One of the most important things you can do when going through a divorce (especially if you have a contentious ex) is to keep a journal regarding the events that happened leading up to your divorce, as well as all interactions that occur during your divorce. This will not only help you keep track of important things to tell your attorney and the court, but can also help you in your emotional healing to process your thoughts and feelings. Friends and family and therapists are important, but your journal is the one friend that doesn’t talk back and is always available to you.
Starting a Journal
If you haven’t kept a journal so far, it’s not too late, but start now. Write down everything you can remember regarding your family situation, including as many dates as possible (and be careful about not creating new memories that may not have actually occurred). And then continue to journal on a regular basis as events and feelings occur. You may think you’ll remember things in the future without writing them down (you won’t), but even if you do, if you have them written down, you can use them in court and they will have more weight.
Here are 4 tips to get you started:
- Type your journal. Whether it’s through using a word processing program, emailing yourself, or using a dedicated divorce journaling platform such as Our Family Wizard, if you have it typed, you won’t have to type it or scan it later (or pay hourly rates for your attorney’s paralegal to type it up). You’ll also have digital date and time stamp records, which can be important when including your journal as evidence or an exhibit.
- Include as many details as you can, especially regarding interactions with your ex, visitation issues, things your children say about their time with your ex, etc. You can always “censor” what you want to share with the court later and only submit selections. But the more specifics you have recorded from the time of an event, the more confident you can feel in your memory of the situation.
- Feel free to make your journal multi-media. Since Utah is a single-party consent state, you can always audio record your conversations with your ex. Also, photos, screenshots, voicemails, emails, and texts, or anything else relevant can be helpful additions to include in your journal to form a complete picture of situations.
- Ensure your journal is secure from others’ eyes, and that your children never see the journal. Your journal is for you to express any and all true feelings and frustrations going on with your ex. Your children need to still cultivate a relationship with your ex and not hear your negative thoughts toward him or her. And if your ex has access to your journal, he or she can just as easily use the parts you don’t want shared against you. Make sure no one else has your phone or computer or email passwords.
Getting Help with Your Utah Divorce Case
If you are looking into a divorce and need legal help, we’re here for you. You need to ensure you consult with a competent family law attorney that understands the issues during a divorce and will help put your mind at ease legally and financially so you don’t get taken advantage of. At CoilLaw, LLC, Salt Lake City Divorce attorney Jill Coil and her team knows how to advise you during a divorce to help you achieve the best settlement and/or result possible. At CoilLaw we are ready and available to help you through your legal action. If you need legal advice concerning a Utah family law issue, call Jill Coil at CoilLaw LLC in Utah at (801) 939-6027 today.