I Just Got Divorced. What Do I Do Now?

Alison K writes...

"I'm recently divorced. We were married for just 3 years but it was a disaster. I'm mad, sad, depressed and uncertain of my future. What should I do? Some kiss me goodnight advice would be stupendous right about now."

Replies (2)
  • Hi Alison.

    People learn a lot form the divorce.

    I did! We could probably swap horror stories, but that will take us both backwards.

    If you've reached the point of extremely bitter thoughts and actions, it's time to chill out and settle down. I empathize, your divorce resulted in a big loss. A loss of a spouse, safety, security, trust, and even some material possessions you may have cherished. But the loss was much more than that. You feel alone now. Many times the impact of divorce is so huge that you lose yourself in the process. A lot of changes occur as you go thru and move on after a divorce. You may hop on the wrong track and develop a negative attitude, but over time (with some help) you will return back to the normal you. Some people who go thru divorce fear getting into a new relationship because they think the same thing will happen again. This is the wrong approach to take and you should always remain positive. You were able to exit a bad situation and now have the opportunity to start fresh with a more compatible mate.

    The positives of divorce are these:
    1) you are more experienced,
    2) you have a much better idea of what you want and don't want in a relationship, and
    3) you will find that you are stronger and able to handle difficult situations in the future more easily.

    You also have a better understanding in the difference between words and actions. Divorce will bring out the true nature of a person. Was your spouse mean or classy in the process? Deceitful or civilized? Honest or not? Take from this situation a lesson in human behavior. Learn from it so you can recognize the same good or bad behavior in the next person you date. Look for the signs and signals you may have missed or "glossed over" when you initially got together and were too smitten to accept as fact.

    It's also time to start appreciating your friends and family. You'll learn who is a true friend and who's got your back. It's a time of need for you. See who shines. Your true friends will always be there to support you and provide you strength to get you thru this.

    Finally, you need to let go of your anger and frustration! Get counseling if you need to, but you must start healing RIGHT NOW. Not 2, 5 or 10 years from now. It will be lost time and you'll look back at the time wasted and want a do over. Sorry, the universe doesn't allow that. The time machine has not been invented yet.

    The best part of divorce is that you are now in total control over your life and destiny (at whatever age). You may experience financial, emotional and mental hardship, but it's only temporary. Grab this opportunity to start over and try again. Bitterness will get you nowhere except a life of loneliness. Pick your head up and get the heck back out there.

    Stay positive and rock on!

    • One more thing...

      It's important to remember that a divorce is a serious life event and that it may require a time to heal before you re-enter the dating scene.

      It's hard for someone on the outside or someone who has never experienced a divorce to understand that you may not be ready to date right away. If you have recently gone through a divorce and your friends are urging you to get back into the dating scene but you just don't feel ready, don't be afraid to tell them that you need more time. They may think that you are being ridiculous but you are the only one who will truly know when you are ready to start dating again. Trust your own instincts and don't allow others to rush you back into the dating scene. On the other hand, don't let fear stop you either!

      If you have children from your previous marriage, it is important to consider their feelings before starting to date again. Although you can't allow your children to prevent you from re-entering the dating scene ever, it is important to realize that they are also going through a difficult time and it may be necessary to wait a little longer than you had planned to help them work through their feelings and to understand that you are not trying to replace their other parent in their lives. Once both you and your children feel positive about you starting to date, it is acceptable to begin dating again.

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