119 Transcript: Deconstructing Divorce (with Sally Boyle)

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J: You're listening to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast, episode number 119. We're talking today about how to know when you need to end a relationship and how to do so amicably. Stay tuned.

Intro: Welcome to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast, stories of vibrant women living happy lives. And now, your host, Jen Riday.

J: Welcome to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast, I'm Dr. Jen Riday. Thank you so much for being here and for listening. Last week, I spoke with Maggie Reyes all about creating a 5-star marriage and today we're going to go to the other end of that spectrum and talk about how to know when you need to end a relationship; how to deconstruct the divorce process so it's not painful and awful for everyone involved, but so that it benefits everyone involved. Let's go ahead and dive into this episode.

I’m talking with Sally Boyle today and she's the author of the new book, ‘Deconstructing Divorce: Taking the Mystery out of Divorce and Its Impact on Your Family, Finances, and Future’. She's a certified financial planner and certified divorce financial analyst who has provided financial planning and business advice for over 30 years. She's principle of SJ Boyle Wealth Planning LLC in Hanover, New Hampshire. After working through her own difficult and unexpected divorce, she committed her life's work to helping others in similar situations. Sally is the mother of 4 sons and the grandmother 2 twin granddaughters. She enjoys spending that day hiking or skiing in the White Mountains, sailing in one of New England's beautiful lakes or enjoying a family day in New England. Welcome, Sally, I’m so glad you're here.

S: I am too, Jen. Thanks for having me.

J: So I'm a mom of 3 boys and you've topped it; you have 4 boys. Wow, that's amazing.

S: That means that goes straight to heaven.


J: Okay. Well, I have 3 girls and I'm told they'll be harder as teenagers than boys, I'm afraid, but I still think maybe boys were trickier; we'll see. (Laughs)

S: Well, that… that's what I hear too is girls are harder. I think boys are risk-takers and girls are thinkers, but sometimes the thinkers are hard to keep up with, and so…

J: That's right, that's right. Well, let's dive in and hear your favorite quote and then tell us your story after that.

S: Ah, my favorite quote is, “Call the attorney and last.” When you're engaged or considering a divorce, I feel like the attorney shouldn't be your first call, they should be your last call. So maybe it should be, “Attorneys; our last call.” (Laughs)

J: Oh, that's a good one. So why that quote? Why is that important?

S: Well, because I… you know, it's interesting. I feel like you should know what you want to do first. You should be aware of your options in terms of divorce. For example, when I got divorced, I thought that going to court, litigation was the only option. And one of the things that I've learned is that there are multiple ways to get divorced. You can start at your kitchen table if you want to. You can go directly to mediation, to a mediator, to an arbitrator. You can use something that's relatively new called collaborative divorce, where you sit around the table, both of your attorneys and you ,and you hash it out with litigation being the last option. But if you go to an attorney who has a litigation bias, just like going to a surgeon, you might get litigation advice. Sometimes we go to a surgeon, we're going to get a surgical option; if we go to a naturopath, we might get something very different. It's the same when you're considering a divorce process; you will get the bias of the professional that you're visiting or considering employing.

J: Okay. Well, wow, that's great. I didn't even know about any of that. There's a lot of stigma and maybe even shame still around divorce. Can you speak a little about that to anyone who might be just really struggling in there and that ‘D’ word has popped into their minds just a little, you know? What do you say about that first step there?

S: Well, you know, it's interesting. I mean, I think that there is a lot of stigma around divorce and I think, you know, we feel like we're failures if we consider divorce; we've failed at our, you know, relationship and we failed our family. But the reality is, you know, my experiences, we're married for an awfully long time these days and, you know, we're married probably longer than most of, you know, our ancestors lived even. So rather than blaming ourselves or shaming ourselves at all, I think if we've given our marriage a really fair shot, we've communicated to the best of our ability, we have maybe even sought some family counseling, you know, I think we should be able to forgive ourselves. Because as a friend of mine said, “Your cells completely replicate every 7 years. So you're a completely different person every 7 years anyway.” And maybe we should just be a little bit more lighthearted about considering divorce because it's not a failure, it's a recognition that you as 2 mature people have just grown apart, that your visions with regard to your life and your family are no longer the same. And it's okay to acknowledge that so that you can live your life in a way that is more consistent with your inner being, so to speak.

