8 things I wish I had known before I got divorced
Even when the separation is amicable, it’s crazy dear
Because we opted for a mediator and never needed lawyers, seeing a judge, or spending time in court, our divorce was undoubtedly a relatively painless experience.
But everything is relative. The experience was relentless, overwhelmingly sad, and almost two years later, honestly, I still haven’t stopped crying.
Even so, if there was one upside to all of this, it was that we were able to save a substantial amount of money by working with a mediator instead of a lawyer. When I consulted with attorneys before filing divorce papers, I was advised to set aside $15,000 for legal fees. In reality, it cost around $5,000 instead. Yes, that’s only a third of the original estimates, but even so, that’s a lot of money when you don’t have a ton of liquid assets in the checking account.
Plus, that was just the beginning of my overall divorce expenses. Apartments aren’t cheap in Los Angeles, and when you factor in the first month, last month, and security deposit, I had to write a check for almost $7,000 the day I got the keys to my new apartment – a very bad day for my checking account.
My wife and I have shared much of the furniture and other household items, but starting out as a newly single for the first time in 30 years is a bit like being born – you’re starting from scratch. A kitchen table, silverware, dishes, TV, bathroom supplies, a mop – there was almost no end to the mundane things I had to buy on my own during my first few weeks. I was a daily visitor to Target and racked up several thousand more dollars in completely unexpected expenses.