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What to do with unsolicited divorce advice

Posted on November 5, 2013 in the Divorce category.

Recommendations during divorce are just like recommendations for fine restaurants. Everyone is going to give advice based on their own individual experiences. Because of this, if you are going through a divorce, you may get unsolicited advice. Don’t be surprised if someone tells you what you are entitled to (and how they may be completely wrong).

When confronted with differing accounts about what you should ask for in the divorce, it is natural to become confused and ambivalent about the entire process. After all, no one looks forward to the emotional battles and turmoil that can come with divorce. With that said, it is helpful to do the following when you are offered unsolicited advice regarding your divorce.

Tell them what you want – Friends and family naturally want the best for you, so they may offer harsh advice (i.e. “Get out of there now!” or “She’s a horrible person, I’m glad you left”) because they want your pain to stop. But instead of the rebukes of your soon-to-be ex, be specific about what you need in order to move through this process.

Say “thank you” and move on – This is important because it is your divorce, not theirs. If you have a plan to deal with the issues and it works for you, that’s the only thing that matters. After all, you will have to live with the decisions you make.

Get advice from a professional – An experienced family law attorney can give professional, unvarnished advice for your individual circumstances. It may not be consistent with a friend’s advice, but it should work for you.

Source:, “How to deal with unwanted divorce advice,” Bob Tomes & Jane Warren, November 2, 2013