Domestic Abuse Divorce –
3 Keys to Working within the System

Dr. King

by Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D.

People say that the system doesn’t work. What I see is people not working the system to their advantage. This is especially true for battered women in divorce court.

Now this doesn’t mean that they are responsible for the system failures, any more than they are responsible for their perpetrator’s battering behavior. What it means is that there are so many things that can be done along the way to build one’s case and block divorce abuse.

Here are a few pointers to help you improve the way the system works and the way you work the system...

1) Keep the court record straight.

Now to some litigants this could mean hold the thought that your attorney has a full copy of your court record. For others it may mean that you yourself have a full copy of your court record.

While you do want both of these to be the case, you also want to make sure the facts in your court record reflect the case you wish to put before the court. Make a point to learn how to keep the court record straight.

2) Get off the defense.

Domestic violence survivors often live on the defense in their divorce proceeding. It’s the nature of the beast. They’re usually subjected to a methodical plan to discredit them, so naturally they assume defensive strategies.

You are far better off not being in this position. Your job is to learn how to flip the table. Get off the defense; be proactive.

3) Know the difference between friend and foe.

Now this sounds simple, but it is actually the hardest task for battered women for a number of reasons. They want so badly to believe in “rescue,” that sometimes they look right at the bully in manipulation mode and think knight in shinning armor.

Then, other times, they look at an angel who has shown up for them, with the grace of God, and they project distrust and paranoia. (Some of these victims recognize themselves in their reflexive and unfounded “prince-frog” dance.)

Abuse survivors have cut themselves off from their own inner knowing and authentic intuition. It’s one of the survival/defense mechanisms cultivated in an abusive relationship. And then when bombarded with stress, as in divorce and custody litigation, they distort even more.

If you are a protective parent and battered spouse in divorce court, it’s time to learn how to work the system. By doing so, you will increase the likelihood of a positive outcome in your divorce.

For information about divorce abuse, visit and claim your Free Instant Access to Survivor Success eInsights. Psychologist Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D. helps domestic abuse survivors block legal-psychiatric abuse in divorce and custody cases nationwide. Copyright 2009 Jeanne King, Ph.D.

Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D. – Domestic Violence Prevention and Intervention

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Dr. Jeanne King is a licensed psychologist and domestic abuse consultant. Feel free to contact us if you need help with physical and/or emotional pain, stress-related illnesses, or relationship abuse issues at home or in court. Contact Us to reach Dr. King.