Too Much Information

“Good fences make good neighbors” – Robert Frost

Even when someone is well-meaning and cares about you, they may ask questions about your divorce that you are uncomfortable answering. And then there are acquaintances who just want the scoop. Either way, what you choose to share is something you should consider well so that you can develop a response plan. People DO talk and, especially if you have children, you are entitled to protect yourself and your kids from gossip. We call this privacy!

For the divorce that occurred due to infidelity, alcoholism, addiction, gambling, try these responses to intrusive questions:

  • “I’m still trying to understand what happened and I’m so thankful for all the support I have in getting through this. I’ll let you know if I need anything.”
  • “Thanks for your concern. It’s just too emotional for me to talk about right now.”
  • “We grew apart without realizing it as it happened.”
  • “Our lifestyle goals just weren’t in sync.”
  • “I’m not ready to talk about it right now.”
  • “My spouse was not making choices that were conducive to family life.”
  • “I’d like to keep that private for the sake of my children. Thanks for understanding.”

You are not obligated to give details to just anyone. Identify family members, trusted friends, a therapist, religious counsel, and an attorney with the gruesome facts. Outside of that circle, use restraint and discretion.

Your ex may have behaved in a way that you don’t condone. Privacy allows you to live your life on your terms. It’s time to take back control!

Deirdre Shaffer, MSW, LCSW



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