Many non-working spouses like homemakers find themselves financially devastated after a divorce. Divorce, in fact, is a major financial turning point for women, who, on an average, experience a 7 percent drop in income after divorce.

Child support and alimony payments may be temporary. Once those checks stop coming in, you may have to learn how to support yourself after divorce. Even with alimony and child support payments, you may find that payments are insufficient to meet many of your needs. Here’s what you can do to boost your financial situation after a divorce.

Get a Job 

You may need to get into the workforce after a divorce in order to earn additional income to sustain yourself and your family. While the divorce is in process, look into suitable job opportunities that utilize your talents, skills, education and experience level.

Update Your Skills 

If you have chosen to be a homemaker during marriage, then you might find that your skills or education are outdated and insufficient to find you a job. Look at upgrading your skills by enrolling in classes and additional programs. You may find many programs that offer financial aid or assistance programs.

Use Financial Aid 

Make use of any available financial assistance programs, and don’t be embarrassed about doing so. There are likely several government or community programs in your area that can help you learn new skills, obtain health care coverage, or assist with buying utilities and groceries until you can find a job. Be practical and tell yourself that you will take all the available aid you can get until you are financially secure. Remember, this transition period is usually difficult for most non-working spouses.

Monitor Expenses 

Create a budget for monthly expenses. Learn how to save money every month and learn to live within your means. Many of the spending habits that you developed over the years as a non-working spouse will not work post-divorce.

Learning new skills, getting a job and staying within your means — these tactics can increase your ability to get back on a sound financial footing substantially and support yourself and your family after the divorce.

Life after divorce does not have to equal destitution. For more advice about how you can thrive after a divorce, read the rest of our Texas Divorce Lawyer blog. For help filing for divorce, schedule a consultation with Texas family attorney Julie Johnson — The Texas Divorce Lawyer.