Freya’s Financial Facts Regarding Divorce
West Coast Woman
Published April 2006
What is a Fair Divorce?
At first glance, that seems to be an oxymoron. Let’s explore what we mean by “fair divorce”, “equitable distribution of assets” or “amicable settlement”. They all sound so nice, yet any of us who have been through a divorce or are anticipating divorce don’t think of it in terms of “nice” at all.
If you don’t want the divorce then it certainly doesn’t seem fair. Even if you do want the divorce, it doesn’t seem fair. It is a loss for both of you. The loss initially is an emotional one. It is the death of a relationship. Keep in mind you both have invested in this relationship. You loved each other then, when you said you did. People change. Your relationship will change. It isn’t over, especially if you have children, but it will take a different shape. The changes can be positive for everyone. Often times, we don’t make changes in our life and experience change that seems to be forced upon us. Later we look back and realize that the change was good for us!
Divorce is about change. During this process, which comes in phases, you are both going to be adjusting emotionally and financially. If you have children, you will want to consider your actions and how they will affect your children. My son and daughter, who had a mommy and daddy living together (seemingly happy) just four years ago are now living with me and visiting their father frequently. They have experienced the breakup, the moving out and new relationships in their parents’ lives, but most of what they have experienced is how their father and I treat each other in relation to them.
My daughter has suggested that she come to my seminars to tell divorcing parents how important it is not to fight over the kids or put them in the middle. This is not trite. How you treat your mate has a direct result on your children’s self esteem and their future as an adult. Kids really get it. It isn’t necessary to give them any gory details. They need to know that you both love them and will continue to love them. Your actions speak loudly!
If we are talking about fair, equitable and amicable and everyone is on board with that philosophy because it is a kinder, gentler way to divorce, then don’t you want to be treated that way? And if you want to be treated that way don’t you think your partner wants to be treated that way?
The equitable part comes from the state statutes. So regardless of how either of you are feeling about a divorce the professionals are trained to divide things generally 50/50. Getting nasty with each other and threatening to ruin the other party or take the kids does not accomplish anything. It just increases the hostility. Add to that mixture a couple of aggressive attorneys and you will have a time untangling that mess. Now you have a mess that is costing you time, money and energy.
Why not sit down like mature adults and work this out so everyone wins? This is where we come in; to help you work through the financial part while keeping the temperature down. If you don’t want to destroy your mate (remember the one you loved once and had children with?) then this would be a good way to begin to show it.
We will meet with you initially to discuss your concerns, answer questions you have and explain how our process works. We do not charge you for that meeting. After that we will meet with each of you individually until you are both satisfied with the outcome. We use specific financial tools designed for divorce to measure the outcome of your settlement. Our services address the division of assets, alimony and child support in a mediated environment. Prior to you deciding if this is a settlement that seems “fair”, “equitable” and “amicable” you will have all the necessary answers so that you can make an informed decision about your financial future. We all make better decisions when we aren’t agitated. So, nix the agitate and let’s collaborate!