Search Site
830 Post Road East, Suite 301 | Westport, Connecticut 06880
2435 Route 6, 2nd Floor | Brewster, New York 10509
Call For Consultation 203-557-9500845-860-0000
The right mindset in divorce

Tips for the right mindset in divorce

Ask for/Get help

Seeking  help is often the most significant impediment to a  divorce.  Where do you start?  Fear and anxiety is normal and can be overcome.  How do you gain the “right’ mindset in divorce?

Help can be found all around you: family, friends,  support groups, therapists, marriage counselors, religious ministers, community service organizations.

It can also come from a variety of professionals including lawyers, accountants, wealth/financial advisors, medical professionals, etc.

But, only you can determine the best, most trusted place to start.  The most important thing is just to start!  So. reach out sooner rather than later.  Look to maintain contact with a trusted friend or, better yet, a support group or support system to assist you in dealing with the range of emotion you will experience with the prospect of your new life.

Allowing one’s mind to run wild with fear and anxiety about all the unknowns is just about the worst thing you can do. Knowledge is power.

It is therefore critical to take the initiative to learn about the process of divorce in your state/jurisdiction. Quantify your financial situation. Define the areas of major disagreement, and truly understand all your options.  Divorce is not a one-size-fits-all process.  Every divorce is unique and there are, in fact, lots of ways to approach the process and resolution with your spouse.

An important first step for most is to find an experienced divorce attorney with whom you trust and are compatible.  It is important that you take your time to make the right choice as divorce is often a slow process and you will be reliant on the relationship you have with your attorney throughout.

mindset in divorce

Grieve, but don’t hold onto the past

It is a normal part of the divorce process to be sad that the life you have known is coming to an end. Moving through the wide range of emotions and realities presented by divorce is a very difficult process. Harboring feelings of denial, anger, hate, resentment, frustration, disappointment, sadness, personality loss, or a basic sense of failure (just to name a few) is common.

Simply said, it may be difficult to see a way forward when looking through any combination of the above-referenced emotional “filters.”

All the feelings that you experience are important to acknowledge and process — noting everyone handles this experience differently and in their own time.  That said, ultimately one needs to move forward because holding onto the past can be detrimental to your mind set slow progression of the divorce process.

“Acceptance” is the path to the “right” mindset in divorce.

Don’t have a “Win-Lose” mindset in divorce

Divorce doesn’t yield winners and losers, just people that have endured a very difficult process.  Chances are, you will not walk away with everything you want, whether you reach an agreement with your spouse or a judge makes the decisions.

Litigating divorce related issues is not only financially expensive, but has an emotional toll as well.  At a high level, divorce is about compromise — whether is it found by agreement or ultimately ordered by a judge.

Therefore, it is best to be open and focus on a “compromise” mindset so your expectations are appropriately managed.  A path forward to realize your goals may be mediation or arbitration.

An experienced divorce attorney will help evaluate all the available dispute resolution options and find the best process for you to achieve best results, but having the “right” mindset in divorce comes from you.

Maintain reasonable expectations

Believe it or not, marriage and divorce have a lot in common. While anticipating either, we tend to view them as utopian panaceas. But in both cases, they rarely (if ever) are, and you’ll survive either one much better if you enter with realistic expectations.

Divorce is not a magic bullet or end-all solution to every problem, such as your spouse’s narcissistic personality disorder or your spouse’s inability to earn reasonable income. Divorce divides assets/property and liabilities, it defines the sharing of future income (including alimony and child support obligations), and it establishes child custody and parenting plans..

Having realistic expectations practical goals about what a divorce is designed to do goes a long way towards developing the “right” mindset in divorce.

If Kids are in the equation, understand that your ex-Spouse will still be part of your life (post-divorce)

Kids are a permanent link between two people, whether married or divorced. Both parents have ongoing obligations to ensure that the best interests of the children are protected until they reach adulthood.

The connection continues. Figuring out how you and your ex-spouse will interact in   the new version of your family, is something to contemplate. Afterall, you will be “together” as parents for the entirety of the lives of your children. There will be birthdays, graduations, wedding and grandchildren that you will share with your ex-spouse.  Thinking about how you want these life events to look is a smart idea and may drive the divorce process when trying to achieve the right mindset in divorce.

Keep the lines of communication open with your soon to be ex-spouse

If you experienced a respectful, mutual parting, talking to your ex may be a healthy choice.  Effective communication may streamline the divorce process. Good communication throughout can also influence the quality of the relationship you have with your ex-spouse after the divorce is finalized. Having a healthy line of communication can save you time (and money if lawyers are required), minimize anxiety, eliminate any stress or conflict your kids may feel, and help to positively re-define your modified family for all over the long-haul.

If your separation was due to abuse, unhealthy patterns, or painful emotions, minimizing communication might be the best choice.  Each relationship can be unique, deciding to talk to your ex can be a complex issue.

In situations where communication should be limited, consider the following to attain the “right” mindset for divorce:

  • Communicate only in writing (email, text, etc.);
  • Stick to the business at hand;
  • Keep it short;
  • Draft something…Wait to send it…Think on it…edit accordingly…press send;
  • Document your communication using screenshots or other digital record keeping method.

Open lines Communication can help create the right mindset for divorce.

Create and commit to a vision of your future (focus on this vision and related goals daily)

It may be difficult to move forward productively without having  a clear direction for yourself and how your family will be “redefined”.

Remember: A family disrupted by a divorce is still a family — just a different kind of family — familial connections do not  just disappear.  The simple truth is that you will have different kind of family moving forward, one defined by the approach that you and your spouse take with respect to your communication, behaviors, co-parenting decisions, and how you treat each other.

Every relationship is a two-way street — even relationships between divorcing and/or divorced spouses.

Important questions to ask yourself:

  • What is your individual future going to look like?
  • What makes you truly happy?
  • What are your real needs (vs wants or wishes)?
  • Are you being both practical and realistic?
  • How will your family operate?
  • What will your family look like post-divorce?

At Needle | Cuda, we have found that clients who lack or have difficulty working out their vision for the future have the most difficulty during the process and tend to be resistant making the important decisions required to finalize a separation agreement.

It is therefore is important to affirmatively develop a future vision for yourself and your family to be in the “right” mindset in divorce.

Write your own marital history and divorce narrative

There is more than one side to every story.  What is yours?

The process of writing your marital history and reflecting on how the relationship broke down can be very therapeutic and empowering

When you feel ready, look at the old story you’ve been telling yourself and others about what happened.

At Needle | Cuda, we ask our clients to complete their own marital history (and add to it) during the pendency of the divorce.  Not only is it important to you, but it helps us to better understand and present (to the court) the major themes and undercurrents that were present in your marriage and its breakdown.

Together, we work to optimally present your “side” of the story to the family court.

So, start developing the “right” mindset in divorce and create your narrative.

Take advice from other divorced people with a grain of salt

Every divorce has a unique fact pattern and circumstances.  The divorce of someone you know has absolutely no bearing on your divorce. It is unrealistic to think your divorce will be similar to another person’s divorce.

Some people in your life who have gone through divorce will be more than happy to share their experience and offer advice about several aspects of your case. Regardless of how well-intended , the advice you get from other divorced people should not be compared to your divorce case.

What happens in one will not happen in another. The facts are always different. .Do not base your decisions on the experiences of someone else. Instead, work with a family law attorney and rely on their guidance.  Other professionals, such as a therapist or financial consultant, may also be able to assist you.

Divorce Do’s and Don’ts

Attorney Melissa Needle Bio Link


Contact us

Quick Contact Form