Divorce Mistake #1 – Giving In To Your Spouse to Avoid Conflict

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I have experienced a lot of divorces in the nearly 23 years I have been in practice as a divorce lawyer and have seen a lot of mistakes. This is the first article in a three-part series on divorce mistakes. Giving in to your spouse during a divorce helps you avoid feeling discomfort. But that’s our #1 mistake.

Making Agreements Just to Avoid Feeling Uncomfortable

No one likes to be uncomfortable, in conflict or stressed.  Unfortunately, discomfort and stress are often felt by those going through a divorce.  Moreover, conflicts of varying degrees routinely rise in a divorce.  People argue over how to divide household furnishings, who must move out of a shared home and parenting arrangements for children.  There is also internal conflict as a person grapples with intense emotions like regret, guilt, or doubt. 

Your Decisions Now Can Have a Lifetime of Consequences

The emotions and conflict present in divorce can be very hard to tolerate.  It is normal to want to avoid unpleasant feelings.  But, in a divorce situation, the desire to put a halt to conflict and misery must not be acted on in haste.  People going through a divorce are faced with many decisions and many of these decisions have lifetime implications.  Feeling overwhelmed by discomfort or stress is not a good place to be when making decisions.  Judgment is clouded and rational perspective is out the window. 

Don’t Give in Too Quickly Just to Get The Process Over With

Do not make a big decision when plagued with emotions.  Do not agree to a settlement offer in your divorce just because you want the divorce to be over.  Although there can be value to your emotional state by ending conflict, do not short-change your well-being by a reluctant “yes.” Be thoughtful and give your mind space to process emotions before making decisions or reaching agreements.  If you need help, ask for it!  Rely on trusted advisors like your attorney, accountant, or therapist for direction.  Above all, think about yourself in the present moment and where you want to be in the future. Giving in to your spouse too early in the process will cost you.

If you want to learn more, check out Divorce Mistakes Part 2 – Not Preparing for Divorce and Part 3 – Relying on Bad Divorce Advice.

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