Recommended reading

LEGAL ADVICE AND PRACTICAL MATTERS

On Your Case: A Comprehensive, Compassionate (and Only Slightly Bossy) Legal Guide for Every Stage of a Woman’s Life
by Lisa Green

Television legal analyst and attorney Lisa Green offers something new: a witty, direct and empowering legal guide for women, filled with accessible information they can employ to understand and respond to common legal issues throughout their lives, from dating, marriage, and kids to jobs, retirement, aging parents, and wills. In On Your Case, Lisa Green finally fills a gap in women’s bookshelves with a thorough, compelling and occasionally hilarious guide to the range of legal issues women can expect to navigate in their busy lives. Leveraging her professional experience as a lawyer and her personal experience as a wife, ex-wife, mother, and daughter, Green explains common, even complicated, legal issues in practical, easy to understand terms. She uses court cases and vivid personal anecdotes to illustrate how readers can make smart decisions when problems arise. And legal problems will arise, Green counsels, so women need to get smart, and get ready.

The New Yorker’s Guide to Collaborative Divorce: Untying the Knot with Dignity, Respect and Compassion
By Katherine Eisold Miller

A short readable handbook on the whys and how-to’s of Collaborative Divorce by one of the leaders in this growing movement. Katherine Miller has been featured on several UNtied panels and has offices in NYC and Westchester.

He Had it Coming: How to Outsmart Your Husband and Win Your Divorce
by Stacy Schneider, ESQ.

The vitriolic title belies the solid, play-fair message. Schneider’s strength is presenting information that does not overwhelm.  She offers level-headed advice and tactics so you can take care of yourself while taking care of your divorce. Chapters include tips on what to do once your divorce begins, what to expect in a divorce lawsuit, how to find missing money and assets, how to negotiate like a pro and seven things to do before you sign your divorce papers. Schneider writes, “The best thing you can do to take care of yourself is to learn everything you can about divorce before you begin the process, and devise a strategic plan to protect your marital assets and preserve your lifestyle.  By arming yourself with a divorce road map, you will help shape the course of your own future, rather than leaving your fate to your soon-to-be-ex or a divorce court judge.”

Divorce: Think Financially, Not Emotionally. What Women Need to Know About Securing Their Financial Future Before, During, and After Divorce
by Jeffrey A. Landers

The author, Forbes columnist and UNtied.net panel speaker takes on a variety of topics, including secret funds, filing first for divorce, women who earn more than their husbands, key people to have on a divorce team and managing finances after divorce.

Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline Or Narcissistic Personality Disorder
by Bill Eddy and Randi Kreger

Divorce is difficult under the best of circumstances. When your spouse has borderline personality disorder (BPD), narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), or is manipulative, divorcing can be especially complicated. While people with these tendencies may initially appear convincing and even charming to lawyers and judges, you are all too aware that they tend to leverage false accusations, manipulate others, launch verbal and physical attacks, and do everything they can to get their way. This is your legal and psychological guide to safely navigating a high-conflict divorce from an unpredictable spouse.

LETTING GO AND FACING THE EMOTIONAL MUCK

Crazy Time: Surviving Divorce and Building a New Life, Revised Edition
by Abigail Trafford

Thoroughly revised and updated for a new generation, the essential guide for men and women to help them weather the turmoil of divorce and build rich, rewarding lives. Based upon her personal experience, extensive research, and interviews with hundreds of divorced men and women, Trafford offers individuals a better understanding of their own experiences and the message that they are not alone in their pain and confusion.

Getting Past Your Breakup: How to Turn a Devastating Loss into the Best Thing That Ever Happened to You
by Susan J. Elliott

Elliot refers to  grief “as the healing feeling” and tackles philosophical questions such as “What is love?” in a healthy, mature relationship.

Coming Apart: Why Relationships End and How to Live Through the Ending of Yours
by Daphne Rose Kingma

Hailed by therapists, this book is invaluable for helping you understand your past relationships to ultimately let them go. Kingma talks in depth about the emotional process of parting and how to get through the ending. Exercises will help readers gain clarity so they can see what happened and to hopefully not make the same mistakes in their next relationship.  She offers hope for finding love after love and a ritual for parting.  Kingma writes, “While we’d like to think that time heals all wounds, the fact is time doesn’t heal—time passes. Insight heals. We can’t get better until we understand what happened.”

