Divorcing Women: What To Know

Things are not as different for women now as many would like when it comes to economic issues. That can become depressingly clear when divorce rears up. Read on and find out what women need to do differently than men when they divorce.

Get Support

It's best to acknowledge that you are going through a traumatic and stressful experience and get the support you need from the beginning. While it's true that men need emotional support during divorce too, many women are more likely to be burdened with multiple problems all at once. They may be the primary caretaker for the child of the marriage while also coping with an elderly parent's health issues, for instance. Women are also more likely to face the strain of being financially vulnerable when divorce strikes. Shoring up your emotional bank account makes good sense. You can do that by not keeping things bottled up. Be open with friends and sympathetic loved ones. Seek help from mental health professionals when needed. Don't wait until the strain of the divorce causes you to make bad decisions.

Don't Make Faulty Assumptions

It's easy to fall into unhealthy patterns during a divorce. Women often assume that they should have physical custody of the children. After all, it's what good mothers do. However, thinking about what is right for the children can help you decide about pursuing custody. It's also bad to assume that your spouse won't fight you for custody, since that assumption can cause a huge problem at a juncture you never expected. Be sure to discuss things with your lawyer and be on the same page as you make your parenting plans. Know what you want and know what to expect of your spouse as well.

Be Financially Grounded and Ready

Moving from a two-earner household to one is not as simple as you might think. Whether you and your spouse have been splitting things up financially or using some other method to budget, things are not as easy as dividing everything in half. Take on your new budget as soon as possible so that it can help you make better financial decisions during divorce. For example, if a look at your retirement funds leaves you disappointed, ask your divorce lawyer about using a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO or Quadro) to remove funds from your spouse's retirement account. In most cases, any funds deposited in the account since the date of the marriage are considered marital property and you may be entitled to some of it.

Learn more by speaking with a divorce attorney.