The Smart Divorce® Weblog

Move forward with focus, hope, and confidence.


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A public rant gone awry….

Airing your laundry in public

Philip Smith was left hung to dry earlier this month when his wife, Tricia Walsh-Smith, aired her marital and divorce grievances on You Tube.  While each side may have their issues with one another, for a while it was kept relatively private.  But, with Ms. Walsh Smith’s recent You Tube video about the concerns she has with her husband and their divorce, public opinion is now weighing in with disbelief as to how these complaints were brought forward. 

This is not the first time a celebrity or someone in the public eye has let their emotions rule their decision making only to have it backfire on them.  While it might feel great in the moment to speak your mind, the feelings of relief often change to horror when you hear the reaction from the very same audience you were hoping to gain sympathy from. Perhaps it is best to keep your personal issues private, no matter how much you may want to seek revenge or validate your shame.

Articles about public displays of anger have been widely written about by the media.  There are two articles I would like to draw your attention to these are:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070422.lbaldwinmain0423/BNStory/lifeFamily/home

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080416.wgtyoutube0416/BNStory/lifeMain

Public opinion to the way these celebrities acted out their frustration and anger was certainly not what they were anticipating.  Damage control seemed to be next on the agenda. I’m sure there are many people who would like to air their grievances in public too — out of revenge sure to humiliate you soon to be or former spouse. 

While it might feel good in the moment, think about the consequences of venting in public:

·         The effect on your reputation.

·          The effect on your relationship with you children and/or step children.

·         The possibility of the rant being used against you in legal proceedings.

·         The actions coming back to hurt you later on.

Here are some strategies to help you get through these emotionally difficult times:

  • Write your thoughts down in a personal journal.
  • Vent your feelings to a trusted family or friend.
  • Speak with a therapist, clergy or other people in your support network.
  • Vent your thoughts in a letter, don’t send it out – perhaps rip it up.   This can be cathartic.
  • If you are going to sign a pre or post nuptial agreement, ensure you get a legal opinion before you sign.   

While interest in the You Tube video will soon become yesterday’s news as the public grows tired of this battle and becomes fascinated by some other family squabble, the significance of it will play out for a long time in many ways for this couple. 

Use these lessons well.  As much as you may want to vent and scream your personal issues via email, You Tube or some other communication vehicle, you don’t want a war of words coming back to haunt you.  While you may have achieved your short term goal, in the long term, you might very well be sorry you let your emotions get the better of you.


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Seeking closure…….

Seeking closure…….

to your marriage and starting on a new path towards divorce

There are no rituals, ceremonies or customs ending a marriage, as there are mourning the death of a loved one. However, many people are looking for a way to find closure, to mourn the end of their marriage.

I started thinking about symbolic ways to mourn the ending of a marriage because I was recently asked if I have ever heard of a Divorce Cake.

While I have never heard of anyone baking or serving divorce cake (this doesn’t mean no one has done this), there are some ideas which might help people to move on. While one might need a sense of humor to creatively use one of these tactics, there is definitely some merit to it.

In a recent article in The Globe and Mail newspaper I read about a coffin designed for wedding rings. I thought this an out of the ordinary idea, as it implies burying the past, mourning the past and then moving on.

I received an email from a lawyer who told me of a client who insisted on walking her divorce petition down to the courthouse and filing it herself. She said she went down to get the marriage application and wants now to be part of the unwinding process. I thought this idea to be brilliant. This was a woman taking control of her life.

There are people who throw divorce parties, mail out or email notices of their divorce. Interesting concepts too. The thing to remember is, you don’t want to show anger, bitterness or remorse. You certainly don’t want to offend your friends, make them feel uncomfortable or create a mockery of yourself. Use this as an opportunity for closure and healing.

But, back to the cake. I thought, what could that recipe for divorce cake be?

How about –

I dash of focus (on how you would like your life to unfold)

2 sprinkles of hope

and lots of confidence (for enabling yourself to achieve the life you envision).

All of this achieved by doing research, asking questions and accepting that this is an emotional time – and dealing with your emotions.

Divorce is rich in opportunity to learn and grow from. Use these lessons well.


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Hear Deborah on “Guy Talk”

Hear Deborah talk about

The Smart Divorce on “Guy Talk”

Have you hear about the new radio show on Newstalk 1010 CFRB, “Guy Talk”? You can hear it live on Sunday evenings from 10 pm-11pm.

Guy Talk is a radio show that deals with psychological issues which modern men face. The underlying premise of Guy Talk rests in the question: Why Won’t Men Grow Up? The creator/hosts of Guy Talk are Dale Curd and Owen Williams.

I’ve been invited to speak about The Smart Divorce and dealing with the many issues surrounding divorce and relationships on May 4, 2008. Tune in and feel free to call in with your views at 416 872 1010. Although this show is targeted towards men, women are invited to call in as well. I would be interested in hearing your perspective as we discuss the many issues divorcees are confronted with.