In a storybook world divorces would be as amicable as falling in love. People would look at their children, their belongings, and their lives and try to figure out how to detangle all that they have built together with care. Instead, most of the time, one or both parties begin that destruction process with a sledgehammer. They don’t think about the consequences even when they are inevitably linked to the other person for the rest of their lives because they have a child together. Sometimes it’s one person whose destruction is careful, almost delicately careful, while the other is blasting away with dynamite. In this type of divorce it is very difficult to come to a conclusion that is fair. One person is being fair and the other is taking constantly. This doesn’t end once the divorce is final. It often ends up with both parties back in court time and time again. There are, however, a few things you can do to mitigate the issue of a difficult spouse to keep them from draining your checkbook in litigation:
- Just don’t deal with them. Let your lawyer talk to their lawyer. Lawyers don’t like to lose. The last thing we want is to go into a courtroom with a difficult client who is focused on winning knowing that we don’t stand a chance. It hurts our pride, our reputation, and gives us a pretty good chance of getting a bar complaint. Every lawyer has had that client where they’ve had to say, “I know, agree, and understand, but my client wants….” Eventually that lawyer, if she respects the foundation on which she built her career, will explain to that client that they are being completely unreasonable. Normally, at that point, the client either gets it or moves on to another attorney.
- Give in when it’s necessary. There are little things that people get caught arguing over. People get angry over the principle of the matter, when they truthfully need to throw up their hands and stomp off to Walmart to buy a replacement. When the other side is taking a stand on something irrational, don’t join the fight. You’re just throwing fuel on the fire. Simply walk away.
- Don’t always give in, especially when your lawyer says not to. Sometimes giving in is best for everyone involved. However, if you quickly become a pushover just to get the entire thing finished, you’ll more than likely end up with a terrible settlement that’s hard to change and back in court each and every year. You’re setting up a pattern of giving in when things get hard, making your ex realize that they can get what they want each and every time they push a little harder.