Helpful Divorce Books


Below, you will find some of the best books about divorce for women, from making the decision and working through the legal issues, to helping your children cope and starting over.

Deciding on Divorce

Should I Stay or Should I Go?: A Guide to Knowing if Your Relationship Can--and Should--be Saved
Considering Leaving Your Relationship? Want to make sure you're making the right decision? Discover a powerful new process that will help you decide what's right for you.

Too Good to Leave, Too Bad to Stay
Should you get a divorce? Only you can answer that question, but this book will help you make an informed decision. Written by therapist and counselor Mira Kirshenbaum, this book walks you through thought-provoking diagnostic questions to help you work out whether the issues in your marriage can be overcome or not.

Preparing for Divorce

Divorce 101: A Woman's Guide to Divorce
Get the facts about divorce before it's too late. Divorce 101 provides the comprehensive information you need to navigate the issues of your divorce and control the outcome.

The Divorce Organizer and Planner with CD-ROM, 2nd Edition
Brette McWhorter Sember, a retired divorce attorney and mediator, helps guide you through the divorce process, giving you the tools to help you create a complete, accessible record of everything you will need to prepare for divorce, as well track alimony child support, and more after the divorce.

Divorce & Money: How to Make the Best Financial Decisions During Divorce
Unfortunately, there is a difference between the financial reality of your situation and how your assets and debts would be legally divided by a judge. This guide gives a really good overview of how assets (such as the marital home, retirement assets, and businesses) are evaluated in divorce and what you can expect.

The No-Fight Divorce Book
End your marriage on your own terms and without the cost and heartache of a traditional divorce. This book reveals the advantages of using mediation during your divorce to save time and money while keeping the whole divorce process less combative. Learn how mediation works and if this is a method you should pursue to negotiate the division of assets and debts, child custody and support, and other issues relevant to your divorce. Brette goes into detail on how to find the best mediator for your case, how to overcome difficulties in the mediation process, worksheets and checklists to keep everything organized, as well as information on how to review your final settlement, and what you need to do to make the settlement legal.

How To Make Any Divorce Better
Based on the author's 35 years of experience in family law, this guide can help you avoid unnecessary turmoil and expense during your divorce. It offers common sense steps you can take to make the process easier and strategies to help if you have a high-conflict situation or one involving domestic abuse. Also included is a CD containing worksheets to help you determine assets and debts, work out a parenting agreement, child support guidelines and enforcement, and more.

Divorce Preparation Manuals - This is another section that includes specific guides on divorce, custody, support, alimony, separation, and property division.

Children and Divorce

Joint Custody with a Jerk
Learn how to deal with a difficult ex-husband who makes joint custody hard to handle. From learning about the common problems of parenting with an ex who doesn't want to cooperate, to finding solutions to effectively communicate with each other, this is a good read for anyone who feels that their custody situation is out of hand.

A Family's Heartbreak: A Parent's Introduction to Parental Alienation
This book takes you into the everyday life and challenges of an alienated parent, giving you a heartbreaking look into what can happen when one parent manipulates and turns a child against the other parent. It's not pretty, but the author points out the pitfalls and the legal difficulties that an alienated parent often faces. You can read my full review on Amazon, but this is definitely worth reading out if you find that your ex-spouse is purposely turning your child against you.

The Child Custody Book 
If you are facing a child custody battle, this is the book to read. This guide outlines the process of how the court decides custody and what you can expect at each stage in the litigation process. Written by a judge, with additional input from a child custody evaluator and as well as a trained psychologist, it highlights how you can present your case so that you stand the best chance of retaining custody. It goes over how to conduct yourself during a custody evaluation, how to choose the best attorney for your case, how abuse and issues of alienation can factor into the custody decision, and more.

What Every Woman Should Know about Divorce and Custody
This revised edition focuses mainly on custody issues, but also discusses a wide range of legal strategies, as well as financial and psychological issues. Learn what to expect in court and the risk factors that women face, as well as sound advice on how to deal with the challenges of divorce.

Putting Children First
If you have been through a high-conflict divorce, this book can help you navigate the difficult co-parenting issues that you will face afterwards. Learn how to get past the hostility and constant bickering with your ex so that you can truly focus on what's best for your children. You'll learn new strategies for communicating with your ex, how to handle transition and discipline difficulties, dealing with step-parents, as well as how to manage the special occasions in your children's lives.

Helping Children Cope with Divorce

Helping Your Kids Cope with Divorce
Even though it's been around for a while, the common-sense guidance offered in "Helping Your Kids Cope with Divorce the Sandcastles Way" applies to all parents going through divorce. It can help you realize how important it is to put your children first by seeing things through their eyes. It's worth reading.

It's Not Your Fault, Koko Bear
Even it's been around for a while; this is still a great resource to help children come to grips with their parent's divorce. The main focus of the book is to help children understand that they didn't cause the divorce. With beautiful graphics, children can relate to the pictures of Koko Bear and what he is feeling, helping them realize that their emotions are normal and giving them permission to verbalize what they are feeling. The book also has sections at the bottom that describes what most children experience when their parents' divorce, giving suggestions on how to approach different situations and the right messages to convey about the whole situation.

Taking the "Duh" Out of Divorce is a video that your children will enjoy watching. Following the cartoon adventure of Skye and Jack, kids can see that what they are experiencing is normal and that divorce is not the end of the world. I recommend it to help your children cope with the emotions of divorce.

