Hear from women who attended and blossomed through Lilac

Tree programs and services.

These "Blossoms" will share the good, the bad, their do's and don'ts, and the things they learned from their divorces, in their own words.

If you are a current or former Lilac Tree client and would like to share your own story to help other women, please contact Jan, our Development Director, at 847.328.0313 or jwalch@thelilactree.org

Please note: these are real stories by real women, to protect privacy, some names, dates and minor details might be altered or absent. Nothing written constitutes as legal, financial or therapeutic advice.



Divorced in 2005

Sue’s story tells of the tough journey through divorce with two small kids and how she found support, strength and built a new community. The divorce experience was very scary for her, and she was overwhelmed with unknowns. She has learned that there is hope and new experiences after divorce and she today has created a new happy life. Sue’s pearls of wisdom include the advice that we cannot heal and move forward alone. She feels that we all need community and support to succeed in any part of our lives. The Lilac Tree was a resource that helped Sue throughout her divorce process.

In The Beginning

When Sue decided to separate from her husband, her only friends were married women with children and her family lived out of town. It was a great challenge because she felt that it was difficult to connect to her married friends because she was in such a different place in her life. She had a few friends remain, but many of these friends drifted away and she felt displaced.

The Lilac Tree Comes to Sue's Assistance

Luckily, Sue sought help from The Lilac Tree and attended their groups during and after the divorce process. In the groups she met other divorced or divorcing women with kids. Through the groups Sue regained her self-confidence and made new friends.  Without family in town to assist her and no other divorced friends, The Lilac Tree offered Sue the validation and support she needed. 

Sue used the traditional divorce process and had a good relationship with her lawyer. Even still, it was a contentious divorce with many different concerns including custody issues. The parenting differences came to a head on many levels, including decisions about which school the children would attend. During the process Sue was juggling taking care of her young children and working as a social worker.

Life After Divorce - A Hobby,  New Profession and Remarriage

After a few years of being divorced, Sue started to meet new people and was introduced to Swing dancing. She geared herself up and walked into the dance studio alone. She heard that the great thing about Swing dancing is that she didn’t need a partner, so she could go out and have fun by herself while still meeting both single and married people. In this dance studio, Sue found her outlet and life became fun again. While dancing, she met lots of people including a great guy, who would become her current husband of 7 years. 

Sue began a new journey, after her divorce experience, of exploring what she needed and wanted in a new relationship and sought out Coaching to understand what was important to her. Sue felt it was her calling to take her counseling skills and specialize in helping single women find that special relationship. She coaches clients who never married or those who have been divorced and helps them with self-esteem and relationship skills. Sue’s personal journey helps her empathize and understand her clients and she has a thriving private practice. 

Final Parting Advice

1.    Make sure to find a supportive community to help you through the divorce journey, such as The Lilac Tree.
2.    Stay the course and make peace with where you are in the process – stay in the moment.
3.    Focus on YOU.  Find what you love in your job, life and love and go for it.
4.    Through the journey, you will find your inner strength and courage.

Sue DeSanto is a social worker with a private practice and a therapy practice and provides relationship coaching for singles. For more information about Sue and her practice, please contact her at this website.

If you are a current or former Lilac Tree client and would like to share your own story to help other women, please contact Jan, our Development Director, at 847.328.0313 or jwalch@thelilactree.org