Starting Over Financially After Divorce

life after divorce Feb 04, 2020

Starting over financially after divorce can feel overwhelming on numerous levels. If you are recently divorced, you could still be handling your legal bills related to the divorce. Besides, you are likely trying to manage your expenses on a lower income than what you're used to while only seeing half your assets when you open your investment statements.

Related post: Tips for Rapidly Rebuilding After a Divorce or Separation

5 Tips for Starting Over Financially After a Divorce:

Eliminate Debt

If you walked away from your marriage with debt, look at ways to reduce your interest rates or reorganize to eliminate it. If you can't eliminate it right away, begin paying it down aggressively. Your monthly cash flow will be so much stronger if you're not paying down debt every month. When I am working with people on their divorce settlement, we often look for creative ways to eliminate the debt for both parties so they can each have a fresh start.

Related post: Debt and Divorce:...

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Handling Small Business Valuation in Divorce Mediation

mediation small business Jan 07, 2020

Handling small businesses in divorce mediation presents several challenges and added complexity to the process. For starters, there may be other owners involved in the company, or it could have been a business passed down within a family. The value of the company under consideration for the asset division is typically the value created during the marriage. Sometimes that substantial, and sometimes there is little to no value to divide.

If you were negotiating your divorce settlement through attorneys or at trial, you would likely rely on a business valuation or possibly two competing expert reports. 

Most people who choose mediation to settle their divorce choose it because they don't want to waste marital assets on the divorce itself. Thus, paying $10,000-20,000 for business valuations does not make a lot of sense.

Related post: 10 Ways to Save Money on Your Divorce

Not only does the valuation add quite a bit of cost to the process, but it can also add quite a bit of time to...

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Resolve to Be a Better Co-Parent

It's that time of year again where many of us are considering how we might be better or do better in the new year with New Year's resolutions. If parenting with your ex has been a significant struggle in your life, I want to challenge you to resolve to be a better co-parent this year. If you don't want to do it for yourself, do it for your children.

Divorce not only takes a toll on the divorcing couple, but it also affects the rest of the family. This is especially evident if you have young children. Even though it's tough to hide the negative feelings that surface during a divorce, it's extremely important that you work at managing those feelings constructively if you don't want them to affect the kids.

Avoid the mistake of believing that your adult problems are too complicated for your children to understand. Although young children may not understand words like "irreconcilable differences," they're very intuitive and impressionable. Even babies can tell when their parents are at...

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Could You Benefit from Discernment Counseling?

counseling divorce marriage Dec 24, 2019

Discernment counseling is a unique approach to helping couples decide what they should do about their marriage. While traditional couples’ therapy typically has an end goal of saving the marriage or saving the relationship, discernment counseling allows couples to work through different processes and determine if staying together is the right choice. 

Irreconcilable Differences

Perhaps one of the biggest reasons for divorce is irreconcilable differences. This is a common cause and probably one of the hardest hurdles to get over for people who are trying to save a marriage. If your partner is unwilling to work with you to even determine whether divorce is the right choice, discernment counseling might be the best way to go.

There are many issues that come up in marriage, from family life to finances and other stressors. Whether you and your partner handle these the same way can have an impact on the success of your marriage. If you feel your marriage is heading toward...

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7 Issues That Could Signal an Impending Divorce

Over the years of working with people going through a divorce, I've heard repeatedly that one of the parties was blindsided by the other spouse's request for a divorce. With that said, a relationship headed for an impending divorce will often show multiple signs of challenges and issues, if you're paying attention. 

7 issues that could signal an impending divorce:

1. You feel emotionally detached from your spouse.

One of the most frequent complaints is that love has faded.  Know that it's normal for relationships to change over time. Your love will also change. The first feeling of romance will turn into a deeper kind of love. However, it shouldn't disappear. A relationship that has lost its love altogether is in danger.

2. Mutual resentment has reached high levels.

Anger and resentment can do immense damage to a relationship. If you both resent each other, then it's a strong sign the marriage is in trouble.

