Attorney Laurie Newmark, a partner in the Morristown, NJ Family Law Firm Townsend, Tomaio and Newmark, advises clients that just as with the passing of a loved one, the death of a marriage often requires a grieving period: "Few people get married and expect to be divorced. This can be a very traumatic experience," says Newmark.
She adds, "It is important to approach the divorce in a thoughtful, calm frame of mind. For women in particular the divorce will often necessitate a life style change – facing questions like: Where will I live? How will I earn a living? How will I pay the bills and will I have health insurance? What will my future look like – what will my retirement look like? If there are children involved their needs must be considered as well. Some of the answers may come if there is alimony or custody settlements.
The most important thing Newmark suggests to do is "get control of your emotions". She explains, "It is important that you emerge from the divorce knowing that you have gotten the outcome that you wanted and needed. There is no room in the divorce negotiations for retribution – children should never be a bargaining chip in the settlement. It is often useful to have an accountant, a financial planner and sometimes a therapist as part of a team to help get you through the process."