Liza Caldwell and SAS for Women

Liza Caldwell and SAS for Women

Divorce isn’t a decision about marriage. It’s a decision about who you are, what you value, how you raise your children, what values you live your life by. It’s about the life you want to live and the world you want to live in. It’s about what’s right.

When you think about it this way, it makes sense that going through a divorce requires a variety of tools and resources. In fact, it is no coincidence that we have to marshal support from all corners to get through it successfully.

This month we’ve been taking a close look at the work of Liza Caldwell, cofounder and director of SAS For Women, graduate of Fordham University with an MA from Columbia Teachers College where she studied Gender and Leadership Development. She’s trained in transformational coaching and she’s a certified professional coach and recognized by the International Coach Federation.

In her work, Caldwell describes the four stages of divorce. These are mental stages, not legal. They describe the changing feelings, worries, realizations and breakthroughs we experience in the dissolution of a marriage. As you process your feelings and thoughts, you pass from one stage to the next. No matter what the specifics of your own divorce, you are somewhere on the spectrum of the four stages.

Stage One: “Something is Wrong”

This is a breakthrough moment. It may be triggered by a fight, a conversation, a disappointment or seeing something through someone else’s eyes.  Caldwell calls this “a spiral that goes around and around and around with no end. It’s a kind of a black hole.” Here, you decide you can’t take any more and that it’s time to take action.

Stage Two: Hitting the Trigger

Stage two, according to Caldwell, is taking that first step toward action. Here’s where you go from secret nighttime Googling to action in the light of day. It’s when you interview professionals like lawyers and therapists. This may even take you through the divorce itself.

Stage Three: Something is Changing

Stage three begins deep into the process, possibly after signing your divorce papers. This step is challenging because it’s when you take a deep assessment of where you are in life—and where you’d like to go.

Stage Four: New Normal

As a reward for all that difficult soul-searching you arrive at stage four—an exciting new beginning. You’ve gotten rid of the negativity in your life and you’re ready to start your new life—with a new attitude.

SAS For Women

Caldwell created a center called SAS for Women (Support and Solutions) for those contemplating divorce, or facing another life challenge. It takes women from pre-decision/contemplation mode to whatever new challenges they face post-divorce. Their website is full of resources, articles for research, articles and testimonials about people at any stage of the decision.

If you’re considering divorce but would like to try an approach that might mean a brighter future, call my team to schedule a confidential consultation.