According to Statistics Canada, 40 per cent of Canadian marriages will end in divorce. For many of us, this process will be the most stressful period of our lives, with fear of the unknown, having to start over, and dividing family property all high on the list of worries.
The good news is, it’s possible to take the majority of stress out of the divorce process. Sure, it’s a big change and feelings will understandably run high, but couples can control how smoothly their divorce will proceed. For example, if a couple approaches their divorce in a mature and collaborative manner it’s highly likely the process will run smoothly. Conversely, an acrimonious divorce is likely to take a high psychological and emotional toll on both parties – as well as any children involved.
To help provide guidance, here are five simple tips to take the stress out of your divorce.
Seek the Support You Need
The strain of a divorce can lay low even the most mentally hardened of individuals. Don’t try and suffer through these challenges alone. Call your family or friends if you feel overwhelmed. If you aren’t comfortable doing so, consider talking to a counsellor or therapist to help work through your emotions. Divorces are a fact of life, and the vast majority of people will provide judgement-free advice and support. Even if they don’t have practical solutions to offer, just having a friendly ear to listen can make a world of difference.
Forget the Need to “Win”
In every facet of our lives, we are increasingly trying to secure wins and avoid suffering defeats. It’s natural to take this mindset into the divorce process but it can be hugely damaging and needlessly confrontational. Ultimately, divorce should not be treated as a game to be won or lost. Taking a more collaborative approach, where everyone can emerge as a winner, is the key to a stress-free resolution.
Further to the collaborative approach mentioned above, a mediator can nullify the stress, delays and legal fees associated with the legal process. Don’t think of mediation as a “last resort” option. Instead, be pro-active and attempt to work with a mediator as early in the process as possible. These highly skilled professionals are trained to find fair solutions that work for everyone involved. Want to learn more? Read our recent blog on when mediation is appropriate in family law.
Speak to a Family Law Expert Early
With so many important decisions to be made, it’s crucial to consult with a family lawyer as early in the process as possible. The team at Westside Family Law can consult with you about your legal rights, obligations and other items to be aware of. We believe it’s vital to make informed choices and the input of a family lawyer will help avoid common mistakes and ensure you’re clear on the path ahead.
Divorces and heightened emotions go hand in hand. While you may feel a parade of negative emotions towards your former spouse, it’s so important to remain respectful throughout the divorce process. Trying to communicate and collaborate as equals will remove so much of the stress of the process, and work to ensure an outcome that works for both parties. If children are involved, this point becomes so much more important, for their sakes.
Talk to a Family Law Expert
If you’re going through a divorce, or have questions you would like to ask about the process, the expert team at Westside is standing by to help. Contact us and we’ll be happy to assist.