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Some simple tips for lessening the pain of divorce

Going through a divorce is likely one of the most stressful, sad experiences you will ever have. No doubt, you're being inundated with advice, good and bad. However, you can never get too much good advice. Here are a few tips to help you.

First, have your story about what happened ready to go. No matter how rude it may be, people are going to ask. Have a short, succinct answer ready that doesn't tell them more than you want or speak ill of your spouse. Then stick to that answer, no matter how much they try to extract information from you. Short sentences like, "It was a mutual decision" or "The marriage wasn't working" are fine. Eventually, they'll get the message.

You'll probably share more with family and close friends. However, for most of the people you encounter at work, your kids' school or the gym, this is fine.

Speaking of family, you'll need an answer for your kids that's age appropriate and doesn't give them more information than they need or can handle. It's always best to work out this answer with your spouse so that they aren't getting two sides of the story.

Second, resist the urge to find out what your spouse is up to. That's easier said than done when people post their activities routinely on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. If your spouse is one of those people, it may be best to avoid those sites, particularly when you're alone on a Saturday night.

Taking a break from social media can be beneficial in other ways. Attorneys often caution their clients that their posts can be used against them during the proceedings. It's also advisable to change passwords and privacy settings on those social media accounts.

Finally, seek out support from others who have gone through a divorce. This could be a friend, family member or a group. It's often helpful to hear from someone who's gone through the experience and can provide assurance that you'll come out the other side. It can also help you feel less alone to realize that many people have had the same feelings and experiences as you. If you're working with an experienced family law attorney, he or she can probably help you find the resources and support you need.

Source: Huffington Post, "7 Habits to Make You Happier During Your Divorce," Rosemond Perdue Cranner, July 09, 2015

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Commandments of Family Law

  1. The only truth your children need to know is that you both love them unconditionally, and that this isn't their fault.
  2. Take the high road — everyone wins when you do what's best for your kids.
  3. Negotiate but don't capitulate — if you are being pushed toward something detrimental for your children, stand your ground.
  4. You can only control yourself and how you respond. Don't engage.
  5. Do set up rules and responsibilities. Kids feel better when routine is continued.
  6. You are still their parent — don't be afraid to be one.
  7. Disneyland is in California, not in your home. Don't set up unreasonable expectations.
  8. It is not their job to take care of you. Repeat that to them. Often.
  9. Yelling is for sports — not court. Good lawyers strongly advocate without being disrespectful to opposing parties.
  10. Fair is a place you go to get cheese curds. Aside from that, nothing in life is fair.

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