The Chief Domestic Officer: What Stay-at-Home Parents Should and Should Not Expect in Their Divorce

As a chief domestic officer, you have tackled how to run your household and know the ins and outs of what daily life looks like. From running the finances to managing the grocery shopping and cooking, you’ve created a sustainable system that meets the needs of you and your children. But what happens when a divorce gets thrown into the mix? Your routines and responsibilities might change quite a bit, so it’s best to prepare yourself accordingly. Let’s take a look at some things you should do and not do in preparation of your divorce.

Understand Your Finances

While you might pay the household bills and have a handle on incoming and outgoing money, realize that your entire financial situation is about to change. You should obtain financial documents pertaining to investments, taxes, and real estate holdings, so that when it comes time to divide assets, you have a clear understanding of what you are entitled to.

Create a Backup Plan

Many spouses who stay at home are fortunate enough to receive alimony after a divorce, but it shouldn’t be something that is expected. The amount you receive might change, or it just might not be enough to support the lifestyle you once had. If necessary, it might serve you well to begin thinking about part-time employment or cutting back on expenditures just in case the support you receive isn’t sufficient.

Don’t Go It Alone

As a CDO, you are used to being solely accountable for the safety and success of yourself and your children. However a divorce can be an emotionally trying process, and it’s best to allow friends and family to offer support when they can. Rather than trying to do it all yourself, accept the help others are willing to offer, even if it means moving in with friends for a short period of time or accepting a loan from family to help you get settled.

Brush Up on Child Custody Law

If your divorce is less than ideal, you might find yourself with a custody battle on your hands. As a stay-at-home parent, be ready to provide clear evidence showing how you are able to meet your children’s needs despite not having earned a regular paycheck in recent history. Your children will not automatically go to the parent who has a job, so familiarize yourself with Texas custody laws.

You Don’t Have to Give Up Your Life

Just because your situation is changing doesn’t mean that you have to completely transform everything about your life. Don’t start selling your possessions, applying for every job you can get, or make a rash decision that might affect your children. Reacting to your divorce in a panic will not serve anyone’s needs. Rather, take some time to let the dust settle and then evaluate what your priorities are.

Assumptions Never Helped Anyone

Being a divorced stay-at-home parent sometimes makes people feel like they are lost and have no purpose. They feel too old to go back to school and too inexperienced to enter the workforce. Making assumptions that you won’t be able to succeed in this new way of life will only create frustration and setbacks. Focus on the opportunities that await you and remember that you can create the kind of life you want.

If you are a CDO who is going through a divorce, contact Alexandra Geczi Family Law today. We are well versed in supporting the needs of you and your children during this time of transition.

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Written by Alexandra Geczi

Alexandra Geczi

Alexandra Geczi is an attorney, mediator, and founding member of the firm, Alexandra Geczi PLLC | Family Law. Alexandra is also Owner/CEO of Chief Domestic Officer Solutions, an entity dedicated to enhancing the busy lives of stay at home spouses.