Who needs a divorce coach? 5 groups of people (and one who doesn’t)

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date published

6th June 2024

written by

Emma Heptonstall

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date published

6th June 2024

The online world is awash with myths and misunderstandings about divorce coaching – what it is and who it’s for. In truth, I’ve worked with hundreds of women, from TV producers to teachers, from homemakers to luxury property brokers. So, who needs a divorce coach? If you fall into one of the five groups I share in this blog, I know I can help save you time, money and emotional energy in your divorce. There is one group of people I’m not best placed to help, though. Read on to find out who they are!

1. Women who want value for time and money as they divorce

One of the myths you’ll hear about divorce coaching is that it’s only for people who can’t afford legal representation. Absolutely not true! While a divorce coach can be a valuable lifeline for people who choose or need to self represent (more on that in a moment), those in higher wealth marriages still want value for money and to plan for their future. 

One of my clients, who works in the media world, is working with me over the next six months, and has also budgeted for a lawyer she has a rapport with, and who understands her situation inside out. Working with me means she has 360 insight on her divorce and her future, and can have more focussed discussions with her legal team, rather than them being the first port of call for everything. Which will save her money. 

Could this client afford to pay the legal team, without having me in the picture? Yes, if she had to. But working 1-1 with me means she gets clarity on what she wants and needs. It’s more efficient and more cost effective. And, in her words, ‘Why would I pay more if I can get exactly what I need with you?’

2. Women who want or need to self-represent in their divorce

Some of my clients do indeed self-represent in their divorce. Some, because they have no other choice. Some hadn’t ever intended to self-represent but after working with me they realise their situation isn’t as complex as they’d feared, and they are perfectly capable of doing it themselves with minimal fuss and legal expense. 

If you are forced into self-representation due to finances, then a divorce coach can be such a valuable investment. If money is tight I absolutely understand that it can feel like a leap of faith to spend on professional support in your divorce. But it can save you thousands, even tens or hundreds of thousands, in terms of your future life. A mistake, or lack of knowledge about financial planning can mean you are left with a settlement that’s unfair and inadequate. 

A divorce coach can help you get clear on what you want and need, and make a plan that’s within your means. Which might mean a shift in lifestyle. It might mean some big changes. All of which you are capable of taking control of, I promise. We can work through it together. 

3. Women who need to be tactical about legal support

If there is any complexity around marital assets, you have children, or shared business interests, it is usually a good idea to enlist legal support at some stage. However, instructing a solicitor is not an all or nothing deal. It’s perfectly possible to take charge of some parts of the process yourself, and bring in the professionals tactically. Which means you save yourself money. 

I help you to map out what you want from both divorce and your post-divorce life. I help you step into the mindset of being the CEO of your divorce – which is what you are. And then you can make informed decisions about how and when to instruct a solicitor. You do the elements you can, you instruct them to do the elements you’d rather have in professional hands. You’re in charge. It’s as simple as that. 

4. Women who want to break patterns and understand themselves better

Most women who seek out divorce coaching want help ‘sorting their divorce out’. Which they get from working with me, of course. But what actually happens through divorce coaching is they ‘sort themselves out’. Which has a legacy far greater than the Final Consent Order. It means you get a clear understanding on:

  • What matters most to you
  • How you ended up in this situation
  • What you want from your future
  • What needs to change in your life. 

And that makes you a pattern breaker, a cycle breaker, and sets you up for life lived on your terms, forever. What could be more important than that? 

5. Want to focus on the future

The number one thing you need to focus on when navigating divorce is your future. Yes, divorce is a stressful, often painful experience. But it’s short-lived relative to the rest of your life. 

Marriage separation is a line in the sand. A wake up call. A sign from the universe declaring ‘enough!’ And it’s that spirit that you can take into your divorce. Not to play games and ‘beat’ your soon-to-be-ex. But to stand up for what you want and need, fight for it, and build a life that’s meaningful and important to you. Not one that you’ve drifted into, or that’s come about by accident. 

Divorce is an ending, yes. But it’s also a fresh start. It can bring a powerful energy that drives you to start putting your needs front and centre. I am here for that. 

Do you recognise yourself in at least one of these camps? Do you want excellent value for money, the ability to self represent, or tactically instruct a legal team? Do you understand the importance of reconnecting with who you are, and focussing on what you want from the rest of your life? Then you are absolutely ready for divorce coaching.

There are people who I don’t take on as clients, however. Because it would cost me my integrity to do so. I don’t work with people who aren’t prepared to move forward.

What do I mean by that? Some people are stuck in their story. They want to tell and retell the terrible things that have happened to them, and have someone make it go away. I can’t do that for them. No-one can do that for them.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not heartless! I regularly encourage my clients to take breaks from their divorce. To cry. To rage. To feel all their emotions. As part of their recovery process – as part of their navigation of divorce. But that can’t be the whole picture. 

If you are in a place where you can’t do anything other than relive your story, then your first port of call needs to be a trauma-informed therapist. Someone who can help you work through your story, and get to a point where you are ready to take the reins again. It would be irresponsible of me, or any coach, to try to do this work with you. Divorce coaching is all about the future. It’s about the rest of your life. 

Ready to look to the future? Book in your free 15 minute chat here. 

 

About Emma

Emma Heptonstall, the Divorce Alchemist is the author of the Amazon best-selling book How to be a Lady Who Leaves, the Ultimate Guide to Getting Divorce Ready. A former lawyer, Emma is a family mediator and founder of Get Divorce Ready, the online self-study programmes, and the newly released ‘Should I be a Lady Who Leaves?’. For More Information on Should I be a Lady Who Leaves? click here.

Emma has been featured on BBC Radio, The Telegraph, the iPaper and in Marie Claire Magazine. Emma is also the host of  The Six Minute Divorce Podcast. To find out more visit www.emmaheptonstall.com

 

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