Going through a divorce means learning how to navigate some entirely new situations all on your own. While it can be tempting (and maybe justifiable) to throw all of the blame for your failed marriage at your spouse’s feet, your goal right now should be getting through the divorce as peacefully as possible. After all, a peaceful, easy divorce is better for your stress, your kids and your wallet.
Here are some sure ways to blow any chance you have of preserving some kind of working relationship with your spouse:
- Quitting your job or reducing your income: Trying to lower your income so you don’t have to pay spousal support or child support is going to infuriate your spouse (and it probably won’t impress the judge).
- Emptying the bank accounts: It only takes one person in the relationship to decide that they need to grab all of the assets they can to start a real “divorce war.”
- Trash-talking your spouse: Trust us, everything you say about your spouse will probably find its way back to them. If you’re tarnishing their reputation, they may no longer be willing to cooperate with you in any way.
- Introducing a new partner to the kids before the divorce is over: This can put a great deal of stress on your kids and your spouse. Everyone needs time to process the split, so keep your new relationship quiet until the divorce is finished.
- Filing a motion instead of just asking: You lose nothing by trying to negotiate directly with your spouse for what you think is fair. If you go immediately to legal maneuvers, they’re likely to respond in kind.
Although it sounds counterintuitive, being kind to your spouse during your divorce is the smartest move you can make when you want a fair divorce with a minimum of trouble.