I Can't Want To
"I Can't Want To" is a wonderful story by Michelle Shillings that young children of divorce and separation can relate to. Inspired by her young son's frustrations over having two homes, Michelle is able to put into words the feelings young children experience over visitation and the changes that go along with it. Children will be comforted by the simple message that it's okay to be upset when Mommy and Daddy don't live together anymore. And adults will appreciate the opportunity to talk with their children about how they feel about their situation. The illustrations by Brenda Lovejoy are adorable and will engage youngsters as well as the adults reading to them. It's definitely a "keeper". Review by Tracy Achen from

Books on Starting Over

95 Transformational Tips For Letting Go and Moving On After Your Divorce
Shelley Stile is a Divorce Recovery Coach dedicated to helping people move beyond the trauma and emotional roller coaster of getting divorced. This is an easy to read book which offers powerful and thought-provoking tips to help you start letting go of your pain and begin embracing a new outlook on life. These tips will inspire you to start regaining your sense of control as you begin to accept your new reality and move beyond the negative emotions of divorce. It's worth reading...

Rebuilding: When Your Relationship Ends...
This book can help keep you grounded as you work through all the swirling emotions that go along with getting a divorce. It tackles the tough issues that women often don't talk about (even with their friends), and helps you move past all the garbage. And it doesn't stop there. It also walks you through transitioning into your new life by helping you develop worthwhile goals that resound with the real you.

Getting Past Your Breakup: How to Turn a Devastating Loss into the Best Thing That Ever Happened to You
This is a great book to help you get through the anguish and devastation you feel when your marriage ends. It's full of practical tips for all women who find themselves single after many years of marriage. It can help you adapt to the changes in your life, make order out of the chaos you're feeling, and help you start rebuilding your life independently.

Wife Goes On (Fiction)
Here is a fiction novel that you will truly enjoy, especially after you've finalized your divorce. It's for every woman who has dealt with the trials and tribulations of being a single mom or faced the uncertainty of having to handle it all yourself. This book gives readers a delightfully funny and true-to-life glimpse into the real world of starting over.  Read the full review...

The Journey from Abandonment to Healing: Revised and Updated 
This book discusses the five stages of abandonment, provides exercises for managing the pain and rediscovering the capacity for love, plus it provides a complete program for abandonment recovery. If you're ready to begin a new life after your divorce, take some time to read this book.

Leaving Him Behind
Learn how to break free from the emotional bonds you had to your husband and the marriage itself. Even though this book has been around for a while, it can help you start putting your life back together after your marriage ends. Isn't it time to move forward and grow into the person you were truly meant to be?

Mars and Venus Starting Over
From the relationship expert John Gray, this guide helps people who have suffered the loss of love due to divorce, breakup, or death deal with the loss so they can move on with their lives and be open to new relationships.

The Breakup Diary
If you're struggling to find closure to your relationship, this self-directed journal will help immensely. The exercises walk you through your feelings about your ex, allowing you to put the relationship into perspective while pinpointing issues you may have overlooked or down-played. As you get your feelings out in the open (and down on paper), you can come to terms with what happened and begin to heal the wounds in your heart. I found it very helpful in the breakup of my long-term relationship.

Daisy Dooley Does Divorce (Fiction) 
As a forty-something divorcee, this was a book I could certainly identify with. Daisy's post-divorce misadventures in trying to find the perfect man illustrate the realities of the single scene. I could relate to her obsession with self-help guides, and laugh at her portrayal of real family life (which was way out there, just like most of ours). Although it was a witty and fun read, it was also down to earth and exposed the reality of the dating scene today. I enjoyed the book and would recommend it to all newly divorced women to help them realize that they are not alone. Contributed by staff contributor LaurieKennedy.

Written by Rev. Justine Hanif, this book gives a realistic view of many of the issues that Christians face when they divorce or remarry. After going through her own divorce, she became aware of the challenges of divorcing women within the church, especially the isolation they feel due to feeling judged by others in the church. This book offers hope to these women so they can learn how to let go and move beyond being stuck by what others think. Read the full review of Get Over It...

Got 90 Seconds?: Quick Quotes and Notes to Encourage and Inspire
Written by Gloria Swardenski, "Got 90 Seconds?" is an easy to read daily dose of encouragement that will help you look at things with a new perspective. These quotes and anecdotes will inspire you to savor the positives in your life so you can look at your challenges a little differently.

Understanding Men

Why Does He Do That?: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men
Understand what is going on when the one you love comes to dominate your life. This is a very thorough guide on the mind set of controlling men that can help you understand why he does what he does.

The Verbally Abusive Relationship, Expanded Third Edition: How to recognize it and how to respond 
If you're struggling with a controlling husband and feel that nothing you do is right, then this book is for you. In this book you'll find validation about what you're feeling, understanding about your situation, and encouragement to change the situation. Do yourself a favor and read this so that you can understand your situation.

Generation EX: How to be a Happy, Healthy, and Positive EX-Husband and Father by David M. Zamora. This guide was written to bridge the gap and to bring back the smiles to families who have been separated by difference or divorce. Through humor and practical advice, this book encourages divorced parents to keep a positive attitude when working together to raise their children.

How to Survive Your Boyfriend's Divorce
If you are the "girlfriend" of a married man in the middle of a divorce, you need to read this book. It's a quick and easy read, revealing what your choices and options are in this type of relationship. This book has been around for a while, but the information is still valid.