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Nov 27, 2016BY: Neil Grossman
IN: After the Divorce, The Collaborative Team

Thanksgiving Dinner After the Divorce: an open letter

I’m at Thanksgiving Dinner with my family and it’s so sad because my kids aren’t here. This is the first Thanksgiving Holiday since the divorce, and it’s my ex-spouse’s year for the kids.

This got me thinking what I am thankful for about the divorce. I’m so happy we were able to agree on getting a Collaborative Divorce. Many of our friends weren’t able to agree and they went to court and the judge made the decisions. Some of them are still fighting years later. The parenting plan that the judge gave them worked for the first year, but then their circumstances changed and whenever there’s an opportunity they fight. They never learned to get the bitterness from the divorce and how to set their anger aside and focus on what’s best for their kids. Rather than compromise and reach agreements they put their anger in the forefront and focus on that.

Our collaborative team was so helpful. The attorneys kept us focused on the details and worked hard not to prompt our anger. The anger came out anyway until we learned to deal with it and set it aside, making decisions about our children. The family specialist/coach was very helpful with this. The financial specialist was great in assisting us to find options we didn’t even realize were possible.

As divorced parents, we are able to co-parent well – not that we don’t get stuck and dig our heels in. But we are usually able to use the tools we learned during the collaborative divorce to work our way out of the hole and reach agreements. So, although I’m sad, I’m also thankful.