HELPING CHILDREN THROUGH DIVORCE

The Good Divorce: Keeping Your Family Together When Your Marriage Comes Apart
by Constance Anrons

An early champion of collaborative divorce, Dr. Ahrons offers a hopeful book that takes on the stigma that divorce is always bad for families.  Chapters include transcending the myths of divorce, letting go while holding on, forming a limited partnership, aftermath of divorce and pathways to a good divorce.  The author writes, “The good divorce is not an oxymoron. A good divorce is one in which both the adults and children emerge at least as emotionally well as they were before the divorce. Because we have been so inundated with negative stories, divorce immediately carries with it a negative association. Even though we have difficulty conjuring up positive images of divorce, the reality is that most people feel their lives improved after their divorces.”

Helping Your Kids Cope with Divorce the Sandcastles Way
by M. Gary Neuman, LMHC

In this practical, 460-page book, Neuman comprehensively covers the many situations parents will encounter: how children experience divorce, understanding the different age groups, when parents fight, when a parent moves away and introducing a significant other.  Moreover, the author offers innumerable activities for parent and child that deal with the divorce in an indirect way (often the best way to reach a child): from building a time machine together about the past and future to creating “connecting” conversational cards for the dinner table.  Both parents should own this book so they can work together to help their children move forward in a consistent and structured way.

Neuman offers 13 Ways Parents Can Help Children At Every Age:
• Never assume your child knows how much she means to you.
• Spend quality time and quantity time.  Kids need both.
• Always speak of the other parent in positive terms.
• Mediate your differences with your ex.  Do whatever you can not to fight it out in court.
• Maintain structure
• Invite spirituality into your life.
• Maintain family traditions.
• Become involved in your child’s life. Show interest.
• Find and focus on your child’s wonderful qualities.
• Allow your child to express herself freely.
• Encourage your child’s individuality and social development.
• Take care of yourself.Wake up every morning and ask yourself, What can I do for my child today that will make her smile? Then do it.

Mom’s House, Dad’s House for Kids
by Isolina Riccia, Ph.D

Riccia’s books is a great one to read together as a family.  Although the book is geared toward middle school children, all ages can benefit from the book’s caring message and learn simple approaches to deal with complex questions and situations.  The book offers a map of what is to come, ideas that encourage structure during the big change and ways for parents to help teach kids about bouncing back and having hope for their future.  Dr. Riccia writes, “Separation and divorce are a little like a long road trip.  The destination is a new version of normal family life—one that is different from what you knew before but is still right for your family….Eventually things will settle down and you will arrive at your destination.  There may be moments when it feels as if your world is coming to an end, but it won’t.  However, it is changing.”

IF YOU ARE ON THE FENCE

The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country’s Foremost Relationship Expert
by John M. Gottaman, Ph.D and Nan Silver


Filled with exercises and questionnaires, this book by the country’s foremost expert on thriving relationships is filled with helpful thoughts on predicting divorce and improving marriages. Gottman discusses in detail the so-called Four Horseman, the four obvious signs of an unhappy relationship: criticism, contempt, defensiveness and stonewalling.  However, Gottman’s approach is not to dwell on the negative.  He writes, “So although my Seven Principles will also guide you in coping with conflict, the foundation of my approach is to strengthen the friendship that is the heart of any marriage.”  Other chapters tackle solvable problems, overcoming gridlock and nurturing fondness and admiration.

Should I Stay or Go? How Controlled Separation Can Save Your Marriage
by Lee Raffel, M.S.W.


There are a lot of ways to live a life and many of those lives don’t mirror what we learned while growing up.  It’s tough to leave a relationship and this book helps couples with the dilemma about walking away from a marriage.  The author writes, “Let me assure you that what you are going through in your situation is normal.  Most people have an extremely hard time with such decisions.  The stress component is immense.  Even if you possess very effective decision-making skills and use them successfully in business, they may not work well in this highly personal, everything’s-at-stake crisis.  You are too close to the situation, too emotionally involved.”   Raffel advocates controlled separation, defined as “a powerful impetus for partners to rethink their options and get one another moving.”  Time apart, she argues, is essential for the clearing of heads.  The book covers ground rules, money, children, forgiveness and examples of couples who decided to get divorced and those who chose to remain married.

Thank you for creating a safe space for women in the different stages of divorce to share, support, and learn from each other. For many of us, there is no community to turn to for support. Of course, our friends and loved ones reach out to comfort us, but connecting with others going through similar experiences is invaluable.

Rochelle

I got my lawyer through UNtied! I was totally clueless about collaborative divorce before going to one of your panels. UNtied saved me a lot of time, pain and money. Eternally grateful! Nancy

At a moment when I was in complete shock, stunned and had absolutely no idea how to proceed, it was enormously comforting and helpful to have a group of brilliant women to turn to, each of whom had suggestions, and stories. Knowing you are not alone is big! Liz