The Guys-Only Guide to Getting Over Divorce

The Guys-Only Guide to Getting Over DivorceTwo psychologists have joined forces to write a man’s guide of practical advice to provide divorce help for men. “The Guys-Only Guide to Getting Over Divorce” was written by Sam J. Buser and Glenn F. Sternes, two highly trained clinicians and licensed psychologists with more than 20 years experience.

The book is written in an easy-to-read Q&A format answering hundreds of questions from deciding to leave the marriage to living alone to sex to new relationships to re-marriages. editor Matt Allen asks divorce questions to Buser and Sternes whom he spoke to from their Houston offices about their motivation behind the book, the biggest post-divorce psychological problems facing men, and what all men need to do to overcome these issues.

Note: Part 2 of the interview (click here to read) focused on surprising problems of divorce and recommendations on how to deal with them. First off, how did you guys get together and make connections and decide you wanted to write this book?

BUSER: Glenn and I have been friends awhile and we actually went to a conference where there was a presentation on how to write a book in 30 days. Afterward we had a drink, decided to write one together and tossed some different topics around.

I have a particular interest in working with men, and I’m always dealing with guys going through divorce so that’s the topic we came up with.

STERNES: I decided at the last-minute to check out the presentation to see can you really do it in 30 days? It was a great presentation and I got fired up. Same was a little ahead of it about wanting to write a book on divorce. I had previously written a book on marriage, family and sexuality and we have the same background in psychology so we thought we had a good fit there. And inspiration turned into perspiration.


DD: You mentioned talking about different topics to write about, so what made you settle on writing a book about guys and divorce?

BUSER: Well I specialize in treating men. One of the most common issues I would encounter is men trying to deal at various stages of divorce. I found a lot were making the same characteristic mistakes and often asking me the same questions. I was always thinking, “I wish this guy had talked to me before he made these decisions.” So every time I kept saying the same answers to the same sort of problems.

STERNES: Both of us like to give homework assignments that can’t be completed in the 45 minutes, an hour we see a person so this is a very economical way of presenting a lot of information. And guys will read the book in different ways then women would.


DD: What do you mean in different ways?

STERNES: A lot of guys may pick this book up who have already been through some of the stages for divorce. So they may not need the whole book and would rather hone in on the chapters that answer their questions.


DD: The emphasis of this book is not really on the legal process and entanglements, but more on the psychological issues brought up by divorce, obviously more up your alley. What are some of the biggest psychological post-divorce problems that guys face?

STERNES: Guys really need to understand the recovery period; the getting over the hurt, the ability to express the hurt. When you divorce somebody the person you want to run to and communicate these feelings with is usually the one you are getting divorced from. So who do you go to?

BUSER: I really agree with Glenn. The first issue is the hurt problem. How do I deal with the hurt? A lot deal with it poorly. A related problem is the loneliness. Is being alone the same thing as being lonely? Guys don’t do very well with being alone.

Guys think they’ll be fine, but the first thing they do is start hanging out with people that may not be appropriate for them. They may be getting in a relationship that doesn’t make sense for them and that is the next big problem.

In our research we found 50% of men re-marry within one year after their divorce. The odds are against you finding the right love that quickly. The divorce rate for second marriages is higher than the first marriage so it’s obvious that people don’t learn from their mistakes. They are making them over again.

It’s almost always true that remarriages are born in pain. Your first marriage is usually born out of hope, joy, love. The second one is coming off a divorce and is born out of pain.


Note: Part 2 of the interview (click here to read) focused on surprising problems of divorce and recommendations on how to deal with them.



Glenn SternesDr. Glenn F. Sternes is an expert in the field of interpersonal relationships, men’s issues and human sexuality. He teaches graduate courses on the subjects and maintains a clinical practice in the Houston Area.




Sam BuserDr. Sam J. Buser is past-president of the Texas Psychological Association. He is also a member of the American psychological Association’s Division 51 (Society for the Psychological Study of Men and Masculinity), has specialized in treating men for more than 15 years, and has provided divorce advice for men. Dr. Buser is an adjunct faculty member of the Counseling Psychology Program at the University of Houston teaching graduate courses in marital and family therapy.

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