Over the last few years, I have been hearing more and more about women (and men) working with a divorce coach to help them during and after their divorce. They are often seeking out the help of a good coach because they want an experienced guide who can help ease the emotional pain of their divorce while focused on the things that matter most.
To find out more about what a divorce coach does and how a coaching program may be a help to you, I turned to well-known divorce coach Elisabeth Klein. Elisabeth has written multiple books, speaks to thousands of women each year, and provides coaching to women who are either in a difficulty marriage or who are going through a divorce.
My Q&A with Elisabeth follows:
Jim: Elisabeth, thank you for taking the time to better educate us on the benefits of divorce coaching.
Elisabeth: My pleasure. Thanks for the opportunity.
Jim: What led you to decide to become a divorce coach?
Elisabeth: Though I had plenty of help and support walking through my divorce, women contact me all the time who tell me they have no one who understands what they’re going through. In part, I believe it’s because our culture downplays going through a crisis…we hear things like pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps is the way to go and we’re pushed to speed through the grieving process, so I think people tend to keep what they’ve gone through to themselves, which makes people coming up behind them going through the same thing feel isolated, when we don’t have to be.
Jim: Why do you think so many women are choosing to work with a divorce coach rather than ‘go it alone’?
Elisabeth: I think it’s that moment when you hit a wall and realize that what you have been doing over and over again isn’t getting you unstuck. I think most of us can, for the most part, navigate life’s tricky situations. But there are some life circumstances – divorce included – that can tend to just blindside us (even if our marriage was horrible for years and years). Having someone walk alongside you who has been there before you can be such a comfort and source of hope and strength. There’s nothing quite like hearing “me too” from someone who is pouring out grace over you.
Jim: What are the benefits of working with a coach or starting a coaching program?
Elisabeth: I believe a coach or mentor can look into your life with a sense of loving detachment. I haven’t been entangled in all of your specific details so I can see the forest for the trees, but I sure have walked through the forest and I know the way out. Another perspective, when feeling like you’re out of options and hopeless, can almost always help you move forward in your healing.
Jim: How would divorce coaching help someone make better short-term and long-term financial decisions?
Elisabeth: One of the lessons I try to impart is that when we are walking through a crisis – which is what a divorce is – we are tapped out in every area of our lives and we shouldn’t make huge decisions, like getting a tattoo or a major haircut that we might regret, but also things like buying a sports car just to spite your ex, for instance. All things in moderation. It’s all about taking small steps forward to put our lives back together.
Jim: What should someone look for in a divorce coach/coaching program?
Elisabeth: You want someone who has been there. If your divorce coach has never been divorced, ummm…they may know a lot of head knowledge, but you want someone who walked through the fires that you are walking through. You want someone who will be organized and tell you what you can expect up-front. You want someone who has had some experience in working with people one-on-one. And you want someone who will amplify hope in your life and help you to see that you will not always feel the way you’re currently feeling.
Jim: How does divorce coaching work, exactly?
Elisabeth: I can’t speak for other coaches, but I can tell you what I’m doing. I have so many women who contact me for advice, and I just cannot spend huge amounts of time on each one, which breaks my heart. So many hurting women need someone to hear them and understand them and walk beside them. But my time is limited, just like everyone else’s.
So I created a three-month e-course that involves weekly tips, weekly assignments, monthly webcast teachings, access to a private Facebook group for mentorees only, and one of my packages includes a one-on-one monthly phone call with me to talk through specifics.
I offer two courses: MarriageMentor, for those still in difficult marriages trying to stay with integrity and dignity, and DivorceMentor, for those who are separated or divorced. So basically, unless you’re in a great marriage or have never been married, I’m your girl.
Jim: Now it’s my understanding that in order to really focus on the women in your DivorceMentor program, you only open up this program for new women twice a year.
Elisabeth: That’s correct. I only accept new clients in January and September.
Jim: Thank you so much Elisabeth for sharing with us the benefits of divorce coaching and the type of work you do as a divorce coach.
Elisabeth: You’re welcome.
More About Elisabeth:
Elisabeth Klein is a grateful wife to Richard and mom and stepmom to five. She loves spending time with her husband, her kids, her friends, reading and writing. She is the author of Unraveling: Hanging onto Faith through the End of a Christian Marriage, among many other titles, that can all be found at Amazon.com. She moderates private Facebook groups and e-courses for women in difficult marriages and those walking through divorce. You can find her here: Elisabethklein.com and more information on MarriageMentor and DivorceMentor here: elisabethklein.com/coaching-2.
[Elisabeth Klein is not affiliated with Royal Alliance Associates, Inc. or Phase 3 Advisory Services, Ltd.]