Whether divorce was discussed by you both as a possibility or if taken by surprise, it still comes as a jolt.
Calmly talking about an imminent split does not take into consideration all of the legalities and hoops to jump through to complete the process.
It can feel as if one is drowning in all the minutia that comes along with divorce.
How to climb out of this pit or how to prepare for a divorce?
- Discuss with your solicitor or mediator how you are feeling, such as discouraged and overwhelmed. They want you to be at the top of your game so may be able to streamline the process by bringing some experts on board.
Our collaborative solicitors called in an interim child psychologist to set up and monitor visitation during the divorce itself. This took that burden off us parents.
She met with our sons to ensure visitation was working out and if the boys were okay. They were not, so she arranged for them to have a therapist.
Lighten your load with the expertise of other professionals to make the process go more smoothly. Another example is having a financial advisor work with the divorce team to oversee the division of assets.
- It is easy to get so immersed in proceedings that one lets other areas slip, such as sleep, nutrition and emotional well-being.
Stress decreases the efficiency of the immune system which makes one more susceptible to colds and the flu.
Realize that you will have good days and bad ones. Sometimes you feel that you are on top of things and other times that you are skittering on the edge of a breakdown. Divorce is not a straight line, but looks like a graph with peaks and troughs.
- Do not think of being stoic or going though divorce alone.
This is the time to vent or seek feedback. Let people share their wisdom to help you have an easier time. One great piece of advice that I received, was to let go of the small stuff and focus on what really mattered to me.
Fighting over every little thing makes the divorce more adversarial and prolongs the proceedings. Neither of you win and the divorce professionals net higher fees for this battle. Spend time with supportive people and ditch (at least temporarily) those who are not. Get energized by upbeat folks and have some laughs. Schedule some pleasurable pursuits into your agenda.
- Divorce is a temporary episode in your life – perhaps 1/85 of it. Put that in perspective.
Time may seem to go excruciatingly slower during the proceedings. Afterwards it speeds up and before you know it you are facing Empty Nest as I am. You will get through it.
- Be blunt with your family about what went on with your marriage and what is happening now.
Otherwise, they may make unhealthy suggestions about getting back together which is an impossibility. In a few cases where abuse was hidden or minimized, relatives did not understand the need for supervised visitation which upset the children.
When issues are mounting and you feel like you are floating in a fog – get some professional help. There are divorce groups and workshops. A divorce or life coach assists one in gaining clarity and setting priorities and goals. It is a relief to have a compassionate coach help you devise a life plan and not go through divorce alone.
Wendi Schuller is a nurse, hypnotherapist and is certified in Neuro-linguistic Programing (NLP).
Her most recent book is The Global Guide to Divorce and she has over 200 published articles.
She is a guest on radio programs in the US and UK. Her website is globalguidetodivorce.com.