Tips To Cope With Divorce And Support Your Child

Written by Sreoshi Sengupta • 
 
Image: Shutterstock

It takes a lot of strength to accept that a relationship that you have nurtured for so long does not exist anymore. It is hard to move on with life after a divorce. You’re surrounded by uncertainties, insecurities and lost hope. The split from your partner, whether desired or not, can leave you shattered and heartbroken, and rob you of the enthusiasm to lead a happy life.

But, there’s always light at the end of the tunnel. You can move on from this difficult phase of life towards a happy one. All you need to do is focus on the positive aspects of life, rearrange your goals and find a purpose that makes you happy and reinforces that lost zeal. MomJunction has compiled some valuable information on how to cope with divorce and move on with life.

Healing After A Divorce:

You have to analyze and understand why the separation hurt so much when the relationship went downhill long ago! Divorce is painful because it represents the failure of a relationship that you were once so excited about beginning.

After a divorce, your life changes in a way that you are not prepared to handle yet. Your routine is disrupted and everything, including your home, life, family, responsibilities, go haywire. Your professional life also suffers a setback as you are unable to focus on important things and projects. Corporate life can be very unforgiving and if your performance deteriorates, it will be immediately brought to your notice.

To keep a grip on reality and to cope with everything that is going downhill, you need to wake up and smell the coffee. Healing from such a life altering incident takes time. But, you need to constantly remind yourself that you will overcome the pain and sorrow and move on, face the challenges and emerge victorious. All of this needs patience and faith in self.

[ Read: Effects Of Divorce On Children ]

Coping With Emotions After A Divorce:

Never let negativity and depressing thoughts surround you. To cope with the emotions you go through after your divorce, consider using these suggestions to feel better and move on with life:

1. It Is Fine To Feel Different At Times:

You can feel angry, sad, pained, frustrated and hurt, at different times, or at the same time together. The rush of feelings and the flood of tears can hit you at the most unexpected times, when you are least prepared. The solution is to accept the pain and grieve for it for a while. Let it sink in, and then only you can come to terms with it. This will help you see the clear picture and discover ways to leave all that pain and sorrow behind and look forward to a new life ahead.

2. Give Your Emotions A Break:

Do not try to curb your emotions and accept them. There is no harm in crying if it makes you feel better afterwards. Sometimes, emotions need to be expressed otherwise they can have serious effects on your health and psyche. It is important that you understand that you may not function just the same for some time. The toll of the divorce is something too heavy to bear without its effects showing on your behavior and actions. You are bound to make mistakes, get angry for no reason or falter a few times. Give yourself the chance to normalize and forgive yourself for the mistakes. It will relax you and help you get back to your former self faster.

3. Do Not Suppress Your Emotions And Allow Yourself To Grieve:

The most natural reaction to the loss you suffered after your divorce is grief. Even though you prefer to keep a straight face in front of strangers or the people you work with, there is no reason to do so in front of your family and friends. The immediate reasons you are depressed can be:

  • The loss of your companion with whom you had shared so many experiences makes you fear the loneliness.
  • Loss of support in terms of finances, companionship and emotional guidance can hurt and it may get difficult to handle in the beginning.
  • The crashing of the dreams and plans that you had made with your partner leaves you embittered in life.

But then again, nothing should be set in stone, especially when it is about life, which is always unpredictable and can surprise you any moment. Separation from your partner can never mean an end to the happy instances life will offer again.

[ Read: Contested Vs Uncontested Divorce ]

Tips For Grieving After Divorce:

It is necessary that you do your part of grieving after a nasty divorce. Crying will not make you any less strong or determined. But it will channelize your outburst of emotions so that you can work on the positive aspects of your work with a free and unburdened heart.

1. Build Up Your Support System:

You need not go through this turmoil alone. Your family and friends are there to support you and help you heal. Sharing feelings and emotions is not only comforting, but also strengthens your bond with them. Call for your support system in this crisis and see how it helps you blossom. Family and friends will never judge you and feed you with positivity to emerge out of the problem with a smile in the end and turn life into a new leaf.

2. Talk To Your Friends And Loved Ones:

Expression is the key to fight the setback that divorce has caused you. Rather than keeping mum over your issues that you are facing, discuss it with your parents, relatives, friends and loved ones, who are concerned about your well being and worried about the extreme conditions. Opening up to them will work like therapy, as you will be able to share your grief and sorrow. It will relax you and unburden you, and the care and attention of your loved ones will make you realize, that no matter what, life goes on and you always have your family and friends by your side to fight the battles.

3. Be Determined To Move On In Life:

Give yourself some time to grieve but do not forget that you have yet to achieve much in life. Wasting time in over-analyzing the past is not going to help you. Learn from your past, take a note of the failures and the reasons for them, and move on, never committing these mistakes again. Your life may have given you some bitter experiences but it is also the best teacher and you can learn from it if you have the heart to do so.

4. Think About Your Future:

A divorce or separation from your partner is not the end of life. You have many years to live, and just sitting and grieving about the fact that you are alone now is not going to help you achieve your dreams. Be aware of your past and present but do think about your future as well. If your kids are dependent on you then it is even more important to come out of grieving and stabilize yourself for the sake of the children and their future. They are the blessings in your life and nothing should be the reason of their pain and sorrow, not even your failures.

5. Evaluate Your Condition And Seek Help In Case Of Depression:

Grieving and pondering your situation for a few months after divorce is fine. It is reasonable enough if you find yourself angry or in pain in the initial days. But, if the pain and the hurt continuous for months with no change or if you find yourself, suicidal, then it is surely something to worry about.

