7 Emotional Challenges Through the Divorce Process
At Hobson & Hobson, P.C. in Marietta Georgia we work with mothers and fathers who are working through the process of divorce. Most people who are facing divorce are concerned about the financial and legal issues that need to be settled. While these are critical elements of working through a divorce process, it's also important to be emotionally prepared for your divorce. After working with clients throughout the greater Atlanta metro, we put together this basic list of ideas that might help you emotionally prepare for the divorce process, and what comes after it.
- Regardless of who initiated the divorce, feeling sad, scared and anxious is very normal
Oftentimes the spouse who initiated the divorce will associate the divorce being over with "finally being free". However, fear and anxiety about establishing a new home and starting your new life can be very real and rather unexpected. It's helpful for a lot of people sit and make a list of what they will need to accomplish and then spread those items out over a reasonable timeline. Be realistic while setting both long and short term goals. Keep a calendar and journal your progress so you can find a feeling of accomplishment when you are stressed out about what's still ahead of you.
- Your Kids May Not Want to talk about it, but their feelings will be revealed in their actions
Divorce is a hard process for kids to work through. One minute they're "fine" and then there is an unexpected meltdown about something left at the other parent's house. Make sure you are keeping lines of communication open about a variety of topics. Talking about emotions is hard, so talking abut the day to day changes can be a good way to open up the conversation. Be patient, and keep an eye out for unusual behaviors. Take the time to communicate with key adults (like teachers and other school staff) so they can help you watch for troubling behavior or acting out when you're not around.
- You May Lose Some Friends.
This isn't just about "his friends" and "her friends". You may find that other married couples do not call as often or seem uninterested in continuing a relationship. On the other hand, some of the people you would have counted on the least can come out of nowhere and be very helpful. At the end of the day, you need to be comfortable enough with your decision to deal with some adjustments in your life. Being prepared for a variety of reactions from your close friends is helpful.
- Anger and Resentment towards your ex-spouse are self-destructive.
People get divorced because they weren't getting along, but there's no reason to hold onto those feelings any longer. Anger and blame towards your ex-spouse may feel good in the moment, but they are damaging to you and your progress towards your new life. Focus on finding solutions to your problems, not dwelling on how your ex-spouse caused or contributed to them.
- Spare your children the bad-mouthing
Your kids have enough challenges through this process without listening to one trusted grown up who they love bash another trusted grown up who they love. Find constructive solutions to problems, and if changes need to be made, be specific about your expectations with your ex-spouse. Name-calling and generally being aggressive towards your ex-spouse is hard for your kids to hear, and isn't going to solve anything. What's best for your children is for you and your ex-spouse to focus on making their transition and new lives as easy as possible.
- Holidays can be tough
You will likely be sharing custody through holidays which can be hard to arrange. What's even more difficult is ending up alone on a holiday. Make plans; you and your ex-spouse both deserve to know when you will be with the kids for holidays. Conversely, you should know what time you will have open, as making plans to stay busy and see other people can help move through the first few holidays, which can be particularly hard.
- Divorce can be freeing and worth while
While there are a lot of things to work through while transitioning to your new life, divorce can be well worth the trouble and can give you a new life. It's hard to be happy with your life when you're spending it with someone who does not make you happy. Divorcing parents are challenging to children, but probably not as bad as seeing their parents continue to fight and be miserable. Think of the work you're doing to get through a divorce as an investment; an investment that pays off when you are making your own decisions about how you will live your life going forward.
If you are getting ready to start the divorce process, take advantage of an initial consultation with the experienced family law attorneys at Hobson & Hobson in Marietta, Georgia. We will take the time to listen to you and understand your situation, explain how Georgia family law applies to your situation, and will make suggestions about how to move forward. Contact us today.