Divorce Dizziness:The many complexities ....
The emotional scars of a failed marriage don’t end when papers are signed and filed in court. This is when the healing should begin. Sara Davis understands this process. The Texas powerhouse has built an entire purpose-driven business called “Divorce Buddys” around helping women struggling with the challenges of divorce.
Along with her colleague and also Divorce Recovery Consultant, Sandra Groth, Sara takes calls from women six days a week to walk them through the legal, financial and emotional hurdles. She helps women come out the other side of the divorce decree with a support system and a positive outlook on life.
Divorce Buddys is a unique service that offers logistical guidance and empathy.
Sara has a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications from The University of Texas, Austin. She has the skills to develop organizational plans around the divorce process, but she is also a vibrant and social woman. She understands that sometimes women just need to get together for dinner or a movie with women going through a similar situation.
First Wives World had the pleasure of speaking with Sara about Divorce Buddys and her goal to help women recover from divorce and look forward to the future.
How were you inspired to create this amazing resource for women?
Sara: I’m inspired to meet the needs of women. There is a big gaping hole and a real need to help women going through divorce. It’s a unique concept. We are divorce recovery consultants. When I say the word “recovery”, our hope is to help that woman move forward in her life. When I say I am a recovery consultant - we are “divorce buddys”. The word “buddy” stands for friends, but we are much more than just a friend. We provide experience, guidance and divorce recovery.
We say that on the journey of divorce there are many complexities and many concerns and I actually coined a term “divorce dizziness”. To me, that means that when that women files for divorce that there is actually so much to consider – not only the emotional concerns, the financial concerns and the reorganizational concerns.
How does the program work?
Sara: The woman is actually in a state of divorce dizziness, which is a temporary season. She will get through this, but things are pretty complex, so at Divorce Buddys, “We think it thru w you”. We have a page in our resources where we have compiled over 25 keys areas to consider. We help our members to deal with those key areas of concerns.
We explain the divorce process. We explain filing the petition, the discovery process and temporary orders. We discuss what is mediation, arbitration and negotiation. What about spousal support, or credit cards? What about getting the will updated?
It’s important that that woman knows that her will needs to be updated. She needs to know how to file her taxes in the upcoming year. We know how to explain the divorce process because several of these terms are brand new to the woman. We don’t know it until we’ve lived it. We help her think it through.
We also supply selective referrals. That’s another phrase with I have invented. That means we have selective vendors that we can provide - seasoned lawyers, CPA or realtors, or a handyman service. We can refer a woman if she needs a moving company or a resume rewritten. We women need to know who to go to for this, so we select vendors for a variety of services.
We also offer support to our members six days a week. Why that is unique is that if we choose to call our lawyers, it is usually during business hours. If we choose to call our professional counsellor, that may be next Tuesday at an appointment, but when a woman has a concern in the moment – she gets an unsettling phone call or email or has a question, she calls her Divorce Buddy. Because she is a monthly member, there is no additional fee for phone calls.
You call directly to your Divorce Buddy. Right now, there are two of us. You are assigned a buddy and you are building a rapport and building a consulting relationship one on one with the member.
When you call with that question you call to the one who knows you and we pick right up because we know right where that woman is in the journey of divorce.
The monthly membership is unique because there are no surprises and you pay month to month. For a very low cost, you get all this support and you can decide whether you want to continue the following month.
We find that we women often retreat when we are sad. That means we stay home, and yes, we may call our friend or our neighbor, but we kind of feel alone. We work into our membership plan social club events and they are only for members, and our members are only women.
This is not a time for romancing the opposite sex, it’s social time for women who are walking through the journey of divorce. They can have that safe place where they know that we are all members and we all understand. The first Friday of the month we have dinner club, the second Saturday of the month we have movie night, the third Saturday of the month we have walk and talk. These events are in public places. If you are a member, you know where we are meeting and you are able to share and relate to other women who are somewhere in the journey. You meet women and you immediately don’t feel so alone. So when we come into a time of trial we understand each other.
I am well equipped and inspired to help. I know this season and I know how to give encouragement. That is why I am so well equipped and inspired to help. I know this season and I know how to give encouragement. I want to listen and share my experience, provide courage and guidance and my suggestions for the women to consider to help them move forward.
We will take her step by step to make sure she is well informed and alert because we know that in the journey of divorce that concludes in the divorce decree, if something is missing or if something is not beneficial that will remain for years and years. This could be child visitation considerations, child support considerations, social security or retirement. There could be unknown debt that could come back and harm that person in the future.
That’s why if we help them through the process and they get the divorce decree, they are better informed to make sure everything is considered.
The legal system will allow you to go back and make modifications but there will be more lawyer fees. We know that that can happen when things have been disregarded or misrepresented.
We use a phrase, and it’s really true and I can prove it, “We have the potential to save our members thousands.”
