The TRUTH About Divorce that lawyers will never tell you


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A very powerful presentation about the effects of divorce on children and the best way to divorce if you have to

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  • Divorces per minute are based on 1,000,000/year. Using business days, when divorces would occur, and eliminating 6 holidays per year there are:8 hours in the business day or 480 minutes which is 2400 business minutes/weekIf we use 6 holidays then the annual number is reduced by 6 times 480 or 2880 business minutesThe annual number of business minutes would then be 2400 minutes/week times 52 weeks -2880 minutes or 121980 business minutes per annumDivide 1,000,000 divorces/year by 121,980 minutes/year 8 divorces/minute
  • Many spouses will just react without thinking and try and punish or control you
  • The danger could be physical and/or emotional
  • Going through these stats could touch the fears of the participants and bring them out
  • The danger could be physical and/or emotional
  • And what’s worse is that advice from the person who should be your greatest advocate, could be the most dangerous of all to you and your loved ones
  • This is referring to interfering with the other parent’s parenting techniques and the damage it causes…
  • You should stress the final point several times…
  • Here is where you bring up that an unscrupulous California attorney may drag out the process until they own your home…
  • This slide is to demonstrate how casual the typical attorney is with the amount of time a divorce takes
  • This and other studies emphasize again and again that joint custody is more successful – for the children – than sole custody – children need both parents actively in their lives
  • This and other studies emphasize again and again that joint custody is more successful – for the children – than sole custody – children need both parents actively in their lives
  • Of course you want to note that this really a continuum and may be more less in one of the areas. In other words it could be that a couple is pretty hostile, but only interferes occasionally with the parenting of the other and so on…
  • That only 25% of parent are able to develop cooperative relationships demonstrates how hard it is to focus on the child instead of personal agendas or pain
  • This starts to make the participant aware of the additional expenses and the possible change in life-style post divorce
  • The danger could be physical and/or emotional
  • There are divorce support groups for several children’s age groups
  • This was the most complete series of steps for emotional protection that I found
  • Most of this area is just about getting through the divorce process – they will want to have walked through all of these steps before they even broach the topic of divorce
  • Emphasize again and again – the participant should always be looking for ways to shorten the process without compromising their position
  • This is the call to action slide
  • The TRUTH About Divorce that lawyers will never tell you

    1. 1. Divorce!<br />Rescue or Disaster?<br />Wrong choices threaten your family and your assets<br />
    2. 2. Divorce!<br />Rescue or Disaster?<br />Wrong choices threaten your family and your assets<br />
    3. 3. Divorce numbers are staggering<br />Risk of loss during divorce is very high<br />Money and children form the basis for legal disputes<br />Contentious divorces are like a war – nobody really wins<br />Divorce is never so horrible that you cannot make it worse<br />Areas Covered<br />3<br />
    4. 4. <ul><li>You are currently married. You and your spouse are likely having serious and ongoing issues with one or more of the following:</li></ul>Infidelity<br />Communication breakdown<br />Physical, psychological or emotional abuse<br />Financial issues<br />Sexual incompatibility<br />Boredom<br />Religious and cultural strains<br />Child rearing<br />Addiction<br />Differences in priorities and expectations<br />4<br />You may be thinking about divorce because…<br />Sources: Divorce Guide – The Top 10 Reasons for Divorce – retrieved 2007<br />
    5. 5. You are not willing to take it any more<br />5<br />But most of all you are thinking about divorce because<br />You feel you MUSTget out… now!<br />
    6. 6. <ul><li>There were over 1million divorces in the U.S. in 2006
    7. 7. That would mean that in just the couples alone there were over 2 million people involved
    8. 8. There are at least 8 divorces every minute of every business day in the United States
    9. 9. 75% of filings were by women</li></ul>6<br />And there are a lot of people just like you<br />Sources: National Vital Statistics Reports – NVSS – CDEC- US Dept of Health and Human Services – Data for 2006 – 8/28/2007 – volume 55, number 20 <br />
    10. 10. <ul><li>I am afraid that I will lose access to my children
    11. 11. I am afraid that I will lose my assets
    12. 12. I will lose it all…</li></ul>7<br />What’s wrong?<br />
    13. 13. <ul><li>I want the pain to stop
    14. 14. I want to help raise my children
    15. 15. I want to keep my assets</li></ul>8<br />What do I want?<br />