J: That's great advice. And I was thinking there seem to be 2 reasons, at least for women, that they would stay in a marriage that… well, there's probably way more than 2, but 2 that come to my mind why women would stay in a marriage where they're really having way more conflict than they'd like to have. And the first being children, this belief that, “Gosh, we need to stay together for the kids,” and then the second… well, let's go with that first one first and then we'll come to the second one; hit them one at a time. So what do you say to that? People are like, “I can't ruin my kids’ lives,”? You know, I have a friend who said she feels that her parents’ divorce was the number one trauma in her life and that she's so angry at them for doing it, and she felt like they should have worked it out. So, I mean, there's so much emotion around this. How do you talk about that to people?

S: Yeah there's no question about it. And I… I would argue that, again, because litigation has been the primary way to get divorced, that might be the reason that your friend had a bad experience. It's interesting, you know, we do try to walk through some of the most difficult decisions we'll ever make in our lives, you know, “What are we going to do with our money? What are we going to do with our children?” at a time that we really are emotionally unbalanced. And I don't mean unbalanced in a professional sense, I mean, we are going through a really significant split, I mean, we're leaving the person that we thought we were going to be with for the rest of our lives, we're acknowledging that, you know, we aren't happy. And I think when we tell our partner that we want a divorce, we've hurt them, we've unbalanced them, we've rejected them, we've made them feel bad about themselves. And so it's at this particular moment that we then decide we're going to figure all this other stuff out. And it's really, really hard to do. So, so often because of that, you know, those first 6 months that we're talking about divorce, we aren't at our best and we probably don't put our best foot forward in front of our children even. And especially if you're the one being left, you feel rejected and hurt.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: And, you know, there's actually been some… you know, some research around this where, you know, therapists have looked into the emotional response that people go through when they're divorcing, and it's very similar to any loss; to… to the death of a partner to… you know, anytime we experience loss, we feel confused, we feel pain, we feel sorrow, we might even be mad at that, you know, our partner who maybe died earlier than we expected, we're certainly mad at our partner who wants to leave us. And so we are probably not at our best behavior and then we enter into an arena that we have no experience at all. We're being advised usually by a turn who are trained at litigation, who stopped the communication that goes between us, you know, all of a sudden you're talking to your attorney who's talking to their attorney who's talking to them.

J: Wow.

S: So much gets lost in the translation.

J: Yeah.

S: And it's just a process that is really difficult at a time that's really difficult for us. We're entering into a difficult era in our lives and using a process that we're completely unfamiliar with, and we're making big decisions at that time. And that's why, you know, my advice to people is to educate yourself. First it was the purpose, it was the reason that I wrote ‘Deconstructing Divorce because, you know, I think we're a lot less afraid when we feel like we have knowledge, we know what's going on, we know what to expect, we understand our options, and we can think about them before we begin to even make decisions, much less hire professionals to help us. And so there was a big reason for the book because I feel like knowledge is power.

J: Uh-huh.

S: Knowledge gives us control. Lack of knowledge makes us afraid, and that's the last time we should be making critical decisions about our finances and our family.

J: Exactly. And I love how you referenced fear and anger; there are so many emotions. You're essentially taking the vision you had for your life, tossing it, and then that leaves this big gaping hole of an unknown future or that level of uncertainty can just be so fear inducing. And then you add kids and finances to all of that, yeah, it's crazy complex with so many emotions. So how would someone go about finding a special therapist who's trained in divorce mediation and also addressing all of the fear and emotion and grief that's piled on top of it?

