You’d like to have him or her out of your life. You’d like to get even. You’d like to go back to those first, happy days. You love the way your ex deals with the children – you hate the way your ex deals with the children. Divorce brings up a whole lot of conflicting feelings. Here are 5 little things you can do to help you get through the divorce as easily as possible.
1. Don’t Dwell. Improve your self-talk. You realize he never fixed the sticky drawer or that she wants to keep your favorite chair. Instead of getting mad, change your thought process. You don’t want to start a negative thinking spiral that will drag you back into anger or distress. Be practical. Know you can replace a chair or fix a drawer. Plan on how you are going to handle things in the future – not the past.
2. Say Thank You. He or she picked up the children when you got stuck at work. Your soon-to-be-ex remembered to send your mother a birthday card. Life goes on and a thank you (well said whether it’s sincere or not) can help build a bridge. If you have children, you’re going to co-parent with this person for years to come. If you’re still working out the details of your divorce, creating a more cooperative atmosphere will serve you better than an anger. So, say “thanks” if a situation arises where it’s the appropriate thing to say.
3. Get Support. If you really have to let it all out, get some professional help. Your best friend who is still locked in a dispute with her ex is not going to help you find middle ground. Talk to your Mom or Dad, but, remember, they’re already worried about you. If you have children, make sure that they have a professional counselor or psychologist to help them.
4. Use Email. But, use it carefully – email is easily misread. But, during a divorce it can provide a line of communication without having to pick up the phone or be face-to-face when you’re struggling with staying pleasant. Be cordial but get to the point. For example, “Want you to know Johnny got an A on his history paper, but you might want to review his math with him.” Add that important word – “thanks”. Before you hit send, make sure your email is designed to be informative – not to take a swipe at past behavior or hit a hot button.
5. Take Back Your Space. If you’re the spouse that’s staying in the home, don’t be afraid to get rid of things that remind you of the bad times. If it’s his, offer it to him or offer to put it in storage. Make yourself a happy space – or, at least, a haven – with a comfortable chair, a good reading light and your favorite, cuddly throw. If you’re the one who has left the home, try to reach an agreement so you can take your favorite things with you. If that’s not possible, replace them. Again, make a space that is your own.
No matter how amicable your divorce may be on the surface, there are going to be some strong emotions running deep. Deal with them as nicely as you can. Rely on your divorce attorney. While he or she may be happily married, they’ve lived through divorce after divorce with their clients. They’re the person who can recommend a counselor or help mediate a problem. make sure you hire an attorney who is a divorce lawyer and has the experience you need to help protect your interest and your feelings.