of family and friends you need to get out of the house and reengage with other people. Staying home by yourself and missing what you once had with your spouse will only prolong the emotional agony every divorce brings.
One of the best places to become socially active again is through a website called meetup.com. Via this website you can find tons of groups and activities that will be of interest to you to participate in. The type of groups you will find at Meetup.com would include such things as groups who go bowling every Friday, play tennis on Thursdays and Tuesday’s, learn to cook on Friday nights etc. etc. etc… you get my drift.
In answering my friends query: So, my wife wants a divorce. Now what? This was the advice I gave him in hopes that he does survive this potentially traumatic experience. I know I’ll be part of his support network… and I will also be one of the folks to take him around and re-craft a new social life. My advice to you, if you are going through divorce, is to do exactly what I discussed above so you too can have a smile once again on your face once the divorce process has ended.
article: So, my wife wants a divorce. Now what?
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