Then I started to wonder, ‘Is it only me? Am I the only unlucky woman trapped in this type of incomprehensible divorce?’
I reached out to lawyers in the UK and started presenting the psychological findings of my research.
I half-hoped they would shake their heads and tell me that I had ‘misunderstood the finer points of law’ or that I was simply ‘missing the point’ somehow.
Instead, lawyers across the whole UK resoundingly told me ‘Yes.’ what I was saying was true, and worse, they had seen it with horrifying regularity.
I wondered, ‘So how come no-one is talking about this? Why aren’t there any specialists out there?’
Then I thought, ‘Maybe I need to start offering support for these women?’
I knew in my heart the value of what I offered was the truth of my lived-experience. I had been unthinkingly patronized by professionals so many times that I could spot who had or had not walked this path, just by the questions they asked me.
But, to stand in front of professional peers and proclaim, ‘I’ve been victimized too.’
No, no, no.
Full disclosure felt far too risky.
Instead, I chose to protect my credibility by not being too loud about my experiences and stuck to building a safe, professional ‘brand’ presence.