Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin announced this week that they are ending their 11 year marriage. They termed their decision to separate as “conscious uncoupling.” While most people would just call it “divorce,” the fact that they were aware (i.e. conscious) of their need to separate for themselves and for their children is commendable. The ability to take ownership of the decision to end a marriage gives way to moving forward for each person. Many couples have not yet achieved that level of acceptance as a result of fear, reluctance, denial, anger or resistance. Despite the fact that the divorce process affects everyone differently, there are certain behaviors which can aid in the “uncoupling” process:
Be Honest. Telling the truth – good, bad and ugly – will save a lot of time and money when you are working with a lawyer. The truth will come out eventually and it’s always better if it comes out sooner rather than later.
Be Open. Going through divorce is an experience. The law, by design, has certain limitations. However, being open to creative and various solutions to resolve a problem often results in a better outcome. Today, more than ever, there are a plethora of resources and methods for resolving problems for divorcing couples including collaborative divorce and mediation.
Be Active. You know your spouse better than any lawyer or judge ever will. Take an interest in and actively participate in your case so that along with a lawyer, you become the best advocate for yourself and your children.
Regardless of whether or not a couple has agreed to “consciously uncouple,” the process can be greatly impacted by certain conscious behavior.