Website Seeks to Empower Women Facing Divorce

Palm Springs' Paula Swartz created LookForward based on her own divorce experience



Paula Swartz: "Look Forward is not about one way. It’s about finding your own way."

Courtesy of Paula Swartz

Divorce brings about enough change.

But if there was one thing Palm Springs resident Paula Swartz didn’t want to see change was her health insurance. The complexities created the need for a comfort zone and simply keep what she already had with her family group insurance policy.

Unfortunately what she discovered was once her divorce became legal, she said it was against the law for her to remain in that insurance policy.

“In your mind, you’re thinking this is one of the things I can negotiate,” says Swartz, who divorced after 15 years of marriage. “You can’t. You have to get out.  That was really shocking to me in terms of the realities of divorce.”

There were plenty of others. Enough that Swartz decided to do something about it.

She created a website, LookForward, which not only handles such topics as health insurance, but prides itself on providing information specifically to women on a variety of topics from vetted professionals chosen by an advisory board comprised of Swartz herself, a lawyer, a practicing CPA, a clinical psychologist, and medical doctor.

palmspringslife.com caught up with Swartz to find out how LookForward can become a tool of empowerment for women going through one of the more difficult periods of their life.

When you were going through your divorce, did you find the information online that you were looking for?

“I found very generic information, a lot of blogging, chat rooms, a lot of celebrity divorces, and none of it was interesting or different models where they said you have to come to our event, pay for this event, or give me your email. You have to buy our program, or I’m a life coach and teaching you my way.”

Does LookForward preach a certain way to proceed?

“Look Forward is not about one way. It’s about finding your own way. We have one page articles that speak to women. When I entered into this world, it was daunting. There is so much information because you never think this is going to happen to you when you’re in a marriage.”

What was important about the information Look Forward provides?

“There was really an opportunity to say the narrative really has to change. We need to empower ourselves with information. If we’re still blaming, we’re still married. What this site is all about is that the back-story doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter how we got here. What matters is we’re here. We have one page articles that speak to women. We created an internal app called My White Book. You can save an article to your white book, and allows you to see all of the titles of the articles you have saved.”

LookForward keeps users’ identities confidential. You log in with a user name and password. Why is that important?

“I also felt that the one thing you learn when you enter this world is that your privacy is so compromised. It’s such a scary time for women. You feel so insecure. You don’t know which way to turn. When you become a member, we don’t know who you are. We never ask for that information.”

Do you have a platform for members to contact one another, or a chat room?

“What we have is a member’s story. We encouraged members to share some anecdotal of their process. They cannot use names, not identify anyone in the article. They are only a state they are form – we don’t want anyone to track them. What we encouraged is if they have a question, talk to the credentialed professional. All of the professionals on LookForward have a bio, a picture and contact info. You can do that on your own discretion."

Divorce can be embarrassing and cause the person to withdraw. Does that make them less likely to look for help?

“Often, you have to go to these events, it’s almost like you’re wearing a sign – ‘I’m one of those people’. We’re not ready to tell everybody. Some of us are thinking about divorce. And we know that this is the direction we are headed in or we’re already there. Look Forward is a place you can be anonymous, your identity is protected, and for $49.95 you take the information you need, and there is no need to be worried about being embarrassed. This is all about empowerment. Taking control of your own life. Slowing down and knowing there is no easy answer. No one way. One size does not fit all.”

Add your comment:
Desert Guide

Related Articles

Palm Springs Life’s 40 Under Forty at The Saguaro Palm Springs - Oct. 14, 2014

Palm Springs Life celebrated the Coachella Valley’s newest generation of up-and-coming inspirational stars at The Saguaro Palm Springs on October 14, 2014.

Discover the Top Sightseeing Spots in Greater Palm Springs

Whether you’re looking to commune with nature, fly high in a balloon, or see where the Hollywood stars of old once lived, the Coachella Valley offers the perfect tour.

Carpool Mom Finds Her Inner 'Drive' at La Quinta Resort & Club

Michelle Roe is a carpool Mom. But thanks to the Waldorf Astoria Driving Experience at the La Quinta Resort & Spa, she was behind the wheel of a 2014 Ferrari 458 Italia Spider.

Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation Honors Environmental Efforts

Some of world’s leading scientists recently gathered Oct. 12 to discuss how to advance and provide leadership strategies to combat the alarming rise of sea levels across the planet at Sunnylands in Rancho Mirage.

Explore Palm Springs: Jilly Rizzo

Jilly Rizzo, known as Frank Sinatra’s right hand man, opened his nightclub called Jilly’s in Palm Springs on Oct. 15, 1965.

Promotions + Contests

Cartoon Caption Contest

Cartoon Caption Contest

Each month, we provide a vintage 1950’s cartoon illustrated by Alice Rovinsky. You are invited to submit a caption or vote for your favorite caption.
2014/15 Best of the Best

2014/15 Best of the Best

Palm Springs Life’s annual Best of the Best. Readers tell us who their choice is for the “Best of the Best” of the Coachella Valley in over 40 categories.
Enter to Win A Celebrate Dance Experience!

Enter to Win A Celebrate Dance Experience!

Enter just once for a chance to win tickets to one of the second annual Palm Desert International Dance Festival performances.