Divorce is one of the most emotional experiences a person will ever face. The decision to end a marriage is not an easy one and it is often accompanied with anger, fear, and resentment. The negative emotions associated with divorce are responsible for more than hurt feelings; they affect the final outcome of settlement negotiations. Most important, if children are involved, they will suffer. It is in your best interest to approach divorce from an amicable perspective. This will allow you to put on your business hat, which is critical for reaching a successful settlement. It will also allow you to put on your effective parent hat, which is critical for helping your children through this difficult process. An experienced family law attorney at Alley Register & McEachern in Wilmington, NC, can help you see your situation clearly and objectively.
Bill Ferguson, a nationally recognized divorce and relationship expert on divorce and healing, recommends several steps that will help you remain amicable with your spouse during divorce proceedings.
Bill describes the cycle of conflict people engage in when ending a marriage. One person says something nasty, the other responds. It takes two people to create and maintain a cycle of conflict. It only takes one person to end it. To end the cycle of conflict, you need to stop fueling it. The following tips will help you end your part in the negative cycle and help you achieve an amicable divorce.
If you don’t accept someone as they are, you will end up frustrated and more likely to continue to contribute to the conflict. Face it, your spouse isn’t going to change any more than a leopard will change its spots.
2. Feeling Hurt
Feelings of hurt drive more behavior than most people will admit. Often, anger is simply an unwillingness to feel hurt. If you allow yourself to feel hurt, it will run its course more quickly and allow you to move beyond it. Remember, crying is simply a means of relieving stress.
3. What’s your part?
Take the time to think about yourself, not the other person. Ignore what they did or said and think about what you did and said. Were you more critical than you should have been? Did you hurt their feelings? Notice how the other person has put up his or her walls of protection and given it back to you. See how your actions have fueled the conflict.
4. Let Go & Forgive
In many ways not letting go is a form of denial. We hang on to avoid feeling pain, but the pain won’t go away until we actually experience it. Become willing to feel the hurt and watch the need to hang on disappear and your ability to forgive grow. Forgiveness is for you, not the other person.
An argument is an example of two people talking but no one is listening. Once someone stops to listen, the argument ends. Take the time to listen, then calmly express your opinion and again take the time to listen. You will find solutions.
Speak to a Divorce Lawyer
There are many more tips and techniques you can use to diffuse the tension between you and your spouse. Even if you decide to pursue a divorce, you can make it more amicable. Remember, when you fight to have your side prevail, you force the other person to fight against you. If you are committed to finding solutions that work for both of you, the resistance against you dissolves. It’s hard to fight someone who’s on your side. Family law attorneys, too, like those at Alley Register & McEachern in Wilmington, NC, are interested in reaching an amicable resolution with the least animosity possible, and can be your best allies in achieving the most beneficial resolution.