Divorce or Break ups are traumatising and a painful transition. It is happening because two people are no longer at the same energy frequency. I will give today 5 tips on how to deal with divorce, cohabitation break ups and these tips may be relevant for any break up depending on how your relationship was set up.
Divorce in a relationship that involves finances, family and children, can be more complicated as there are practicalities to resolve. These practical factors within Divorce and Co habitation break ups multiply the emotional impact. There is a slight difference in emotional impact, if you are the one walking away. If your partner initiated the divorce or break up, you may feel abandoned. The person who initiates/requests the break up, has usually worked through some of their emotional triggers.
However, to a large extent, both persons usually know that some things are not right in the relationship. Denial may exist but there is some degree of awareness even though pain thresholds and comfort zone levels differ. Key thing is that as with everything in life, you are two unique individuals and impact of the divorce/break up will be individual. Trying to compare or assess from the outside is a fruitless exercise because our perceptions are blurry and dysregulated at this point. It is best to avoid dwelling on trying to assess how the other person feels compared to you.
This article is for those who are thinking of leaving, have left or are feeling abandoned. This will help to raise your awareness about what you are going through, whether it is pre divorce, actual break up stage or post divorce stage. You have most likely tried to hold on, you have done counselling, compromised, tried giving space, talked to family, involved your mutual leaders whether religious or community. You have tried to make it work, but this is where you are.
Pre divorce trauma would be some degree of abuse whether sexual, physical, verbal, emotional, mental or religious. The betrayals, the rationalisations and the build up of courage to leave is usually accompanied with a loss of self esteem and worth. This is why leaving is so tough, because you are usually at the lowest level of self worth, blaming yourself, feeling let down etc. You need a plan.
This is the first tip. Start planning. You may need a safe person you can divulge your fears in. This will help you build your courage of getting out of the toxicity. Your plan will include dealing with the finances, family, children, legal matters etc.. The separation will come before the actual legal divorce, so where will you go?. Will you stay and he/she leave?. Or will you leave and he/she stay in your home? When it is you, the husband, that leaves your partner and children, you have to make some intricate choices. where will you go? where will you eat? where will you do your laundry? Do you have a friend you can stay with? Do you need to leave the locality, town, state, country?
As the wife, you may have lesser income, where will your new income come from? How will you pay your bills? How much will be split? How will the children be handled day to day? Will you have childcare?
These are very practical issues and you may not have all the answers come to you immediately, but hold on to your intention and most importantly, have someone you trust to plan with you. Make some calls to local groups and find out what will be required for your divorce even before you separate. If you are in a domestic violence situation, you may need to take you and your children away at a carefully planned time, maybe even, in the middle of the night to a safe place. You will need a new phone. Start your planning with your safe person or professional now. It is possible to leave safely but it has to be planned.
Pre divorce planning brings up lots of triggers such as blame, guilt, shame, grief, fear. It is very individual. For some, there will be little or no financial loss, but for others they may be left with nothing financially. I have gone through both types. It made a huge difference. I was devastated leaving the relationship because I only had £30 to my name and two children to care for. I still chose to leave and depend on friends and family for help for a long while. This was really my best option at the time. The second time, I was financially stable, so very little financial impact.
The financial loss/change makes a big difference in the pre divorce stage. It is a make or break actually. You have to decide if staying is worth it. It is your choice and you make it when the time is right. The worst thing you can do is not to plan at all. If finances is a huge factor, the sooner you start planning, talking to a lawyer, a financial adviser, the better. Do not do nothing. You need a practical plan worked out with a safe person and/or a professional. Just to know what you will need to do. This is the first tip, to have a plan to cover the practical aspects of finances, children, your care, your home, safety, having a trusted person. it is only when this is resolved that you have some capacity to go on to tip 2.
The second tip is to Raise your own awareness of your emotions. Whatever stage you are in whether it is pre divorce, breaking up or post divorce, your relationship with the other person will either be Fight (antagonistic towards them), Flight (avoiding them), Freeze (numb towards them) and Fawn (trying to appease/please them). It is helpful to be aware of your reactions. This awareness allows you to understand your emotional triggers such as blame, guilt, shame, grief, fear. This tip is about you identifying how this transition is affecting you at a deeper level. It may be bringing up triggers from past childhood trauma of abandonment, bereavement etc. The emotional aspect of divorce is huge and we struggle to do this on our own. This second tip is about you not ignoring or repressing your pain – to deal with the grief. Grief is the most common emotional trigger in divorce or break ups, and if not resolved we are usually be impacted for years or even lifetime. There are five common emotional stages we go through when dealing with grief: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Avoidance. This stages are not linear. You can have one leg in anger and the other in depression. The fear of dealing with our grief during this transition can stop one from even taking the first step which is the planning. You deny that you have an issue or how bad it is, or how it is affecting you. You get angry. You bargain with yourself, “I am staying because of this or that”. Then you have times when you are numb or quite anxious and then there are times when you are just avoiding the issues. We stay in grief until we raise our awareness and begin to work through the emotions. We have to tackle our pain to move through.
The third tip is getting Trauma Informed professional help to deal with these emotions. This is usually easier to do when you have left for a while or the break up has just happened. But the sooner you get Trauma Informed professional help, the better. When you have your plan and have realised how your emotions are affecting you, get this help for deeper clarification. It could be counselling, coaching or even medication. Be open to what resonates with you whether traditional or newer bio technologies such as inner child work, reprogramming, sound therapy, art therapy, energy healing etc. Try a combination of things. You will be surprised what will get you through this time. Stay open and try out different support to work through your emotions. Again do not just do nothing and do not give up.
The fourth tip is Self Care. It is not just a word. You are your own best resource. Invest in yourself mind, body spirit. Whether you are in pre divorce, breaking up right now or in post divorce, your self care is key. Your daily habits determine how you function. Do two things each day that connect you with yourself; time alone, journaling, tea, nature, walks, exercise dancing, music, having a safe group. This builds your own inner world. Reiki and meditation work for me.
The fifth and final tip is to Remember your authentic self. Whatever stage you re in, do not forget that there is a true self within which you may no longer be in touch with. This true self vibration is what is no longer matching the relationship status. Take your time to get in touch with this true self.
You can do this through meditation, prayer, travel, quiet time, personal transformation programs. This is a huge transition and a new person, a new You is emerging. Embrace this on a deep spiritual level as you also have to release the spiritual soul ties. Take the time to get the support you need to allow this transition happen in the easiest way possible.
The 5 tips again are:
1. Make a practical plan
2. Raise your awareness about your emotions, triggers and your grief
3. Get professional help for the emotions, recovery goals
4. Self care
5. Embrace your true authentic self in this transition.
Get YOU back & take your next level goals. Choose to live fully again & again one day at a time.