    16. 16. Hire a mediator<br />Take the high road<br />Consult the correct experts<br />Take the shortest path<br />Save the co-parenting relationship<br />9<br />How do I get what I want?<br />
    17. 17. Digging into the issues…Divorce candestroy your family<br />
    18. 18. <ul><li>There may be a threat to destroy or harm something of value to you
    19. 19. There may be a threat to harm you or a person or pet loved by you
    20. 20. It could result in unjust punishment to children – “I have to do this because of you”
    21. 21. The children could be involved – “See what your *mommy or daddy* has done. *She or he* has been bad and must be punished</li></ul>11<br />There is danger when you reveal your intention<br />Sources: Recognizing Abuse in a Legal Divorce – Laura Johnson –<br />
    22. 22. <ul><li>Your spouse unreasonably preventing you from access to money, people, pets or anything else you value
    23. 23. Name calling and labeling with the intention of making you sick
    24. 24. Obsessive control over your actions and schedule
    25. 25. Taking away your freedoms</li></ul>12<br />You may need to protect yourself from:<br />Sources: Recognizing Abuse in a Legal Divorce – Laura Johnson –<br />
    26. 26. In a recent poll of the worst fears of divorce…<br /><ul><li>32% explaining the divorce to the children and other relatives is their worst fear
    27. 27. 52% Fear of living alone (even with children)
    28. 28. 57% Getting on with a “new” normal life
    29. 29. 67% Trouble trusting God again
    30. 30. 75% Out of place in social situations
    31. 31. 80% Loneliness is the greatest fear</li></ul>13<br />Knowing what mayhappen to you is hard<br />Sources: Divorce, Abuse and Stress – Poll Results for Women by April Lorier – 2007 eZine<br />
    32. 32. Children of divorced families are (more than) twice as likely to suffer serious social, psychological, emotional or academic problems<br />14<br />Knowing what may happen to your children is even harder<br />Sources: NPR Interview – 01/31/2002 – E. Mavis Hetherington, professor emeritus of psychology at U of Virginia<br />
    33. 33. 15<br />Seven critical mistakesin divorce<br />Making legal and financial mistakes based on emotion<br />Negotiating without all the important information and documents<br />Thinking that the divorce process must be adversarial<br />Thinking that divorce has to be expensive<br />Not getting professional help<br />Not knowing the real value of your assets<br />Not controlling the process<br />Sources: Avoiding the Seven Critical Mistakes in Divorce – Joan Coullahan, CDFA, LLC - 2005<br />
    34. 34. 16<br />On top of everything elsethere are predators<br />Divorce Attorneys generally charge by the hour ($200 - $400) – it is in their interest to create a contentious situation using as much time as possible<br />Truthfully, your lawyer IS NOT YOUR FRIEND! They are not therapists, experts on taxes nor financial strategists. Use them as little as possible…<br />Sources: Morning Call (Allentown, PA) – Gregory Carp – July 9th, 2006 – Divorce breaks pocketbooks as well as hearts<br />
    35. 35. What to expect during a divorce…<br />
    36. 36. <ul><li>Staying in the house together may cause a “death spiral” – regression into angrier and angrier postures
    37. 37. If the wife initiates the divorce the husband will often link the house and kids to saving the structure of his life
    38. 38. The ideology of 75% of the custody fights is ‘You want a divorce, you go; I’ll keep the house and kids’</li></ul>18<br />Once the process has started things may escalate<br />Sources: Denver Rocky Mountain News – Mark Wolf quoting Sam Margulies author of the book – A Man’s Guide to Civilized Divorce – July 24th, 2004<br />
    39. 39. I will tell the court about your behavior and you will never get the children.<br />Why are you trying to take my money from me?<br />Either do this my way, or you won’t get a dime.<br />I&apos;ll go to jail before I&apos;ll pay you a dime.<br />I&apos;ll quit my job before I&apos;ll pay you that amount of support.<br />19<br />You may start to hear threats<br />Sources: Dishon & Block, APC Aaron Dishon, Esq. California Divorce Attorney – California – 12/11/2007 – Top Threats Made During A Divorce<br />
    40. 40. Your attorney is a loser/inexperienced OR my attorney can represent you as well as I, why don’t we just save money and use one attorney.<br />Your attorney is making me provide all kinds of documents. Call him and tell him to cancel all “discovery” requests”, he is just running up your bill. <br />You&apos;ll never see the kids again.  <br />I will drag out this case forever-- I would rather pay my attorney than pay you—I will fight you to the bitter end.<br /> I am going to file for divorce in Nevada (or some other state or country).<br />20<br />And more threats…<br />Sources: Dishon & Block, APC Aaron Dishon, Esq. California Divorce Attorney – California – 12/11/2007 – Top Threats Made During A Divorce<br />
    41. 41. <ul><li>Over 1,000,000 children go through divorce each year through no fault of their own
    42. 42. ”…children will say the divorce was the worst thing that happened in their lives – and I have never seen a victimless divorce.”
