Removing Emotion from Divorce Proceedings

Q: Can divorce decisions be treated like business transactions?

Divorce isn’t easy. Emotions run high. The stress that led you both here and the divorce process itself may be riddled with feelings of anger, hurt, jealousy, guilt, anxiety, depression, fear, and even a sense of failure.

Depending on your particular circumstances, the idea of removing the emotion from your divorce proceeding might require super-human strength. What could motivate you to deep dig deep down and be that hero?

Consider your children.

When a couple with children gets a divorce, there are issues beyond the distribution of marital property and spousal support/alimony which need to be decided. Too often, soon to be ex-spouses let their emotions interfere with these important decisions. When that happens, their children may suffer.

In Arizona, “custody” and ‘visitation” are referred to as “legal decision-making” and “parenting time”, respectively. The standard by which  legal decision-making and parenting time terms are decided in a divorce always comes down to one determining factor – – the best interest of the child.

Except in cases with extenuating circumstance is, it is generally considered in the child’s best interest if legal decision-making authority over major decisions on behalf of the children, as well as the parenting time each parent gets to spend with the child is allocated equally.

Most people understand that children benefit when their parents can find a way to co-parent in an atmosphere of cooperation and positivity – – at least in front of the children. It often takes a conscious effort to push feelings of hurt and anger and even jealousy aside and not use the children as pawns to hurt the other parent. Parents’ words and actions can cause irreparable harm to children who are already struggling with their own pain and emotional turmoil.

Couples who want to divorce may be able to do so amicably through the process of mediation, enlisting the help of a neutral third-party to work out mutually-agreeable terms for the divorce. If mediation fails, or is not an option in your case, seeking an experienced family law attorney for your divorce would be the next step.

Cohen Family Law in Phoenix, Arizona, offers representation and assistance in all family law matters including mediation, divorce, child custody and visitation, child support and more. Contact us at 602-714-8898 for a free consultation. We’ve been helping families throughout Arizona since 1982.