If you are getting divorced, you likely hear a lot of people telling you a lot of things. Your spouse, family, friends, and even strangers on the internet can fill your head with suggestions and opinions.
Amid all these voices, it can be hard to know who to listen to. Under these circumstances, consider focusing on three of the most important ones.
If your legal matter affects your child, listening to their thoughts and feelings can be crucial in securing a peaceful outcome. The key here is to “listen”; don’t prompt just what you want to hear. Just listen and understand and empathize.
One family court in the U.S. is taking this approach to another level. In the program, judges or other professionals hold 30-minute interviews with kids. During that time, the children can speak openly with a third party about their thoughts and feelings regarding matters like parental divorce.
Parents listen to these sessions with mediators and lawyers, which the children know.
This approach has been called a “game changer” in ensuring a child’s voice is heard and helping parents resolve family disputes more quickly and in ways that benefit the child.
The one inside yourself
Trusting your instincts in a situation you have never been in can be challenging, like ending a marriage or fighting for time with your child. And you may not know what to think.
However, that voice inside you – whether you call it your gut, your conscience, or something else – can tell you more than you think. It could alert you to situations like:
- A spouse concealing assets
- Parental alienation efforts
- False statements
- Someone following or spying on you
Even if you don’t have direct knowledge or evidence of these situations right away, you could pick up on clues. Listen to what your inner voice is telling you, and discuss your concerns with your family lawyer.
You must listen to and obey Ontario court orders, even if you don’t like what they say. Pay especially close attention when they say anything regarding:
- Filing requirements
- Support obligations
- Children’s issues
- No-contact orders
These three voices may not necessarily be the loudest, but they can be the most important during any family legal dispute.