We explain the process and help them through “divorce dizziness”. We give them courage and help them with the social club events. They don’t have to come but, when we are divorced we have no one to go out to dinner with. What a lovely night for that lady to help her feel like she is not the only one.
We are excited to offer this as a support service. We aren’t legal professionals and we still feel a lawyer is necessary to lead the legal process, but we are going to help that women be better equipped. We know the documents she has to compile and we give her a list. We show her exactly what she needs – you are going to have to find your assets, your mortgage, your taxes, bills, etc. and get this ready. Through our coaching, we help them get their information compiled. They are actually saving on legal fees because we teach them.
One of our concepts is buy a plastic file box with a handle and start compiling your documents and put them in your box. Keep it in your trunk, so if you are at the lawyer it’s always ready, that way you can take your documents and you have everything you need.
We ask our members to recognize what the lawyer’s hourly fee is and what the paralegal’s hourly fee is.Every minute that we spend talking to a paralegal is billable, and we are talking on the clock. So if we talk to a paralegal and we think that they are our confidant, they will keep us talking on the clock. So if we talk to a paralegal and we think that they are our confidant, they will keep us talking on the clock.
If the woman shares her concerns with me, we help her think it through and then call the paralegal. We women love to talk. She can talk to us on and on and she’s not on the clock. So we say, good point, tell your lawyer that and we help her process her thoughts and makes sure those important matters do go to the lawyer.
We are better than a friend because we are experienced and actually we are smart. We point out – actually those concerns could go to the lawyer in a bullet point email rather than a lengthy phone call when the phone call costs, we don’t know how much.
There is another interesting point that I hope shows honor to the lawyers. I believe the lawyer is especially skilled when it comes to intelligence, strategy, protocol and leadership. That’s good, but is the lawyer warm and caring and relating to another divorced woman like a buddy would be?
The lawyer actually has a different package of skills and we will honor them for that. Let the lawyer be the professional. We as divorce buddies are explaining, feeling and sharing. We do the sharing and it is really valuable and beneficial.
I think that’s amazing. We need those professionals but it can be intimidating going to a lawyer or other professionals. Most of us aren’t prepared for this experience.
Sara: I designed this myself. I launched it last year and it’s a new concept. We have three different levels of membership that you can check out on our website.
We walk through divorce with you. Image courtesy of divorcebuddys.com
I’m finishing writing my book, “Divorce Dizziness”. I have a publisher. I talk about how to walk through the journey of divorce. It’s a journey but you will get through. In my book these are “how-to” chapters on calendaring, organizing, lawyering, calculating means, such as what are my costs? Where should I live, what are my debts? How to re-launch credit or secure your credit.
I talk about calendaring, it’s a fabulous concept. Buy a full size calendar, note conflicts, your legal payments, note your legal dates, note your deadlines, your filing dates, note when he doesn’t pick up the kids. Put it all on your calendar; it’s a fabulous reference tool.
I also talk about re-strengthening and your new life ahead. That’s super power; that’s refueling that woman. We also promote walking or listening to calming music.
Another thing I talk about in the book is targeting – target your goals, target your dreams, put it in a journal, paint on a canvas. We need to set our sights on our target goals, our dreams and our purpose. Target your future and move forward. There is new life ahead. It’s a workbook to help a woman make sure she is well informed and equipped.
There are so many key elements of smarts in how to move forward. I do think in life we come into seasons of challenge. Certainly for me, I’ve grown more compassionate. I want and am inspired to help and I am doing this because the only one who can do this is the one who has learned it. I know how to get through this journey and it is a hard one.
A phrase I came up with – “The details, the discovery the depositions, the drama and the delays – that’s divorce dizziness.” It all happens. Those things make us dizzy, but we can move forward and lead a life with purpose.
This is my business with purpose. I could do something else, but this is a purpose and I know how to help that woman move forward.
It’s too bad you couldn’t clone this or franchise it around North America. I think more woman could use this kind of help. Do you have any plans around that?
Sara: I had to get the story out about how we limit the cost and we provide social healing. I’m trying to show that it is a smart investment. I have designed a franchise opportunity and I have thought it through, even down to the name. I wanted it to be unique on purpose. Anyone could be a “divorce buddy” under my name.
There are a lot of programs out there and they are all different. A lot are geared toward therapy, which is extremely helpful, but this format creates a very caring relationship with the woman, especially since you understand the emotions.
Sara: My business concept is a business with purpose. I am inspired. We have a heart to help. When considering the future expansion of Divorce Buddys, I have Divorce Buddys franchise business opportunities available outside of Texas.
Sara Davis Image courtesy of divorcebuddys.com
Thank you, Sara! It has been a pleasure learning about your passion for helping other women on their divorce journey.
Do you feel alone and overwhelmed by the process of divorce? What steps have you taken to create a new life? Share your stories in the comment box below.