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As we begin episode four of the We Chat Divorce podcast, please remember that divorce does not define you. Yes, it’s part of our stories and it may be a part of your story, but that’s okay. We’re here to share our insight and inspiration, addressing the good stuff and the bad stuff (aka the BS) and hope this podcast will help you move forward in a positive direction.

Being Present with Each Other

Do you find yourself having a hard time focusing? Does the activity in your life, not to mention in your divorce, have you feeling overwhelmed? It’s a problem we all encounter, especially in our world of instant gratification but disconnecting, especially from social media, is important.

Whether you’re a stay-at-home parent, managing the household or you’re working full time, the most important thing you can do for each other – and your marriage - is be present. It’s deeper than putting the cell phones down.

Make it a point to have a transition time from work to home and then carve out some time to sit with each other and acknowledge you want to be in each other’s presence. Being married and being a parent is about relationships and if you can’t figure out the relationships, you’re going to have a lot of dysfunction going on. Being present and listening, making that person feel heard and affirmed is so critical to healthy relationships. We all need to slow down, listen more, and be in the moment.

Being Present in the Divorce Process

Being present throughout the divorce process is a critical skill to develop. You have a lot coming at you all at once – where to live, will the kids be okay, will you have enough money, will you have enough energy to get up and go to work each day, and on and on. Actively being present is a skill that will get you through each step. It may be helpful to start journaling, even if that means you write down each step and focus on them one at a time.

This is also true with mediation. If you’re going through divorce as two individuals, each with your own attorney communicating with each other on your behalf, you’re not even in the conversation in the moment. With mediation or a negotiated settlement, you remain present and in the moment about the decisions being made. Literally. You’re there in the room together and you’re able to hear you’re your soon-to-be-ex wants a certain asset or more time with your kids. This process allows you to communicate with each other and, above all else, be heard. It changes how you get divorced for the better.

Today’s Takeaways

  • Use the “24-Hour Panic” Rule: Give yourself time to not think about the issue. Write it down if it helps you. Put it on a to do list. When you come back to it 24 hours later, your perspective may be completely different.
  • Stop, Drop, and Let Go: Maybe you’re not wired to let something go for 24 hours. Try 10 minutes. Remember the fire prevention phrase, “Stop, drop, and roll?” Tell yourself, “Stop, drop, and let go.” If you feel overwhelmed or you’re not feeling heard, give it that time, that silence. The feeling may go away or you may master it.

Being present helps to set boundaries for yourself and others. It helps to quiet the noise in your head so you can tune into what others are saying. It helps you to focus on one thing at a time.

We Welcome Your Feedback

Thanks for joining our community. We want to hear about the positive steps you are taking for yourself every day.

Be sure to like our Facebook Page and Instagram Page and follow us on Pinterest and Twitter.  For more information about who we are and what we do, please visit our website at www.divorceusolutions.com

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In episode three, we continue our real talk about the world of divorce with a conversation about the realities of co-parenting. Is anyone really ready for that? Co-parenting is always a challenge, for sure, but this podcast will give you practical tools to get through it with your sanity and current marriage intact.

Celebrities, They're Just Like Us!
With all of the money and resources available to celebrities, it’s easy to presume they sail through co-parenting or relating to an ex’s new significant other. At the end of the day, though, we’re all human and need to think of our children above everything else.

Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck are one example. Jennifer recently took their children on vacation and Ben went along. They stayed in two connecting suites of the same size, so their kids could spend time with both parents. They made it work for them and their children.

Ryan Phillipe, who was married to Reese Witherspoon, has said that “You have to get to that point as a divorced parent, as any parent, where you’re not putting yourself first.”

Taye Diggs, who is co-parenting his son with singer and actress Idina Menzel, acknowledges this: “When you have a kid in the mix of it there’s no time for negativity.”

No matter who you are, put your children first. We get married for a reason, we get divorced for a reason, but there’s never a reason to put your kids in the middle of it.

Keeping It Real
Co-parenting is complicated by so many things, the emotional residue of the divorce, new significant others or spouses on the scene, and the world of step-parenthood.

