Divorce is one of the hardest challenges life can present you with, and nobody anticipates just how ugly things can get – especially when it comes to real estate. Not only do basic things get really difficult for both of you, it’s also a living nightmare for children. You may think they’re not affected by those whispered arguments, the angry texts or slamming of doors, but the impacts can be lifelong. Even if things are going pretty well and things are still amicable, juggling two households and running children between them and their busy social lives can be very hard. You’ll need all the help you can get building a new life after your divorce and thankfully, technology has a positive role to play.
There have been lots of great apps developed in recent years that help separated couples navigate everything from emotional impacts to shared budgeting, calendars and co-parenting arrangements. These are just a few of our favourites.
Perfectly named, the 2Houses app does exactly as you would think – helps co-parents manage two houses. The app enables parents to organise and coordinate schedules as well as calendars – custody arrangements can be detailed, as well as medical appointments and piano lessons, school pick-ups, soccer practice, play dates and more. Parents can update each other after health appointments, share medical information and even allow access for a mediator if required. Best of all, 2Houses has a finance component – both parents can record expenses such as kids shoes or new braces, as well as see who owes what for child support mortgage repayments and so on. Most of the content can be exported into excel or pdf files for reference and images can be added and shared as reference too, so you don’t have to prove you really did buy the kids new schoolbags – the receipt and the photos will be all the proof you need. The app team is based in Belgium but it is currently used in 163 countries and is available in multiple languages.
Focusing on the intricacies of co-parenting, Divvito was launched in 2018 and is Australian made and owned. It pitches itself as a communication tool, allowing both parents to message each other, coordinate the children’s movements and share photos and videos. The built-in virtual support person is a great feature too – filtering communication to make sure things stay positive, archiving and storing conversations in chronological order, responding to preferences around being disturbed and flagged terms to watch out for and block. Activities and reminder can be scheduled and best of all there is enough functionality in the free version for your everyday needs, plus plenty of great solutions in the enhanced version.
Currently boasting over 17 million users, Cozi has similar functionality to the previous apps mentioned, but its secret weapon is FOOD! Along with being able to manage schedules and communication, users can also share menus, recipes and shopping lists. For households with fussy kids and complicated custody arrangements, this can be life changing. Add a cake mix to the shopping list for whoever gets the kids on cake stall day. Brainstorm recipes together, now that your 12-year-old has decided she’s a vegetarian. Share what dishes were a hit, which ones failed and make sure that each parent has what they need in the pantry when it’s their turn to feed the kids. You can even create shared meal plans so both parents can keep their kids diet balanced and consistent across the week, without doubling up on meals between houses. Sure, the kids would love pizza at mum’s on Friday and pizza at dad’s on Saturday but they’ll never tell you that – so Cozi will. Amazing right? It’s even integrated with home devices so you can get Alexa in on the parenting action too.
Personal Banking Apps
Although not a purpose-built app specifically, your banking app could become your best friend post separation – especially if you’re living from pay to pay and need to keep on top of what’s going on with your finances. All of the top four banks have some kind of provision in their service offering for separated and divorced clients. Westpac’s new Separation Hub offers support, checklists and professional advice around the entire separation process, including the financial considerations. NAB offers similar options and tools to help clients manage their finances during divorce through its Unplanned Life Moments programme. ANZ offers financial hardship support, as does the Commonwealth Bank, along with a budget planner and a monthly savings calculator as part of their financial difficulty support. Managing finances can be one of the most stressful parts of divorce so it’s important to get the help and support you need as quickly as possible before the bills stack up and you can access help right now, through your bank’s dedicated app.
Break up Boss
This one is not at all about logistics, and 100% for broken hearts. Created in Australia by entrepreneur Zoë Foster Blake, Break Up Boss is a book and an app and an all-round, sort you out kind of philosophy. It’s part tool kit, part self-help guru, part best friend in your back pocket. Think of it as a tiny life coach in your phone, there to offer advice when you need it, emotional support of the sad kind as well as the motivating kind and tools and techniques to help you navigate life after your breakup and get you in top shape for love the next time around.