4 Books to Read When Going Through Divorce
Updated: Mar 20
Books Can Help You Navigate a Family Law Case
Much like personalities, family law cases typically can be categorized into a pattern. Patterns help people make sense of the world and circumstances around them, and those of us embroiled in litigation can identify and use patterns to help determine the issues of a case. The patterns we see in personality traits, behaviors of the parties, and positions of the parties during a divorce or paternity action, can sometimes result in the same outcome.
One of the most frustrating things about family law cases, is that the parties in the case, often do not realize they fall into a category or a pattern. Parties believe they are alone and that no one else in the world has the same issues happening to them. They believe the Judge “jumped to conclusions during the hearing” or that their voice was not heard. What many attorneys fail to tell their clients is that they are going through some of the very same issues many before them have gone through, and these are common patterns in these types of cases.
In divorce cases, you often find parties that could be diagnosed as a narcissist, a party who might be dealing with an addiction of some kind, a party who wants to step outside of the marriage, a party who had a spending problem, or parties that have dealt with traumatic events.
In paternity cases, you have parties that have recently broken up, parties that have decided to move on during the relationship, or parties that have delayed in determining who the true parent of the child is for a number of years.
Given these types of patterns, those of us that deal with family law cases often try to make sense of a case when the case is first presented. We know that certain behaviors result in typical outcomes, and we try and help our clients navigate those scenarios and situations. We often say that someone who is going through a family law case needs a person to bounce their thoughts and ideas off of. Sometimes people do not have friends or family members that can be that person. Other times people have personal relationships that help, but there are still unanswered questions.
Because you cannot call your family attorney at midnight when the issues of your case go racing through your head, the most logical place to turn is to your night-stand. Books can help fill in the blanks when you need help processing the reality of your case. The following are a list of books dealing with some of the common patterns mentioned above that may help you during your family law journey.
1. When Your Significant Other is A Narcissist
Narcissism is a common trait in family law. Understanding how to deal with someone who has narcissism is extremely difficult without professional help or a book with some of this information. Although I cannot vouch for all that is within the book, I can report that my client believes this can help them through very difficult time.
AUTHORS: Bill Eddy,LCWS,JD and Randi Kreger
2. Co-Parenting with a Difficult Person
Although the title of this book “Joint Custody with a jerk” is meant to be funny, the substance of the book is very helpful. Often times people cannot gain access to their attorney quickly to answer some of the common situations that they find themselves in, and they need more of a day to day guide.
TITLE: Joint Custody with a Jerk
AUTHORS: Julie A. Ross, M.A. and Judy Corcoran
3. Dealing with a High-Conflict Custody Battle
The title of this book provides just what it says—tips in dealing with a high custody battle. Diffusing the conflict, dealing with the conflict in front of your children, and navigating dealing with the emotional stress of the conflict are just a few concepts this book addresses head on.
TITLE: The High-Conflict Custody Battle
AUTHORS: Amy J.L. Baker, PhD, J. Michael Bone, PhD, and Brian Ludmer, BComm, LLB
4. Moving past the HATE for the LOVE of your children
When some parties first come to a family lawyer, they are so buried in the hate that they have for the other parent they cannot see clearly. This clouded judgment can have long term effects on the children, and on your extended family. The day to day decisions can be some of the most important decisions you make, and this book helps you re-prioritize your focus, your goals, and the importance of managing your hate until you are able to fully address it in other ways.
TITLE: Loving your Children More Than You Hate Each Other
AUTHORS: Lauren J. Behrman, PhD and Jeffery Zimmerman, PhD, ABPP