What Do I Need to Know Before Divorce?

When you walk down that aisle, the last thing you are thinking about is someday filing for divorce. However, divorce statistics tell a different story, and many couples don’t make it to happily ever after.

If you think your marriage may be headed towards a divorce, read on to educate yourself on what to expect. The more you know now, the better off you’ll be when the time comes.

There is no “Winner” in a Divorce
Divorce is about equity and compromises, so if you go into it, thinking you will walk away from the winner, you will not. No one wins in a divorce. There will be difficult discussions, and you will have to sacrifice some of what you want to make it work. Child custody is an area that can get very contentious during a divorce. If you go into it with a positive attitude with a goal to make it okay for everyone, yourself, and your kids included, things will go better for all of you.

Slow Down and Think it Through Before Making Any Decisions
As tempting as it may be to hurry up and get through the divorce, take your time and think through all major decisions. You may have to decide on many big changes like whether to sell your home or not and how the children will spend time with each of you. These are important things you don’t want to regret rushing.

There are Alternatives to a Standard Divorce
Visiting a courtroom is not the only way to handle a divorce. There are a couple of other gentler alternatives, such as mediation, where the two spouses work with a third party to iron out the dissolution details. Another very popular option is a collaborative divorce where both parties are committed to working together to amicably and fairly distribute assets and work out further details pertaining to the children. Both offer healthier, less stressful options for the entire family.

The Kids May Not Express How They Are Feeling
Your kids may not be open and honest about their feelings, but they may have some difficult times to deal with. Instead of talking openly about how they feel, they may act out or get into trouble at school. Let these be warning signs that your kids are not adjusting as well as they say they are. Communicate to them how you feel so they will be more apt to open up to you. Keep your children as a top priority throughout the process, and it will help guide you to make good decisions.

Once You Sign on the Dotted Line, It’s Not Over
If you have children, you will have ongoing contact with your ex-spouse as you co-parent your kids. It’s best to understand and accept this. Although you may be hurt and grieving, find a way to work with your ex-partner successfully so that you and your children can thrive even through a divorce.


About the Author

Doreen Yaffa, Board Certified Divorce Attorney Founder and Managing Partner of Yaffa Family Law Group. She is one of a handful of divorce attorneys in South Florida who is board certified in Marital and Family Law. Doreen Yaffa earned her board certification in 2001 and has remained a member of The Florida Bar in excellent standing throughout her career.