Lost. Betrayed. Scared. Lonely. Shaken. Sad. Angry. Relieved. Hopeful. These are just some of the stops along the emotional roller coaster that is divorce. It’s not anything that anyone should have to endure alone. Divorce is becoming increasingly common and there are lots of resources available to help you survive the process and come out better on the other side.
Firstly, it’s probably best not to rely on the advice of friends and family. It can often be, at best, misguided or uninformed, and at worst, downright damaging to your ability to think straight. Don’t get me wrong, they’re great for a shoulder and to keep you distracted and to remind you that you are loved, you will likely lean on them heavily to get through this. However, do your best to get advice from objective professionals and not biased family and friends. You’ll come out of this better for it.
The resources that I think everyone needs during the process and for at least a little while after are:
- A Good Therapist – There is just so much emotional fallout caused by divorce that you really need to talk through with a qualified professional. A therapist will help you explore all those feelings and your role in the breakdown of the relationship. You will likely come out stronger and clear about your goals for the next phase of your life.
- Divorce Support Groups or Resources – Almost every community in the country has a non-profit that offers divorce support resources. In Canada, we have access to organizations such as Divorce Care, which has resources for each province Canada – DivorceCare
- CFDS, CDFA™ or Financial Planner – The most common and paralyzing fear that nearly everyone feels in divorce is “Will I be ok financially?” It’s inevitable. Before you agree to any settlement, you really need a knowledgeable set of eyes and some financial projections so you know what you’re going to be looking at and how to plan for your financial future post-divorce. Of course, I would prefer that you find a CFDS (Canadian Financial Divorce Specialist) who specializes in finance as it relates to divorce but that said, I’m biased.
- Google – New resource sites pop up every day offering a wealth of free information, downloads, blogs, referrals, directories, etc. It can be somewhat overwhelming so just pick out what you connect with and leave the rest. Meetup.com is a great resource for local divorce support groups and are a wealth of knowledge in a private and safe space. Use a support group to move through the process and then – move on.
This is going to be a challenging time in your life. Ultimately, you will be ok! Use the resources available to you to make good decisions for yourself, your family and your future. Today truly is the first day of the rest of your life.