How can you navigate these relationships, stay focused on the well-being of your children, and stay sane? Know when to pick your battles. Here are a few ways we recommend to keep the peace, and your cool:

Drop the Rope
Often, you’ll find yourself in an argument with your ex. It could be a timing issue, or whether your children left things at the other’s home, or any number of issues. Instead of participating in this tug of war, simply drop the rope. You’ll feel more mentally free and present for your priority, your children.

That’s interesting.
This tactic is especially good to use with narcissists. When someone is battling head-to-head, and no matter what you say, you will never be “right” in his or her eyes? Just say “That’s interesting,” and leave it at that. It’s not worth the stress it will cause you or your children.

24 Hour Panic Rule
Things happen. The threat of court, an ex is late picking up your children. Whatever it is, give yourself 24 hours to not even think about it. Give yourself time to breathe. Often, whatever it is will resolve itself, or you’ll have a fresh perspective.

How do you know these tactics are working? React to the reactions of your children. If your child is happy and doing fine, that’s what it’s all about. Talk about it together so your child can feel secure.

When It’s All Said and Done
It’s hard to co-parent through a divorce. Stay engaged, try to better yourself. Be there for the kids, and you’ll all grow and develop together.

Give Us Your Feedback
The hardest part for us is not hearing your voices. Please give us your feedback, your comments, your questions. Let us know in the comments section below this recording. 

Be sure to like our Facebook Page and Instagram Page and follow us on Pinterest and Twitter.  For more information about who we are and what we do, please visit our website at www.divorceusolutions.com

And remember we know divorce is never easy, and your life may be changing.  Change can be good!  We want you to know – you are not alone, and you will be ok.  We’ll talk to you soon. We chat because you matter.

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In this episode, we continue the conversation about real people and real situations in the world of divorce. Every person has their own unique story. We’re here to discuss the human element of divorce from a variety of perspectives – from personal anecdotes to divorce in the entertainment world.

Divorce in the Entertainment World

Celebrities can seem like they have it all, but beneath the glamour they’re people, too, with the same feelings and the same problems in divorce. Drew Barrymore has been divorced for a year now. In her 40s with two small children, “When you break up with somebody you’re like, ‘Yeah, that didn’t work,’ but when you get divorced you’re like I’m the biggest failure. This is the biggest failure. I’m so shameful and it’s so hard to actually go through that, even privately.” This feeling of guilt and failure is common in divorce, but isn't who you are.

Divorce in the Real World

A new client came to see us nine months after her divorce. We worked with her, reviewing her documents and creating a timeline, determining that what was happening post-divorce wasn’t supposed to happen to her. The system wasn’t providing what was financially owed to her and what was agreed upon. We helped her go from barely making ends meet to securing the reimbursements and the level of support she was entitled to.

Real Divorce: The Human Element

In our article that appeared recently on the DivorcedMoms.com website -- The First Year of Divorce: 10 Truths No One Tells You But Should – we talk about a lot of the feelings we ourselves went through in our personal divorce experiences, are we messing up our kids, do we miss our exes, etc. We also discovered an article on LinkedIn from the men’s perspective -- How Do Men Really Cope After Divorce? – which covers that men don’t fully realize how their lifestyles are changing until some time passes, that they miss all the activity of home life with their kids.

We’re basically the same – we have a sense of loss and we care about our kids. If divorced couples focus on that throughout that first year, on respecting each other and taking things one step at a time, it’ll make things better in the long run.

As we like to say, “Divorce does not mess your kids up. It’s how both parents behave before, during, and after divorce that can mess your kids up.”

Thanks for joining our community. We’d love to hear from you and love to hear positive steps you are taking for yourself every day. Let us know via our website, on our Facebook page or our Instagram account.

Divorce is never easy, and although your life may be changing.  Change can be good!  We want you to know – you are not alone and you will be ok.  We’ll talk to you soon. 

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The We Chat Divorce Podcast brings you conversations about real people, real situations and real divorce. We’re Karen Chellew, paralegal and business manager, and Catherine Shanahan, CDFA (Certified Divorce Financial Analyst). We’re co-founders of Divorce U Solutions, where we work with clients to navigate the often complex and confusing process of divorce. We’re here to share our personal and professional experiences to demystify the big business of divorce. This podcast is time for you to gain clarity and even have a laugh or two.

First up, what we wish we had known as we went through our divorces.

For more information about who we are and what we do, please visit our website at www.divorceusolutions.com, like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram. Welcome to our community!