Did you know that around 40 to 50% of marriages end in divorce nowadays? That’s roughly 1 out of every 2 married couples who, for one reason or another, make the difficult decision to go their separate ways.
The prevalence of divorce doesn’t make it any less difficult to deal with though. No matter who you are or where you’re from, the divorce process can be a stressful, daunting, and uncertain experience. But it’s even worse when you’re wholly ignorant of what’s involved!
With that in mind, it’s often helpful to learn more about the steps that lie ahead. Trust us, having a clearer idea of what’s involved can settle your nerves, firm up your resolve, and make everything seem less scary. Sound good?
Read on to discover exactly what to expect during the process of getting a divorce.
Uncertainty at Every Step
There’s a good chance you’re reading this article to establish a greater sense of certainty about whatever’s down the line. But there’s bad news:
As much as we’ll try to lift the curtain on the divorce process, you can expect uncertainty to be a constant feature throughout it! Regardless of how many articles you read or experts you talk to, every twist and turn may a) make you feel unsure of yourself and b) raise a wealth of common divorce questions.
After all, divorce is complicated and involves a huge amount of change. Life as you know it flips upside down, so it’s natural to feel inundated with uncertainty along the way. Expect it, embrace it, and you’re less likely to be as bothered by it.
A Whirlwind of Emotions
Everyone has their own story, which means the emotional side of divorce varies too. There’s no right or wrong way to feel throughout it, just as there’s no real way to know what you’re going to feel in the first place. Heck, you might feel nothing but relief and joy from the get-go!
Most people experience a whole smorgasbord of emotions throughout proceedings though. They go through everything from anger, bitterness, and frustration to remorse, grief, and crippling sadness. You may doubt yourself, wonder if you’re doing the right thing, and be burdened by a sense of loss along the way.
The only thing certain is that your divorce is going to be emotional from start to finish. With kids, memories, and intimate relations involved, how couldn’t it be? Expect the way you feel to shift, chop, and change at every turn.
Temporary Living Arrangements
Depending on the circumstances of your particular divorce, you and/or your spouse might look for temporary living arrangements until everything’s over. After all, many couples find it hard to remain in the same house while the divorce goes ahead. One party might move back in with their parents, for instance, or find an apartment to hole up in.
Moving out of the family home can be traumatic in itself. Yet getting some space from your current partner can prove invaluable. It’s an opportunity to think, breathe, process what’s happening, and find the mental fortitude to step forth in the right frame of mind.
Divorce tends to be full of difficult conversations as well. From telling your closest friends to informing your parents and colleagues, letting people know you’re getting a divorce is tough. Of course, conversations with your children are often the most challenging- especially when they’re too young to really understand.
It’s never easy, but you’ll take the edge off by addressing the issue as a couple and explaining the situation in a calm, fair, and compassionate way. Let your children know that you no longer love each other, but that you still love them. Choose your words with care, outline the changes to come, and make sure they understand the divorce isn’t their fault.
The Need for Support
As you know, going through a divorce isn’t fun. However, it’s ten times harder when you go through it alone! Expect to need emotional, practical, and legal support along the way, and strive to find it however possible.
This could involve talking to your best friend on the phone every evening, crying on your dad’s shoulder, or engaging with other people going through a divorce. Do what you can to alleviate the sense of aloneness and you’re sure to feel the benefits.
Oh, and seek support from a first-rate divorce attorney while you’re at it. They’ll hold your hand, outline what’s to come and help you get the best possible outcome.
Delays and Hold Ups
Anybody looking for divorce wants the process to be over as soon as possible. Unfortunately, the person being divorced might not want the same thing! Unless this is a mutual decision, your spouse may employ a wide range of divorce delay tactics out of spite and/or self-interest.
Trust us, hold-ups go with the territory when you have bitter disagreements between partners and lawyers who bill by the hour. Expect the divorce process to take longer (and cost more) than you’d like and you should feel less frustrated when it happens.
Now You Know What to Expect During the Divorce Process
Millions of Americans go through the divorce process every year. And each and every one of them will tell you the same thing: it’s no walk in the park. Divorce can be stressful, distressing, full of emotion, and fraught with uncertainty.
That prognosis is unlikely to fill you with confidence if you’re considering divorce! Yet knowing what to expect is crucial for dispelling your ignorance, reducing concerns, and empowering you along the way.
With any luck, the insights in this post will help out in these ways. Keep them in mind and the prospect (and process) of getting a divorce shouldn’t be quite so scary. Would you like to read more articles like this one?
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