Mar 16, 2012

Coping with change after divorce

Divorce must be one of the most devastating interruptions a person can experience during his lifetime. Whatever the reason for divorce, whose fault it is, what tipped the apple cart, the outcome of separating a family is the same; loss of love, loss of affection, and loss of spirit. You are so bewildered by what has taken place you don’t believe you can recover, especially when you see the children grieving and your life as you know it disappear. There is a deep sense of loss and bewilderment.

Necessary changes to strive for

• Pray to God and believe that you will be helped. Your spirit and the way you feel is important for recovery and reaching out to God can take you a long way. Believe in your heart that things will change for you and the children.

• As the parent, you are responsible for them and are expected to do everything you can to make sure they understand what is happening and do not suffer pain.

• When there is an argument coming on between you and your former partner over support payments or whatever, do not involve the kids in the argument. They cannot take sides and you must not expect it.

• Spend extra time with the kids so that they don’t feel they are losing out on life because of the changes.

• Continue to do, with or without your former partner, the things you all did as a family on weekends or holidays.

• Don’t confuse your kids with the kind of relationship you have, and do not make sudden changes. Kids are funny about moving and change. They need time to digest things.

• Sign the kids up for activities they really enjoy. Spend more time with them and speak to each child individually.

• Make friends with other singles and join a group. Single parents have many things in common; you can talk about the changes you are experiencing. Talking about a problem you all have in common makes you feel you are not alone. Your self-esteem has suffered a blow; you want to restore the way you feel, and part of doing that is not becoming hard and vengeful yourself.

Coming to terms with change takes time. Take each day at a time. Visit your friends. Get a babysitter and have some away-time by seeing a movie with a friend. There are many things you can do where the kids can come along. You basically have two seasons in America; hot and cold. There are activities for both the warm summer days as well as many activities you can enjoy in wintertime skating or skiing with your kids in the outdoors. Whoever it is that got the divorce rolling, be sure you will get up again, and be stronger. Don’t rush into a new relationship. You need time to think and recover. A relationship in distress needs time to repair, and the repairs you make today may be for the benefit of someone else in the future. Don’t begrudge it; that is how the world works.

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