Divorce has a very negative connotation. While it is true that many couples do end up arguing or going through struggles during the divorce process, many couples find a way to get through it with minimal issues. If you want to be more like the last type of couple, then it can help to learn some methods that can enable you to keep your divorce peaceful.
The American Psychological Association explains that even though your relationship did not work out, that does not mean that your divorce must be rocky and full of trouble. You can make it a smooth and calm process simply by making a commitment to work together.
This does not mean, though, that you have to agree on everything. If you do, that is great, but if you do not, then you need to find a way to work through things and negotiate with each other to reach reasonable compromises.
One of the best ways to keep things from blowing up is to keep open lines of communication flowing. When you stop talking and working together, that is when things have a tendency to go bad. Furthermore, open communication means that you both feel heard and feel like you can express your wants and needs.
If you have children, then the best thing is to make life as normal as possible for them. There will be changes you cannot help, but minimizing the disruption is the best thing possible to avoid having issues with your children during the divorce. You and your spouse need to find a way to co-parent effectively and learn to always put the children first. This alone can help to avoid many of the things that can derail a divorce.
You probably already know that divorce battles can be costly in terms of time and money. You may also be aware that conflict between parents can take a severe toll on children. What you may not be aware of is how a contentious divorce battle can exhaust your energy reserves. At the law office of Sheldon E. Finman, we believe that a collaborative or cooperative divorce process can help you conserve your energy by not becoming involved in destructive court battles.
You can then channel your conserved energy into more constructive outlets. UpToParents.org offers a few suggestions of efficient and productive uses of your time and energy during and after divorce.
1. Supporting and encouraging your children
No matter how carefully you handle the divorce, it will be traumatic for your children. Children are resilient and can recover, but they need assurances of your unconditional love and of their value as human beings. Now is a time to focus on them and help lay the foundation on which they will rebuild their self-concept and worldview.
2. Reading or re-reading a good book on the divorce process
Professional advice can be enormously helpful during the grieving and healing process that arises from divorce. If you have already read some books on divorce, now is a good time to revisit the ones you found particularly beneficial.
3. Improving yourself
For some people, divorce can be a time of uncertainty about identity. While this can be upsetting, it is also an opportunity to reinvent yourself as the person you want to be. You can take advantage of this by committing yourself to daily exercise or trying something new that you never had time for before: a hobby, a new business venture, volunteering, vacationing, etc.
When you stop fighting with your ex-spouse, you can find and commit yourself to better uses of your time and energy. More information about collaborative and cooperative divorce is available on our website.
Like other major life events, divorce can cause significant and lasting changes. People tend to focus on the negative effects of divorce, but some of the consequences can be positive and beneficial in the long term.
Here are some of the positive effects that divorce can have on your life and relationships.
- Your relationship with your ex may improve
With the pressures of marriage and cohabitation in the past, you and your ex-spouse may find that it is easier to maintain a civil and even cordial relationship with each other. If you have children you co-parent together, this can be beneficial for everyone.
- You may become a better parent
Parents’ divorce can affect children deeply, but so can living in a household where tension and conflict are present between mom and dad. When you are no longer stressing over a deteriorating relationship, you can focus more time and attention on your relationship with your kids.
- You may feel motivated for self-improvement
Divorce can mean a crisis of identity as you try to determine who you are if you are not a spouse. However, this may motivate you to become your best self. You may feel inspired to undergo a makeover or get in better shape.
- You may experience new hope
Divorce means loss, but it also means that new opportunities can open up for you that were not available before. You may be able to travel, pursue a new hobby or start a business.
- You may develop new coping skills
Though divorce can be difficult, what you learn through the process may help you better handle future struggles that will inevitably come your way.
Though grief and loss are an inevitable part of a divorce, the consequences need not be entirely negative for either you or your family. It may be easier to reap the potential benefits if the divorce process is respectful and non-antagonistic.