Money is by far the most common point of conflict between separating couples. It is important to realize that money in of itself is often not the primary issue; rather, what money symbolizes for people, what it represents, and how it provides identity are the real underlying points of contention.
One of the first questions clients ask is, “What is this divorce going to cost?” They almost always are inquiring about the cost in dollars and cents. They learn that there is also an emotional cost to divorce which can be the most expensive aspect of the divorce process.
How to make the best of the circumstances in which we find ourselves is a topic that has been written about and discussed throughout history. This is particularly apropos now, as we find ourselves in a worldwide pandemic. Being a person fortunate enough to have been born with “the optimist gene,” I read all I can on the topic of anything that motivates, inspires, or educates me on topics of interest. In today’s climate, I believe all of us can benefit from some extra inspiration and encouragement.
According to the last information from the Spanish government, as of June 15, 2020, 27,940 people have died due to COVID-19.
From March 13, 2020, our life and country have changed. We could not meet with friends, visit family, walk down the street, or hug. Our country closed down. For many days Spain was in the headlines worldwide due to the spread of infections and many deaths.
Obviously, the courts were closed. Terms of the statute of limitations were suspended. Our time seemed to stand still.
As the co-chair of the Pro-Bono Pilot Project in the Broward County Court House, part of my job is to reach out to our local professional Collaborative community and gather volunteers (including attorneys, neutral facilitators, and neutral financial professionals), who are assigned into teams. When the project began to take off and cases started to be assigned, there was a buzz of excitement amongst our Collaborative professionals. For many of them, they were finally getting to put the Collaborative Divorce Process into practice!
For children experiencing their parents’ separation, the space between “what was” and “what is next” is a place of loss, waiting, and not knowing. The family is no longer what it once was, but not yet what it will be. Anthropologists have described the transition between states or statuses as “liminality.”
In Brazil, every year in February, hundreds of people gather in the City of Lamentations, Capital of the State of Eternal Causes, to attend the Fantastic Disputes Convention. We interviewed the organizers to know a little more about the Convention, and we got some revealing information.
Recently, I was invited to a client lunch with a financial adviser trained in Collaborative Practice, with whom I work, and to whom I've referred several clients for assistance in both Collaborative matters and mediations. To my surprise and delight, I was seated at the table next to a former client (*Mary). To say that I did not recognise her would be an understatement. She literally looked like a new woman, and not because she had aged during the approximately eight years since I worked with her.