3 Things to Remember about Advice from Friends during Divorce

Woman thinking about divorce

Deciding to divorce or not

Who did you choose to confide in first as you started the divorce process?

Often times, it’s those closest to us- friends or family members whom we turn to right away with questions about what we should do, who to consult with and what steps to take first.

Although it’s beneficial to start building a support system as soon as possible during this challenging time of incredible emotional and financial stress during divorce, there are 3 things to keep in mind when it comes to relying on divorce guidance from friends and relatives.

1.       Those closest to us often have their own agenda when it comes to giving out divorce advice.

Since separation and divorce are times of emotional overwhelm and confusion, it’s hard to know if advice you are given has been filtered through the lens of their specific intentions rather than truly imparted to you with thoughtful consideration about what would be most beneficial to you over the long run.

For instance, if your dad never thought your husband was good enough for you, he may urge you to forget about mediation and pursue him through the court system as long as possible.

2.       What worked best for your friends or family members during divorce may not be the right path for you.

Does your mom advise you that you should stay with your husband no matter what bad behaviors he continues to dish out?  Does your best friend encourage you to start seeing a new man now to make your husband jealous during the time that you are separated?

When we’re not sure what direction to take next, it can be very tempting to rely on others to make decisions for us and believe that their advice is the best way to go. By comparing our own marital situation to those who those who are closest to us, we limit the amount of possibilities and choices that are open to us and also may end up blaming those whose advice we followed.

3.     Laws about separation and divorce depend heavily on what county and state you live in. 

Despite your friend’s insistence that you CAN lock your cheating husband out of the house, liquefy the joint savings account or take your kids out of state, all of these actions could have legal consequences  that can come back to haunt you later on.

Even if your friend or family member filed for divorce in the same county where you now live, it’s critical to get legal advice as soon as you have questions so that you understand how the unique factors of your own situation apply so that you can avoid making costly mistakes.

Since divorce cuts across so many aspects of our everyday lives: financial, spiritual, health, parenting and our work lives-our levels of stress can go down significantly when we quit relying too heavily on those around us for advice.

Please let me know your thoughts in the Comments Section below.

Comments

  1. Thoughtful advice – thank you for sharing.

  2. Thanks for sharing these. I remember when I was going through a divorce several years ago everyone had their own ideas on how I should handle it. Yes even my own parents. in the end, I appreciated everyone being there for me but honestly, I had to mainly ignore their advice and go forward with my own heart and mind and what it was telling me to do. In the end it was the best thing I could have done for myself, my ex-husband and our kids. Strangely, because I didn’t follow some of the advice I was given, it all went smoothly and with kindness rather than hate.

  3. Caroline Mahmud says:

    I have been divorced for 5 1/2 years. I wish I could have had Nancy as my divorce coach then. I would have been in the position to make better choices and have a better support system too. Thinking about divorce and going through it is one of the most difficult things you will ever face. There were people in my life then that didn’t understand what I was dealing with at the time. Although their intentions were good, their advice wasn’t always appropriate for my situation. If you are thinking about divorce or actually going through it, take Nancy’s advice. She is educated and very experienced in this field. You have to be prepared and strong to get through it.