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Divorce is not like a surgery where you go to sleep and when you wake up, it's all over.

Far from it. Divorce is hard work. Resolving to work closely with your attorney and getting it right the first time can greatly affect the outcome. Commit to doing the homework that is asked of you. Embrace change and know that your divorce will affect every aspect of your life, sometimes for the better. One of the things I find myself saying, and it bears repeating:

This too shall pass.


No one wins in divorce. The people who prevail with their dignity intact and emancipation on their own terms are active particpants in their representation. Toughest of all is maintaining a sense of humor in perhaps the most unfunny situations.

I believe in educating my clients in law and procedure so they know what to expect. Clear thinking is essential. Once you are educated in these principles, all related facts become powerful weapons with which to achieve your goals in an amicable fashion, or, if necessary, at trial. My common sense approach to law enhances my ability to help people solve their legal problems in and out of the courtroom.

One way I initially coach my clients is by asking them to get help from their divorced friends. Ask them, "What went wrong in your divorce?" Write down their answers, and then turn the tables by asking yourself what you can learn from their mistakes. Chances are, if your friend had been better informed, they would not have made the same decisions and the same mistakes. Now ask yourself: What do I do to become better informed and better organized in my divorce?

If you don't understand something about your divorce, chances are your attorney doesn't understand it either. Like other professions, divorce and family law is highly specialized and full of complexities. You need to be represented by someone who understands the system and the law and human nature. You'll find that it pays to educate yourself, up front, rather than in retrospect. How do you know what to do in a divorce if you've never been through a divorce? How do you manage your money? How do you make this easier on your children?

Follow my blog. It is a running commentary on divorce-relevant issues that concern you now. My experience of "love, law and relationships" is unique.

Professional counseling is another solution for helping your family better handle the stress of your divorce. My office can provide contact information for the qualified mental health professionals we work with in my practice. I wish you well in your endeavors and hope that you can somehow manage to "divorce your loved one with dignity"

This too shall pass.

Douglas Kneller, Esq.

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