    43. 43. Parents may begin to act emotionally and irrationally about the children
    44. 44. They will attempt to cut off the other spouse’s contact with the children
    45. 45. They may use the children as “spies” or messengers
    46. 46. Often the other parent is criticized in front of the child</li></ul>21<br />And your childrennow start to suffer<br />Sources: NPR Interview – 01/31/2002 – E. Mavis Hetherington, professor emeritus of psychology at U of Virginia | “Guy” Ferraro, president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers – PR Newswire – June 5th, 2007 | St. Johns Law Review 2003<br />
    47. 47. <ul><li>High pre-separation parental hostility can cause children to be over-controlling
    48. 48. Moderate to high levels of maternal interference in the relationship with the father causes issues with intimacy
    49. 49. When the father interferes with the co-parenting relationship there are higher chances of having more difficulty of intimacy with males</li></ul>22<br />Assessing your spouse’s position on co-parenting is important<br />Sources: Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry – 2/1/1995 – Robert Bolgar, Joel Paris, Hallie Zweig-Frank<br />
    50. 50. <ul><li>A spouse may ‘poison’ their relatives to not have contact with the other spouse as part of an irrational power struggle
    51. 51. Hostilities between spouses can cause children to become ‘grand-orphans’
    52. 52. Loss of these relationships is harmful to the children and often to the relatives (especially grandparents)
    53. 53. Some parents will exclude the divorcing spouse’s relatives from any contact with themselves or the children</li></ul>23<br />Even your relatives may become distant<br />Sources: Boston Globe – Nina McCain quoting psychiatrist Arthur Kornhaber author of books on grandparents and grandchildren – 11/23/88<br />
    54. 54. <ul><li>This may be the most stress of your life
    55. 55. There is a huge disruption in your routine
    56. 56. You are 12 times more likely to get an illness as your immune system weakens
    57. 57. Your chances of cancer are increasing
    58. 58. You have 300% increased chance of accidents
    59. 59. The longer the divorce lasts the more deadly it becomes</li></ul>24<br />Your health starts to deteriorate<br />Sources: MMEGI – March 9th, 2007 – Lauri Kubuitsile – Divorce Can Even Kill<br />
    60. 60. Digging into the issues…Divorce caneat up your assets<br />
    61. 61. <ul><li>Do you know what all of your assets are?
    62. 62. Do you know your debt structure?
    63. 63. Are there stock options?
    64. 64. Are there any sheltered assets?
    65. 65. And what about the home?
    66. 66. Do you understand your equity position?</li></ul>26<br />Assessing your financial situation can be difficult<br />
    67. 67. <ul><li>If you hired an attorney the $200 - $400 per hour fees are starting to add up
    68. 68. In California the attorney has an automatic lien on your home!
