In earlier blogs, Divorce: 7 Principles of Parting – Part 1 and Part 2, we discussed tools to help divorcing couples make more positive and productive choices throughout the divorce process and with co-parenting. Contrary to some stereotypes of divorced fathers, many divorce outcomes are more positive and balanced than suspected. A group of fathers have put together advice that helped make their divorce processes go more smoothly for all parties involved. Here are 5 of 10 tips to help dads survive the divorce process in a more positive and manageable manner:
- REMOVE THE SAILS: An analogy has been drawn between fathers “hoisting sales” to avoid tension from an angry wife. When the wind blows hardest (or a fight occurs), the sails can get blown out of control. Instead of reacting irrationally and giving into anger, take down the sails and respond more cautiously and with deeper thought.
- REMAIN IN THE HOME: Don’t exposure yourself to a strategic disadvantage by moving out of the home. Move into another room and try to avoid your spouse if need be, but don’t move out of the home until the divorce is settled. If you leave too early, your spouse has practical custody of the children and could affect your custody rights in a potential custody battle.
- KEEP RECORDS: Get into the habit of documenting everything that is said and done in relation to the divorce process. Jot down any insults or threats from your spouse along with dates and times. Keep an eye on spending habits and bank account withdrawals. Keeping detailed records is often an equalizer in a legal system that seems biased against men.
- BE GOOD: This isn’t the time to start partying, doing drugs or acting irresponsible. Be sure to pay bills on time and do not engage in any form of physical, emotional or sexual abuse. Unfortunately the man in the divorce often has to uphold to a higher standard of behavior. Keep your behavior clean and it will help your chances of coming out of a divorce with your reputation and finances intact.
- SEEK LEGAL COUNSEL: Check around for references and seek legal counsel with a good reputation in working with fathers. Be completely honest with your attorney and work on how to best communicate your specific divorce situation. A good family law attorney will be an asset in your divorce process.
A divorce is emotionally painful for all parties involved. Unfortunately because of the pro-mother bias of the family law system, sometimes fathers are more challenged during the divorce process. Stay tuned for Part 2 of this series where we discuss 5 more survival tips for fathers. For more information regarding legal issues and your specific situation, contact Gerstenberger Law at (770) 920-7722.
The information found on the Gerstenberger Law site is for educational purposes only. Your situation and the situation of others are unique and more complex. This is neither legal advice nor to be considered legal advice. Contact us for advice about your specific situation.