February 24, 2020
Divorces are emotionally raw times, opening wounds for people that they often didn’t know were there. And once the initial shock wears off, there is just so much more to process—how to rebuild your self-confidence, learn to trust others, and deal with the depression that comes from loneliness, betrayal, financial hardship, and change. These things are true both parties to a divorce, both the person ending the marriage and their partner.
For all these reasons and more, it is so important to seek help from a qualified therapist during and after the divorce. If you have never tried therapy, or are skeptical of it, I ask you to keep these three things in mind about getting a divorce, and then reevaluate whether you think therapy is a worthy pursuit.
The end of your marriage does not mean the end of your life. You have entire chapters of your life waiting to be written, and you deserve to be happy during them.
Therapy will help you cope with the anxiety, depression, guilt, shame, and fear that comes from a dramatic change like a divorce. It will also help you identify things you may have done wrong during your relationship so that you can avoid doing them in the future. And it can help you find forgiveness, both for your ex and for yourself.
You can only take care of the people you love—your children, your family members, your friends, your co-workers—if you are taking great care of yourself. Therapy will help you learn to take care of yourself by dealing healthily with negative feelings and by building self esteem.
There will be a time after your divorce where your friends, family, and co-workers will understand if you are depressed, forgetful, and unpleasant to be around. But eventually, they will expect you to be “back to normal”… and most likely much before you are ready.
This is not to say that you should fake feeling good for other people’s sake. But it is to say that if your work suffers because you are depressed, or if you never have fun with your friends anymore, then your depression will only become worse. The best way to prevent this from happening is to deal with the negative feelings associated with your divorce productively, with a qualified therapist.
It won’t be easy, or quick, but the journey will be worth it in the end, and you will undoubtedly credit therapy with helping you see your divorce as a learning experience and a chance for personal growth.
Have a question about this or any other Family Law matter? Give us a call at 914.615.9058.