“When two people decide to get a divorce, it isn’t a sign that they ‘don’t understand’ one another, but a sign that they have, at least, begun to.” — Helen Rowland
When a married couple decides to file for divorce, it means death to the marriage. The divorce will bring forth a multitude of mixed and shaky emotions.
More than the marriage itself, other things and people will suffer as well. We’ve seen so many tips on how you can deal with the process of divorce but not much on how to get through a divorce emotionally.
Dealing with your emotions during and after divorce is essential and will determine how you will face your new life.
No matter how you try to be ‘cool’ about it or how understanding you may be, there will be times where it just ‘hits’ you, and you start feeling these emotions.
It would, of course, be quite stressful and confusing, especially when you’re still in the process of completing the divorce process. How to get through a divorce emotionally starts with knowing what you are feeling.
Denial is having thoughts about what went wrong and why this happened to you.
Denial is the first stage of your emotional rollercoaster; most often, it happens before the onset of the divorce process where one of the spouses would still do his or her best to ‘save’ the marriage.
It’s that overall feeling that you are no longer in control of your marriage and that somehow, you failed as a spouse.
How to cope with divorce as a man, especially when your ego has been shattered to pieces? How about as a woman when you found out that your spouse cheated on you?
You may have different situations, but all will lead to the end of one’s marriage. Here, you’d feel anger or resentment towards your spouse.
From denying the divorce to denying the intense feeling of anger that your partner has betrayed you or has given up on you.
It’s also tough for couples to learn how to get through a divorce emotionally with adult children because you’ve already spent too many years together to ‘just give up.’
For some, this stage is the most dangerous one because a person can be very destructive if angry and can even do bad things.
3. The bargaining phase
Time and stress will sooner or later take a toll on both couples. One day, you’d want to know how to get through a divorce emotionally.
Sometimes, this is where the couple puts in all their last efforts intofixing the marriageor at least being in good terms.
It’s not admitting defeat, it’s just too tiring, and a person can only take so much pain. Ego and pride will still be there, but on a halt and in a way, you want to make amends and want to see what you can do.
In some cases, how to get through a divorce emotionally sets in after the bargaining stage; it’s where you meet halfway, but sometimes, it doesn’t work that way.
Most of the time, this is after the divorce process, it may be a week or a month later, but this is where you need to know how to get through a divorce emotionally. Why?
It’s when you wake up one morning, and you realize you no longer have your wife and kids with you, or you go home and there are no noisy children to greet you or a wife that is pissed off because you don’t know how to put socks on the laundry basket.
First, learn to acknowledge the loss. Of course, you have to prepare for the initial shock, and it’s also common to feel in denial or hurt. So, know that the first step in recovery is to face reality. This is your situation now, and this is the first step towards your emotional healing.
Second, embrace the pain. Don’t show everyone that you are perfectly okay because you are not. It’s a normal response, and there is nothing to be ashamed of.
Third, realize that this, along with any other trials in life, will also pass. Everything happens for a reason, and that’s life. There are things beyond our control. However, if you are willing to work through the recovery process, then you’ll be okay.
Fourth, allow your heart and mind to heal. It’s okay if you are not ready to love again for a year or two. It’s okay if you become a little bit of a loner if you think that the allotted time will heal you, then use it.
Fifth, don’t hesitate to talk to someone. It’s okay to grieve. It’s okay to have to speak to a professional or have to ask a friend for help. Don’t feel that they will judge you, know that there are people who love you, and are willing to listen.
Sixth, learn to forgive not just your ex-spouse but yourself as well. If you think you have something wrong or have failed yourself – forgive and let yourself heal and be free.
Lastly, learn to finally let go of your past, along with the hatred in your heart and the resentment that you are feeling. Note that this doesn’t need to happen in a short time. It can take years but trust the process and remember that rushing yourself into another romantic relationship so that you can forget isn’t right.
You have to rebuild yourself; you have to be whole again to be able to love again.
Emotional coping and divorce is not easy and will be different for each one involved in this situation.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Sylvia Smith loves to share insights on how couples can revitalize their love lives in and out of the bedroom. As a writer at Marriage.com, she is a big believer in living consciously and encourages couples to adopt this principle in their lives too. Sylvia believes that every couple can transform their relationship into a happier, healthier one by taking purposeful and wholehearted action.