Schwam-Wilcox & Associates, Attorneys and Counselors at Law
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Florida Divorce

If you are going through a Florida divorce right now, it's possible you are experiencing some feelings like those when as a teenager, you felt like you were misunderstood. Even if you are not in the midst of a high-conflict divorce, and instead are trying to keep relations between you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse civil, there are certain to be moments or periods of time when discord is reigning supreme.

Perhaps tensions are high because you are still trying to work out how to co-parent while not living in the same home. Maybe you are disagreeing about how your assets and liabilities are to be divided, and then there are the issues of spousal and child support which often result in financial strain on the resources of both spouses.

Misunderstandings are bound to occur; emotions are heightened, and consequently instead of being able to have a constructive conversation, a learning conversation, when these issues arise, at best you are simmering in frustration and anger.

Now let's go back to when we were teenagers feeling like no one in the world really "got" us. What did we wish for the most? Personally, I would have paid my weight in gold (if I had any gold back then) to have someone just say "Please help me understand what problems and challenging emotions you are experiencing." And then I would have paid more gold for that person to really listen, not judge, and then empathize with me.

Miracles can happen in the most stressful times when we approach the distress of another with wonder instead of judgment. The next time you find yourself in conflict and want to be understood, first seek to understand, and then empathize (e.g. "I can imagine you must be feeling angry and sad" or "When that happened to me, I felt a similar way.") Having these kinds of "learning instead of judging or winning" conversations open the door to true communication - the kind that lead to post-dissolution harmony. You may find that the thoughts and feelings you want to express will be received in a more wholehearted manner because you have just modeled the behavior you want the other to exhibit. Being careful how you say something can make a world of difference when you want your soon to be ex-spouse to do something.

If you are having trouble communicating with your spouse about dissolution actions you can gain some knowledge by meeting with the attorneys at Schwam-Wilcox & Associates by calling at 407-245-7700 or e-mail at or visit our website at

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