    69. 69. You may have accountant fees
    70. 70. Your spouse may have stopped cash flow and closed accounts
    71. 71. Counseling for the kids is expensive
    72. 72. The longer the actual divorce process lasts the worse everything becomes!</li></ul>27<br />And the expensesstart to roll-up<br />
    73. 73. A Memphis divorce attorney describes it as:<br />Lawyer Time vs Real People Time<br />He talks about how a client was upset with him for the slow progress he was making in their case. He makes a number of points about how the legal system can be very slow, especially in contentious cases. He says that he will tell the client that he will try and “get some things done next week”.<br />Then he goes on to say that “trying” is a low priority behind gym time, a hot date or getting a new client. His deadline is very slow to the client and “a month or two is nothing in lawyer world”<br />28<br />How does your attorney feel about the length of the divorce?<br />Sources: Memphis Divorce Law Blog – David M. Sandy – Lawyer Time vs Real People Time – 11/26/2007<br />
    74. 74. In an article in the Star Tribune, the author describes how divorces have historically ended:<br /><ul><li>The couple are enemies
    75. 75. The savings are depleted
    76. 76. The children are devastated
    77. 77. All goodwill is lost in a fight-to-the-finish court battle
    78. 78. And grief, anger, confusion, and fear take a terrible toll on the mental, emotional and physical health of the participants</li></ul>29<br />For decades people have chosen to make enemies<br />Sources: (Minnesota) Star Tribune April 1st, 2007 – Gail Rosenblum – A Different Divorce<br />
    79. 79. What to expect afterwards…<br />
    80. 80. <ul><li>Parents are often not willing to co-parent
    81. 81. Some parents use the children as pawns
    82. 82. Kids will say they do not want to talk about the divorce and their feelings
    83. 83. Parents will often criticize their ex which is like criticizing the child
    84. 84. Children may be hostile when you start dating
    85. 85. Children in sole-custody settings were more poorly adjusted than those in joint custody (depression, deviance, school effort, school grades)</li></ul>Children do not always fare well after a divorce<br />31<br />Sources: Adolescents After Divorce – Buchanan, C., Maccoby, and Dornbusch, Harvard University Press, 1996<br />
    86. 86. Relocation can be an issue<br /><ul><li>750,000 children of divorce, will relocate, each year, with custodial caretaker, to a community some distance from their other parent
    87. 87. 3 out of 4 custodial mothers move at least once within the four years immediately following a divorce
    88. 88. Of those that relocate, one-half move more than one time
    89. 89. One concerned, loving parent may lose their relationship through no fault of their own
    90. 90. The parent suffers – the children suffer</li></ul>32<br />Sources: St. John’s Law Review – Lucy S. McGough – April 1, 2003 – Starting over: the heuristics of family relocation decision making<br />
    91. 91. 33<br />Styles of divorcedparenting varies <br /><ul><li>Hostile: open warfare – no cooperation and little communication – often the needs of the children are second to the hostilities of the parents – may include interference by one or both parents
    92. 92. Parallel: the parenting relationships do not interfere with each other – they may have different rules and regulations – the couple does not communicate with each other
    93. 93. Cooperative: both participate equally in raising the children – they consult on the children’s problems and the children’s activities – they are child focused and have developed a mutual respect to achieve the best result for the child</li></ul>Sources: NPR Interview – 01/31/2002 – E. Mavis Hetherington, professor emeritus of psychology at U of Virginia<br />
    94. 94. 34<br />The parenting relationship suffers – the kids pay<br />Sources: NPR Interview – 01/31/2002 – E. Mavis Hetherington, professor emeritus of psychology at U of Virginia<br />
    95. 95. There are financial changes after a divorce<br />When couples separate all expenses just doubled<br /><ul><li>Rent, furniture, utilities, newspaper subscriptions, phone, cable TV and Internet services just to name a few</li></ul>Then there must be duplicate items for the children in essentials and non-essentials alike<br /><ul><li>Beds, clothing, bicycles, video game consoles, school supplies, doll houses, towels, etc… </li></ul>50% of single mothers receive public assistance<br />Incomes at retirement are significantly lower for divorced couples than those who stayed married<br />35<br />Sources: Are Two Homes Better than One? – The True Cost of Divorce – Jeffrey Lalloway California Divorce Attorney<br />
    96. 96. But there is hope!There are positive steps you can take and a approach that you can use that will serve you and yours through this difficult time<br />
    97. 97. Even though, children of divorced families are (more than) twice as likely to suffer serious social, psychological, emotional or academic problems – 80% of them make it through without these serious problems – that is your goal!<br />37<br />Divorce will cause some damage to your children, but consider…<br />Sources: NPR Interview – 01/31/2002 – E. Mavis Hetherington, professor emeritus of psychology at U of Virginia<br />
