Ask The Divorce Coach: Archives


In order to address specific issues of mediation and litigation, please feel free to ask questions; the responses will be posted here without your name, to maintain the confidentiality that is so important at this time. Please email with questions or for a free copy of the exercises mentioned in these articles.


EPIPHANY is the sudden realization of the essence or meaning of an occurrence. It may even occur when we realize that something wonderful has occurred as the result of a challenge or trauma. In divorce, one EPIPHANY may relate to our new freedom or to the realization of our own growth.

Once you have worked through the first four STAGES OF DIVORCE; Panic, Denial, Agony and Rage, you are free. You are not free because you will never have those feelings again; you are free because you will never be controlled by them again. Once you realize that it is not the circumstances that create your pain, you are on the path to EPIPHANY. When you see that it is your thoughts about your situation that create suffering, you are halfway to PEACE. Before you see the truth, you will first need to SEE. In divorce most of the moments of EPIPHANY occur when we realize that a divorce offers freedom. There are many forms of freedom; does your divorce promote internal peace, physical safety, autonomy in the choices you may make to raise your children; or options for your career and financial growth?

When a situation falls below our expectations, we are encouraged to fight, avoid, or resist. When we accept life as it is that can be one EPIPHANY. Although acceptance does not mean that we enjoy the current situation, until we accept it, can we begin to transform it? In marriage, if we misunderstand the dynamic and try to hold on, we may still lose the relationship and lose ourselves, too, and understanding this may be another EPIPHANY. Our marriages may have failed but we are not failures. Divorce can become the greatest opportunity of your life. This EPIPHANY can be more beneficial than any divorce settlement and acceptance offers the power to create the most successful Marital Settlement Agreement that you can. Once you allow yourself to heal, you can sail through future potential disasters understanding and using these same 7 STAGES OF DIVORCE which are also the 7 STAGES OF LIFE.

'Your wish for unity will not be possible without the free choice of your partner. Ultimately you must let your spouse have, be, or do what he or she will not change. This is one of the most important epiphanies of divorce.' Frank Zizzo, Ph.D. consultant to

Dear Divorce Coach

I finally realized I can't do this any more. I can't spend the rest of my life in this miserable marriage! I'm afraid of getting a divorce but I'm more afraid of the alternative. How can I get a 'quickie divorce' so that I don't waste any more time and money on this mistake?


Quickie Please

Dear Quickie,

One option is a mediated divorce which has become extremely popular as it offers the chance to resolve your financial and childcare challenges yourselves, without attorneys or a judge weighing in on your intimate issues. Once you have begun discussions with your husband, with a mediator present, you will discover if you can accomplish a simple uncontested divorce or whether you need to consider litigation. As America's leading marriage and divorce coach I have created a formula that works in every case: 1. before mentioning the 'D' word to your spouse, I strongly urge you to confer with an accountant specializing in divorce also called dissolution to learn the financial divorce formula that will affect your case. In every state there is software to determine child support and spousal support is based on recommendations and factors that can be clarified for you by the CPA, too. Thus you avoid placing yourself in a vulnerable position asking for divorce without first understanding your options. 2. do everything possible to motivate your spouse to mediate as this saves families thousands and even hundreds of thousands of dollars that may be the cost of attorneys' fees. 3. with mediation, you make your own decisions and if something changes, you may be able to reconsider the new issues and renegotiate. 4. do everything possible to avoid escalating any arguments with your spouse as any argument has a huge cost in time, money and even health.


The Divorce Coach

Dear Divorce Coach,

My wife and I have been growing apart for years. The nest is now empty and we have suddenly realized our marriage is in trouble. Is there some way for us to reconnect that really works?


Not resigned

Dear Not Resigned,

The shift from the everyday mode of co-parenting to beginning to recreate intimacy in your marriage requires new skills. If your marriage was founded on a firm basis of communication and shared needs, you will most likely succeed. If not, use The 6 Part Conversation which includes self-empathy, empathy for the other, self-expression using feelings and needs words instead of judgments and accusations, reflection and clarification to be sure that each of you have been heard, and generating solutions based on requests and offers. As you begin to invent new ways of connecting, you will rediscover what brought you together, kept you together, and continues to bind you to one another. More peace and less tension in your communication are guaranteed if you practice the 6 Part Conversation, and you will be thrilled with new levels of joy and intimacy.


The Divorce Coach

Dear Divorce Coach, When I left my abusive relationship I didn't think I would make it. My kids and I fled from Ohio and went into a shelter. But now, my life is totally different. I wish it hadn't taken this for me to wake up but it did. Thank God I lived through it all.


Safe at last

Dear Safe,

I feel delighted when I read your words of inspiration to so many others. The Path to Peace most often forces us directly through our greatest fear. You have earned your new life. The courage that supported you away from violence will continue to lead you and your children. Now you have the peace to consider acquiring new skills so that all your future choices are based on the ability to spot danger and disconnect from it before it gets close. With the 41/2 Minutes to Peace training, we understand that we must be able to calm our self down within 5 minutes no matter what the trigger, no matter what hooks our fear, anger or sadness so that our options are not diminished and so that we remain in a peaceful and therefore safe state. This training allows you to choose open-eyed meditation, self-empathy with a deep yogic breath, the 4 Questions of Inquiry in which we reconsider the stories we tell about life; or any tool that allows you to self-generate peace within minutes. The common denominator for all those who have attended my workshops including the prison workshops I have led are as follows: we must self-generate peace when we feel frightened, angry or sad; we cannot depend on others to calm us down or to be calm around us etc. this is our job and it guarantees us a peaceful joyous life.


The Divorce Coach

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