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Ground yourself early on with these principles.

← Getting Divorced

Where to Start

 Understanding your financial situation is crucial before moving forward with a divorce:

  • The updated value of all assets owned individually or jointly
  • Your respective current incomes

One thing at a time

The decision to end your marriage may be the most difficult step you take in the entire process. Divorce is never easy and can consume enormous amounts of time and energy. That is why you should make sure to be prepared ahead of time. As easy as others want to make it sound, now is not the time for impulsiveness but for careful planning and decision making.

The process can feel overwhelming, with so many pieces to put together. Like all big projects, it can be helpful to break things down into smaller pieces. Keep deadlines for yourself and try to be methodical in order to stay on track.

Avoid emotional reactions

Play it safe with social media

Play it safe with social media

Be aware that social media posts, not just by you, but posts by friends and family members about you could end up in court and have a negative effect on you. If you are going on vacations or spending lavishly, it would be in your best interest not to post about it on social media. A good rule of thumb is to assume everything you post will be dissected by lawyers.

Be mindful of your money.

Be mindful of your money.

Judges often view excessive purchases during a divorce in a negative light. Be careful not to take more than your fair share and document any spending you do. Tell your spouse beforehand if moving any marital assets.

Be nice.

Be nice.

Do your best to avoid engaging in any heated arguments. You want to work toward a divorce that's fair for everyone so it is important not to say or do things that you will regret later.

Stay cool, calm, and collected

Have a handle on what is going on with your finances. When coming up with your new budget and negotiating the divorce, be sure to have clear picture of your assets and liabilities. Choose a legal path compatible with your interests and situation: DIY, mediator, attorney, or a hybrid approach. Gather documents early to get the legal process rolling (think tax returns, pay stubs, bank statements, investment and retirement account statements, car registrations, and insurance policies). Engage a support network: trusted friends, family, and even a professional counselor—someone who can help you evaluate options and think straight about big decisions.

Learn more about mental health resources

It’s important to take care of yourself, especially if family members rely on you. Feelings associated with divorce are varied and complex. At various times you can expect to feel sad, lonely, bewildered, worried, angry, bitter, and frustrated. But you still have to be about the business of getting a divorce. Unlike assets, which can be temporarily frozen, your life still goes on. Staying healthy and resilient during a divorce is largely a matter of self-care.

So practice self-compassion: Give yourself time and permission to not try to do everything perfectly.

As you learn how to function in this new stage, take care of yourself and focus on what you need to do to get through a process.

Surround yourself with supportive family and friends, people who love you and will boost your overall well-being.

Learn more about mental health resources

These organizations can offer peer and family supports, and provide general information on treatment and available services for mental health issues.

MENTALHEALTH.GOV / RESOURCE

Psychology Today provides a comprehensive directory of therapists, psychiatrists, and treatment facilities near you.

PSYCHOLOGY TODAY / RESOURCE

Clarity begins with a conversation

Contact Fidelity today for 1-on-1 guidance during life’s big decisions. We believe in making the complex simpler, because we want you to be confident about the decisions you make—next week, next year, and beyond.