Don’t be you’re own Worst Enemy
One of the worst things about the divorce process is that you are your own worst enemy.
Remember the truth lies somewhere in the middle between your story and your ex-spouse’s story. You each see the truth as you remember it. Throughout the process, I can recall reacting defensive to things I heard the opposing side say because I thought that it was a lie – But was it really a lie or how she saw it.
The range of emotions experienced through out the divorce process will cloud your vision. If you allow yourself to take a step back, you will understand that the truth is somewhere in the middle. You can start to understand the other side and what they are asking for and you might even be able to help your side as well. The problem is you are your own worst enemy, you allow your emotions and anger to control your decisions and you stand in the middle road blocking all potential suggestions to reach a solution.
This is a long and exhausting ordeal and most of the time you will be running on anger, hurt, disappointment and adrenaline. All of these emotions combined with the stressful situation provide a perfect platform for saying things without thinking that may either cause us additional issues and we may later regret. During the initial stages, due to my range of emotions and reacting rather than thinking, I found myself talking too much and providing additional information when asked a question by the opposing side. In many circumstances this did not help my side and only created additional unnecessary questions that only lead to increased attorney billable hours.
I found the best was to avoid reacting and speaking before thinking was to take notes on everything. The more you write the more you listen to what people say. This strategy provided me with the time to think about what people were saying before reacting and allowed me time to compose my response to insure that I answered only the question they asked. I found that this tactic worked because not only did I have time to think about my answer, I did not have to ask the lawyers to repeat the question to allot me additional time to answer. Lawyers will typically ask you to repeat your answers several times to try to catch any discrepancies in your story. Repeating questions and answers take time and increase a lawyers billable hours, so remember the questions and answers and when asked to repeat your answers respond that you have already answered that question, this will usually put an end to that question.
Listen carefully it can only help you. Talk less and don’t answer anything that you weren’t asked. If you actually listen you most likely won’t make those mistakes.
Learn to open your eyes and ears and close your mouth. Observe the body language or the other people in the room, listen to what you are being asked, speak only when spoken to and answer only what you are asked. Most importantly, no matter what always be polite to everyone, you never know who is listening to you.