The Importance of Taking Care of Your Emotional Health by: Beth Riffe, attorney

If you find yourself experiencing extreme emotions as a result of your impending divorce or custody case, you’re not alone.  It is common for women to experience a jumble of emotions, including fear, shame, bitterness, anger, uncertainty or regret.  These feelings are all normal and natural reactions.  It is important for you to understand, however, the significant impact that your mental health can have on the outcome of your case.

Like many of the women we represent, you may be suffereing from low self-esteem.  This may be the result of years of emotional or physical abuse, or it may stem from the feeling that you’ve been rejected by the person you trusted most.  Whatever the cause, these feelings may have left you unsure of your ability to handle the challenges ahead, and you may simply want to settle things as quickly and amicably as possible.  However, the desire to avoid further conflict and heartache can lead you to make concessions on important issues that are difficult, if not impossible to undo later.  Or you may find yourself at the other end of the spectrum, so full of anger and hatred for your spouse that you can think of nothing else but making him pay for what he has put you through.  If left unresolved this anger can reult in a long, bitter battle.  In addition to the emotional tool this can take on both you and your spouse, such extended litigation can result in large bills for attorneys and court costs.

Taking the time to care for yourself mentally and emotionally can help you to avoid these negative outcomes.  Surround yourself with a support network of family and friends who can help you cope with the emotional challenges of your divorce or child custody case.  A clear head and renewed confidence will allow you to see beyond today’s challenges and chart a path to a better future for you and your children.