Don't Be Silenced After Divorce (Talk About Finances!)Mar 07, 2023
Going through a divorce is tough. There are many aspects of life that will change, but the one that seems to rise to the top is money. Many women feel shame and uncertainty when it comes to their financial situation after a divorce.
Maybe you weren't the one who handled the family finances during your marriage, and you know little about the detailed expenses, accounts and investments. Now you find yourself facing divorce and to add insult to injury, you feel alone, left to tackle the financial side of things.
Oftentimes money is a hush hush topic in families before divorce. Money talk becomes even more taboo when divorce strikes. Not talking about finances to your family actually speaks louder than you think. Your silence equals shame.
A CNBC survey found that 56% of divorced people almost never talk about finances with family members, versus just 27% of all survey respondents. What does this mean? It means that divorce tends to make people talk less about money.
It's inevitable that your finances will change when you go through a divorce. Everyone around you will have an opinion about what you "should" do with your money. Advice will come from all directions, whether you want it or not. Chances are, it will be unsolicited. But keep in mind that financial advice from others is based on their perception of your situation, not your own. They are on the outside looking in. Only you know the real story. You write the narrative when it comes to discussing it with family and others.
It's time to throw shame out the window and for you to feel confident in your new financial situation. Here are a few key steps to ensure you have confidence and stability moving forward.
Step 1: Determine the Cause
It's been found that women place paying off their debts higher on their list of priorities than they do saving for their future. Anxiety and fear about paying off debt is a large cause for staying silent.
Maybe you are embarrassed about your lack of understanding or simply want to shield your children or other family members from the feelings that go along with financial burdens?
Knowing the cause for your silence will help you understand how to approach change and take control.
Step 2: Find your Support System
If you don't want to or can't talk to your closest family members, maybe meeting others who are going through the same experience will help you. Hearing other women discuss their own financial issues after divorce can bring the perspective you need to move forward with confidence. Online divorce support groups are out there. Find one that best meets your needs and dive in.
Contacting a professional is another great place to find support. A financial advisor can provide a greater understanding of what options are best for you. You are now financially responsible for yourself and with a little help and support you can start to focus on you and prepare for your life after divorce.
Step 3: Set Boundaries
Once you determine the cause of your silence and find some support to gain confidence, consider setting boundaries with family members. Setting boundaries for a variety of areas in your life after divorce is helpful. With your money and finances, it's critical. You decided how much information you will share and who you will take advice from.
If you have children, they are going through this divorce right beside you. They likely have their own anxieties, fears and shame. Getting in control of your feelings before discussing money with them is a must. They will respond better to a parent who is caring for them with confidence and creating stability.
Again, YOU are writing the narrative. What you choose or choose not to share with your own family or in-laws is up to you. They may have the best of intentions, but only you can decide how much you want to share and how much "advice" you are willing to accept and discuss.
The money in your divorce is important. Get our free resource, The Top Ten Money Questions You Need to Ask Your Attorney.
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