At Alternative Divorce Solutions, we work with couples who are from all walks of life. We help couples in short term marriages, and very long term marriages. We also have clients who are divorcing for a variety of different reasons. These reasons range from financial difficulty to infidelity and cover all of the bases in between. No matter how many couples I work with, I am always amazed at the way that people handle this process with so much grace. Research shows that divorce is one of the most traumatic events that can ever occur in a person’s lifetime. It is up there with death of a family member! Of course, we expect our clients to be grieving. Divorce is a loss. Despite this great adversity, we have some people who handle the divorce so well and do so while maintaining respect for one another. These clients are shining examples of peace. To help our clients along the way, I thought I would give a few helpful tips for managing the stress of divorce:
1. Keep perspective: Divorce is a tragedy. Don’t get down on yourself for being emotional and don’t be afraid to express yourself, even if you have to do this in your mediation. Also keep in mind that the pain you are feeling now will pass. Think back on another difficult time in your life. Maybe you don’t remember how you got through it, but you know that you made it out on the other side okay. Divorce is just like that. The wounds take time to heal, but you will eventually be restored.
2. Treat others the way you would want to be treated. In divorce, it is common for one or both spouses to have made some pretty big mistakes. Remember, we are all only human and mistakes are going to happen. Even if you feel like your spouse is to blame for the breakdown of your marriage, keep in mind that he/she is probably in pain too. Maybe they show the pain different than you do, but it is still there. Despite your own feelings of sadness and maybe anger, do your best to treat your spouse with respect. The way you handle your divorce is a test of your character. Take the high road.
3. Go back to the things that make you happy. With everything going on, our lives are busier than they have ever been. The use of technology has made life easier, but has also raised the expectation that we will be available all the time to handle clients and other matters. During your divorce, it is important to set your e-mail, phone, etc. aside and take some time to yourself. Go back to the activities that make you feel happy and that you are living in the moment. You will be surprised at what simple activities like fishing, hiking, or yoga can do to restore your emotional stability. Going back to your roots will also help you on your journey of re-discovering yourself after the divorce.
4. Get support if you need it. Therapy can be a great tool to use to help you overcome the challenges you will face during your divorce. If therapy is not for you, try leaning on your family and friends for support. It is important to have someone to talk to and share what you are going through. Remember, you are not alone.
At Alternative Divorce Solutions, we pride ourselves in being a strong support network for our clients. We are a team that stays with you for every step of your divorce. We are happy to provide referrals to mental health professionals that are highly-trained in assisting people in the transitions involved with divorce.