3 Tips for Communicating During Your Divorce
The divorce process can be financially difficult and extremely stressful. One of the best ways to ensure you and your spouse maintain a civil, if not friendly, relationship during your divorce is to establish and maintain a line of communication you can both be comfortable with.
Most people hire an attorney during their divorce, in which case much of their communication may go through legal representatives. However, there are always instances where each spouse will need to talk to one another, especially if they share children or are planning on divorcing through mediation rather than litigation. Ensuring those conversations go well can set a much more agreeable tone for your entire divorce process.
To improve communication during your divorce, try following these tips:
1. Set Boundaries
As you and your spouse navigate this new change in relationship from married to divorced, it is important that you set boundaries with one another. There will be certain issues you should only discuss through your attorneys, or with your attorneys present. If you are uncertain about what these topics may be, ask your lawyer to clarify. Other topics, like your children, for example, should be open for discussion between the two of you.
Establish how you and your spouse will communicate throughout the divorce. If you can, consider meeting in person to discuss important issues, perhaps on neutral ground at a coffee shop or other public place. Or, if you and your spouse will likely be unable to have in-person discussions without argument, communicating over email might be a better alternative. If your spouse is argumentative or hostile, having your communications documented in writing may be helpful for your divorce case.
2. Focus on the Present
While it may be easier said than done, try your best to avoid bringing up any issues from the past. If you and your spouse begin to argue, do not bring other problems into the conversation. Address the issues that immediately applicable, with a focus on resolving the issue currently at hand. Bringing in past squabbles will only complicate things and make your situation more contentious.
3. Consider Mediation
Taking your divorce to court to resolve issues can be pricey, take longer, and may also cause more fights between you and your spouse. Instead of litigation, you and your spouse might consider mediation as a more affordable, quick, and amicable way to end your divorce. A mediator can act as an unbiased third-party when the two of you reach a standstill with negotiations. By choosing mediation, you and your spouse can go over any aspect of your divorce, including child custody, child support, alimony, the division of assets, and more without interference from the court. Instead, mediation will only involve minimal interference from a impartial mediator.If you need help with your divorce, contact McKinley Irvin in our Oregon office.