Many people come into my office and ask me if I can be “mean.” This is a difficult question because I would rather answer them and say I am tough, honest and effective. I ask them what they really mean by “mean”? Do you want “justice”? It probably doesn’t exist within your idea of the word. Do you want to “win” at all costs? Do you want to hurt your spouse? If so, you probably need someone else. Do you want to use the law to attain the best possible result for you and your children? If so, I am your woman.
Divorce is not easy. The court system is not a place to assuage your pain or hurt from a spouse’s affair or from years of abuse or neglect. It is best to keep your sights on what you really want to accomplish within the bounds of what the system is set up to provide.
Being tough is one thing. Being mean to your spouse often hurts your case, and it often is unnecessarily expensive. Are you willing to spend more money assuaging your feelings and reduce the pot you might receive to continue your life in order to feel better by being mean? Are you willing to incur the wrath of the court by being difficult for no reason? Being mean may mean to you that you don’t let your spouse see the children. Will that hurt your spouse, or your children? Have you thought about whether that will affect your relationship with your children and scar them indefinitely? If you don’t have children will it hurt your spouse or backfire against you, and cause your spouse to retaliate? Being mean may mean that you don’t provide support to your spouse. But how will that affect your children, or the division of the marital property? Cutting off money causes unnecessary stress on your children as well as on your spouse, and frequently causes you more money in attorneys’ fees.