This post was updated on Nov 29, 2022
Separation and divorce are typically emotionally charged and challenging events. Marital breakup mostly arises from complicated circumstances. Knowing how to deal with divorce and how to seek emotional support is the key to making this experience less traumatic and can help you manage the negative effects of it. Continue reading to see how you can end your marriage on healthier terms and without the burden of guilt and mutual resentment.
How Can I Have A Healthy Divorce?
Marital misunderstandings, conflicts, and bickering can be quite messy. Nevertheless, imagining a scenario where getting divorced is considered healthier than staying together might be a challenge. However, keep in mind that divorce isn’t negative or positive by definition. It can simply be the final proof that things haven’t worked out between you and your significant other. Moving on might seem like an optimal solution for an otherwise irreparable situation.
However, knowing how to accept divorce and move on is sometimes easier said than done. In truth, many breakups are complicated, mixed with anger, fear, and anxiety. Consequently, many people find it hard to emotionally cope with divorce and reach acceptance.
There are some ways to recognize a healthy marital breakup:
- You don’t battle each other or try to have the upper hand
- If you have children, you act as a team and prepare together to talk to them openly about the reality of their situation – with compassion
- You resolve any resentment toward each other
- You don’t talk badly about your ex-spouse, and keep your circle boundaries close at hand
- You communicate and cooperate with each other
- You have turned from a married couple to close friends
Is It Better To Divorce Or Stay Unhappily Married?
While it might sound counterintuitive, the answer isn’t so straightforward. There are married couples that manage to salvage their relationship after a period of separation, detachment, or resentment. On the other hand, becoming happily divorced after an unhappy marriage is feasible for couples that have grown very far apart. Many couples are still reluctant to leave their marriage because they fear the effects it might leave on their family, children, social circle, and everyday life. And, money often plays a big role in keeping couples together.
Let’s take a look at the negative and positive side-effects of divorce:
What Are The Side Effects Of Divorce?
Divorce rarely comes without worries, feelings of loss, and negative effects, making it potentially traumatic. Surviving divorce without suffering emotionally is quite unrealistic. And, a marital breakup is likely to bring the following side effects:
- Grief, depression, or guilt for being unable to save your marriage can accompany the initial excitement of your newly found independence.
- A great deal of anxiety and fear of the unknown, as you’ve left a less-than-perfect, although somewhat familiar position of an unhappy relationship.
- You may go through sleepless nights trying to figure out what to do with your time.
- Financial stresses can impact a family system in many ways. Money challenges and differences often takes a front row seat in a divorce.
- Your children need more than just an explanation, and you have to do a lot of reassuring and healthy actions tto help them with the transition..
- Changes in your social circle, with some of your mutual friends picking one side or the other, or other married couples distancing themselves from both of you.
What Are The Pros Of Divorce?
Of course, leaving an unhappy marriage can be seen as a benefit in itself. And, there are stages of separation and divorce you need to consider. Here are some early advantages:
- Less conflict and tension for everyone involved. Leaving a toxic or emotionally neglectful relationship will give you a break from constant arguing. It will also spare your children the tension and will give everyone more clarity and calmness. After a while, they will get used to the new situation.
- Opportunities to learn about and work on yourself. You’ll be more likely to have a fresh look at your strengths and weaknesses, and work on empowering yourself one step at a time.
- More time for your friends and family. You can use your newly found freedom to spend quality time with family members and friends.
- Better parenting skills. Although you may feel guilty for your kids initially, if you have reached a reasonable compromise with your ex, you may find that you are able to become more effective in your parenting role.
How Do You Prepare For A Healthy Divorce?
When you make a decision to end your marriage, you may need to tread lightly. Whether you both agree to part ways, or your spouse is unwilling to accept it, you’ll need time to adapt to the new situation and consider all the details.
Talk It Out
Clear communication with your spouse is paramount in order to have a healthy divorce and ensure you move on without anger, resentment, and anxiety. Make sure to cover all the details and talk about how you feel. Try not to put the blame on them and be open to hearing their side of the story.
Be On The Same Page
Whether you’re discussing coparenting, financial realities, moving out, sorting out your belongings, or spending time with your friends, it’s important that you work towards understanding each other. You are on a crossroads and delving into bickering and confrontation might only waste your time and energy.
Tap Into Your Support Network
You can’t rely only on your devices to get you through a period of uncertainty. To get back on your feet, don’t shy away from reaching out to your family or friends, and find time to speak with a professional coach or counselor.
Take Care Of Yourself
Whether you choose to part ways or you’re confronted by your spouse who is wanting to end the relationship, don’t forget to take care of yourself. Find ways to spend your free time creatively, or revisit some of the hobbies that you haven’t had the time to take up before. Stick to your routine and be gentle with yourself.
Where Can I Find A Relationship Coaching Retreat For Individuals Following Divorce?
If you’re recovering from a divorce, PIVOT can help you with experience-based individual coaching sessions for divorcees. We can help you identify unhealthy patterns of behavior and emotion, and work with you to develop new strategies in relating to yourself and others. Married couples who are considering rekindling their relationship after separation or divorce can find support with relationship advocates in our Glass House workshops for reconnection.
Our relationship coaches have many years of experience helping couples and individuals reach valuable insights and make significant changes. Give us a call today and find out more about how to start a new phase in your emotional life.