“X” is for Xenagogy

“X” is for Xenagogy

There Are No Guidebooks To Divorce

The obvious choice for this post would have been something with “X-spouse” in the title, but why not take this opportunity to learn a new word along with our readers. So that brought us to xenagogy, which is defined as a guidebook.

When we consult with new clients, they often relate stories to us about a divorce that their friend or family member went through. While it is healthy to share these “war stories”, comparing your divorce case to another sets a dangerous precedent.  It is not advisable to believe that the path or outcome of someone else’s divorce will mirror your own. In fact, countless family law decisions published by both the New Jersey Appellate Division and Supreme Court often cite to the specificity and uniqueness of each divorce case. This is not to say that every case is a unicorn and that there are no rules, but it is ill-advised to apply a conclusion to your case based upon an anecdotal story from a friend, co-worker, or family member when you only have a small piece of the story or one side of the story.

So, when approaching a divorce remember that there is no xenagogy, or guidebook.

From the outset, we advise our clients to identify issues that are a priority and unique to their case.  With each family’s needs differing, we have yet to find a uniform pattern in these preliminary discussions.  For example, if you have a special needs child, it is necessary to develop a strategy on how to best ensure that the care that this child will receive after the divorce will remain in place.  In terms of financial issues, if you or your spouse are owners of a business, a game plan needs to be implemented in terms of how to best “divorce” one of the parties from the business.  If you are a dependent spouse and would like to seek additional education to increase your chances of securing a job after your divorce, it may be necessary to negotiate a front-loaded alimony structure that allows you the financial freedom to pursue this goal.

Our point remains that expectations for the divorce process must be based on your own path.  By trying to compare your case to another matter, you are forcing yourself into an “apples to oranges” scenario.  There is no positive outcome to this approach.  This mindset will create unrealistic expectations, causing a communication breakdown between client and attorney.

While there is no xenagogy, or guidebook for divorce, the attorneys of Ulrichsen Rosen & Freed LLC have the experience and knowledge necessary to address the issues unique to your case.  As our focus remains on the individually tailored needs of each client, we are confident that we can work collaboratively with you to identify and pursue the goals that matter the most to you.