The heartache of separating from someone you love is often indescribable. When coupled with the divorce process, this heartache can feel even more painful. When you got married it was for life and you never imagined it would be otherwise. You can still be in love with your spouse even if they have treated you unfairly, or if there is no way you can make the relationship work despite trying. However, there are ways to help you through this rollercoaster of emotions. We’ve compiled some helpful tips to get you out the other side and happier.
- Get yourself ‘in the know’
If you are not familiar with the process of divorce it’s worth finding out a few facts when you feel ready. Being armed with this information can help you understand what to expect and prepare you for what you may feel. This Divorce guide gives the basics on the process, the time it takes, costs involved and the new no-fault divorce laws.
- Face reality
Putting on a happy face when you are handling a divorce with someone you still care about is exhausting. You do not need to feel as if you need to be brave at this time. Being open about the sadness you are experiencing will open the door for friends and family to give you the emotional support you need. Explain that you are feeling at a loss without the person you love and good friends will rally around you to try and fill the gaps. Although this may not be the same, it provides some comfort and can be a good distraction when you are feeling lonely.
- Let time do the healing work
Although it’s an old adage, time does heal. If you did not initiate the divorce, remember that that the grieving process may take a little longer. You will first experience denial and anger, and later want to bargain with your ex. Next you may feel very sad and depressed before you finally move on to acceptance. Remember also that you should not compare your situation to others. Your healing time maybe longer, so be kind to yourself if you feel your progress is going back and forth.
- Remove all remnants of your ex from your home
When you are ready, it is a good idea to remove any reminders of your ex. These could be pictures on the wall, old voice notes, letters and cards. A good way of doing this is to decorate. Throw yourself into creating a new environment in your home by exploring new interiors and furnishings, meanwhile relieving yourself of triggering and painful reminders that can activate nostalgia and sadness.
- Use your pain to gain
Surprisingly, negative feelings like anger and loss can spark a new kind of motivation. If you’ve always wanted to get to the gym, take up cycling or invest in equipment for a new hobby, now is the time to do it. Expressing yourself through creative channels like music and art can also be cathartic. This energy may arrive later on in the divorce process, but when it does make an appearance, put it to good use by doing something you love or are passionate about.
A final thought…
Finally, when you are still in love with your ex, it’s easy to question if there is something wrong with you. But talking to yourself in this way will compound negative feelings. By taking practical steps to prepare you for what happens in a divorce, allowing yourself time to heal, and transforming your pain into positive new interests, you will begin to speak to yourself with more compassion and move past this difficult period in your life.