S: Right. You know, it's really interesting. I really do recommend that people educate themselves first. But during that process I… you know, I feel that we discussed the emotions that are involved in ‘Deconstructing Divorce’. We talked about how managing your emotions while you're doing the research around, is important. And so maybe one of the first people that you do talk to is a family therapist. Maybe you and your spouse goes, maybe you your spouse and your family goes, so that you have the opportunity to have someone say to you, “Hey, how you're feeling is normal. How you're feeling is okay.” More importantly, I think it encourages you to take a breath to recognize your feelings, to recognize your emotions, and to step back at a time when maybe you're not at your best, maybe that isn't the time we should be having a conversation. That's the beauty of mediation, that's the beauty of collaborative divorce. Unfortunately, when we go to litigation, we've got to go to court on that day and address the issues at that moment.

J: Right.

S: You know, so I think doing things on your own time table is important, but also recognizing that the way you feel is absolutely normal and it's okay. I always tell people to… “It's like the loss of anything. Takes 6 months to educate yourselves, you know, take 6 months to really engage in the initial parts of what divorce is. Don't pay somebody else to do it, put your financial affidavits together between you. You know, start to have good conversations with your children. Make them feel like…” you know, you're right. I mean, the kids generally know frankly if things are going well or not with their parents. I don't think it's as much of a surprise to them as we think that it is.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: I think they have a sense that something's not right. And so if you openly address it with your children, include them in the conversation, always be careful about what you say about your spouse, even when you're not feeling particularly terrific about them, be careful what you say to your kids and have those initial conversations if you can together. If you can't, maybe it's a good sign you do need a week or so to settle yourselves and come back. But having those conversations through 2 people isn't going to make them any easier; my experience is it makes them harder.

J: Yeah, yeah, that's true; that's true. Well, you know, the stereotypically… hear stories of or see on TV, you know, one person cheating or betraying the other, or one feeling so… you know, tons of anger and hurt there. What if one of the partners in a… you know, an imminent divorce situation refuses to talk or refuses to go to the mediation type of setting? What would you recommend for someone in that situation?

S: So that's really interesting. I've worked with a lot of couples like that where one just will not speak to the other. In fact, mediators will hire me to do the financial side of the initial phases developing what's called the financial affidavits because they're not talking to one another.

J: Oh.

S: And it really is… so they bring me in because folks have to behave.

J: (Laughs)

S: (unclear) [13:31]. And I literally… you know, I'm communicating by email, I'm doing it, you know, in those ways and I'll have a spouse, I'll say, “Why don't you just ask him? Just send him an email and ask him,” and she'll say, “No. Would you do it for me, please?”

J: (Laughs)

S: You know what I mean? So it does happen.

J: Uh-huh.

S: And especially if there's been some violation of trust, there's no question that that's a completely separate issue. And I have to say, that's when you really need probably some personal… you know, a therapist to work with you to help you work through because trust is an awfully important issue if you're mediating, isn't it?

J: Right.

S: You know, because you're not allowing the courts to protect you, you are, you know, taking your spouse's word at face value about a lot of things, you know, what… especially if they're the spouse that is handling the finances. There's a lot of trust that goes on, not only in the divorce process, but following divorce too. You've really got to trust each other because you're not living together anymore and you've got to trust that what you put on paper is something that you'll do together. So finding that place, you know, to re-establish that trust is really important. Sometimes we just have to have the therapists be frank with us. You know, very few divorces are one-sided.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: You know, if they're… I don't… I'm not excusing infidelity, but quite often, I think that we probably have seen our relationship deteriorating. And I think, you know, quite often, you know, just taking a real look at selves or having a therapist help us do that, you know, I really just feel like, you know, it's not easy, it's really not easy, but it's really worth it to see if you can find that place where some level of forgiveness can be there. And we all have people we've had to forgive, not just our other spouses, you know, they're… not just our spouses. And so finding that place is important because it's going to be important to you for the rest of your lives frankly. If you have children, you're going to have, you know, baptisms, you're going to have marriages, you're going to have weddings, you're going to have Christmases, you're going to have Thanksgiving.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: Thanksgivings. And, you know, mine personally have been very difficult because our divorce was so difficult. And there are times that I wish, maybe I had taken some steps to make them easier earlier on.

