"Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending."
- Maria Robinson
As true as this quote may be, it's not easy to think about re-writing your future when you're in the process of divorcing. You want to put your marriage behind you, but removing yourself from it is not the sort of thing that happens by snapping your fingers. You need support.
When you're considering divorce, you should seek out an attorney who understands that the dynamic of your marriage does not need to control the dynamic of your divorce; an attorney who wants to help you break the cycle of arguments and miscommunications that engulfed your marriage.
Traditional divorce attorneys who primarily litigate have a habit of using that vortex of negativity - a vortex which you are trying to escape - to convince you to accept the idea that your relationship with your soon-to-be-ex will always be that way and that you need your attorney's protection.
Collaborative attorneys, on the other hand, are happy to encourage your effort to find a different way to communicate, but we can't do it on our own. At the end of the day we are lawyers, not mental health professionals, and that's where coaches come in.
If you want the way you communicate in your divorce to be more productive than the way you communicated in your marriage, you are more likely to succeed if you get the help of a divorce coach. Some of the things that coaches help with are:
- Helping each of you to see how you may be triggering your spouse and stop doing those things
- Giving you tools so that you aren't as easily triggered by him or her
- Helping you to process the emotions that you are feeling so that they don't hijack your ability to make important decisions
- Identifying the best means for communication around certain issues
If you look at the items above, you can see how a coach is focused only on the present and the future, not the past. They need to understand the past, but they will not help you or your spouse to keep rehashing it. The coaching sessions also serve as a safe place to voice other frustrations that might cause a log jam in the stream of negotiations.
The team approach offered by collaborative law yields the best chance for divorcing spouses to "...start today and make a new ending." Divorce coaches in particular can help couples to concentrate on the future while offering concrete ideas on how to get through the present.