Overcoming Shock of Divorce to Achieve Personal Growth
Charlie and Elizabeth, my client, were both in their early 50s. Charlie was a CEO. Elizabeth had been the complete corporate wife, homemaker, and mother to four children, two of whom were still residing at home. Charlie wanted the divorce.
Charlie’s decision to divorce came as a complete shock to Elizabeth which caused her to distrust not only Charlie’s explanation of why he wanted the divorce but even more importantly, her own judgment. Elizabeth worried about the impact on all four of the children, wondered whether Charlie, whom she still loved, was suffering from an emotional breakdown, and feared for her financial future. Elizabeth felt her identity was being stolen, without her consent or control. This was potentially paralyzing.
The mediation process enabled Elizabeth to gain some control over her life-her opinions, goals, and needs were as important as Charlie’s and the divorce would not be completed until she, as well as Charlie, was satisfied with the substantive outcome. With my confidential advice, guidance and support as her consulting attorney, as well as the trusted family accountant and family financial advisor, Elizabeth was able to competently and confidently participate in all aspects of the financial negotiations. Her success in the negotiation process translated to more confidence in herself generally and specifically helped her look forward to a different but still meaningful and happy post-divorce life.