J: Mm-hmm, mm-hmm.

S: Not easy, I'm not saying it's easy.

J: Oh yeah.

S: It’s very tough, very tough, but worth it, I think.

J: So for a person who might have been on the quote-unquote ‘victim side of infidelity’ or anyone who's just really hurt in general, would it be a good idea to go get individual therapy first, just to get to a place of balance before going into the mediation or unique for everyone or, you know?

S: No, I bet you, everyone’s situation is a little bit different. And I do think, with infidelity in particular, I do think you may need your individual therapy to just help you get back on balance.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: Sometimes I don't, you know, my personal experience is, sometimes if you have your therapist and they have their therapist, it’s kind of like you having your attorney and they having…

J: (Laughs)

S: … them having their attorney, right? You develop these silos…

J: Mm-hmm.

S: … of inability to communicate. So if you feel that you need help with, you know, someone's been unfaithful, the trust isn't there, I think, you know, finding a way to find your way towards, you know, beginning to trust, or maybe not even trust, forgiveness might be more the word I'm looking for.

J: Mm-hmm, mm-hmm.

S: You know, it could be that your partner isn't trustworthy.

J: Right, right.

S: And you just have to figure… which might be part of the reason why you need to leave them, you know what I mean?

J: Mm-hmm, right.

S: But finding a way to forgive their particular faults, I think is important because you… you do want that ongoing relationship if it's at all possible. If they're not abusive, if they're not… you know, if you don't have a fear for yourself or your children, you probably will try as hard as you can to have a reasonable relationship so that, just like your friend who really felt scarred by her parents’ divorced, it probably was a fairly volatile relationship that is scarring.

J: Aww.

S: And that's what you're trying to avoid is hurting your family or your children. And so I think if you put that in the forefront, “What am I looking for? I'm looking for a civil divorce. I’m looking for a civil family post-divorce,” if you keep that in front of you, I think you may be able to stay on track better.

J: You know, that reminded me when you mentioned my friend, I just remembered, one of the reasons it was so hard on her because her parents were so upset with each other that her dad just left the picture completely. It was such a loss for her. It was almost like…

S: Yeah.

J: … her dad had died or that he had rejected her. So I can see why it would be so important to be able to communicate and smooth over those feelings definitely for the kids sake.

S: Absolutely, because I think your children take responsibility, and different ages will respond differently. Young children, it becomes a way of life for them, but those that are kind of in their pre-adolescent, preteen early teen years, you know, they can take things on personally; they can feel that their responsible. I mean, that's why I think we have to be really, you know, really careful about our behavior. Again, short of abuse, you know, tolerance goes a long way in protecting the kids. And that really should be first and foremost, I think, in our minds.

J: Right, right. And so if people wanted to have some mediation with divorce or to work through feelings, would most family therapists be able to do that or do they need to contact some kind of specialist?

S: Well, it’s int… I think most family therapists could do it actually.

J: Uh-huh.

S: You know, I do. And, you know, it's interesting just to, you know, if you really find yourself unable to accomplish it, one of the things that collaborative divorce… and, again, there's a whole section on collaborative divorce in ‘Deconstructing Divorce’, that's a fairly recent process developed by an attorney in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where you both have your attorneys at the table, but you do have a therapist who is a specialist in divorce, and their job is to facilitate the conversations.

J: Mmm.

S: So in other words, when we get off track, when we just can't keep ourselves emotionally together during the negotiations because of the hurt or trauma that the divorce is creating for us, that therapist’s job is to do exactly that; to help the conversations by keeping it in front of us what the goal was. “Well, the goal was a civilized divorce. The goal was our family. The goal was, you know, to make sure that we divorced in civility and our family was first and foremost.” So there are actually family therapists who are directly involved in the divorce process and the conversations in collaborative divorce.

J: Hmm, that sounds amazing as far as divorce goes. Well, let's have a quick break for our sponsor and then I want to come back and talk about the financial side of divorce, which sounds really tricky.

