The stats on the state of marital bliss in Australia are grim. According to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics the number of people getting divorced is up and most couples are lucky to last beyond 12 years.
Divorce does not have to be a costly train wreck.
“Here was the man I had loved with all my heart and I just wanted to be away from him. We had just drifted apart. With two small children, full-time jobs and all the things that go along with being busy people, we stopped taking time for each other,” she said.
Karen and Bruce wanted to do divorce with as much love and compassion as they did their wedding … but there was now more at stake. It is hard to put aside all those feelings when a relationship ends. When we put as much time into planning a wedding, it makes sense to put in the time and energy to plan a peaceful divorce. This doesn’t mean you’ll become besties at the end of the process, but it will mean the financial and emotional consequences will be diminished.
- The first step to an amicable divorce is Connect – with professionals who can help you navigate your relationship with your ex, the family law system, property, business, taxes and with yourself. This is the time for constructive conversations to plan the path ahead, to work out the best way forward is and to be sure your relationship is not salvageable.
- This next step may get you thinking … Coach- While you may not be training for a sporting event or taking your business to the next level, you are planning the next phase of your life. This step is worthy of time and energy. No one really knows how to manage relationships; many of us cross our fingers and do our best, guided by those who have gone before us. With divorce rates so high, we are not doing the best job. Coaching can help you heal, learn to communicate better, manage the conflict and develop goal-oriented outcomes. Think of your divorce coach as your voice of reason. When relationships break, it’s a highly emotional time and we often respond in anger and grief. A coach can help you navigate the cycle of emotions, provide bespoke personal and practical assistance and help you prepare and get organised. A coach will work with you and your wider team to create a comprehensive road map.
- Then Consult – with a mediator- This doesn’t mean you are handing over your power; you must be the driver’s seat when it comes to navigating the many decisions you must make. A mediator can help you negotiate a parenting and financial plan with your spouse so you both know where you stand and will facilitate the conversation between the two of you. If there are areas that are proving to be sticking points, this is where a mediator can help you reach a respectful agreement. Divorce litigation is costly. A mediator can assist you to reach an agreement so you can stay out of court.
- Complete is the final step- Breath. You have made it. The children are as settled as they can be. Property is divided, and you can look at your ex without wanting to throw something at them. Your lawyer can now finalise the paperwork and legalise the agreements you and your partner have reached at Mediation. This is where the work and effort you have put into your amicable divorce pays off.
What happened to Karen and Bruce? Their marriage ended and while they are not best friends, by working through this process, they parted with dignity.
Bruce said he had heard horror stories from friends who had divorced. “I was terrified of this happening to us, especially when we have the two girls to think about. I could see it happening. When we followed the four steps, we gained clarity about what we wanted and didn’t want,” he said.
“I didn’t think divorce could be amicable, but it is amazing what you can do with guidance.”
Anne-Marie Cade’s Bio
Hi, I am Anne-Marie. I am also a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner / Nationally Accredited Mediator, Certified Divorce Coach, High Conflict Coach, Parent Coordinator and founder of Divorce Right.
I have created a revolutionary new way for clients to heal and get over divorce or break-up. I am passionate about family and relationships and I work with clients to empower them to improve communication, manage conflict and reach a peaceful, amicable separation, so they can successfully co-parent together. I incorporate mindfulness practices into my coaching and mediation sessions so my clients are able to get more centered and grounded and become more mindful about the decisions they make.
This unique method helps clients manage the conflict, re-frame their relationship with their partner and finalize all the paperwork so they can move on to the next chapter of your life. I believe that this approach will ensure a positive outcome for the family. I am currently working on my soon to be released book “Peaceful Divorce, Happy Kids.”