Should you tell your boss you are divorcing?

Photo of attorney Melinda L. Singer

You can’t keep your divorce secret from everyone, but you might not want the whole world to know, especially if the marriage ended due to some unsavory incidents. So it’s usually better to tell specific people yourself, rather than wait until they hear it third hand.

Does your boss or line manager fall into this category? Or is it none of their business?

It’s typically best to tell keep your employer informed

If you believe you can turn up at work every day and perform to the same standard as before, then go ahead and keep your divorce a secret. Yet it’s going to be harder than you think. Divorce is such a massive emotional event that it will inevitably affect everyone’s performance at work.

There are going to be times when you don’t have your usual energy, times when you struggle to talk to anyone and moments when your blood is close to boiling point. If your divorce is difficult, these are even more likely and all could affect your work.

Telling your boss you are divorcing can help them understand why you may be acting differently on a certain day. It makes it more likely they cut you some slack and less likely they think you no longer care about the job. 

It also allows them to plan to help you. Perhaps they can shift some of your workload to others. Maybe they can bring someone else in on the project, so there is cover available if you ever need time off for meetings to do with your divorce or extra time off for yourself. Getting legal help to learn more about the divorce process can help you make the best decision.

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