If you can see that the extreme emotions have not subsided even after months and you are still weak and vulnerable, or collapse emotionally at the slightest of triggers, wake up and smell the coffee! You might have depression and will need professional help and guidance to overcome the condition. Don’t neglect your condition as depression can have fatal and unforgiving consequences. Seek help of a professional psychologist or counselor to assess the situation, and get treatment immediately.

[ Read: How Does Joint Custody Work ]

Self-Check For Faster Recovery From Emotional Trauma:

A divorce is a life altering experience, which can leave you shattered and hopeless. Do not let the pain break you down or drift you away. It is essential that you take care of yourself in the best way possible during this crucial phase and also allow your family and loved ones to care for you.

Don’t let the harmful and ugly events of your life always dictate how you will feel.For a while, reduce your workload, be it at home or office. Take enough rest and do not take any stress about any crisis or situation. There are others to manage it and they will, as efficiently as they can. Eat at regular intervals and check on your fluid intake. It is necessary to have a grip of the situation and maintain your physical and mental health.

It is important to learn the value of being self sufficient and independent. A fit body also ensures a healthy heart and active mind. You can be more productive and useful to your children, your family and the society at large if you can be healthy, fit, and fresh enough to work and balance life even in the absence of a partner to share the responsibilities.

Some Essential Self-Care Tips:

1. Take Time Every Day To Nurture Your Hobbies:

It is necessary that you continue indulging in your hobbies and interests even when you are going through a difficult time. Hobbies generate passion. And, when you carry out activities that please your mind and senses, you get a chance to see the positive sides of life and increase your self-worth. When you indulge your senses in creative activities such as painting, gardening, dancing, singing, playing music, etc, it boosts your self-esteem and makes you joyful and content, thus, reducing the negativity in life to a great extent.

2. Pay Attention To Your Needs:

Do not neglect your needs at any cost and do give priority to your requirements first. You cannot be totally dependent on others to make sure that you lead a successful life. It should from form within you and for that, you must look after your needs, basic, emotional, financial or any other that is relevant in your perspective.

3. Avoid Alcohol, Drug, Or Tobacco Abuse:

The worst approach to deal with a traumatic situation is to escape from it using alcohol and drugs as a means of escape. Components such as nicotine, alcohol, and drugs numb your senses of perception, fooling you into thinking that you are getting healed or showing you a false reality. Do not succumb to the charms of alcohol or drug abuse as they have both immediate risks and can cause permanent and long term damage to your body and mind. Not only that, drug or alcohol abuse puts your loved ones at danger too.

4. Take Time Out To Introspect:

There is no harm in evaluating the years that passed by and seeing yourself in a positive manner. Looking back at life is a great way to learn from it if you can take it with a pinch of salt. Do not be drawn towards the bitter experiences, and promise yourself that you’ll improve your life, behavior, approach, and outlook so that it is no more a reason for worry.

[ Read: Effects Of Parents Fighting In Front Of Children ]

5. Follow A Healthy Routine:

It is essential that you follow a regular and healthy routine to relieve stress and cope with the situation better. Poor eating and sleeping timings and irregular habits can take a toll on your general health that will further aggravate your depressed state. Working in a routine keeps you busy and engaged in activities that are worth the effort. You can also indulge in some physical activity or hit the gym.

6. Seek Out New Possibilities:

Explore more in life, be it for work or for pleasure. Indulge in a new activity or hobby that you have never tried before even when dreamed of it occasionally. Join a salsa class or opt for pottery or anything that interests you enough that you feel ready to commit yourself to learn it well and enjoy yourself while you learn. This is an amazing solution, and it helps lower stress levels, gives you a new found purpose in life, and offers you those little achievements you make as your progress fills you with great joy, bringing back that lost hope and faith in life.

Supporting Your Child When Going Through A Divorce:

When a couple decides to divorce, their separation not only affects their life but also their family. The situation complicates further if young kids of impressionable age are involved. The kids are loyal and loving to both their parents and do not understand the dynamics of separation and divorce. It is also a bit difficult for them to take sides and judge either of them based on logical reasons. They are affected the worst when parents decide to separate after years of living together as a family.

It is a very delicate situation and if care is not taken in handling it, it can completely ruin the lives of the children or leave them embittered and hurt all their lives. Here are some ways by which you can help them cope with the trauma when the parents are getting divorced:

Learning Important Lessons From A Divorce:

  • It takes time to heal and nurse a broken heart and spirit, but at the end of the day, you need to be strong enough to let go of the pain and face the world with new found strength.
  • One has to be open to changes in life, whether professional or personal. Some additions and subtractions of responsibilities, a change in routine, modification in habits and sometime a change in address and office are also expected.
  • Life is full of ups and downs and nothing is permanent, neither pain nor happiness. If you going through sufferings now then you must have experienced happiness and joy in the past and will do so again in the future too.

[ Read: Relationship With Kids After Divorce ]

  • It is of no use to hold back the sorrow, misery, anger and hate for the situation or the person concerned. There is no better remedy to ease pain then to let go.
  • Never forget to keep a strong hold on your dreams and aspirations, as that is what which makes you and feeds your soul. Achieve them in life and you will never have regrets.
  • Just because you faced a bad relationship should not let you believe that you missed your chance for happiness and a fulfilled life. Keep an open heart and take your chances. After all, you are much more experienced in understanding relationships and know exactly what you do not want in your partner.

Hope the article is inspiring enough to help you let go of your pain and accept life with a smile. Share your experiences of struggle and moments of victory with us and we will help in spreading your heroic tales that will inspire others. We would love to hear from you. Comment in the section below.

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