3 Steps to Divorce Recovery

According to TODAY.com, even the party who initiated the divorce may feel a sense of loss over the end of the relationship. Divorce can be traumatic, and both spouses have to come to terms with it. Here are some steps that may help.

1. Forgiveness

Forgiveness may be difficult at the beginning of a divorce, but it should be a long-term goal. If each spouse can leave behind any thoughts of spite or revenge early in the process, the divorce is more likely to go smoothly and resolve quickly. Divorcing spouses often assume guilt or blame for the breakdown of the relationship. Therefore, the goal is not only to forgive one’s spouse but oneself as well.

2. Calm

As reported by Psychology Today, the likelihood of a divorce can result in some rash decisions as spouses enter “survival mode” trying to maintain stability. Such decisions can have unintended consequences. Divorcing spouses should reserve any major decisions for when they are calm.

3. Reflection

Before the legal proceedings begin, each spouse should take some time to reflect and process his or her emotions. Sometimes a solitary activity, such as meditation or journaling, can provide the necessary clarity. In many cases, divorcing spouses may have to seek help from third parties such as trusted friends, therapists, or divorce support groups. Whatever the technique, reflection can help divorcing spouses become calm enough to make major decisions and help provide the perspective that makes forgiveness possible.

Though these steps are important in a divorce, they are not necessarily sequential. For example, reflection may be a recurring exercise during and after a divorce for a spouse to remain calm and keep moving toward forgiveness.

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