Divorce is an event within a family that creates a great deal of trauma and emotional distress. The way that people react to divorce is different. Each situation garners its own reaction. For many, it can be quiet a liberating experience that allows them the space they need to grow while others can fall into despair emotionally and financially.
Adapting to life after divorce will depend on the temperament of each individual. Some newly divorced individuals make full use of this new found freedom and hit the road running towards new horizons and brighter futures. Other divorcees sulk around thinking about their pasts, scared of their future. Divorce changes your life in a billion different ways and fortunately sometimes it ends up better.
When two people are married they live their lives in a manner that is acceptable to both partners. Compromise is a large part of any marriage. The things you like, the places you go and your hobbies start to conform to those of your partners. This is drastically different than life after divorce. After your divorce you are able to live the life you choose. There is freedom to come and go as you please, socialize with whomever you want to and live without explanation. This is true in every manner of your new life from your career choice to the food you eat. Each and every decision you make is your own without compromise.
When you have gone through a divorce you are enabled to begin living life all over again. There are no restrictions placed on your new life from anyone else. If you were ever physically or verbally abused you no longer have to live with that nightmare in the background. You can choose to move to a new city to start your life; you can travel for awhile or create a plan for your life that you alone are in charge of. Starting fresh allows you to take the things you want out of your old life with you while leaving the other stuff behind.
When you are married your assets become jointly owned. When you buy something new when you are married it is influenced by your spouse’s approval or disapproval. No matter where you are in the relationship, whether you are the higher paid spouse or not you still only have fifty percent of the vote on how to spend or save your financial assets. Financial empowerment is one of the largest revelations newly divorced people enjoy. Your money is yours. You can choose to be thrifty and save it or you can choose to be wasteful and spend it without answering to anyone. You can live the lifestyle you want. You no longer need to seek approval. Your budget is now within your complete control.
There are several positives that come from getting a divorce especially if you were in a marriage that was less than ideal. That is not to say that divorce is without disadvantages as well. Single parenting and financial troubles are two side effects that divorce can often bring. Paying child support and alimony sometimes results in more than fifty percent of your take home pay. Financial pain can be felt in that now two mortgages are being paid, two utilities, food for two homes etc. This can be a burden which leads to an unexpected life style change.
Single parenting is no picnic either. No matter if you have joint custody or full custody or only visitation you are now the sole person responsible for your children when they are with you. There is never a break in parenting when you are divorced. This can be difficult for many parents. You know play all the roles in parenting not just the ones you are comfortable in. This is a strange zone to enter especially if you played a specific role, such as primary disciplinarian, in parenting. You will have to figure out a way in which to learn when discipline is necessary and when it isn’t which something that you may have taken for granted that your spouse used to do for you.
If you find yourself at a cross road in your marriage sit down with a divorce attorney to go over what options you have available. After talking with a family law specialist you may find that working towards reconciliation is a better option for you or you may not. The point is that you need to thoroughly explore the good, the bad and the ugly of divorce and its aftermath before diving head first. For most of us marriage was not something we decided upon on a whim; your divorce should not be either.
After your divorce there is nothing more precious than or as delicate as your children and their emotional state. They need to be placed ahead of your own needs and protected from other outside emotional shock. Before beginning to date again after your divorce in finalized you should carefully consider what is in your children’s best interest. You must protect them in every way possible meaning you may back burner future relationships until you know for certain that your children have accepted their new lives.
Your children are feeling many mixed emotions throughout your divorce. This is unlikely to end once the divorce decree is in hand, assets split and parenting arrangements decided upon. They will have a variety of fears, expectations and hopes. Your job as their parent is to help them adjust. Support their growth and shelter them from undue stress. Divorce is a painful experience for children and is not something that is gotten over just because yours has been finalized.
Some children find that they are incredibly angry. Not yet having experienced an emotion this strong many young children have not learned the art of hiding the pain away. For these children parents can easily tell how a child is feeling.
Other children are quiet and withdrawn. This type of child may seem perfectly well adjusted on the outside but distraught on the inside. Their hurt may typically go undiscovered. It is your job as the parent to determine where your children are at in dealing with your divorce and to seek the adequate help and guidance that they need to cope with this major life change.
It is crucial that you take the time right after your divorce to focus on your relationship with your children. You will need to re-define who you are as a parent. The level of attention you give to your child along with your behaviors set the tone for their healing.
This is not to say that you should only focus on them and forget about yourself. You set the pace for their healing. Take care of your own emotional well being without getting romantically involved with anyone for a substantial period of time after your divorce is settled. Your children are watching you with glaring focus so it is important you model to them behaviors and attitudes that are acceptable.
Children are fearful of loss after their parents have been divorced. Jumping back into the dating game after your divorce is not a good idea. Your children will fear more loss or rejection. Children most often see anything or anyone taking away any of the attention that they feel should be placed on them as another loss. Take time before you start dating again to establish a strong, healthy foundation with your children. Creating a trusting relationship with them again is important if you ever hope to have their acceptance and approval with another partner.
Right after your divorce is final you need time to learn about yourself and to explore your interests. When you are going through this process your children are watching you as a model for themselves. They will imitate your actions within their own. Make sure that the example you are providing for your children is one that will lead them into moving on and creating a healthy life within and with each of you separately.