If you are even thinking about getting a divorce there are things you should be doing. I am not talking about anything illegal or dishonest, but things to protect your assets, credit and future. Having a plan is not a bad idea. I can say for with great certainty, that if you and your spouse have even talked the slightest bit about divorce, he or she has already began thinking about a plan. And if you are a man, I can guarantee you that your wife has already formulated a plan and put it in motion. That is just the way women work. They will not leave one nest without having another ready…financially or otherwise. Trust me on this one.
So, you think you might get a divorce and you have no idea what you should do. Well let’s talk this through. Each week (I will do my best), I will post a step/idea/action of sorts to help you think about things. I am NOT an attorney. This is NOT legal advice. It is simply one divorced person talking to others. A “this is what I would do if it were me” thing…
Let’s start with the mail. Generally speaking, one spouse takes care of the finances. If you are NOT that spouse, start looking at your mail. If your spouse tells you not to worry about it when you ask for it…WORRY. They are probably hiding things they don’t want you to see. Things like bank statements, credit card statements, investments, retirement accounts, etc. Insist on seeing the mail every day. And don’t just glance at it. LOOK at it. Especially credit card statements. They will tell a story.
And then take pictures, copy or write down all of the return addresses, account numbers, and customer service phone numbers of any statements/investments/retirement accounts you have. Trust me, doing this one small thing will mean a lot if the day comes that you have to move out of your home. It is easier to to get what you need now, when you have access, than try to get it later, when someone else is keeping it from you.
So, today’s lesson…LOOK AT YOUR MAIL.
Being a parent to your children for the past 15 months has not always been easy. It took some time for us all to adjust. To learn to live together. They have done remarkably well. We have two different homes, two different parenting styles, but the children have thrived and are happy. They love you and they love their father. So why do you hate me? I have been there for your children. I have fed them, cared for them when they are sick, bandaged their injuries, taken them to school, and picked them up from school. I have gone to extra-curricular activities and purchased clothing, school supplies and gifts for them. I have hugged them when they are sad and shared in their happiness. I have disciplined them when needed and praised their achievements. I have never said ANYTHING unkind about you to them. I have put your picture in my home so they won’t miss you. I have loved them as any parent or mother should love the children of the man she loves.
The decision you made in June 2010, was yours and yours alone. And while I know the circumstances that led up to that decision, I also know some of the role you played in what happened. All of us who have been married know the role we play in our marriage. You tell anyone who will listen how wronged you were. How his actions were to blame. How he hurt you. But you know the truth. Your actions during the last 10 years of your marriage were just as hurtful and devastating to him, but I doubt you saw that. And what you have done since convinces me that you have no intention of moving on. Your desire to hate and punish is what keeps you up at night. No one with those feelings inside of them can ever rest peacefully.
I know you were hurt when he was able to move on so quickly. But I did not cause your marriage to end. I did not lure him away. I am not a home wrecker, a whore, or a slut as you and your friends have put it. I am someone who fell in love with someone you were eager to be rid of.
Proverbs 4:25-27 tells us to keep our path straight, do not stray, do not swerve. The path is clearly in front of us. It is not hard to recognize. So why, so often, does my path take a different direction? Am I not paying enough attention to my feet? Am I distracted from the path?
I have let others dictate my path. Some are people that I have never met, others are people that I barely know. Why do they have an influence on my path? Why am I letting them push me from my path? How do I find the strength to push them away from me and get back on MY path. Good or bad, I will take a lesson from all those people who drift in and out of my life. Today is no different. Although the people that drifted into my life today did so on paper, I will try to take a lesson from them.
Today I learned that words hurt.