If your marriage has broken down and you are stuck in the unfortunate position where you now need to move forward with the divorce process, then stick around because we go through the most important steps for any man going through the initial first months of their divorce.
You may feel stuck, gutted, and devastated. You may wonder what’s next or how you are possibly going to get through the next 24 months of your life. The one thing I want you to take away from this is that its not as scary as it seems, over 50% of men find themselves in this situation and 70% of those men have been on the receiving end of the bad news.
It may feel strange to be back out on your own for the first time in years, it may be new to live in a 2 bedroom apartment and to only see your kids once every two weeks but if you take on board what we talk about then you will nail all hidden agendas that nobody tells you about. In this blog post, we’ll discuss 17 Real Divorce Tips for Men, Divorce Process, Lawyer & Legal Aid: Costs, Process, Custody and More!
- 17 Real Divorce Tips: The “Whats & Hows”
- Divorce Process: What to expect
1.1 17 Tips You Need to Know: Pre & Post Divorce
2.1 Early Days of Your Divorce: First Month
2.2. The Waiting Game: 12 Months Later
2.3. Final Conclusion: 24 Months Later
17 Real Divorce Tips: The “Whats & Hows”
1.1. 17 Tips You Need to Know: Pre & Post Divorce
When going through a divorce, men need to know a number of different things they can expect to look out for. I wish we could make this process as smooth and easy for every single man going through a divorce on the planet. Below are the 17 Tips that I have personally put together, tricks of the trade if you will.
If you see your wife with another man, it will be hard at first. You need to separate the breaking up/ detaching process from the divorce process. Don’t wait till your divorce is final to give yourself permission to get over her.
Only ask questions that you need answers to. If you dig deep into your wife’s situation, whereabouts or movements then you will be on an emotional rollercoaster that you won’t be able to control. Whatever you say to your children will make its way back to your wife so make sure you filter out what they hear.
Decide when you need to be present during the divorce process. Do your kids have a school play you need to be present for? Yes! But this doesn’t mean you need to message your Wife for her birthday or put yourself in an awkward position at her birthday dinner where you get blindsided about her new boyfriend.
For most men, this will be the first time they have ever gone through the divorce process. If this is the case then don’t try and control the situation as a whole. The process will take as long as it takes to transpire, most likely 24 months. Let it happen, let your lawyer do his job, let your wife look after your kids without calling every time you see something on Facebook.
Living alone and being a single dad will be something that you will need to go through mostly alone, it’s very common for men to lead lonely lives. Look for an apartment that doesn’t make you feel sad, tired and broken. If you need to drive past your old house to work every day then that perhaps isn’t a healthy way to detach from your old life.
6. Setting an Example
Divorce is 50% which means half of all families will go through this. That means if you have children then there is a good chance one of them will need to know how to leave bad relationships or marriages in the future. If you make this as seamless as possible and show them how to act and be during these times then that is the best thing you can leave them with in the future. If you make it traumatizing then they will put it off and stay in bad marriages when they are older.
7. Mental Health – Personal Therapist
I wish I could give you something juicy, some sort of magic pill that will solve this issue but it will just be something that is ongoing. The average man only knows 3-4 people and only 1 of them will give them more than 30 minutes or more. What you need is a foundation that you can look forward to dumping everything on weekly – that is the best investment.
8. Children’s Perspective
As you go through your Divorce your children will see it differently, perhaps they will talk to you but chances are they won’t. Sometimes it’s better to have someone who will be a solid foundation for them over the next 24 months. It becomes impossible for two parents going through divorce to offer the emotional stability that children require.
9. Sex & Intimacy
Here’s one thing that most men will come to realize, the grass isn’t greener, and females are harder to come by. If you are planning on meeting someone through a dating app then be prepared to be disappointed. You are better to put your energy into meeting someone in the real world, becoming friends and getting to know them rather than trying to fill a void, feeling empty and then leaving in some sort of regret.
10. Get a Backbone
Don’t agree to things that you don’t agree to. If your wife has full custody and tries to get you to pick up your children last minute then say what you feel, if you can’t – say no. You need to learn how to tell people “No” otherwise you will be constantly pushed around feeling used with no voice.
11. Don’t be so Moral
I have worked with men from all over the world and something I have heard quite frequently is men talking about how they will just give their partner the house and money for their kids. This is wrong, don’t do things just because they are morally right – at the end of your divorce you will get the bad end of the stick and it’ll take you 10 years to get back on your feet.
12. Favours will be Forgotten
Lets say your wife’s car breaks down and she asks you for money to fix it so she can drop the kids off to you, that’s not your responsibility. The amount of men going through a divorce I have worked with who would just spend thousands to fix their wife’s car is astonishing. The worst part, she’ll use that same car to go off and date other men that very night – she’s happy to use your money so she can see her new man on your dime.
Your diet will change because you’ll now eat for convenience rather than on time, prepared, cleaned and to a certain standard. You should also look at staying away from comfort eating, this will get out of hand if you get into a routine of stopping at a fast food place on the way home from work for dinner. Although cooking and cleaning is the last thing you want to do, you should look at a simple low-carb/ calorie meal that takes little preparation. I would recommend getting an air fryer.
