The emotional stages of divorce can be overwhelming, frustrating, and difficult to deal with. Everyone reacts differently to divorce, and having an understanding of these different emotional stages can help you make a sense of all the confusion you are feeling.
Developing a positive attitude and staying hopeful for a better life are key factors to making your recovery easier. Some of the emotional stages of divorce that you will experience will be easier to get through, while other stages will be more difficult.
Why are the emotional stages of divorce so difficult to go through?
It is heartbreaking and difficult for anybody to go through the grief of losing a marriage. Even when the legal process of divorce is finished, many people still find themselves troubled about what actually went wrong in their marriage.
Here are 3 reasons you may find yourself troubled as you go through the emotional stages of divorce:
- There was once a lot of love between divorcing couple, or that love may even still present as they file for a divorce. Letting go of someone you love is never an easy process.
- After spending many years together, it is likely that you held a special, trusting bond with your ex. With a lot shared between you two ever the years, ending it all with divorce is not going to be pleasant. All the physical and emotional intimacy will now be lost, and thinking about that is sure to fill you with negative thoughts.
- There will be changes in your daily routine and lifestyle which will simply be alien to you. When you lived with your spouse, you had a planned life, dreams, and ambitions together. The sudden absence of your spouse will result in drastic changes to your daily routine. Such drastic changes can be overwhelming, difficult, and stressful to deal with.
The 6 Emotional Stages of a Divorce
- Denial. It can be difficult to finally accept that you are in the middle of a divorce. You may think that it was your inability to solve your own marital troubles. This can send you into a whirlwind of emotions and thoughts which prevent you from accepting the truth. You may even believe that there is something you can do to get back with your partner.
- Shock. You may act in a way that is simply not normal. The sheer shock of the divorce will create different emotions inside your head which can make you panic. This shock becomes more pronounced when you realize how much time you invested in your marriage and family.
- Contrasting Emotions. It will be difficult to keep your emotions under control. From feeling hope to feeling simply nothing but despair, you will try your best to make sense of all that has happened leading up to this point. You may also find that all you think about is the failure of your marriage.
- Bargaining. You are still hopeful that your marriage will work out. You are willing to do anything to change yourself and just make things work. You may resort to drastic measures just to get your ex to change his or her mind. What you will need to realize at this point, though, is that you cannot control the feelings of other people. Bargaining only delays the harsh reality of divorce
- Letting go. When you realize that nothing you say or do will bring your marriage back, you stop blaming your ex-spouse and start to understand your faults and what contributed to the end of your marriage. You may also feel a sense of freedom and a better outlook about what the future holds for you. You can finally let go and move on.
- Acceptance. The negative emotions finally stop. You feel that you are finally fit to lead a life that is filled with happiness and satisfaction. This stage will accompany a time period of growth. You will finally understand that there is life after divorce, and that there are more positive things to look forward to in your life.
Dan Buckley is a leading family lawyer in Brisbane and a Legal Partner at Best Wilson Buckley Family Law. He has 14 years of experience and was the Recommended Family Lawyer for the year 2015. He has a Bachelor of Law with a Post Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice. www.bwbfamilylaw.com.au/brisbane-family-lawyers