July 31, 2020 09:02
Divorce lawyer Choi Yu-na puts webtoons detailing the painful process of splitting up on her social media.
Choi has been a divorce lawyer for nine years and handled around 1,000 cases so far, and the webtoons, titled "Marriage Red," reflect the experiences of her clients. She writes the words and an illustrator handles the artwork.
"Marriage Red" signifies the warning signs that appear in a relationship. Stories may concern a husband who has secretly gambled for decades, a young married couple whose relationship was shattered by infidelity, and an elderly woman who divorced her husband after a lifetime of violence.
Choi compiled these into a book last year titled "Let's Split up Now." "I changed some of the stories of my clients, but more than 90 percent is based on true events." More than 220,000 people follow her on Instagram.
She often gets phone calls from divorced people she knows who tell her they were consoled by her webtoons. "More young people divorced than I thought, and many more are considering divorce," Choi said. She started her divorce-themed webtoons after a close family member went through the process.
"I had a tough time watching that family member go through divorce," she said. "I've been consulting people on divorce for some time, but that was different. And I started thinking about the many clients who had sought my help and felt they deserved support rather than criticism."
"People who divorce should not hide the fact. It must be shared, and I wanted to use webtoons to change people's attitudes toward divorce."
Back in the day she decided to become a lawyer when she saw a play featuring one. Her father also told her that giving advice to people would be a suitable profession for her and recommended she apply to law school.
Even as a student, Choi often counseled her friends about their boyfriends and other growing pains. Divorce cases often last longer than civil or criminal lawsuits with smaller fees, and lawyers often shun them as a result, but Choi said mediating between married couples and solving their problems suits her personality.
The most important message is that people should place the highest importance on their happiness rather than struggle painfully to keep a failed relationship going for fear of any social stigma. "If you are considering divorce, I advise you to ask yourself if your life will be happier afterwards," she said. "Divorce can be a path to becoming happier. The answer lies inside you."
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