Going through a breakup or divorce is one of the most emotionally and physically draining events you can possibly experience, and it absolutely can lead to depressive symptoms when it’s all said and done.
No matter how well you get along with your ex and how easy it seemed to be to come to agreements, most people experience some amount of post-divorce depression.
Here are 5 healthy ways to deal with the symptoms of post-divorce depression:
1. See Your Doctor
Even the most resilient people are susceptible to clinical depression, so even though feeling down is common after a break-up, see your doctor to make sure you’re not experiencing a medical issue that might be helped with therapy or medication. Depression symptoms that inhibit your daily routine and never seem to go away can be a hint that you’re actually experiencing altered brain chemistry that won’t just get better on its own.
2. Find a Hobby
If you have a hobby you love, find a group you can join to enjoy it with others. If you don’t have one, start exploring community classes at the library or recreation center nearest you to find one. Perhaps a new fitness class, learning how to knit or even taking music lessons have always interested you in the past. Now’s the time to take advantage of having more time to take care of yourself and explore the things you never knew you were missing!
3. Spend Time with Friends and Family
Surrounding yourself with loved ones and staying socially active are excellent ways to thwart the post-divorce depression woes. Dating after divorce can be a bad idea if you try to do it too soon, so plan on gaining closer relationships with your friends and family for at least the first year. You may even make some new friends to spend time with your new hobby class you decide to try.
4. Take a Solo Vacation
Travel! Now’s the time to recharge and explore the freedom of traveling alone once again. This can be very relaxing and cleansing to the soul, and leave you feeling refreshed when you return. Perhaps there’s a destination you always wanted to visit but couldn’t get your spouse to take the plunge? Book it now and have an adventure of your own accord – or simply head to the beach with a good book and do nothing but relax and heal.
5. Consider a Clean Slate
Most things in your life probably remind you of your ex and may make you feel depressed, so it’s a great time to consider changing that. If you live in the same house you did while married, consider moving. If you live where you do because of your ex’s job or family, think about leaving. Giving yourself something to look forward to can help lessen the depressive thoughts you’re harboring after your divorce, and make you feel as if you’re creating your own destiny without the help of your ex.
Break up or divorce is definitely no joke and can bring about terribly depressing thoughts and feelings. If you use these tips to find something new to look forward to as a single person, you’ll avoid the temptation to fill the void with a new relationship before you’re really ready to. Enlist the help of friends and family and enjoy some leisure time with them, and do something you always wanted to but either couldn’t or wouldn’t when you were married. It will give you hope for the single life and prove to yourself that you don’t need to be married to be happy, and there’s no reason to be depressed because you’re not anymore!