Divorce Preparation: Step 13 – Be Good
Well, we have finally reached the last step in this series of posts on practical steps to consider when you may be facing divorce. I will wrap up the series with two more posts to conclude and summarize the series. But, first, the final step which may seem a bit silly.
It is simply this: Be Good.
Here is the principle: you are about to be under a microscope. You are reading this blog, so I assume that you may be facing a divorce and you’d like to that unpleasant process to be as amicable as possible. Unfortunately, that is not always possible. Your spouse may not share that objective for some reason. They may be influenced by others (lawyers, friends, etc.) that convince them that what you are offering is not fair.
So, there is a chance that your case will end up going to trial no matter how diligent you and your lawyer are about trying to work the case out fairly and quickly. That being said, you should not put ammunition in the gun for your spouse to use against you.
That means no dating, no carousing, and no partying. If custody may be an issue it means making the children your number one priority (they should be that anyway, right?). Even things that are perfectly legal and harmless any other time can be twisted to look suspicious or worse in the hands of your spouse’s lawyer.
Suppose for example that you go out for dinner and drinks with members of the office to celebrate a fellow employee’s birthday. This sounds harmless enough. But, in a custody case these questions may be asked: While you chose to go out drinking with your friends, your spouse was at home taking care of the children, correct? Are you having a romantic relationship with Joe/Jane who was also at the party? How many drinks did you have that night? This is something you routinely did during the marriage, isn’t it (i.e. choosing social events over your family)? You drove home that night under the influence of alcohol didn’t you? Etc.
You get the point. This is a silly example, but why even open yourself up to this line of questioning. Don’t put the judge in the position having to decide whether you are telling the truth that this was a harmless and isolated event.
Spend time with your kids, work, stay around the house, exercise, and attend to your spiritual life. Be above reproach. Be Good. Come to think of it, Its not bad advice whether you are facing divorce or not.