    98. 98. <ul><li>One guided by a mediator
    99. 99. One that speeds up this intrinsically painful process
    100. 100. One that costs relatively little
    101. 101. Protects the children as much as possible
    102. 102. And attempts to avoid creating enemies</li></ul>38<br />Wouldn’t it be better to follow the peaceful route?<br />Sources: (Minnesota) Star Tribune April 1st, 2007 – Gail Rosenblum – A Different Divorce<br />
    103. 103. <ul><li>You must protect your physical and psychological health
    104. 104. Protect your children during and after the process
    105. 105. Retain the relationships that are important to you
    106. 106. Protect your financial position as much as possible
    107. 107. CREATE NO (MORE) ENEMIES!</li></ul>39<br />If it is impossible to stay married then…<br />
    108. 108. 40<br />Divorce experts agreethere is better choice<br />The Peaceful Divorce<br />
    109. 109. <ul><li>Lower the stress level – be calm (66% of divorced children are stressed)
    110. 110. Share a daily meal (32% of divorced children do not share a daily meal with their family)
    111. 111. Make children the center of the family (66% of divorced children feel they are not)
    112. 112. Do not discuss adult topics with the children (58% say they always felt like adults) allow them to be children
    113. 113. Reinforce their safety – again and again (30% do not feel emotionally safe)</li></ul>41<br />First, minimizethe damage by…<br />Sources: Between Two Worlds: The Inner Lives of Children of Divorce – Elizabeth Marquardt<br />
    114. 114. <ul><li>Describe the situation as positively as possible in an age appropriate manner to your loved ones
    115. 115. Tell the children that the divorce is not their fault
    116. 116. Do not use the children as spies
    117. 117. Do not criticize the other parent
    118. 118. Assist the other parent in having meaningful contact with the children</li></ul>42<br />Second, minimize the damage by being appropriately honest<br />Sources: Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry – What About the Kids? Raising Your Children Before, During and After Divorce<br />
    119. 119. Watch for the warning signs of divorce-related depression or anxiety<br />Changes in your child’s emotional responses<br />Changes in your child’s behavior<br />Let’s look at each of these to see when you might call in the professional<br />43<br />Third, minimize the damage by getting professional help<br />Sources: Coping with Divorce –<br />
    120. 120. <ul><li>Loss of spontaneity: playful children become moody
    121. 121. Low self-esteem: comments about being worthless or stupid
    122. 122. Excessive sadness or moodiness: withdrawal
    123. 123. Irrational fears or clinginess: intense crying – separation anxiety
    124. 124. Inappropriate anger: frequent outbursts</li></ul>44<br />Be aware of changes in your child’s emotional responses<br />Sources: Coping with Divorce –<br />
    125. 125. <ul><li>Poor self-care: poor grooming – excessive disorder
    126. 126. Sleep problems: nightmares, bedwetting, hard to sleep, hard to wake
    127. 127. Poor concentration: forgetfulness – decline in grades
    128. 128. Drug or alcohol use: experimenting with drugs – new “at risk” friends
    129. 129. Self-injury, cutting: inflicting physical pain – physical risks
    130. 130. Suicide: talks about killing one’s self - death</li></ul>45<br />Watch for changes in your child’s behavior<br />Sources: Coping with Divorce –<br />
    131. 131. Help them work through distrust or pain – especially with your co-parent and co-grandparents<br />Explain what this experience has taught you – in a positive way<br />Encourage their appropriate relationships with friends, co-parent and grandparents<br />46<br />Protect your children by supporting their relationships<br />
    132. 132. Look at it from the child’s point of view<br /><ul><li>I have to contend with my parents’ wild mood swings
    133. 133. I feel isolated, insecure and depressed
    134. 134. I feel somehow guilty for the divorce
    135. 135. I feel pressured to take sides or spy
    136. 136. I can’t do the usual things with my friends
    137. 137. I am losing everything that is important to me – friends, home, siblings, and my neighborhood</li></ul>47<br />Getting past the distrustand betrayal in your children<br />Sources: Practical strategies for helping children of divorce in today’s classroom – Childhood Education – Aug 1999 – Miller, Morrison, and Ryan<br />
    138. 138. Support the school counselor<br />Normal active – age appropriate – routine will develop some relationships<br />Activities that include their friends<br />Where possible involve both sets of grandparents<br />Also aunts, uncles and cousins can help re-establish a sense of belonging<br />Look for a support group of their peers<br />Family Service America, Inc (800) 221-2681 is a great resource<br />48<br />Your children needvarious types of relationships<br />Sources: Divorce and the American Family – Current Health 2 – Nov 1, 1996 – Nancy Dreger<br />
    139. 139. <ul><li>You pursue excellence in your life
    140. 140. You are calm and loving
    141. 141. You are an active member of your community
