What could you possibly need to help you through divorce? Perhaps an algorithm to “crunch the numbers” of your emotional makeup or "divorce archetype," and help steer you toward the right dissolution professional to match your style.
That was the idea Michelle Crosby, CEO of Wevorce. Wevorce is a holistic, mediation-based approach to divorce (much like DivorceHotel, which I've written about before). These are among the new attempts to bring in mental health, financial and legal professionals to help you unwed without going to war. The intention is directly in line with the aims of the legal and psychological innovators working in the field of divorce, those who are part of what University of Maryland School of Law's Jana Singer has termed the "Velvet Revolution"—a kinder, gentler, problem-solving approach to divorce proceedings.
But Wevorce.com isn't the only way technology can improve the experience of divorce, co-parenting and dating.
Technology has improved divorce in many ways. You can look up child- and spousal-support guidelines online, download forms, and learn about the law in your state without ever leaving your house.
This ability to get informed up front, without immediately spending the time and money on a lawyer can appease fear and give you a sense of control—both of which can translate into a calmer, kinder parting.
You can find mediators, collaborative lawyers, mental health professionals and financial planners online, too, as well as someone to replace your tennis partner or cooking buddy, a.k.a. your former spouse. You can chat with other solo parents on sites such as babycenter.com, order “Just Divorced!” announcement cards, or look at dresses and cake styles for your divorce party on pinterest.com. You can swipe right on any number of possible new suitors.
There are new apps too, such as ones for co-parenting that help you schedule, share photos and track your finances.
Great ambition, but can a computer steer you toward happily ever, after divorce? Take a look at this piece and let me know what you think.
* A version of this post first appeared on Wendy Paris's website, wendyparis.com.
Wendy Paris is the author of Splitopia: Dispatches from Today's Good Divorce and How to Part Well (Simon & Schuster/Atria, 2016). Splitopia and her work on divorce have been covered by The New York Times, Real Simple, The Washington Post, The New York Post, The Globe & Mail, Psychology Today, The Houston Chronicle, Salon.com, Parents.com, Family Law Quarterly, PsychCentral.com and radio and TV shows nationwide. She has an MFA in creative nonfiction writing from Columbia University, and is an advocate for family law reform. She is divorced, and lives in Santa Monica, California, a few blocks from her former husband, with whom she has a warm co-parenting relationship.