A study of the human condition reveals that a good segment of the population create their own problems, or make problems they didn’t create worse. Let me explain. First, recognize that much of what happens in our lives is beyond our control. In the field of divorce, many examples exist. A spouse’s happiness and persons changing over time are facts that we have no choice but to accept.
People are curious. Despite the impermanence of life itself, it is very common for folks to have very detailed plans about very minute aspects of their future. When a divorce happens, it very likely disrupts plans previously made. For that reason, and for the reason that change occurs at inopportune times, I have some advice: don’t become attached to a specific outcome with reference to your divorce.
When people get stuck in the expectation of a specific result, options are limited and the possibility of creative problem solving is curtailed. I have heard many times that one party will never pay alimony to the other. Not one dollar. Well that’s fine, and if that attitude goes unchallenged, the matter will be left in the hands of a Circuit Court Judge who may or may not award alimony. After some discussion, perhaps some amount of spousal support for some period of time makes more sense than a trial.
I believe in challenging firm convictions. In that exercise, and through Socratic dialogue, what is truly important to a client will emerge. I will discuss that matters of principle can be worth fighting for, but can also cost a lot in fees. I encourage clients not to have fixed ideas about the way the future will turn out. Rather, have general intentions, and allow creative problem solving to assist you in overcoming barriers to personal happiness.by Patrick Gaffney