Published: 2017-07-09   Views: 7108
Author: hasanuzzaman
Published in: Divorce
THERE IS LIFE AFTER A DIVORCE

This is the third and final article dealing with the issue of divorce in our short series on this subject. The titles of the other two are: CLEAR INDICATIONS THAT YOUR MARRIAGE IS IN TROUBLE and IT HITS YOU LIKE A LIGHTNING BOLT: SUDDEN DIVORCE

The divorce proceedings are finalized and the two parties involved are ready to carry on with their lives. Some may experience a sense of relief and others may suffer the consequences of the separation for a shorter or a prolonged period of time. Other people not directly involved in the court action may also be involved in this period of mourning for the loss of a relationship. The children born from the union specifically may suffer consequences for many years to come.  Inevitably, people must carry on with their lives and deal with the physical, emotional, spiritual and mental scars of the end of a marriage.

The Parties

Even if a person may feel relief at the finalization of a marriage, this does not mean that there will be no consequences. Divorce does not always bring an end to the problems experienced while the marital union lasted. In the same way that there is no perfect marriage there is no flawless divorce. The challenges experienced during the matrimony may just be replaced by a new set of unforeseen and unexpected headaches.

A case in point is relationships jointly established by the couple during the course of their marriage. There will be the loss of people accepted as family for an extended period of time namely parents, siblings, nieces and nephews of the alienated spouse. The same applies to joint friends where the previous roots of intimacy run deep and intensely.  Despite the fact that those former friendships may be continued it is highly likely that things will never be the same again.  A gradual decline is the most plausible outcome, leaving the parties involved with gaping voids.

There is also the issue of finances.  Living together is cheaper than maintaining two households separately. Budgets will have to be cut and some things will have to be abandoned. Less eating out, less buying of clothes and personal items, and less entertainment like visits to the cinema. This makes fertile ground for resentment towards the other partner who may just be living it up. The challenge of seeking a new place to live, feeling safe and secure in a completely new environment and dealing with utility bills are all too familiar.women life after divorce

The emotional scars of a marriage ended may be hidden and carried in silent resignation but the aftermath may last for many years, even a lifetime.  The sense of rejection is one example of such a wound that may affect all future relationships.  There is plenty of uncertainty, shame, loneliness, despair, resentment, helplessness and confusion to be dealt with.  The sure scrutiny of the previous life to find answers to nagging questions like, “when did it all go wrong”, or whether the past assurances of love, once plentiful and seemingly sincere, were all lies. 

The Children

Often the children suffer the most profoundly when the separation between two people that they love equally becomes a reality.  While adults often have the maturity and emotional reserves to deal with their feelings, children may be a different story entirely. The most common reaction is probably blaming themselves as the cause of the crisis in the family.  I know a girl whose parents divorced when she was in her early high school years.  She became anxious, depressed and in particular avoided contact with people.  Her pet hate was being present in situations where lots of people could observe her like walking into a church or cinema or attending weddings.  The issue was never resolved and even after her own marriage, she continued with her reluctance to mix with people.  She was lucky enough to end up in psychotherapy with a man who did not tell her what was wrong but led her to identify her own feelings and the reasons for those feelings. The surprising answer was that in her own thinking people always looked at her with pity. She saw herself as the poor girl who forced herself into a position where her parents could no longer stand living together. Once she realized the error of her thinking she blossomed into a bubbly personality feeling safe in the company of others including large groups of people.child

Other areas where the effect of divorce may become evident are the same emotions experienced by their parents and more nasty effects like neglecting schoolwork, delinquency, indifference to previously loved sports activities, anger, negativity, and cynicism.  Children too may have to sacrifice favorite hobbies, opportunities for growth, education, and sports due to financial constraints.

Another issue is the effect of having two parents in different households.  This situation creates a number of problems.  Children do not want to be put in the position where they have to choose or seem to choose sides between the parents they both love.  At the other end of the scale, they may well learn to exploit the situation by placing their separated parents in a position where they must vie for their affection, playing them off against each other. Fertile ground for spoilt teenagers that become accustomed to manipulating the world they exist in.

The Power to Deal with Your Divorce is Vested in You

There is no doubt that the approach taken by parents after a divorce will have a telling effect on all of the parties involved. The parents have an influential role to fulfill when it comes to the effect of a divorce and they can use this power to benefit themselves and their offspring.powerful parents

A spiteful, vengeful path may bring short-term satisfaction but is destined to do harm that will be difficult to mend in subsequent years. The preferred route is to act in the interest of everyone in a mature and giving way taking into consideration the needs of the children to grow up in peace, love and security. The most important action that a parent can take is the encouragement of a heartfelt loving relationship with the other parent. Parents should refrain from criticizing the ex-partner even in the subtlest way. Keep friendly relations with your ex because issues like discipline, money and education can be dealt with in a far more congenial way if the atmosphere is cooperative rather than adversarial.  Occupy the high ground in terms of ethics so that all concerned can move on, leaving the unfortunate events of the past behind.

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