    142. 142. You are committed to parenting
    143. 143. You are involved with your kids
    144. 144. You are a storyteller
    145. 145. You discuss faith and religion
    146. 146. You stand by your beliefs- demonstrate integrity</li></ul>49<br />Show your kids what you would like them to become<br />Sources: Denver Rocky Mountain News – June 6th, 1999 – Janet Simons – Teach by Example…<br />
    147. 147. <ul><li>Get regular exercise
    148. 148. Adopt a healthy diet
    149. 149. Try stress relievers such as yoga and meditation
    150. 150. Find a support group to attend
    151. 151. Tell your kids about your successes – ask about theirs
    152. 152. But do not show you kids your anger nor your depression – their life is rough enough right now without worrying about you as well</li></ul>50<br />Control your anger and your depression – for them<br />Sources: Newsweek – Sep 27, 2004 – For a Happy Heart; Depression, loneliness and anger all take a toll on your cardiac health.<br />
    153. 153. <ul><li>Be considerate and polite to their other parent
    154. 154. Show affection and graciousness for both sets of grandparents
    155. 155. Demonstrate respect to other people
    156. 156. Refrain from dating and promiscuous behavior particularly during the divorce
    157. 157. Show interest and respect in their friends</li></ul>51<br />Demonstrate how proper relationships should function<br />
    158. 158. <ul><li>During the divorce process the two of you will be asked to make dozens of crucial financial and custodial decisions
    159. 159. Many couples are finding that with a little effort they can be friends even though they cannot be married
    160. 160. Your divorce partner will always be the other parent of any children that you share – don’t punish the children
    161. 161. The price for continuing acrimony is just too high - acknowledge your part in the failure of the marriage</li></ul>52<br />Make peace with yourdivorce partner<br />
    162. 162. <ul><li>They often will be a great ally – later if you need help
    163. 163. They generally want to help with the kids and may help their healing process
    164. 164. Be frank with them in requesting that they stay neutral and that they stay friends with you
    165. 165. Help them to understand that you are doing everything in your power to create a peaceful divorce
    166. 166. Listen to and acknowledge their pain</li></ul>53<br />Make efforts to reconcile with your divorce partner’s parents<br />
    167. 167. Do not be offended when they withdraw – they are frightened and uncomfortable – it’s not personal<br />Let them know it’s okay to keep a distance during the divorce and that you understand their discomfort<br />Send emails or messages for birthdays and events letting them know that you consider the relationship still intact<br />Ask to get together, maybe in a group setting, after the divorce<br />54<br />Retaining your friends means reaching out<br />Sources: Chicago Sun-Times – Friends Fear Taking Sides When the Divorce Goes Public – Karen S. Peterson – May 25, 1995<br />
    168. 168. Allow grieving to occur – it is a natural reaction to loss – don’t fight it – grief doesn’t so much go away as it becomes irrelevant after a time – the pain will pass if you let it…<br />Choose to move forward – make a conscious effort to get up and move your life forward each day – set short and long term goals and make your actions move you towards them – record your progress<br />Prioritize – List the chores that need to be done, bills paid, etc. – create a list and a plan each day and reward yourself as you accomplish the items<br />55<br />Suggestions for emotional coping<br />Sources: Emotional Coping and Divorce – – Riverwood Center<br />
    169. 169. Put things away – start living the life of a single person as soon as it is practical to do so – put away old photographs and start handling all of the aspects of your life that your spouse used to<br />Talk about it – look to<br /><ul><li>Support groups
    170. 170. Therapists
    171. 171. Church leaders
    172. 172. Be very cautious of using friends or relatives</li></ul>Explore dormant interests<br /><ul><li>Clubs
    173. 173. Fields
    174. 174. Hobbies
    175. 175. Career improvements</li></ul>56<br />Emotional copingsuggestions continued<br />Sources: Emotional Coping and Divorce – – Riverwood Center<br />
    176. 176. Support yourself – start<br /><ul><li>Maintaining healthy routines
    177. 177. Keeping a journal of your thoughts and feelings
    178. 178. Distraction – entertainment – housework – attention getting tasks
    179. 179. Self-soothing – be healing and compassionate with yourself – get massages – relaxation routines – religion – yoga – exercise – retreats – vacations – etc.</li></ul>57<br />Emotional copingsuggestions continued<br />Sources: Emotional Coping and Divorce – – Riverwood Center<br />
    180. 180. Avoid dangerous and self-defeating coping behaviors<br /><ul><li>Avoid drugs – alcohol – gambling – promiscuous behavior
    181. 181. Avoid diving into a new relationship because you are lonely
    182. 182. Avoid acting on angry impulses you might have towards your ex-spouse
    183. 183. Avoid stalking your ex-spouse
    184. 184. Avoid revenge fantasies – a good life is the best revenge
