It’s ironic that I often hear “I don’t know anyone facing divorce or a family law issue.” Within the week, a mutual friend is in my office for advice on those very issues. Obviously, none of us knew. And even after I have a client, that fact is confidential. Unless someone reaches out, no one will know — perhaps for many painful months of isolation.
We keep family issues private, minding our own business and not wanting to air dirty laundry. Discretion is critical. Yet, rethink your take on privacy: people tend to feel very isolated when going through family law problems and need someone who is there for them.
You don’t need to have all the answers. Simply listening when someone mentions their family law issue is a great service and act of kindness, and will make them feel better.
If you know or believe someone is dealing with family law issues, you shouldn’t necessarily push them to talk, but letting them know that you are there for them can be appreciated. They may be holding it in, unsure of who to turn to, and you simply offering your ear can ease their mind and help them to not feel alone.
Especially around holidays, people feel isolated as they look around seeing other happier families, or do not get to be with their children. It’s around those dates in particular that it is so important to reach out to those who are struggling. Lending your ear can be more of a gift than you ever could imagine.