Mending the Heart
Whether your spouse asked for the divorce or you initiated it, you will likely experience many emotions during the first week of your split. Though you shouldn’t repress your feelings, you need to be able to deal with them. Here is a list of some of the emotions you may be experiencing:
Denial: This coping mechanism allows you to escape from reality and ignore the complications in your life. It may be hard to acknowledge that your relationship is over, but try to accept it.
Worry: You may worry about your future, your spouse’s future, your children’s futures and more during a divorce. However, worrying is rarely constructive.
Guilt or Blame: You may feel responsible for the dissolution of the marriage, or blame your spouse for the breakup. Often, one person can’t be blamed for the divorce. A marriage is composed of two individuals who share responsibility for its success or failure.
Regret: It’s easy to regret starting the relationship in the first place. However, this emotion—especially if there are kids involved—never leads to closure.
Relief: You may feel guilty that you have a sense of relief. If you are in a bad marriage, this is a normal feeling and is a sign that getting out of your marriage is the right thing to do.
To cope with and understand these feelings, start a journal. This should be the place you feel comfortable writing all the hard-to-express thoughts, feelings and emotions. The process will take time, so allow yourself the same time and patience you would a good friend. If you are having an especially hard time, seek professional help.