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Dealing with the social, emotional fallout of family legal issues

Any time you are struggling with legal issues in your family, you are likely dealing with much more than some legal documents and courtroom appearances. The emotional tolls these disputes can take are often considerable. Understandably, many people don't feel comfortable sharing details of their situation with too many people.

Dealing with the social, emotional fallout of family legal issues

Family legal issues can be difficult to cope with because they are often considered private and can be potentially embarrassing. Unlike celebrities, most people don't have the luxury or desire to hire publicists and PR professionals to help them present and explain a difficult situation to others in an appropriate manner. However, there are tips we can take away from how these issues are managed by people in the spotlight.

The first thing to keep in mind is that you are under no obligation to share private details of a legal matter with others outside of your attorney and a courtroom. If people ask how you are doing or what is happening with a divorce or child custody battle, you can explain that the situation is private and you remain focused on finding a resolution.

You can also protect yourself and your emotional well-being by avoiding an ex's Facebook page or putting too much weight into rumors that you hear through gossip. Statements, pictures, and events can easily be taken out of context and staying too focused on what others are saying can be both misleading and unnecessarily hurtful.

Finally, it can be crucial to understand the fact that you can damage your own case and yourself if you engage in underhanded or purposefully hurtful tactics. Revealing private information can be a violation of confidentiality agreements, sharing unfavorable or negative stories on social media can make you look vengeful, and railing against an ex to friends and family can do harm to important relationships like those between children and parents.

Even if you are not in the position to hire someone to handle how family legal announcements are made and handled in the public eye, you can manage how or if you discuss the details with those around you. Finding a resolution can be easier by leaving the legal details in the courtroom and saying focused on your own recovery.

Source: New York Post, "When A-listers divorce, PR flacks resort to their darkest arts," Emily Yahr, Dec. 5, 2015

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