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Be realistic, reasonable and communicate for a successful divorce

There are no winners and losers when divorce is involved; it is a loss for both individuals. However, a successful divorce can be achieved. Going through a divorce can be a painful and difficult process. By having information regarding the complexities of the legal system, the process will become a little bit more tolerable. This article will help you more easily understand the process and get you through your divorce with realistic goals and ideas.


Do have reasonable expectations

In family law cases, you should never expect to “win” on every issue. Rarely is either party happy about every ruling in a case. Even some of the best rulings can leave both parties slightly dissatisfied. Your attorney should keep open communication with you throughout the process and discuss the realistic outcomes so nothing is misunderstood or unexpected.

Do keep communication open with your spouse/ex-spouse

Although it can be difficult, if there are children involved, you and your (ex-) spouse will have to work together. Children are generally the ones who suffer the most throughout the divorce process and it is important for them to see that their parents are able to work together in a peaceful and cooperative way. Communicating with each other to come to an understanding and hopefully a settlement will save you both time and money in court and attorney’s fees.

Do get professional help to deal with your emotions

If you are having trouble dealing with emotions such as anger, hostility, depression, or defeat, don’t hesitate to get help through counseling and therapy to help you through it. It is important if you need to vent those frustrations to go to a professional as opposed to relaying your emotions in court or toward your attorney. A good counselor will be able to help you and your children get through this difficult time.

Do consult with a qualified divorce attorney

Even if you are not sure that you want to divorce or separate, you should meet with an experienced and knowledgeable attorney to discuss your issues and options. Consider meeting with an attorney who you feel comfortable with and who focuses their practice on divorce and family law. Your attorney should provide you with a step-by-step explanation of what to expect in your case. Be sure to ask the attorney any questions you may have so that you fully understand your options.

Do keep yourself healthy

Focus on your health. Exercise, eat healthy and get plenty of rest. Exercise reduces stress hormones that are produced from the body’s fight or flight response to conflict and will help you clear your mind and sleep better. Improve your diet and make sure your body is getting appropriate nutrition. Consider joining an exercise class, yoga, Pilates, a running or cycling group, or investing in a regular weekly massage. Then, with a healthier body and better attitude, you’ll be better able to take care of yourself, your children, your finances, and to handle the divorce process.


Do not focus on the negative past

Always keep in mind that you can create your own happiness, and sometimes a divorce is a great opportunity to do so. Sometimes a fresh start is what one needs to flourish. Instead of focusing on all the negative attributes of your prior relationship, try to envision your divorce as an opportunity to change your old bad habits and to make better decisions in the present and future. Visualize who you want to be when the divorce is over and work towards that idea.

Do not fight with your (ex-) spouse

Do your best to avoid arguing with your (ex-) spouse. It can often hurt your case. You may say something you may regret in a fit of anger, and what you say may wind up in testimony heard by the judge. If your (ex-) spouse becomes nasty to you, do not respond. Don’t allow yourself to be hurt by what was said. You should keep a journal, noting dates, times and places of conversations in which your spouse got nasty, and what exactly was said. If you can’t agree, then agree to disagree, and let your attorney handle the situation.

Do not rush through the divorce process

Make informed, rational decisions based on your attorney’s advice (that you’re paying for), and try not to let your emotions dictate your choices. Unfortunately, some parties rush into a bad settlement to try to end the divorce quickly, only to find that they have made extremely poor decisions for themselves and their children. Reversing or adjusting a bad settlement is much more difficult and sometimes much more expensive than taking the time on the first settlement. A bad settlement can be very painful. Be patient and persistent and your settlement will most likely be fair.

Do not discourage visitation

The court does not look highly upon parental alienation. If you end up as the parent with the majority of the timesharing (even if temporary) it is important that you strongly encourage visitation with the other parent. You must do more than just stay out of the way or leave the choice up to your children. If you show the initiative to encourage your children to spend time with your (ex-) spouse, it just may reflect in the judge’s ruling on certain issues with the children.

Jumping cartoon

It is understandable that through divorce and separation many emotions will arise between both parties. However remember that the legal system is not a tool that you can use to gain revenge against the other person. The court must decide the outcome of your case based on facts and evidence. In the majority of family law cases, the court will not compensate you or anyone else for the other party's misconduct. So remain calm, be reasonable, and communicate effectively to attain the best possible results for all parties involved.

More expert advice about Divorce and Separation Law

Photo Credits: Young Couple Together In State Of Troubles courstesy of David Castillo Dominici/; Check Man, Cross Man and Jump Man © ioannis kounadeas -

Jeffrey FeulnerManaging Attorney

Attorney Jeffrey Feulner graduated from Rollins College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Organizational Behavior and received his Juris Doctorate degree from the Florida State University College of Law. Attorney Feulner is the sole shareholder ...

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