    185. 185. Avoid making large decisions after your divorce for a while</li></ul>58<br />Emotional copingsuggestions continued<br />Sources: Emotional Coping and Divorce – – Riverwood Center<br />
    186. 186. Open a checking account in your name only – try to add an amount that you may need to transition during the divorce<br />Get a credit card(s) in your name only – establish individual credit and create an emergency resource<br />Create a budget of your expenses as a single person – be accurate, but frugal - include the children’s expenses, if appropriate<br />59<br />Taking care of immediate financial safety<br />Sources: A Civil Divorce – Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine – July 1, 2005 – Mark K. Solheim<br />
    187. 187. Create a list of all current assets and liabilities (you may want to hire an accountant to help you with this)<br />Document all existing financial agreements<br />Get copies of all existing financial documents<br />Don’t forget taxes, insurances, beneficiaries and estate and retirement planning<br />Check on the availability of a certified divorce financial planner<br />60<br />Financial Safety(continued)<br />Sources: A Civil Divorce – Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine – July 1, 2005 – Mark K. Solheim<br />
    188. 188. <ul><li>If you search the Internet for the cost of a divorce you will get about 800,000 hits
    189. 189. Of those hits that express a preference, over 95% of the experts will recommend going to a Certified Mediator firstto handle your divorce and avoid the big charges
    190. 190. The advantages are many and the downside few, but this will not work for everyone
    191. 191. So let’s look at the data on the Mediator and see if this is for you</li></ul>61<br />“I’m confused by thenumber of options”<br />Sources: Empire Research Group 2008<br />
    192. 192. <ul><li>There are divorce mediators in all 50 states
    193. 193. Some are therapists, some are faith based, some are even accountants and some are attorneys
    194. 194. In the peaceful divorce the primary function of the mediator is to mediate an equitable solution on the property, assets and liabilities and to help them come to a solution on visiting and parenting arrangements
    195. 195. Mediators help others coexist peacefully</li></ul>62<br />The Mediator and mediation who and what are they?<br />
    196. 196. <ul><li>If the primary function of going to a mediator is to resolve the legal issues without hiring a conflict attorney then…
    197. 197. The mediator should be an attorney with divorce experience
    198. 198. They should have a fixed or low fee structure
    199. 199. There should be no bias
    200. 200. They should have a high success rate and a long track record</li></ul>63<br />How do I pick a mediator?<br />
    201. 201. 64<br />How much might you save?<br />
    202. 202. <ul><li>Use a mediator when both parties are willing to come to the table and work on a resolution – even if they don’t agree currently
    203. 203. Don’t try to use a mediator if the contentious nature of the divorce is such that the emotions preclude any attempt at a peaceful resolution</li></ul>65<br />Who should and shouldnot use a mediator<br />
    204. 204. <ul><li>Using an online service is equivalent to setting and casting your broken arm yourself with instructions from the Internet – you might accomplish it but… the risk is horrendous
    205. 205. Use online data to research the laws and resources available in your state and then locally hire the resource(s) that make the most sense</li></ul>66<br />Wouldn’t I save much more with an online service?<br />
    206. 206. 67<br />And the one common sense financial safety strategy<br />Make the divorce process<br />as short as possible!<br />
    207. 207. These are the experts:<br /><ul><li>Richard Mikesell – Clinical Psychologist and editor of “Integrating Family Therapy”
    208. 208. Belinda Rachman, ESQ – California divorce lawyer and certified Mediator
    209. 209. Robert Emery, professor of psychology at University of Virginia and author of “The Truth About Children and Divorce”
    210. 210. Constance Ahrons, professor emeritus of sociology at University of Southern California
    211. 211. Ed Sherman, California law attorney and author of “Make any Divorce Better”</li></ul>68<br />Five divorce expertsgive sound advice<br />Sources: The Washington Post – How Can I Get a Good Divorce? Jennifer Huget – 12/18/07<br />
    212. 212. <ul><li>“Face Facts – holiday seasons will sometimes make it clear whether it is going to work or not”
    213. 213. “But get a second opinion – if you seek counsel with a highly qualified clinical psychologist or family therapist you will get an objective viewpoint – before you go to a divorce lawyer”</li></ul>69<br />Richard Mikesell Clinical Psychologist <br />Sources: The Washington Post – How Can I Get a Good Divorce? Jennifer Huget – 12/18/07<br />
    214. 214. <ul><li>Set the tone – minimize the drama and tension, be rational and get through this as peacefully as possible - The court system creates stress and drama by its very nature
    215. 215. Meet with a lawyer or mediator for a one hour consultation – to learn the rules in that state – general property division, child support guidelines etc.
