Written by Divorce Coach Prudence Henschke
Behind every elite athlete there is a team of people, supporting them to be their best. Each person on the team has specific skills, knowledge, and insights for the athlete to leverage. The same idea can be applied to navigating a divorce. Just like an athlete before a big game, preparing for your divorce by assembling a team of people to support you will set you up for success and is the best strategy for getting the outcome you want for yourself and your family. Here are some people you might want to consider recruiting.
1. Family Law Attorney
What does a Family Law Attorney do?
A Family Law attorney specializes in the Matrimonial Law, which can include dissolution of marriage, child custody agreements and other related matters that must be adjudicated within the Court system. Family Law Attorneys can charge as low as $250/hour and the hourly rate can go as high as $900/hour. Though they can provide you with clear advice about your rights and responsibilities during a divorce, they are not your therapist nor should you treat them like a friend. They may also be able to provide you with advice about alternatives to the traditional legal pathway, such as mediation.
When do you need a Family Law Attorney?
If your divorce is uncontested, you may not need lawyers. It’s Over Easy is designed specifically for that scenario! However, if your divorce is very complicated or acrimonious, you might need professional help to resolve your issues. The information age we live in means there is easy access to a large volume of resources about divorce. Unfortunately, some of the information available isn’t always reliable. Seeking professional advice from an experienced divorce professional tailored to your particular situation, can save you from making costly mistakes in the long run.
2. Divorce Coach
What does a Divorce Coach do?
A Divorce Coach supports and guides you through your separation, divorce, and beyond! They can share tools and strategies with you to make the process quicker and easier. They can also help you make thoughtfully considered decisions by acting as a sounding board and thinking partner.
Why do you need a Divorce Coach?
A Divorce Coach can provide you with a valuable, impartial perspective that’s removed from the situation and your relationship. They often have professional experience in the field of Family Law (also known as Matrimonial Law) which they can draw upon when offering you guidance. Divorce coaches provide a more holistic approach to divorce that can also be very helpful. They can work with you on everything from co-parenting, to understanding the importance of self care, to developing strategies for effective communication.
What does a Therapist do?
A Therapist will help support your mental health. Depending on your individual situation, you may choose to work with a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, a Psychotherapist, or a counselor. These professionals may work with you on your habitual thought patterns, emotional skills, and coping strategies. Though they also typically charge by the hour, their hourly rate is usually much less than an attorney's and unlike the attorney the Therapist is trained to listen, and offer emotional and psychological support.
Why do you need a Therapist?
Therapists possess an expert skill set in working with people with mental health issues. If you have a diagnosed mental health issue or have experienced trauma, you might need care from a specialist like a Therapist when going through a divorce. This added support will be crucial during what can be an incredibly traumatic and taxing time in one’s life.
4. Financial Planner
What does a Financial Planner do?
A Financial Planner can help you manage your finances during the divorce process. This type of professional can also offer you options for how to structure your future financial affairs, help you work on your financial goals, and establish a concrete plan for how to reach them.
Why do you need a Financial Planner?
After a separation, in most cases spouses end up with fewer assets and less income than they had when they were married. If you were not involved in your family finances during your marriage, you might need the assistance of someone to learn the best way to manage your money during the divorce process and to set yourself up for the future. Even if you were in charge of your financial affairs during your relationship, you might still benefit from another perspective as you move forward.
5. Supportive Friends and Family
What should friends and family do to offer support during a divorce?
Friends and family who are non-judgmental, patient, and understanding, can provide invaluable emotional support for you during a divorce. They make you feel loved and cared for. They listen to you with empathy. They lift your spirits and make you feel lighter. Your loved ones can also provide you with practical support, like extra help with your children or a place to temporarily live if you need one.
Why do you need supportive friends and family during a divorce?
We are social beings. We need people around us, particularly when times are tough. Reaching out to family and friends and being honest about what you are experiencing is key. Without knowing what you need and telling people, it is difficult for those around you to know how to help.
6. Health and Wellness Practitioners
What do Health and Wellness Practitioners do?
Depending on the modality you choose, Health and Wellness Practitioners can support your physical and emotional well-being as you navigate your divorce. You may enlist the help of one person or a number of people, such as a yoga instructor, meditation teacher, massage therapist, or personal trainer.
Why do you need a Health and Wellness Practitioner?
Separation and divorce are up there with the most stressful events in life. It’s common knowledge that stress can take a huge toll on your physical and mental health. A caring health professional can counterbalance some of the stress you are under and help you manage it on a day-to-day basis.
Always Get The Right Kind Of Help
While it’s a given you need your team to be qualified and experienced, it’s also important to find people who are a good personality match. They should be people with whom you may speak openly and honestly. Your support team is there to help you. If they add to your stress and aren’t helping you in advance, recruit new members. If you need help building your team, The Index on It’s Over Easy offers an array of curated professionals for many of these categories and more!
Prudence is a Certified Divorce Coach with over 14 years of experience as a Family Lawyer. In her role as a Coach, she specializes in helping working mothers feel supported, calm and confident as they navigate the practical and emotional challenges of a break-up or a divorce. You can connect with her at www.prudencehenschke.com