Call 401-287-2079
To Reach Our Office

Rhode Island Family Law Blog

Divorce, Child Custody & Nesting

A rarely used option in child custody arrangements is "Nesting". When divorcing and co-parenting, the parties decide to each reside in a new residence and keep the children in the former marital home. Instead of the children going from Mom's home to Dad's home, the children remain in the home while the Mom and Dad go back and forth into the former home.

Cognitive Dissonance in Divorce

Cognitive dissonance is the fancy term for the stress that occurs when a person holds two contradictory thoughts, beliefs, values, opinions or attitudes. This often occurs during the divorce process.  If I believe that I am a good person and I do something truly bad, the discomfort I feel is the result of cognitive dissonance. People have an internal desire to feel that their actions, beliefs and ideas are consistent. Cognitive dissonance develops when a person takes two opposite beliefs or actions.

How can you deal with emotional stress post-divorce?

Some people in Rhode Island probably set aside thoughts about divorce because they don't want to deal with the emotional stress that comes along with going through the legal process. Instead, they stay in a marriage that they're unhappy with, which can make things worse in the long run. So, how can our readers get past this mental hurdle? Are there any ways to prepare yourself for dealing with the potential emotional stress you might feel in post-divorce life?

Using an experienced divorce mediator to help you resolve issues produces less stress that you find in a litigated divorce. You resolve issues in the office of the private mediator instead of the hallways and court rooms in the Family Court building. In the confidential setting of the mediator's office, you can discuss your concerns and fears as well as reach results in less time that it would take in a litigated divorce. Be able to express your needs, concerns and wants, and solving issues quickly reduces stress.

According to a recent article, there are several tips that people might want to take note of as they head into life after a divorce. No one will tell you that divorce is easy; there aren't many uncontested divorces out there. So, after the conflict and stress of going through divorce proceedings involving real estate issues, property division, custody plans and spousal support, what are you to do with all that stress?

When is it time to consider mediation in a divorce?

Many divorces are uncontested: the parties have few assets or debts to argue over and they have no children. These divorces can be relatively easy to complete. However, other divorces can be quite contentious. There may be many different assets in question, including complicated issues like business interests and retirement accounts. And, there will likely be children involved in these types of divorces, leaving the soon-to-be ex-spouses to fight over child custody and child support.

Many Rhode Island residents probably think that if a divorce is this contentious, courtroom litigation is the only option. However, there may be another way: divorce mediation. So, when is it time to consider mediation in a divorce?

Cohabitating Before or Instead of Marriage

Today, many more people are cohabitating. Without being legally tied together, couples may choose to reside together to save on rent, utilities and other expenses. Some couples want to live together before they consider marriage, while others may be divorced and never want to go through a divorce again.

What is the main goal of child support?

Many Rhode Island residents enter the divorce process with specific goals in mind. For some, the goal is to keep a certain piece of property. For others, the goal is to obtain a particular child custody arrangement. And, for many, the goal is to make sure that any child support order is fair. But, what is the main goal of child support?

Many of our readers would probably say that the main goal of child support is to provide enough of a financial commitment to the child in question so that the child's most important needs are met, like food, clothing and housing. That isn't necessarily the wrong answer. Everyone has these needs, but, when two parents divorce, one of them will most likely be ordered to have primary physical custody of the child. That leaves the "non-custodial" parent with the responsibility of paying child support. You may wish to consider other expenses related to a child such as extra-curricular tutoring, sports and cultural activities.  

Parenting: College Costs

To some, parenting includes contributing to a child's college expenses.  College costs and the related debt can be huge today. As a family law practitioner and mediator, I see too many people in their mid-fifties or older getting divorced and having to pay significant college loans that they signed for their children. The total amount of the loans often exceeds $100,000. It's like having a second mortgage to be paid when you may want, or need, to retire.

Divorce mediation in Rhode Island

Many of our readers have questions about the divorce process - perhaps they are in the planning stages of filing for divorce, or maybe they are right in the middle of everything. For some, issues like child custody and property division are the most pressing concerns. For others, just getting through the divorce process is enough of a goal. But, for most, there is a potential solution to many issues: family mediation.

While most people know about the overall benefits of using mediation in a divorce - less time, money and emotional stress - those same people probably have more specific questions about mediation. Divorce mediation in Rhode Island is a private process. Each mediation session usually lasts about two hours, at which time the two parties will meet with a facilitator who is a third-party that maintains neutrality.

Divorce rates drop, but couples should still take precautions

For years now, the common refrain regarding marriage is that half of them will end in divorce. But, according to a recent report, that isn't actually true anymore. The recent report noted a study which indicates that in the last 35 years, the rate of divorces in America has actually decreased by 25 percent. If that is the case, then the new reality about divorce is that the majority of marriages actually make it.

There could be many different reasons for the drop in the divorce rate. Some probably think that there are fewer divorces because, overall, there may be fewer marriages taking place - with many people just deciding that marriage isn't as important as a social construct anymore. Or, others might think that the young people who are getting married today - many of whom are "children of divorce" - saw what a divorce can do to a family and made the personal commitment to not even think of divorce as an option when times get tough.

For many couples, child custody is a vital part of a divorce

The prospect of the many different family law issues that Rhode Island residents can face in a divorce can seem daunting. Most divorce cases will involve property division issues, alimony and child support. However, for couples with children, the issue of child custody can be the most important issue of all.

In the ideal scenario, a divorcing couple will work out a child custody and parenting plan on their own, agreeing together on issues of legal and physical custody. But, our readers in Rhode Island know, that if a couple has reached the point of a divorce in their relationship, they might not be inclined to agree to much of anything with their soon-to-be ex-spouse. That is when a real child custody dispute could erupt.

Email Us For a Response

Tell Us About Your Situation

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Law Office of Steven J. Hirsch, Esq

Office Address :

100 Jefferson Boulevard Suite 315 Warwick, RI 02888 Phone: 401-287-2079 Fax: 401-352-0029 Warwick Law Office Map

Office Number :