Many people are forced down the road of separation and divorce by their partner and are devastated by the impending loss and unquantifiable, frightening change.
It is bad enough getting divorced when you want to – how much more distressing when you feel your life is being snatched away to be replaced by a vast feeling of emptiness. Some sink into depression, lose their focus at work and have a series of unfulfilling transitional liaisons that never quite make it on to the relationship map.
How to cope?
Getting divorced is a bit like bereavement, there are 4 stages to the loss:
- Disbelief – shock
- Sadness – grief
The four stages are not on a linear curve, one can achieve acceptance and then slip back into anger. However it is important that all 4 stages are gone through in order to recover and move on. We’ve all seen the over cheery, newly deserted man or woman, claiming total resilience and moving swiftly into a committed situation with the first passing candidate – probably living with someone they met on the internet 3 weeks earlier! Best not to comment on what fate awaits them.
Dealing with the pain of a broken heart is best reduced into achievable daily goals. The worst time to get through is the weekends and the best way of avoiding feeling dreadful is to fill one’s time. Visit a relative you don’t normally make time for, go for a run in the woods, join a class, interest group, learn to fly, abseil, pot hole, take up golf, drama, get a job in a pub Saturday night to avoid being home alone – basically JUST DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT. Couples are normally constrained on the weekend by their partner’s wishes – so, if your wife never let you watch football and always made you go shopping with her, now is the time to get a season ticket. Think deeply about what you’ve always wanted to do and do it, even if it’s reading a tabloid newspaper!
For an individual to feel happy and fulfilled the 8 areas of his/her life need to be in balance, like the spokes on a wheel. If one segment takes over the wheel won’t turn. When one separates the loss encompasses more than one segment and can be completely debilitating. It is important to ensure the other seven segments are not neglected. I will blog on what these are at a later date…