Deciding to get a divorce can be a very difficult and complicated decision to make. It is basically an end to something that is so significant it can ruin your life. However, sometimes it is the best decision for both you and your partner, and any children you two might have.
It’s easy to state that you will love somebody for the rest of your life when you’re in love with them and focus on all the best things that your partner possesses. But sometimes people change, circumstances change, people grow apart, and love fades away. At that moment, being realistic and knowing how to move on are very crucial things for your health.
The truth is that different people in different circumstances go through a divorce with unique experiences. Until you are going through it, you can’t really predict how you will feel and what your reaction will be. Although nothing can fully prepare you for what’s coming, there are some things that you can keep in mind that might make the whole process easier.
6 Harsh Truths You Need to Know During Divorce
1. Divorce is rarely all one person’s fault
Being in a relationship with somebody is a very hard thing in terms of efforts. Often, people think that the efforts at the beginning of the relationship or marriage are enough. In fact, being together with somebody requires constant willing effort from both sides. Being willing to make compromises, trying to understand the other person, working extra hard on your marriage when it’s the worst, etc.
Even though in some instances it’s only one of the partners who indicated divorce or was unfaithful, there is still some fault on both sides. That being said, try not to play the blame game with your partner. Regardless of what happened, it’s not going to help the process. Don’t put the blame all on yourself, and don’t do it to your partner.
2. It takes time to get to divorce
There have been countless excuses made by divorcing spouses about the reasons for their divorce. He was not ambitious enough, she had a shopping addiction, he was drinking too much, she gained a lot of weight, he didn’t want to have sex, and thousands more that can be as deep or as vain as possible. But the truth is, any problem by itself could have been eliminated. Marriage doesn’t just end all of a sudden, it erodes over time.
It’s a compilation of thousands of small miscommunications and painful comments. That is why some couples that have big problems are doing well with good problem solving skills. The key is how much you communicate and how much you are willing to do to resolve the issues. It is important to be real about the fact that you both did this, at least in the vast majority of the cases.
3. You have to make a choice to heal
Divorce is the death of a marriage. It doesn’t matter how it happened. It could have been a murder from one side, or loving euthanasia that you both agreed on; it’s still a death. And with death comes grief. Grief is a natural response in situations like these. And when people are grieving it can be hard to be rational.
At some point, you will be torn apart between feelings of hoping and letting go. If it’s the end, then you have to consciously make the choice to let go and start the healing process. This is always easier said than done, and you should take as much time as you need. Just be careful not to fall too deep into this dark period of your life.
4. You need to document everything
Yes, you think you know this person with whom you’ve shared many years of your life. You think that they will play fair and won’t double-cross you. And sometimes, it might be like that. However, there are many cases where the most vicious attacks come from people we didn’t expect. When people are going through one of the worst periods of their lives, they tend to do petty things. You might also do some things you never thought you were capable of.
So for your protection, document and record everything. Do this for protection only, even if you’re not planning to use this information. Try to do most of your communication through email or texting since you can keep better records that way. Don’t blackmail or use the records to harm them, just keep them in case you’re being attacked. This can prevent the divorce from getting very ugly.
5. The kids love both of you
Divorces are far more complicated when there are kids involved. That way, you’re not only responsible for you but for your kids as well. Divorce can be a pretty traumatic event for children, especially if the divorce is high-conflict. As a parent, you have to think about what’s best for your children and try to minimize or put aside completely your own emotions towards your partner.
Keep the whole divorce process as far away as you can from them, and keep open communication. Answer all of their questions, and try to explain as best you can what is happening. Try to minimize sudden changes, and do not throw blame around. It is in your kids’ best interest if you and your partner remain on good terms, and they keep seeing both of you. This, of course, doesn’t apply if one of the parents is dangerous, addictive, or abusive. If needed, get your children professional help.
6. Taking care of yourself is a must
You have to do it, no matter how much you don’t feel like it. Try doing sports, reconnect with friends, read books, join yoga, get cooking classes, go dancing…do whatever you can to keep going through life with a healthy attitude. Don’t be afraid to go to therapy and work things out. This can be your chance to do the things you always wanted to do but never really got to it. Find what feels good for you and keep going on!
Gary Peterson is working at NCSM. He was born and raised in New York. Gary is a professional writer who specializes in SEO, social problems, email marketing, and healthcare. He likes traveling and taking gorgeous photos of nature. Rock music is something that inspires him. www.ncsm.nl