Divorce scores only second to the death of a spouse on the traumatic life events scale. Even when a divorce is amicable and uncomplicated, it can still be stressful. How much more so if the divorce is unwanted or unexpected. I often refer to the first emotional stage of a divorce as being “Hiroschima”. It is a time of many emotions – grief, anger, sadness, anxiety, guilt, helplessness, hopelessness…..to name a few. It can also be an absolute rollercoaster ride and it’s easy to feel out of control.
How many of us divorcees found or find ourselves asking questions that we cannot answer or that do not serve us? Do you recall asking yourself:
- When did my spouse stop loving me?
- When did it all go wrong?
- Why did this happen to me?
- What did I do to deserve this?
So let me ask you…..even if you actually did find the exact right answers to these questions, how did that serve you? Even if you were to find out that your spouse stopped loving you on Tuesday 15th April 2006, would this had any different effect on the outcome of your situation?
In Alice’s ** divorce, which was sudden and unexpected, she recalls wanting closure and an understanding of “what went wrong”. Her husband at the time assured her that he would explain to her “when she was ready to hear”. That was ten years ago and they have never actually had that conversation. The truth is that Alice’s husband had made a decision to leave her for another woman. Whatever conversation they would have had would be tinged with his justification of why he was left with no choice but to leave her. Although Alice thought this was a necessary conversation – no answer that her husband would have given her would have served her.
So what am saying? Ask yourself better questions. Ask yourself questions like:
- Now that I am on my own, what does this allow me to do that I could not have done before?
- Now that I have been given an opportunity to do things differently, what will I choose?
- What tiny step can I take today towards creating a good life for myself?
- What can I do to make sure that I look after myself (mind and body) so that I am better able to cope with my new reality?
- What structures can I put in place to make my new reality more manageable?
The reality is that even if you had all the answers to the disempowering questions you asked yourself, what difference would it make to your reality? The harsh truth of the situation is:
It is what it is
So…… why not ask yourself better questions that empower you and allow you to take steps towards healing and creating a good life.
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