Divorce coach reveals the ‘right way’ to split up

Long Lunch 11/09/2018
Photo: Unsplash.

Imagine having an unbiased best friend help you navigate you through a separation or divorce – only they’re a certified professional.

As New Zealand’s first-ever certified divorce coach, that’s precisely what Kimberlee Sweeney does.

After experiencing a divorce of her own, Ms Sweeney realised that others could benefit from having a third-party advisor who wasn’t involved in mediation or asset disputes.

“I realised that it didn’t all have to be quite as traumatic as how [my ex-husband and I] made it,” she told RadioLIVE.

You can’t control your ex and what they’re doing in their life.

Grief and shock are almost inevitable in a split, explains Ms Sweeney, particularly when individuals commonly initiate a separation or divorce onto their partner.

“You’re not thinking in your right brain. You’re thinking more in your livid brain because you’re overwhelmed and stressed.”

Paradoxically, splitting up “the right way” emphasises coming up with a clear plan with what each person wants their life to look like going forward.

Enter Ms Sweeney, who can help cut through the stress in order to review what a person wants from the split.

Kimberlee Sweeney helps guide a person through a split.

When a couple initially splits up, Ms Sweeney says both parties should work together to come up with a plan that meets both halfway.

If the couple has children, drafting up a parenting plan can ensure that the parents are on the same page.

“I’m quite passionate at doing it right for the sake of the children.”

But once a plan has been devised, Ms Sweeney advises parents to learn to release some part of their control over their ex’s parenting style.

“You can’t control your ex and what they’re doing in their life,” she said.

Listen to the full interview with Kimberlee Sweeney above.

The Long Lunch with Wendyl Nissen, 12pm - 3pm on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.