This week’s article is about inner healing. Most people do not realize the amount of emotional damage that is done in the name of divorce. Unfortunately, many of those who pass through my office doors don’t know how to work through that pain which is why they contact me.
When couples separate and divorce, life begins to unravel. Many experience deep emotional pain that seems to last forever. After my divorce I felt like my heart would break into pieces! I remember the heartache I felt and longed for my pain to end. Over the years I’ve met people who have spent years struggling with the pain of divorce. They had no hope or joy in their lives. When I went through my divorce, I knew I didn’t want to struggle with my pain. So I began looking for ways to find healing. As I looked past the pain, I thought about the kind of future I wanted. Did I want to struggle with the pain or did I want to find freedom and move on with my life? I chose the path to healing and moving on!
As a young man just starting my career, I wondered where I would be in a year, three years and five years down the road. I had lost the love of my life, my family, my home and our close friends. I tried to find ways to heal by reading books, talking to friends and anyone who I thought would understand my pain. After wrestling with the feelings of loss and loneliness, I decided to face my grief head on. The first thing I did was I make a list of the things I had lost. The list included losses that would affect me as a husband, father, business owner and friend. I would encourage you to do the same. Make a list of the losses you have right now and what you think you may face in future. Keep adding to that list as you go through your divorce. This list will help you keep focused on areas that need your attention. For example, if loneliness is on your list then put together a plan that will help eliminate those lonely times. I filled my days with hikes, trips to the library and photography. It kept me busy and kept the loneliness at bay.
Along with loneliness, what are some of the barriers to the grieving process? After years of counseling couples, I have found that fighting and arguing can be two of the main obstacles to your healing. The more fighting and arguing there is, the longer it takes to grieve and then heal. To move forward with your life you will need to find ways to resolve your differences. For some, finding out their marriage is ending is the first of many shocking and grievous events they will face.
I recall the first in a series of shocking events that led to my broken heart and grief. I was having lunch with my wife one afternoon enjoying pleasant conversation. After about an hour and a half, I asked her if we could head home. I had spent the morning taping a fishing show and was exhausted from being in the sun. She lingered a bit longer then I wanted, but finally agreed to head home. She seemed nervous and unsettled as I drove and I noticed she had asked me to take a different way to our home. As we finally drove down our street, I saw several trucks backed into the front lawn of our home. I watched in disbelief as several of her friends loaded our furniture into the bed of the trucks. I was in total shock! I looked at her with complete and utter surprise and with no emotion she said, “We need to have a talk.” Imagine my shock! I felt like I was on a runaway train. My emotions went from high to low in a matter of minutes. I had no idea how to deal with the emotions I was feeling and witnessing.
How do you grieve when you have a broken heart and realize that your marriage is coming to an end? I experienced grief on a scale that I had never experienced before. That’s when I realized I would no longer be married to my best friend. I had to accept the fact that she wasn’t going to be the one I could count on when I needed her most. As I look back, I now realize that this was all part of the grieving process. There were no shortcuts and I was to go through it alone.
I now recognize that it’s a painful but necessary part of the healing process. Dealing with the grief can’t be avoided. Just remember, when you go through it, it’s a part of your recovery from the shock of divorce. Find someone that will walk with you through your pain, and stand beside you. It needs to be someone that will listen and not necessarily give advice. Many of my clients ask, will they ever get over the grief and pain of their divorce. The answer is yes! But you must allow yourself the time to heal. It’s also a time to learn about yourself from your divorce, and how live one day at a time!
Are you experiencing a difficult time in your marriage and need help? Is your spouse avoiding meaningful conversation with you about the problems in your marriage? Are you struggling with the execution and planning of your divorce? Would you like to learn communication tools that are helpful when talking with your spouse about repairing your marriage? If you answered yes to any of these questions, I can help you. Give me a call today!
Many of you have expressed an interest in talking with me about how to save your marriage, or how to end it. Having gone through the pain myself, I’d be glad to help.
It won’t just go away by itself. Let me help you resolve one of the most painful times in your life, so you can start moving forward again. Make that your first step right now.
Dr. Michael Brooks is founder of Master Life Coaching and Divorce Coaching & Counseling Services. His services are affordable, accessible, anonymous and available by appointment from the privacy of your own home. To avoid travel time, many clients prefer to meet with Dr. Mike over the phone or via Skype (we can help you set up Skype if needed, or request Dr. Mike’s Skype contact number). The convenience of this type of coaching and counseling is the most effective means for those who live out of Colorado and the Denver-metro area. Give Dr. Mike a call! You’ll be glad you did!