S: Yes. (Laughs)

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(Interview resumes) [23:08]

J: Welcome back. So before the break, I mentioned that one of the big reasons people are afraid of divorce is that it will hurt the children, but I feel like another one is that one of the partners or maybe both feel like, “Gosh, you know, financially it seems like impossible to split the household income into 2 households.” So how do you recommend people handle the financial side of it?

S: One of the things that's absolutely true is you may need to recognize that maintaining the standard of living that you had become accustomed to in one home is not going to be possible in 2. I mean, we literally are going to have either 2 mortgages or 2 rent payments, and that's not something that we have right now. And so take the housing cost as an example and just extrapolate it around other expenses, now all of a sudden, we'll have 2 vacations, we won't have one. So recognizing that, I think, is really important that you may take a step back, you may sell the house and come up with 2 smaller homes. You may end up needing to negotiate things like, “You have the vacation this year. I'll have it next year.” I mean, I'm working with a couple right now and I'm going to go see her in a little while to let her know that her lifestyle is going to change in divorce.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: And so the way to do that is to build your financial affidavit, “What is it that we own? What is it that we have?” and then look forward and say, not just, “What is our budget today?” but, “What do we expect our budgets to be in the future?” And so that helps you to decide what you can afford…

J: Mm-hmm.

S: … before you enter into the negotiations. And so lots of times when you go to an attorney, they just want to know, “What do you own today? What do you spend today?” that's not the critical issue, the critical issue is, “What are you going to spend tomorrow?”

J: Right.

S: So I always ask clients to do that, “Let's envision tomorrow and let's see how it fits in your income.” And sometimes the unfortunate realization is, “It's not going to be the same lifestyle that we've had before.”

J: Mm-hmm.

S: But that doesn't mean that you can't build a good life going forward, you're just going to do it individually.

J: Have you ever had a couple look at the financial analysis and say, “Mmm, no way, we're staying together,”? (Laughs)

S:Oh, no… no, I absolutely have.

J: Never? Oh, you have!

S: I really have had couples who… an infidelity, there's one that Springs right to my mind. Infidelity was the issue, she was unfaithful to him, but when push came to shove, they really recognized that they couldn't afford to divorce.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: And he took quite a bit of time away from her. There was a separation. Probably he… you know, he took quite a bit of time away.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: And then found a way to forgive her and came back home and they reconciled. So…

J: Really?

S: I actually have seen that, yeah.


S: That’s crazy. Well, I know in Wisconsin where I'm from, there's a… I can't remember the terminology, the legal terminology, but it's a State where everything's just split 50/50. Can you speak to whether that's the common practice in a collaborative divorce or what are the ways people could handle the financial part?

S: So I think the premise in most States, whether you're in a community property State, which is a state where anything (there's 10 of them)… anything that you had accumulated in the marriage automatically is owned by both of you and split 50/50. To other States that are considered equitable distribution States, which is… gives more discretion to the judge in terms of (if you go to litigation)… in terms of whether it should be 50/50 or something other than that, but I think the general premise is that, whatever was accumulated during that marriage will be shared 50/50.

J: Okay.

S: And then there are ways of separating them in an unequal fashion. And there are things that judges look at to do that, which is the health of a spouse, you know? For women, we have a lot going on in Gray Divorce today; the… the 50 plus… 55 plus. And women quite often have been stay-at-home moms…

J: Yeah.

S: … had not accumulated the retirement assets, maybe health is a consideration. So quite often, there can be something other than… in fact, one of the cases I'm working with right now, I'm going to recommend an unequal distribution because her ability to earn money is less than his, and she just recently lost a job; she's 63 years old.

J: Uh-huh.

S: And he's moving on to a new job and moving… leaving the State. So I think, in this case, we could recommend something other than 50/50 because of her earning capacity.

J: Nice.

S: And the fact that she had taken home… now, he's got to accept it.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: But I think in terms of the recommendation, I think if he chose to go to court, we'd spend a bunch of money on attorneys and that could rightfully be theirs, and I think he'll probably see that.

