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Who should I talk to during my divorce?

People love to talk about what is going on when you are going through a divorce. Some of this interest in your personal circumstance comes from true compassion, but some of it may fall into the category of morbid curiosity, and most of it has elements of both. It may be a very emotional time for you, so you may want to talk about your feelings of fear, vulnerability and hurt. Other people take the exact opposite approach, burying everything inside and talking to no one.

It can be very helpful to talk to someone along the way, to get guidance and to get consolation. Divorce is a time of loss for many people – you lose your former identity as a spouse, you lose financially, and you lose time with your children. In the midst of profound loss, people can feel very vulnerable which can really heighten their feelings of betrayal and desire for the other person to feel loss as well. This can lead to poor decision making. Therapy can help you process your feelings and keep in check your impulses of wanting to say and do things you otherwise would not say or do. There is a saying in divorce: “lose your head, lose your shirt.”

On the other hand, if you are a person who bottles things up inside, doing so may cause depression as it can intensify the loss. Intense feelings of privacy can work to your detriment in these cases.

In both cases, getting into therapy or coaching can really help. Not only is a professional therapist or coach trained and experienced in what you are going through, but they will not pass on your thoughts to friends and family. Plus, when you are done with therapy, they will not be someone you bump into in social or family situations going forward. What is even more helpful, is that a good therapist can help your attorney by identifying your triggers and your deep needs.

There is a lot to recommend this approach, even if you are someone who would never have considered therapy or coaching outside of your divorce. Most good attorneys have several therapists that they know have the experience and wisdom to help their clients; consider discussing this issue with your attorney.