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How to help a friend through separation

Family law is such a multifaceted jurisdiction that obtaining expert legal advice is a necessity. With the complexities of modern life – with everything from step-families to intricate family trusts – the days of relying on “armchair advice” may be over.

What has not changed is a persons need to have a friend to talk to. But knowing the right thing to say can be overwhelming – especially considering the emotional sensitivity of the issues involved in family law.

While each separation is different here are a few tips for helping a friend during this time:

  • Be calm and rational – encourage them to see that time or more information may help them to make informed decisions;
  • Be objective – help them to focus on practicalities and even making small incremental decisions;
  • Encourage them to seek assistance – to see a lawyer, accountant, doctor or counsellor depending on their needs; and
  • Lastly, listen and just be there for them as their friend.
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