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How to handle unsolicited remarks during divorce

On Behalf of | Jun 14, 2023 | Divorce

It is not uncommon for some people—typically friends or relatives—to give unsolicited advice or remarks about certain situations in your life, including divorce. When this happens, and it puts you off, remember that the only advice that genuinely matters is that from your divorce attorney.

The state of California has implemented a no-fault divorce. This means you can get a divorce without proving that you or your spouse made a terrible mistake in ending the marriage. While you may still need proper legal assistance, a no-fault divorce allows couples to dissolve their union without proving that one of the spouses is to be blamed for allegedly ruining a marriage. This makes a no-fault divorce inclusive of couples who mutually decide to go their separate ways.

It can get annoying if you are going through a divorce, and unwanted comments often come your way. Though some may be well-intentioned, how you feel about certain remarks is valid. Here is a strategy you can use to handle awkward comments about your ongoing divorce.

The sandwich method

You can call out an unsolicited remark diplomatically by using the Sandwich Method. Start your response on a positive note, say your concern, and end it with another good remark. Examples can be:

  • “I appreciate your concern about my current situation. However, I would appreciate it better if you asked for my permission first to hear your thoughts. Thank you for having the confidence in our relationship to approach me about this.”
  • “Thank you for sharing your thoughts about my divorce, but your remark made me uncomfortable. I would appreciate a more cautious approach to my situation next time.”
  • “I am happy to share some information about what I am going through, but comments like that are unwelcome. Next time, let’s be more sensitive with our remarks, especially concerning sensitive topics like divorce. Thank you for trying to understand.”

While these responses will not change other people’s personalities or tendency to be nosy overnight, speaking up diplomatically will help you set boundaries. It can also help prevent resenting the person as you can calmly express your discomfort.

You can also consult your divorce attorney on handling uncomfortable remarks about your situation better. While you may think it is no big deal, your lawyer will support you in navigating the uneasy parts of a divorce.