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Using the divorce process to make the most of your post-divorce life

When you make the decision to end your marriage, you are immediately greeted by a host of additional challenging decisions. You must decide how to divide your property, how to construct a parenting plan in regards to your children and whether or not to approach your divorce in a collaborative fashion.

But perhaps some of the most difficult choices you will face in the wake of a decision to divorce are not so technical and tied to the legal process of dissolving your marital contract. How are you going to approach your relationship with your in-laws now that you are no longer family under the law? How are you going to make your house feel like a home minus everything that may be moving with your spouse? And how are you going to approach your post-divorce life in action and attitude?

Believe it or not, the answer to these less objective questions can ultimately inform answers to the more technically-related legal questions that will impact your divorce and child custody settlements. For example, if you have made the decision to approach your new life in a positive, healthy, happy and grounded way, you will be less likely to get bogged down in disputes about relatively minor pieces of property. If it is important to you to remain on good terms with your in-laws, you may wish to include provisions in your parenting plan that allow for your children to see them on certain holidays or during summer vacation.

Each marriage is unique and each divorce is similarly unique. Your needs, desires and priorities likely influenced the approach you took in your marriage and will similarly influence your divorce. Take some time to figure out how you are going to approach your post-divorce life in ways that will make you happy and fulfilled. This approach can then influence your divorce accordingly.

Source: Huffington Post, "Post-Divorce: An Adventure Is Waiting," Kristen Houghton, July 2, 2013

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