J: Oh, wow! I think what you do is amazing. So do you have a title for what you do; a Divorce Financial Analyst or what?

S: We're known as Certified Divorce Financial Analysts?

J: Okay.

S: Well, we do understand… most of us have a financial planning background anyway.

J: Oh.

S: We do understand… I would say that's the difference. What a financial analyst bring to a divorce process is, attorneys really only focus in on, “What do you have today?” and what a financial analyst will do is… a certified divorce financial analyst will do is they’ll say, “Well, we know you have this today, but this is the best way for you to use your resources going forward.” We actually apply our financial planning work to 2 separate individuals who are dividing what they have.

J: Yeah.

S: Like, “This what you have and this is the best way to use it going forward.” And I think that is what a financial analyst brings…

J: Ah.

S: … to your divorce, yeah.

J: Oh, it's just sounds brilliant; I love it. Because…

S: Yeah.

J: .. why suffer anymore than you have to? (Laughs)

S: Absolutely. And it's really, really interesting. I mean, I do feel that sometimes people relax a little bit when, it's not just about taking my money, it's, “What am I going to do going forward?” And I think answering this isn't just in divorce, I think it's most of the work that I do. When people become more aware of how their money's going to work for them, again, it's another way to reduce the fear in divorce too because, all of a sudden, lots of times they'll step back and they'll say, “Okay, I have a plan now. And it may not be, you know, ideal for me, but I know what I'm going to do going forward.”

J: Yeah, wow, that's amazing. And so, all of the conversation we've had, most of it can be found in your book ‘Deconstructing Divorce’?

S: Yes, absolutely all of it. And the book addresses the emotions in the first few chapters. It talks about your alternatives, you know, mediation, collaborative divorce, sitting around the kitchen table, litigation and its process. And then it talks about considerations for the things that you own in the finances. So all of that's in the book, yeah.

J: Okay. Well, so I want to take it just a tiny bit personal now. So you mentioned that you're divorced. So walk us through if you can remember the feelings you experienced personally when you decided, okay, where you knew you were getting a divorce and what it was like going through the process and then after; what that felt like, all of those steps, you know?

S: Well, you know, and I think that's a good reas… a big party the reason of why I wrote the book because I made a lot of mistakes, both emotionally, you know? Some of the things that I did, I probably sent us on the wrong path. I mean, my former husband also made huge mistakes; in fact, we addressed them in the book. I talk about one specific incident in particular; he misbehaved, but my response could have been better.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: And what it did was it sent us down the road of not speaking to one another, probably for the majority of the rest of our divorce, which did end up in 2 years of litigation.

J: Wow.

S: It was awful. We were not a pretty couple, our children experienced a lot of difficulty as a result of it. There are times that I still believe I see what our divorce did to our kids.

J: Aww!

S: And so that's why I'm a big advocate of trying to keep your head on your shoulders, even if your spouse is not; one of you can remain sane, you might be able to stay on course, and it really, really is important. And it's because of my personal experience that I know that for a fact.

J: Hmm.

S: How you behave, how you handle your divorce will impact the way that you interact for the remainder of your years. I've got 2 granddaughters right now and our lives have never been easy as a result of the difficulties that we had in our divorce, and it could have been different.

J: Mm-hmm, mm-hmm. And what is the average cost litigation-wise for a divorce if people go the litigation route? Do you know that statistic?

S: Well, I don't know it exactly because it really depends on… mine cost me $40,000. I'm sure my former hasn't spent an equivalent amount of money. So between the 2 of us, I think we probably spent somewhere between 80 and $100,000. Now, that's ridiculous. I mean, I think a typical divorce probably is something closer to… if you are relatively normal, in other words, there's not a whole lot of back and forth and in and out of the court process, you probably can do it for something closer to 10 to $15,000, depending upon the expense of your attorney; but it's not inexpensive.

J: And then contrast that with the other route; what that would look like.