3. You or your spouse criticize the other all the time....

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Strategies for Overcoming Co-Parenting Conflicts

When you’re trying to co-parent with your ex, it can make things more difficult for you and your child. Successful co-parenting results in happier children, parents who are less stressed, and an overall greater level of contentment after divorce. While it can be difficult to get adjusted to having a healthy and happy co-parenting relationship, use these strategies for overcoming co-parenting conflicts! 

Above All Else, Consider Your Child 

The reason you’re doing this is for the one who is most important to you, right? It’s all about your child and making sure they have the healthiest childhood for them. Keep that in mind during any type of conflict and you’ll immediately diffuse the situation with your ex. It’s also important to kindly remind your ex why you are both doing this. By keeping the common denominator, your love for your child, in mind, you’ll make it easier to negotiation and compromise during all conflicts with your...

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Talking to Your Family Members at the Holidays About Your Divorce

divorce mediation Dec 03, 2019

Telling parents about divorce can be hard enough. I have seen the tension in a divorce increase too many times as a result of meddling family members or friends. During the holidays, we tend to interact with family members and friends more than we do all year long, so there is even more opportunity for meddling than there typically is.

From my professional experience, it is so hard to watch when a couple has committed to handling their settlement in a mature and amicable way, but someone gets in one of their ears and tears the whole thing apart.

When I sit down with my clients who are going through mediation, I always encourage them to keep the conversations that happen in mediation in the mediation room. I know that when you're emotional, you may want to vent to a friend or a family member. However, divorce is a difficult process for everyone who is involved, and a meddling family member can make it even more complicated. 

Related post: How to Ask Your Spouse to...

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Your First Christmas After Divorce

If it's your first Christmas after your divorce and you are feeling sad or lonely or even angry, that's completely normal. Feelings often intensify around the holidays.

I remember my first Christmas after my divorce well. My ex and I didn't have a lot of conversation regarding how it was going to go. We didn't have a plan. Our divorce was still relatively new, and we were barely on speaking terms at the time.

I was overwhelmed by simple things like getting the tree and other decorations out of the basement without my ex to help.

Related post: 6 Survival Tips for Dealing With Divorce Over the Holidays

No matter the circumstances, divorce is one of the most traumatic events you can go through in your adult life. The impact of divorce on your psyche could have you gearing up for a Christmas in the dumps. It t doesn’t have to be that way, though. Here’s how to make your first Christmas after divorce feel like something special again.   

Realistic Expectations...

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30 Quotes About Gratitude to Inspire You During Tough Times

gratitude quotes Nov 19, 2019

It's easy to focus on the negative when going through a divorce. In honor of this season of Thanksgiving, let's focus on the positive. Here are 30 quotes about gratitude to help you.

30 Quotes About Gratitude

"Being thankful is not always experienced as a natural state of existence, we must work at it, akin to a type of strength training for the heart." - Larissa Gomez 

"Gratitude helps you to grow and expand; gratitude brings joy and laughter into your life and into the lives of all those around you." - Eileen Caddy

"I don't have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness - it's right in front of me if I'm paying attention and practicing gratitue." - Brene Brown

"The root of joy is gratefulness." - David Steindl-Rast

"Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow." - Melody Beattie

"Gratitude turns what we have into enough." 

"When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around." - Willie...

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Can Pre-Mediation Coaching Really Make a Difference?

It is my pleasure to welcome our latest guest blogger, Karen Dorsey. Karen is sharing some important information about a service often overlooked - pre-mediation coaching. Often those seeking mediation are looking to save money and aren't willing to consider additional services. However, some of those cost savings measures could cost you more in the long-run.

Pre-mediation is an excellent example of an investment that is well worth your time and money. It helps you to make the best use of your mediation sessions. While I (and I believe most other mediators) offer pre-mediation coaching on an informal basis for all my clients choosing mediation, Karen provides a more formal approach (described below), which could be especially helpful in high conflict cases.

Can Pre-Mediation Coaching Make a Difference?

Are you and your spouse deciding on whether or not to go to mediation?

Is your attorney recommending mediation instead of a costly court battle?

Is the court in your state...

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