Shrink About This
The divorce may be final but is the left over pain and anger still eating you up? Here are ten tips to help to process the hurt and get on with your life.
1. PHYSICAL DAMAGE
Prolonged anxiety, stress or agony of any kind hurts you physically, not just emotionally. Get ye to the track and run off the hurt, lift weights and scream, dance until you sweat. Eat right and drink water, not booze. Give your body a break. Self destruction will not make the relationship recover. If you are losing it or feeling suicidal, ask your doctor for antidepressants for a few months.
2. THINK IN TERMS OF SUCCESS
If you managed to have a relationship, any relationship, even if it ended badly, at least you have known passion, partnership and perhaps, parenthood. All that may include pain, too. Would you rather have never felt anything for anyone?
3. SAVE THE CHILDREN
Are you trying to continue to be a good parent but your ex-partner would rather eradicate you? That situation may push desperate panic buttons. Remember the story about Solomon and the two mothers. Let the child live in peace and stay as involved as you possibly can. When the child is around ten, they see the truth. Just give consistent, unconditional love and time will do the rest. Never make the mistake of screaming at your children out of frustration with your partner or making the children the go-between.
4. HOT ANGER
Hot anger is, well, hot and not that different from passion. If you are still embroiled in someone else’s life and what they say or do, you must still care. If a stranger said or did similar things would it bother you? Probably not. Admit you still care and get some professional help processing the left over love that is masquerading as hate.
5. BLIND TO THE NEXT
While you are pouting in the corner, your perfect match may be watching you. If you are still all tangled up in your old dead relationship, you will not notice. Double loss.
6. GET OUT OF TOWN
Remove yourself from triggers that jumpstart the feelings all over again. Take a trip to Rome or Baltimore, anywhere that is new and different to help put a relationship crisis in perspective. It is only a relationship. As much as it may hurt right now, it is not life-threatening HIV or cancer. You will recover.
7. NUMBERS REALITY
It is true that of all marriages in America, 50% of first marriages end in divorce and 67% of second and 74% of third marriages also end in divorce, according to Jennifer Baker of the Forest Institute of Professional Psychology. The distribution as shown on http://www.divorcerate.org/ is as follows:
Age at marriage for those who divorce in America
Age Women Men
Under 20 years old 27.6% 11.7%
20 to 24 years old 36.6% 38.8%
25 to 29 years old 16.4% 22.3%
30 to 34 years old 8.5% 11.6%
35 to 39 years old 5.1% 6.5%
Relationships are much more difficult to hold together in this time of stress and easy divorce, especially if you were too young.
8. TAKE RESPONSIBILITY
No matter how awful your relationship may be now, you made a long series of choices that have brought you to this place. Take responsibility for your fifty percent of all the decisions and also the problems. The blame game is immature and fruitless. Learn from your mistakes and try harder next time by selecting a more compatible partner or by learning to be a better partner.
9. LONG TERM
If you share a child, you will also share grandchildren and great- grandchildren at weddings, graduations and birthdays. Animosity for the past will affect the lives of your future descendants as long as you live or as long as you hold a grudge. Sweet innocents will love Grandma and Grandpa and your venom at their parties will poison them. Not fair to the little kids. If you remain in the same town, your friends and co-workers will have to compensate for your botched relationship and inadequacy to mend hurt feelings. Supervisors may read that as inadequacy to resolve other issues and pass you by for the next promotion. Like rings from a stone in a pond, the bad vibes will spread all around you.
10. TIME IS SHORT
Your life is ticking away. Wouldn’t you rather be smiling, sailing, hiking, discovering new miracles of science or gardening, rather than making war?