The High Road

Cindy Best

 

Divorce is one of the most financially traumatic things you can go through. Money spent on getting mad or getting even is money wasted.

~Richard Wagner?

?Always take the high road.? You may be wondering why you should take the high road when you sense that your spouse will not. Our answer is that for this process to proceed smoothly, someone has to start out on the high road and ask the other side for good behavior. Remember; ?You teach people how to treat you.? This is exactly what you are doing to start your divorce.

If you do not display the utmost in courtesy and cooperation, you can be assured that the other side will not do so. Be careful how you begin this procedure, because it sets the tone for the entire process. If you begin in a hateful and hostile manner, you most likely will be met with the same. Even if you feel ill will toward your spouse, it is important to keep those feelings at bay during this time.

A hostile and mean-spirited start makes any retreat or reconciliation much more difficult. Also, a calm, reasoned beginning bodes well for settlement, negotiation and getting what you ultimately want and need. The legal divorce process is the wrong arena to fight your emotional battles; those belong elsewhere. The court system is not equipped to handle these emotional issues and you will find yourself disappointed if you place those expectations on the process, on the court, on your partner, or on your attorney.

Part of your decision-making at this crossroads is whether you need to obtain counsel or whether you and your partner would like to attempt negotiations to work out all your issues in mediation. Again, if you come out swinging, it is hard to reverse course. If, on the other hand, you attempt a gentler, kinder approach from the beginning, you can always change course, should it become necessary in order to protect your interests. If you try the softer approach at the beginning, you will have a better chance at negotiation later.

Often, people think that hard-nosed aggression is the only way to get what they want or need. We believe that you both can get what you deserve in a win-win situation, making the best of the bad situation of a divorce. There can be times when an aggressive approach is a necessary evil, but this book is written for people who want to get what they want in a fair, professional, kind and gentle manner.

You can break the stalemate and start off on the right foot. However, taking the high road is not enough. You must also understand Arizona law and your rights under that law. You must understand the legal process, its abilities and its limitations. Once you have that basic knowledge, you can continue collecting data and making sure that divorce is a step that you need to take; indeed, whether you even want to enter the arena.

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