    216. 216. Meet with a mediator or family therapist to work out the child-custody guidelines and visitation arrangements
    217. 217. Keep the kids out it – they are not prizes –they need both parents</li></ul>70<br />Belinda RachmanCertified Mediator<br />Sources: The Washington Post – How Can I Get a Good Divorce? Jennifer Huget – 12/18/07<br />
    218. 218. <ul><li>Take your time – you may have been thinking about this for a while and you may need to let the idea sink into your spouse
    219. 219. Provide a stable emotional environment – “let kids be kids”
    220. 220. Get a grip – acknowledge your feelings, but recognize what you need to do on a day to day basis
    221. 221. Create a business-like relationship – you may never be friends again, but you and your spouse both need to function rationally to get through this with the least damage</li></ul>71<br />Robert EmeryProfessor of Psychology<br />Sources: The Washington Post – How Can I Get a Good Divorce? Jennifer Huget – 12/18/07<br />
    222. 222. <ul><li>See a marriage counselor together – we tend to make bad decisions at times of high stress – seeing a counselor may help to see what can be salvaged from the relationship
    223. 223. Don’t assume it’s easy if there are no kids – give the process the same attention and care as if kids were involved
    224. 224. Confide with care – don’t vent to mutual friends – you will regret it later
    225. 225. Be well – take care of yourself – find a safe haven to talk – sleep – get a massage – get professional help if needed</li></ul>72<br />Constance AhronsProfessor Emeritus of Sociology<br />Sources: The Washington Post – How Can I Get a Good Divorce? Jennifer Huget – 12/18/07<br />
    226. 226. <ul><li>Patience doesn’t apply – in cases of domestic abuse – get out – hide!
    227. 227. Be good example – show kids that problem solving does work
    228. 228. Avoid fighting – the legal system is a place of fighting
    229. 229. Avoid poor advice – no advice from friends or family
    230. 230. Agree not to discuss personal stuff – when you are discussing divorce stuff – set a separate time for that
    231. 231. Be well – for your child</li></ul>73<br />Ed ShermanFamily Law Attorney<br />Ed Sherman - California law attorney and author of “Make any Divorce Better”<br />Sources: The Washington Post – How Can I Get a Good Divorce? Jennifer Huget – 12/18/07<br />
    232. 232. <ul><li>A professional mediator is a better choice than a litigation-oriented lawyer
    233. 233. Unless there is a “huge power balance” between husband and wife
    234. 234. Doing divorce right can help give you and your ex and your kids a much better chance for happiness</li></ul>74<br />All five agree that…<br />
    235. 235. <ul><li>The couple are partners in the solution
    236. 236. The savings are rescued
    237. 237. The children will recover
    238. 238. Goodwill is not lost and may be built
    239. 239. The healing process has begun for everyone involved</li></ul>75<br />Peaceful DivorceAn Idea Whose Time Has Come<br />
    240. 240. <ul><li>Certified mediator in the state of California for 10 years
    241. 241. 11 years of divorce and family law practice
    242. 242. JD from University of San Diego School of Law
    243. 243. Masters Degree in Special Education from New York University
    244. 244. Teaching severely emotionally disturbed children from 1976-1993 in state mental institutions, public and private schools
    245. 245. 100% success in mediated divorces with over 250 couples
    246. 246. $3,500 flat fee per case
    247. 247. Spearheading the revolution to transform divorce from litigation to mediation</li></ul>76<br />IntroducingThe Peacemaker<br />Belinda Etezad Rachman, ESQ<br />
    248. 248. <ul><li>If mediation is possible then Belinda will find a way
    249. 249. She will always help you protect the children
    250. 250. The shortest divorce process possible!
    251. 251. Her fees are fixed and inexpensive
    252. 252. Her success rate is 100%
    253. 253. If she cannot help you then she will try and guide you to most peaceful path still available to you</li></ul>77<br />Helping all couples finda better way<br />
    254. 254. Do not delay – do not expend your precious resources on any other professional until you have talked to Belinda<br />Understand your rights and the realities of divorce – be protected and secure<br />Visit her web site for more information<br /><ul><li></li></ul>Call her today at (760720-9324<br />78<br />Call Belinda for a free consultation today<br />