14. Mutual Friends
This is a part of the divorce you need to keep an eye on. Consider everything you do and say will go back to your ex, if privacy is something you are looking for then perhaps stay clear of mutual friends. It’s quite common for friends of a couple to have split opinions or loyalty, I wouldn’t take my chances on this.
15. Get a Dog
Coming home to someone or something that looks forward to seeing you at the end of the day is one of the best feelings. The sad reality of any divorce is coming home to a cold, empty household. Dogs keep you busy, are great companions, cheer you up, get you out of the house and give you a chance to be social at places like the local dog park.
16. Get a Folder
You will have a tonne of paperwork, invoices, screenshot printouts, receipts, letters, court documents and more. It’s best to be fully transparent with the process from start to finish. If a Lawyer asks you for screenshot photos of her threatening you from 2 years ago, you need to be able to get that super quick to save yourself time, money and failure.
Telling people what you used to have and bringing it all up when you start dating again is ugly and unattractive to someone coming into your situation. If you live in the reality of split milk then you will always find a way to get yourself back to that feeling because its easy to feel something. I get my clients to start saying “If not this then something better”.
Divorce Process: What to Expect
2.1. Early Days of Your Divorce: First Month
When your Wife first asks for a divorce, you will be in shock for the first couple of days. If your Wife files for Divorce without telling you then you could be blindsided. There are some really important things that you must do in your first month of separation so that you don’t linger, get hurt or be blindsided by anything else to come.
Here are some tips to help prepare you for your first month:
- Sleeping Arrangement: Detaching yourself from your wife, comfort zone, home & children will be one of the hardest things you’ll ever have to do. Sleep in the living room or a separate room to start building space between you and your wife, this will make things easier when it comes to moving out.
- Telling Your Children: This will be some of the biggest news children will ever receive or need to digest. If you are going to tell your children then have a plan ready, Don’t tell your children without making sure you have the next 5 moves in play – where will they live, when will they see their parents. Remove as much confusion from their minds as possible.
- Digging to Deep: If your Wife has asked for a Divorce out of the blue then there will likely be an unknown factor that you will somehow find out by someone or somewhere soon enough. If you go digging then you will get answers about who they could be seeing and this will break your heart. Protect yourself at all costs.
- Speaking to a Lawyer: Speak with a Lawyer as early as possible, this will ensure your encounters with your Wife will be documented, purposeful and productive. If you leave this then there could be things you miss – remember, you don’t know what you don’t know. You should shop around for the right lawyer, this will be expensive but you only get one go at it.
2.2. The Waiting Game: 12 Months Later
During this 12 Month period, there will be a level of patience involved from both parties. Although you both just want this to be over and done with, there is no one answer or magic pill that will fix the situation, it needs to be a way of life that you both grow into.
Here are some things that you will need to gear up for in your first 12 Months:
- Assets Tied Up: There could be a period where the judge orders you to freeze the sale of any of these as they are to be divided between you. It could mean you need to pay out your wife a certain amount for the assets as at the end of the divorce, if this is the case property will go up which will mean you’ll have equity to borrow against for something else.
- Court Dates: These could happen once every 6 months, you work with your lawyer for 6 months prepping for this, you get your day and it might go your way. Just remember – it’s about those involved leaving in a fair manner, one is not allowed to leave with more than the other. Your wife could get full custody, child support & take half your paycheck because she is a full-time stay-at-home mom with your 3 kids.
- Legal Fees: The average lawyer charges $500 per letter, $1000 per hour and a court fee of $5000 for a hearing. If this goes into the 24-month mark you should be looking at at least $30,000 in lawyer fees but some go over that. This is the lawyer fee alone, you have other payouts such as alimony, court fees for your wife if she can’t afford a lawyer and more.
- Interim Custody: Where will the kids live, who will pay their bills and child support pre-hearing? Your wife needs to be transparent about what they need, you will know how much they cost to feed. If she is not being fair with the custody at this time then you are both legally entitled to 50:50 custody until the court rules otherwise.
2.3. Final Conclusion: 24 Months Later
This will likely be when your divorce is finalized. Some places such as Australia and other countries have laws that mean you need to wait 12 months before you can file for divorce which would mean a longer process in theory.
Two Years seems like a long time away but it goes quickly and you both become different people needing different things for your own lifestyles.
Here’s what to expect after 24 Months of your divorce:
- Legal Payouts: This is what you owe in alimony, halving your accounts, closing joint accounts
- Custody Agreement Finalized: As a Man, it is difficult to even get 50:50 Custody and even then the court will push for what is best for the children which will be that they live full-time with their mother and you will get them for 2 days every second weekend.
- Assets Legally Distributed: Cars are split or sold, business is sold or shares are distributed. You will have an accountant and lawyer go through and decide who gets paid what from your business.
- She has a New Man in Your Home: Perhaps the hardest part about working with men going through a divorce is when their wife/ now ex-wife moves her new boyfriend into their once-family home. It’s no secret that men contribute over 80% of the household income and to see his blood, sweat and tears taken over by another man is heartbreaking.
The Divorce Process is lengthy and it’s perfectly normal to experience conflicts and challenges along the way. By spending time apart during this process, you should think about all possible outcomes. Sometimes its just easier to stay and work it out. Remember that its part of your due diligence to do what is right for everyone and not just yourself. If it means going through the above and more because you are unhappy then you must carry your own cross.