Jeanne M. Browne, Family Law Attorney

Serving Sonoma County for over 25 years

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(707) 575-5162

5 Principles: Encouragement

thumbs up jpeg

Divorce is not a simple process and you are probably facing uncertainty.

Here are some common questions that divorcing clients often ask me:

  • Will a judge make all the decisions or can my spouse and I agree on our own?
  • How can we get through this separation or divorce without financial and emotional ruin?
  • How can we best protect our children in this difficult time?

To help answer these questions, allow me to share five important principles and an easy way to remember them.

            1)  Encouragement

            2)  Direction

            3)  Responsibility

            4)  Commitment

            5)  Strength

Remembering these five principles is as simple as referencing the five fingers on your hand.  Let’s start with your thumb.

  1. Encouragement – Thumb:

First, give yourself a “thumbs up” as a reminder that you can get through this and not give up.  If you were my client I would encourage you to surround yourself with positive emotional support.  Realistically, I usually compare the divorce process with a roller coaster — the “Big D Dipper” with unexpected velocity, extreme highs and lows, and plenty of screaming!

You need reassurance from your friends and family to avoid depression or self-medicating behaviors.  “Encourage one another and build each other up” is a Biblical reference I use as a reminder.  If you don’t have anyone who fits this role, join a divorce support group. You also may need a trained therapist with divorce expertise.  Think of him or her as your emotional “safety harness” to keep you from revenge or subversive tactics (like slashing tires or sending that nasty text you will later regret)!  You need to learn how to “keep your hands and arms inside” until this shaky ride comes to a complete stop.

Do you love roller coasters so much that you rush to get back in line for another thrill variation?  Maybe your response is the same as some of my clients: “Are you kidding? I’m never getting married again!”  I tell them that while I appreciate their referrals, I really don’t hope for their “repeat business” (unless they need a prenuptial agreement, of course)!  I encourage them to get more information before choosing to repeat their negative experience.

In my next blog entry, we will talk about 2) Direction. If you are finding that you need directionthumbs up, reach out and we can talk about your particular questions. Remember, I offer $100 first-time consultation.

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