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Give yourself time to process the emotions of your divorce

Have you watched friends go through a divorce? If so, try and remember how their behavior changed with time.

Learning from other people’s mistakes can save you a lot of trouble in many aspects of life. If you are about to divorce, learning from your friend’s experiences can smooth the process for you — particularly when it comes to understanding the emotional process of divorce. 

People go through four emotional stages in a divorce

Psychologists say these are the four emotional stages you and your partner must pass through in your divorce to really move forward:

  • Acute: This is where it hurts the most. It will be particularly tough if your spouse is the one that decided they want a divorce. You may struggle to focus at work, have sleepless nights, and your emotions could be all over the place.
  • Acceptance: You start to accept the reality that your marriage is over, although you may still have significant lapses.
  • Adjustment: This is when you start to look toward the future and begin making changes ready for your new life.
  • Healing: This will take at least a year or two. Gradually you begin to realize divorce is for the best. You can look back and realize that both you and your spouse made mistakes in your marriage. Hostility between you should be much less than before.

You and your spouse may pass through these stages at different speeds to each other. The person who first mentions they want to divorce has a head start.

If you rush things, one of you might still be in the early stages of recovery. They may struggle to make rational decisions. If you wait for a little, it will be easier to sit around a table and mediate a solution to your divorce.