Whether you live in Bessemer, Homewood, Huntsville or Gadsden, Alabama, any woman considering divorce should be aware of the many pitfalls out there. As a Birmingham family law and divorce attorney, my job is to help guide my clients through what can be a very emotional and taxing time. Legal separation or divorce should always be approached with a eyes wide open, which is why I suggest a few things to avoid during this critical period.
While not an exhaustive list by any means, the following are some important points that every woman should keep in mind. As always, you should consult with an Alabamadivorce lawyer to be sure all aspects of you're individual circumstances are fully addressed. In coming weeks I'll discuss a few more points.
You must face the actual realities of a divorce. Since one partner or the other spouse is usually further along the emotional road to divorce, the one who is leaving the relationship may already be gone emotionally. This means that the other partner is typically expected to catch up with this early end to their marital dream while at the same time trying to get a hold of their emotional and financial future. Many times this is too much to absorb in a short time, but ignoring reality can be rather costly.
If the husband is the one leaving the relationship, the woman is more often left to address the pain of emotional betrayal while their soon-to-be-former marital partner is busy addressing what many see as the next level of betrayal that of the family finances. The answer here is to find a competent therapist or a reliable shoulder on which to cry. Do your best to “compartmentalize” as much of the emotional aspect of your pain in order to act quickly and deliberately to protect your assets.
Understand that you may, in fact, be sleeping with the enemy. When we marry our future spouse, we tend to transfer all of our trust to that person — the one we fell in love with. In most marriages, one spouse typically handles the finances while the other handles day-to-day household operations, such as feeding the kids and taking them to soccer practice and dance recitals.
For some women, it may be difficult to face up to the fact that their husband will not be taking care of all those things he previously handled for the family. Promises of trying to work things out or the feeling that if the two of you just sat down with a third party things would get better are falsely comforting and get in the way of actual planning needed to transition to being single again.
The reality is that you and your spouse take on adversarial roles where what used to be common and shared interests in things such as assets and living expenses. Because you need to be fully aware of your entire financial picture, one solution would be to assume the best, but prepare for the worst.
In this case it is important to find a qualified divorce lawyer to whom you can put some, but not all of your reliance. While you can listen to what may or may not be a fair and equitable proposition for settlement from your spouse, always consult with your attorney before making any ultimate commitments.