Whether you wanted the divorce or not, here you are — and it’s completely normal to feel a whole range of negative emotions. Knowing how to handle these emotions, however, is the key to eventually moving forward in your life.
Here’s the best way to fight the divorce blues:
Go ahead and grieve. While the “five stages of grief” have long been documented and discussed, it’s important to remember that you may not go through them in any particular order — and you may go through some of them more than once. Even if you’re looking forward to your divorce, you still have to grieve what was or what “could have been.” Your marriage wasn’t all bad, or you wouldn’t have gotten married. You also had a specific vision of your future in mind when you married — and that’s now lost forever.
Don’t rush the process. Some people try to rush their grief. They plaster on a smile and try to convince everyone that they’ve already moved on. They may rush headlong into a “rebound” relationship or distract themselves with some kind of adventure. Doing all of that just puts the grief you’re avoiding at a distance temporarily. It’s bound to return. Sitting with your grief and letting yourself actually feel everything is unpleasant, but it’s a necessary process. You can’t “move on” without moving through those feelings.
Recognize when you need help. If you find yourself viewing every aspect of your life through the lens of your disappointment in your marriage or you just can’t stop thinking about what happened, it may be time to reach out for professional help. You can also join a support group, reconnect with old friends or rely on family members during this period. That’s a great way to build a solid foundation for your post-divorce life.
The smoother your divorce process goes, the easier it is to focus on your feelings and other important issues. Make sure that you have the right legal representation for your needs so that you don’t have to stay stuck in the past any longer than necessary.