When you and your spouse decide to dissolve your marriage, it can turn brutal. Hurt feelings can lead to vicious words and actions, and the person who promised to support you and love you until death is suddenly doing everything they can to hurt you. Even the most amicable of divorces are often filled with stress and difficulties. When you and your ex are dividing your lives and assets from one another, you need to protect yourself both financially and emotionally.
Financial Impacts of Divorce
Simply filing for a divorce can cost several hundred dollars depending on your state. In addition to this, even in amicable divorces, it’s wise for each person to hire an attorney. This helps you when it comes to filing paperwork and dividing up assets.
Your attorney can advise you on what paperwork needs to be filed when and can ensure that it’s completed properly. Your lawyer’s negotiation skills can help ensure that you get your fair share of the assets you and your ex bought while you were together. You may consider going it alone, but if your ex has hired a lawyer, you’re going to need one too to stand a chance against them.
Additionally, you need to think about your income. They say that two can live as cheaply as one, but when you get divorced, your overall income will often be significantly reduced. Because of this, you may need to live on a smaller budget.
How to Lower Your Costs
Divorce can get expensive fast if you’re not careful. However, there are things you can do to lower your costs.
It may be tempting to simply get rid of attorney fees by forgoing legal advice. However, this isn’t advised, even when you and your spouse are using mediation to separate assets. Family law can get messy when you don’t have the right experience and when you’re too emotional to avoid costly mistakes.
Having a lawyer on your side can help protect your finances in the future, so it’s worth the investment now. However, you can lower these types of fees by using a few simple tips. Shop around for a lawyer with rates in your budget. Keep your communications short and to the point. Then do as much of your own paperwork as possible. Most lawyers will also allow you to set up a payment plan with you, so take advantage of that if you need to.
Emotional Impacts of Divorce
Divorce can get quite emotional. You may feel like you’re on a rollercoaster of wanting to cry, scream, yell, shut down, or throw up—or some combination of all of the above. However, you need to manage your feelings well enough to demonstrate composure and respectfulness since you won’t help yourself by acting inappropriately. Despite that, it isn’t wise to ignore the emotions you’re experiencing either.
The divorce may make you feel insecure, relieved, vulnerable, ashamed, furious, elated, or a wide range of other emotions. However, you need to work through those emotions in a healthy manner. Those feelings can change from day to day, and you need to be able to handle all the ups and downs.
You will go through stages similar to death. You will need to acknowledge the divorce, make the decision public, adjust to the new normal, and then use this as an opportunity for new beginnings.
How to Protect Your Emotional Health
It can be hard to forgive, especially in the midst of the drama. However, you can find a support system to lean on. If you don’t have friends and family that you feel can adequately support you through this time, look into support grounds for divorcees. You also want to take care of yourself by meditating, eating clean, and remaining active.
Finally, you may want to seek counseling from a trained psychologist. While friends and family are a great resource, especially when you want to rant or vent, a trained mental health professional can help guide you to a more positive place emotionally and mentally.
Divorce is always a difficult time, and many people try to struggle through it on their own. However, you don’t have to. Use the resources you have, including your friends, family members, therapists, and lawyers, to protect yourself and your future.
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