Dealing with Divorce in Your Twenties

Dealing with Divorce in Your Twenties
In previous generations, it was the norm to get married in your twenties or sometimes even a bit earlier. It is only a recent trend that people are waiting until later in life to get married. Divorce is something that most people think that only older people go through but that’s not true. Many people divorce in their twenties after marrying young. Here are some great pieces of advice from the Huffington Post to help you heal from your divorce in your twenties.

It’s easy to be hard on yourself when going through divorce in your 20s. While all your friends are busy planning their weddings on Pinterest, you’re planning a new life without your spouse and dealing with mounting legal bills.

To make the process a little easier, we asked experts — divorce lawyers, psychologists and financial advisors — to offer their best advice. Here’s what they had to say:

1. Chalk the divorce up to a lapse in judgment.

Don’t fall into the trap of feeling like a failure for splitting up in your 20s. Forgive yourself and remember that you were young and maybe a little naive when you said “I do,” said Andra Brosh, a Los Angeles-based psychologist.

 “The truth is that you probably landed here because of a lapse in judgment and unrealistic expectations of the relationship,” she said. “Blame it on your brain; some research has suggested that the brain is not fully mature or developed until well into your 20s.”

2. Learn from the mistakes you made in your marriage.

You’re only allowed to sulk about splitting up for so long. Eventually, you need to reframe your thinking and see the divorce as a stepping stone to personal growth, said Antonio Borrello, a Detroit-based psychologist. Ultimately, divorce should teach you what you need to do differently in order to have a healthier, longer lasting relationship the next time around, he explained.

“You’ll still need to work on whatever it was that killed your marriage even after you get out,” he said. “If you don’t, you’ll drag that junk into your next relationship. Develop some insight and take ownership of the part you played in the downfall of your marriage.”

3. Be wary of rebounding.

Yes, you’re still young and Tinder is very tempting, but for your own well-being, it might be best to take a dating and relationship hiatus, said dating coach Neely Steinberg.

“Spend time developing your independence and discovering who you are outside of a relationship,” she said. “Understand that your existence is not validated by you being in a relationship or by another person. You validate you. Once you are good by yourself and you love who you are on your own, then maybe take a small, smart step to move forward again in your dating life.”

4. Consider mediation as an alternative to litigation.

There’s one advantage young divorcés have over those who go through the process later in life: You likely have less marital assets to divvy up (property, retirement accounts, etc.) and no children to shield from ugly custody battles. Given that, you may want to forgo traditional litigation and consider meeting with a mediator to work out the terms of your divorce, said divorce coach Laura Miolla.

“It’s faster, cheaper and gives you far more control over the process and the agreement you end up with,” she explained. “With less to negotiate, mediation is your best path to divorce without the huge bite out of your bank account in legal fees.”

5. Shared debt may complicate the process.

You might not have much property to divide but you may have shared debt. If you split your joint debt (“I’ll be responsible for this credit card, if you’re responsible for that one”), know that complications could arise later, said certified divorce financial analyst Donna Cheswick.

“Where I see problems occur is when one spouse fails to make monthly payments or files for bankruptcy,” Cheswick said. “If this occurs, the creditors can, and will, go after either party to recoup the full amount of the debt, plus interest and penalties. Lenders don’t care what the couple agreed to in their divorce agreement. They see the credit as a legal obligation of bothparties and will enforce the debt obligation, regardless of marital status.”

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Polly Tatum is a highly qualified and dedicated Worcester Family Law & Estate Planning Attorney who can help you in your time of need. Call now for a strategy session.


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