S: Yeah, something like mediation. Now collaborative divorce can be a little expensive possibly, you know, because you do have 2 attorneys, a therapist, and quite often there's a financial analyst there. So it's… it's really for either a very difficult divorces or very complicated divorces. But, you know, I would say that mediation and collaborative divorce would be less than a litigated divorce certainly.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: More importantly than that, collaborative divorce mediation goes according to your schedule.

J: Mm-hmm.

S: It's private, it's not a public… you know, litigated divorces or public, anyone can go in and read what exactly what your settlement was and exactly what happened during it.

J: Wow.

S: So it's private. And so because you managed it yourself, I think it's highly likely that it could be less expensive than an litigated divorce, but it really depends upon your individual situation and the complexity of it.

J: Right. And really, money isn't the primary focus when your goal is to have a peaceful split and years… you know, peace for years to come, hopefully, at all those events you mentioned; baptisms and weddings and everything else.

S: Yes, exactly, exactly. And I think collaborative divorce of the perception is because of all the parties involved is that it will be more expensive, but I have to say, if it allows you to settle in a civil way, I'm not sure you can put a pr… my experience is, you can't put a price on that.

J: It's true. And you have to contemplate all the years of therapy you might have to get for your kids if you don't do it the right way.


S: (unclear) [34:45] Or better yet, dragging them and getting them out of jail or something like that.


S: So, yeah.

J: Oh, so funny. Well, this has been fantastic and we always end the show with the question, “What does it mean for you to be a vibrant and happy woman?” Well, let's twist the question a little today; what does it look like to divorce in a way that feels vibrant and happy? How would you summarize everything?

S:Oh, I have seen so many women leave a marriage and become some of the full forced women I have ever known. In fact, they would have probably not had the space, the emotional distance to be able to become the women that I've actually gotten to know after their divorce. It takes years, don't misunderstand me; it doesn't happen in 2 weeks. It takes you a while to get your feet underneath you, but I think… I really believe that sometimes the divorce allows us to be those vibrant beautiful women we're really intended to be.

J: Mmm, I love how you said that. Well, everyone, make sure you check out ‘Deconstructing Divorce’ if that's something you have thought about or, you know, someone who's in that process. We know that, what is it, half of all marriages and then divorce these days, Sally?

S: That's the statistics; the general statistic. The beauty is, the younger people are not divorcing in those numbers.

J: Really?

S: My age group, which is probably about 55, I won’t be exact, but we are divorcing in even greater numbers; but the younger people are not. So there's kind of an interesting trend; maybe they've learned from their parents. (Laughs)

J: So, yeah, I also heard that Millennials are marrying in lower numbers than any generation (Laughs). So that probably makes a difference.

S: And later; and later.

J: Yeah.

S: So probably more experienced, yes.

J: Right, right. Well, thank you so much for being on the show, this was fantastic, I appreciate it. I know it's going to give some good information to women out there who need it. And, everyone, you can find links to everything, including Sally's book, at jenriday.com/113. Well, Sally as we say goodbye, remind us where we can find you and then give our listeners one small challenge before we say goodbye.

S: Sure. Well, you can find me, I have a blog called deconstructingdivorce.com. I also have a website, SJ Boyle Wealth Planning, where you can find me, and I have a twitter @Sally Boyle 4. So any of those accounts you'll find me; there's also a Facebook page. And the one suggestion I would give to people is, whether considering… when you're considering divorce, if you're considering divorce, just be true to yourself; really be true to yourself because if you are, divorce in a way that makes you feel confident and comfortable.

J: Ah, yes, “Do everything in a way that makes you feel confident comfortable,” that's excellent advice (Laughs). Thank you so much, Sally, this was fantastic. Thank you for that amazing book you've written and all the work you're doing; we appreciate it.

S: Thanks for having me.

J: Take care.

S: You too.

J: Thank you so much for listening today and I'll be back later this week with a happy bit, talking more about how I survived a crappy marriage without losing myself. Whoa! I know, that's a crazy title, right? But I'm going to go deep on what it was like and I hope it helps some of you. So I'll see you then, and until, take care.