1. Even if you are the one who wants to
get divorced, you may often feel sad, loss,
Whether or not you initiated the split, one is
often unprepared for just how big of a life
transition divorce really is. It's a time that not
only includes the loss of a marriage, but often
also includes the loss of other relationships in
your life (your ex’s family, certain friends, and
less time with your children, for example). In
the process of letting go of your past married
life, you will need to begin to create your new
life, which often brings tremendous personal
growth. However, until you get there, you will
likely feel a great amount of fear and anxiety
of the unknown. It takes work, but you will
find happiness at the other end!
2. Just because you are divorced, all of
your problems don’t just disappear. You still
need to deal with your ex — particularly if
there are children involved.
I so often hear from others who are divorced,
“Ugh, I cant stand him!” or “She is driving me
crazy!” and I always respond with “That’s why
you are no longer married to him/her!”
Remember that the bad behaviors you lived
with don’t just disappear when you get
divorced — the buttons they used to press
when you were married may still get triggered,
and sometimes even more so after you split.
Do your best to let it go and not let it get to
you anymore. Easier said then done; it takes
3. Once the divorce papers are signed,
now the real work begins. You need to heal
from the emotional turmoil of a bad
marriage and learn to be happy alone
before you can enter a new relationship.
Creating two new homes after divorce with the
same resources is one of the first big
challenges one may need to make. You may
need to go back to work, which can be a huge
challenge if you have been home with your
kids for so many years.
Your self-esteem will likely need a boost after
working so hard at a relationship that
ultimately failed. I have found it to be so
important to take time to figure out who I am
again, apart from being someone’s wife: What
are my interests and what kind of partner will
really make me happy? Finding these answers
takes time, and it can be a fun and interesting
journey along the way if you let it be.
4. Your kids may not tell you how they
feel, though it may come out through their
It is so important to watch your kids' actions
and behaviors (life if they start to sleep in
your bed, fight with each other, or show signs
of depression) and not just go by what they say
or don’t say. I so often hear “my kids are
doing great” but then when I probe a little
further, I find out a very different story. Talk
to your kids about what they are thinking and
feeling continuously — I have been divorced
for five years, and my kids are still sad, have
questions and wish their parents were still
together. Keep communication going.
5. Don’t rush through the process, as
tempting as that is. Everyone needs time
to adjust and make good, clear decisions
that you can live with for many years to
During the divorce process there are so many
difficult decisions that need to be made, and
these should not be made swiftly or without a
lot of time to think and process. If you rush,
many of these decisions will be fueled by
emotions rather than careful consideration.
Try and always put your children's best
interests first and you will be ahead of the
6. You may lose some friends — the ones
you thought would be there for you may
not be, and vice versa.
This was rather surprising to me: Some people
actually think divorce can be contagious! And
maybe it is? We all know that there are many
unhappily married people out there who are
frightened (and I don’t blame them one bit) to
get divorced. These people often do not want
you around their spouses, giving them any
ideas or courage to take that step.
And then there will be the friends, sometimes
even the ones you weren’t so close to in the
past, that come forward and are tremendously
supportive. The largest complaint I hear from
divorced people is that their married friends
no longer invite them out anymore. So it's
important to create new friends — single
friends and married friends that are
comfortable including you in their plans.
7. Let go of your anger and resentment
toward your spouse — this can only hurt
you and your children and no good can
come from it!
This is so important! Holding on to your anger
about what was or what happened in the past
will only hurt you physically and emotionally.
This doesn’t mean you condone your ex’s
behavior, it simply means you need to let go of
it. If you feel stuck, seek help — a therapist, a
divorce advisor, or a divorce support group.
8. Holidays are so hard, especially in the
first few years. Start new traditions and
make sure you are not alone.
This is definitely one of the hardest parts for
me about being divorced. Holidays to me are
about being with family and those you love the
most. So each holiday where my ex has my
kids, I make sure I do something special that
makes me happy and I don’t stay home and
sulk. I do continue to spend those holidays
with my family and sometimes try and see my
kids at some point during that day.
9. Spare your children from bad-
mouthing your spouse no matter what:
This can actually crush their self-esteem.
As tempting as it may be, bad-mouthing your
ex to your children is a big no-no! Children
want — and have the right — to love both
parents. Saying bad things about the other
parent will come back to bite you, as your kids
will likely resent you for it (if not now, later).
10. Don’t rush to start dating again!
Our children are not ready to see us with
someone new, and you need time to figure out
who you are and who would make you happy.
Take at least a year off to work on yourself
and focus on your children. Trust me, you
need time alone to figure out who you are
again. Until you know that, you are likely to
make bad choices and may even choose a
partner just like the one you just divorced! Kids
too need time to heal and are likely to reject
your new partner if they aren’t ready.
1. Even if you are the one who wants to
[Those are the facts]