Guest Post From DivorceForce
The breakup with the ex is obvious. But there is also a ripple effect of divorce on other relationships.
Your immediate family. Your extended family. And friends as well.
Let’s face it – you might want to end things with your ex-spouse, but you still love your kids, your extended family (at least some of them), and certainly you have great friends to keep close. But there is the likelihood that the subjective opinion of others regarding “whose fault it is” plays strong and everyone takes a side.
Emotions run high and yield irrational behavior by all those that are somehow touched by the divorce. There can be wild mood swings, acquisitions, and downright ugliness coming from every direction. But there certainly are things that can be done to clamp down the wide emotional swings and oscillations.
Let’s consider the three groups.
First and most importantly – Your Children. They did not decide to get a divorce. Their parents did. And at the same time their parents are going through a divorce, the children want their parents to play the same important role in their lives as before.
DO NOT destroy, this want, desire, and need they have. Let their mom or dad (your ex) continue to be a paramount part of their life. Do NOTHING to tarnish this relationship they have with your ex.
It is natural to display your angst and disdain for your ex because it is likely deeply emotional embedded within you. But you must stifle these feelings when communicating with, nurturing, and loving your children.
Things definitely get a bit more challenging in the next layer of “family.” Sides are too often split between “his side” and “her side” (or the other side in same-sex marriages).
We always hear, “I never liked him/her anyway.” So be it. You cannot change the mind of a stubborn emotional person.
Better yet, you don’t have to. The best rule of thumb is to value the family that stays true to you and not worry about those that are ready to throw you overboard. As someone said in one of the discussions in The DivorceForce Community – “Resentment is like taking poison and expecting the other person to die.”
Thus here is some prudent advice – get over it and the hell with them.
Now, let’s talk about friends. What is a friend?
The 500 Facebook friends you have – definitely not. Prior to divorce, I used to think that a friend was someone that would come over and help you paint your new house. They were that committed to helping you get a new start. They gave of their time both physically and emotionally.
Now come divorce, I define a friend in a similar way, but a tad different. A friend is someone who does not pass judgment on you, but is there for you through thick and thin. And you are likely in the thick of it now. Emotionally low and uncertain what the future will bring.
The reality is most people only have a handful of real friends. The others are people we enjoy social engagement with. Divorce causes social disruption. Those “social friends” will fall out – be prepared. You will quickly learn who your true friends are. Embrace them; value their support; and make sure to let them know what a difference they make in your life.
Divorce is definitely complicated as you deal with your ex – legally, financially, and emotionally. But many people do not realize the eminent ripple effect it will have on their life.
At DivorceForce, we constantly hear “If only I knew then what I know now” from people that have been through divorce. Do know that “relationships” are likely to change all around you as the result of a relationship change of the end of marriage.
You need not do it alone. Understand which people truly care about you and keep them close. Get outside support – maybe a therapist. And do know you have a community to support you.
People just like you going through similar scenarios. People that have already been through the divorce rigor and are passionate to help others.
DivorceForce is an online community committed to empowering those affected by divorce.