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CO divorce lawyerA divorce is one of the most stressful life events that a person can experience. Divorce brings about all sorts of changes, from disruptions in your routines and responsibilities to changes in your relationships with your family and friends. As much as divorce is a legal process of separating yourself from your spouse, it is also very much an emotional process that takes a good amount of time to deal with. Going through a divorce can put an immense amount of stress and pressure on you, which can manifest in unhealthy ways. Here are a few healthy coping mechanisms you can use if you are going through a divorce:

Healthy Idea #1: Let Yourself Grieve

One of the most important coping mechanisms you can practice when going through something as painful as a divorce is letting yourself grieve. While nobody died, your marriage did come to an end, and you did suffer a major loss. It is important to allow yourself to acknowledge that. Your feelings of resentment, anger, sadness, and even despair are normal and important for you to experience so you can begin to heal.

Healthy Idea #2: Refocus on Yourself

The time during and after a divorce is a great time to place your focus on yourself and becoming the best “you” that you can be. You can start with your physical health. Taking the time to exercise, eating healthily, and getting enough sleep can make you feel invigorated and ready to tackle the emotional issues that are not as easy to deal with. Now might also be a good time to explore hobbies and interests that you might have set aside during your marriage as well.

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Could Divorce Be Genetic?

Posted on in Divorce

Denver, CO divorce attorneySociologists and relationship experts have long known that children whose parents are divorced are more likely to get divorced later in life compared to children from “intact” families. Many have speculated that this was due to such children spending their formative years in an environment that was accepting of divorce. A recent study, however, suggests that there may be more than just environmental factors at work in most cases, as researchers have found that genetics may also play a role.

Nature vs. Nurture

The study was a collaborative effort between teams at Virginia Commonwealth University and Lund University in Sweden. Together, the researchers looked at data involving 20,000 children who were adopted at a young age, as well as their biological and adoptive parents. The project was intended to examine the common belief that children of divorce are more likely to divorce themselves as adults because they are conditioned to see divorce as normal. The study’s subjects were adopted children so that the team could separate “nature” and “nurture” in its findings.

The research revealed that even children who did not know their birth parents or biological siblings tended to have marriage and divorce patterns that matched that of their biological families more than of their adoptive parents. In other words, if a child’s birth parents were divorced, the child was more likely to also get divorced later in life, regardless of his or her adoptive parents’ marital status. The findings led the teams to conclude that genetic influences may have more impact on relationships than most people realize.

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Douglas County, CO family law attorneyStudies tell us that divorce is one of the most difficult life events for children and adults alike. Even under the very best of circumstances, research shows it takes a significant emotional toll on everyone involved, often leading to long-term psychological effects that require a healthy support system in order to successfully cope.

Among the countless stressors that often arise throughout the course of a divorce, experts tell us there are certain aspects of the experience that have a particularly strong impact. Children can be especially susceptible, as they experience many of the same painful challenges adults do, often with heightened emotional responses. 

Here are some of the biggest stressors of divorce and the struggles they present for children and their parents: 

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How to Tell Your Children About Your Divorce

Posted on in Divorce

Denver, CO divorce lawyerIf you and your spouse are considering ending your marriage and you have children together, you probably have many concerns. Coming to terms with the marriage ending is already difficult, but adding the stress of how the divorce will affect your children can make things seem impossible. Fortunately, there is a wealth of information from child development experts and mental health specialists about how best to break the news of divorce to children.

Keep the Children’s Ages in Mind

The information you will give a five-year-old child about your divorce and what you will tell a fifteen-year-old should be different. Young children are not going to understand terms like “custody” or “separation.” Instead of getting into the details, experts suggest parents tell young children how the divorce will affect them and focus on reassuring the child. For example, parents can say something like, “Mommy and daddy are not going to live together anymore, but you will still see both of us all the time.” Make sure to reassure the child that the divorce is not their fault and that you, as parents, still love the child and will continue to be their parents.

Rhonda Freeman of Toronto’s Family Services Association explains that sometimes children think they can influence the separation. They need to know that it is a decision that did not happen because of them. She warns parents that children might think they can bring their parents back together, or that they somehow caused the divorce. If this is true, the children may have trouble getting on with the healing process. Be sure to help your child understand that your divorce was based on adult decisions which are not their responsibility and that they cannot change.

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Denver asset division lawyerIf you are considering a divorce in Colorado, you may have questions about how you and your spouse will divide the property you have accumulated during your marriage. Television, movies, and pop culture tend to suggest that you will need to divide everything equally in half, but the reality is much more nuanced. In fact, the law in Colorado requires a divorcing couple's marital property to be divided fairly—not necessarily equally—under a principle known as "equitable distribution."

Identifying and Evaluating Marital Property

To understand how equitable distribution works in Colorado, it is necessary to understand what property is subject to division in the first place. In general, any property that was acquired during the marriage—with a few important exceptions—is considered "marital property" and is therefore subject to equitable distribution. This includes not only obvious things like houses and cars, but also things like retirement accounts and debt.

The next step is to determine the value of each marital asset. This can be a complicated process, particularly if the asset in question is something like a business that does not have a readily apparent market value. Establishing an acceptable value for an asset is an important part of dividing marital property, and experts may be required to help you do so. For example, you may wish to consult with a financial advisor to establish the current and long-term value of your retirement accounts.

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