ave you just received word that your divorce is finalized? Divorce can be a draining process physically and emotionally, and finally being through with it should bring a huge sigh of relief. A new life of freedom and opportunity awaits. Clients regularly ask what to do once their divorce is over. Divorce is consuming, so it can be a bit strange to transition suddenly to having no court dates or attorney meetings in your future. While the period after your divorce is certainly a time for celebrating and reflecting, there are a few steps you should take once your divorce is finalized to make sure you have everything in order for your single life.
If you have just divorced, you are likely ready for some relaxation and recovery time. Everyone needs a little break after a stressful, complicated experience, especially after a taxing process like divorce. While you may be ready to take a break from the lawyers, paperwork, and court dates you faced during your divorce, there is one last area to focus on before enjoying your newly single life – your finances. Life post-divorce can be vastly different from married life, so it is crucial that you move on with a solid understanding of your finances and a plan for the future.
Divorce can be a burden, both emotionally and financially. For those over 50, likely preparing for retirement, divorce can be financially destructive. Retirement plans can quickly unravel, assets can disappear, and many late in life divorcees, especially women, find themselves in poverty post divorce. Late in life divorces, often referred to as gray divorces, are on the rise in America. For those ages 55 to 64, the divorce rate has doubled since the 1990’s, and for those 65 and older, the rate has tripled. Today, around one in four couples over 50 years old divorce, and it is more important than ever that late in life divorcees plan accordingly for their future finances.
The start of each year is a great time to set new goals and let go of any past negativity. While moving past unresolved feelings towards your divorce can be difficult, your new, post divorce life can only begin to improve when you let go of any unnecessary negativity and move on. Millions of other people have divorced and recovered, and now, you should too. While thinking about putting your divorce behind you this year, here are a few strategies to consider:
Following a divorce, many individuals are anxious to put their previous relationship behind them and move forward. For some, this may mean reestablishing themselves as a single person and dating casually. Others may find themselves in another serious romantic relationship and heading toward remarriage. As with many aspects of a post-divorce situation, remarriage can present an interesting combination of emotions and experiences to those involved, especially for children and divorced parents with any type of shared custody arrangement. These emotions can intensify with the prospect of blended family situations, as well.
Many divorced parent can attest that their divorce was a difficult process. Even the most amicable situations still carry a level of stress and distrust between spouses, and often, the total upheaval of the life of their children. During a divorce, feelings of bitterness and betrayal are frequently most acute, and their effects may last for months and years. For divorcing parents, who now have to co-parent, it is extremely important to avoid projecting such emotions onto the children, regardless of intention.
There is little question that divorce stress can affect everyone involved. Both spouses, any children, mutual friends, and often extended families on both sides may be forced to deal with uncomfortable changes resulting from the split. According to a recent study, women may be more likely than men to experience a marked increase in stress and stress-related behaviors following a divorce or separation.
According to the Pew Research Center, nearly 42 million American adults have been married more than once. The current estimate has almost doubled from what it was in 1980, when 22 million reported having been remarried, and has tripled the 14 million figure from 1960. The increase in divorce throughout the United States over the last several decades has certainly been a factor, along with an upward shift in the average age of the population, both of which contribute to more individuals able to and interested in getting remarried.
Life can get very confusing and complicated for children of divorce. Even in the best of situations, children can often feel like mere assets to be divided by their parents like furniture or cars. Regardless of how you feel about your ex during and after the divorce, it is extremely important that your children’s comfort and well-being are not overlooked.
If you have children and are going through a divorce, separation, or are not married to your children’s mother/father, you know that custody and visitation issues can be difficult. Understanding your rights and the reasons behind the laws is an important step to making an ultimate decision.