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Law Offices of Molly B. Kenny

When it Comes to Divorce Proceedings, Guilt May Be a Good Thing

Molly B. Kenny
Founder and Principal Divorce Attorney

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Molly B. Kenny
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A new study regarding guilt and divorce has made a surprising discovery about the usually-negative emotion: feeling guilty can actually boost cooperation and problem-solving when it comes to divorce proceedings and settlements.
A new article in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships found that guilt more than any other emotions helped divorcing parties accommodate each other, act in a less intimidating manner, and be less forceful during negotiations. These changes resulted in shorted, less acrimonious and less expensive divorces.
The study, which was conducted by Ann Wietzker of Ghent University, followed over 450 divorcing couples, most of whom had children and most of whom had been married for over a decade.
The study also found that the emotion of shame had the opposite effect on cooperation and compromise during divorce – because it is associated with feelings of worthlessness and incompetence, those who feel shame are more likely to turn inward than those who only feel guilt. Guilt – the feeling that you have hurt another person – leads to more social actions related to healing that hurt.
Are you going through a Washington State divorce and need the assistance of a Bellevue divorce lawyer? The attorneys at the Law Offices of Molly B. Kenny are here to help. Call us today at 425.296.8852 to learn more about how we can help you with a fast and fair divorce.

Category: Divorce and Property

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