Facing the reality of a divorce is hard. It does not matter that we live in the 21st century and that divorce has been a part of our legal system for a long time.
For many, divorce still carries a stigma: for some people, it is one of shame. For others, it is the distinct sting of failure. Some people feel like it might be an uncomfortable tag. These are things that our society conditions us to believe. But are not true at all.
If you are in a marriage where you spend most of your time looking after your spouse and have started to neglect your own needs, getting divorced will give you a much-needed fresh start and an opportunity to focus on self-care. As only when you put your own self-care first, will you be able to enter a healthy, stable union with another romantic partner?
As in a healthy, happy relationship, both partners ensure that their needs are being met and that they are in a positive frame of mind in order to help support their partner.
After your divorce is finalized you may want to celebrate your fresh start by ticking off bucket list items that you sacrificed for your ex-spouse. For example, if you always dreamed of booking a cruise, treat yourself to a cruise. Or if you always dreamed of getting fit enough to run your first marathon or half marathon, you’ll be able to start training for one.
As if you take proper care of yourself both physically and emotionally, you will be in a healthier place for a second shot at love with a new romantic partner in the future. If you still dream of being in an emotionally satisfying and fulfilling marriage.
You Should Never Consider Your Divorce A Failure
We think of marriage as a destination when it is more of a journey
And we can blame Hollywood and Literature for that. We never get to see that “happily-ever-after” (or if it really was that way).
Maybe if we decide to see marriage more like a journey, we will be able to let go of these negative feelings about divorce. Sometimes you’ll leave for vacation an entire summer, and sometimes you’ll just get a weekend get-away. Does that mean any of those trips and moments were a failure for how long they lasted or the fact that they ended? No.
They will end up being significant for the experiences you had, the places you got to know, and things you discovered about yourself along the way. Sometimes, you’ll get to share your journey, and sometimes, you’ll have to do it alone.
So, think about your marriage as a journey that made you go through experiences that made you who you are today, but it is time to leave on another adventure with yourself.
Divorce Is An Opportunity To Grow
From making the mature choice of not continuing a relationship that is hurting you, or where you are no longer compatible, you start to grow from the moment you make this decision of not continuing a cycle that makes you unhappy or feel unfulfilled.
As Divorcemag illustrates it:
In many cases, people who stay in unhappy and suffocating marriages end up becoming depressed, developing health problems and end up living with the daily stress of being in an unhappy marriage.
Why would you stay in darkness if there is a way for you to escape from all the pain you are experiencing and make life better? Getting a divorce can be your stepping stone to a better future.
Take this simple illustration. Let’s say you have been working for a company for many years. You’ve tried your best to excel hoping to get a promotion and higher salary. But after continually proving your worth, you are still at the same level as when you started working at the company. Would you choose to continue to try for that promotion or would you move on to another company where you have better opportunities? The same goes for a marriage.
You don’t stay in a bad marriage that is stifling you just because someone else may view you as a failure.
You Put In Everything To Make It Work
Being in a relationship means work. And even more when you are in a marriage. You tried your best, and could not make the marriage work. Being able to be in it and sharing part of your life with your partner was great, but there is always a point where if we keep trying, we will only end up harming ourselves.
If you have put in the effort to communicate to your spouse about issues that you have identified in your marriage and were open and willing to work on your marriage, you have not failed. The only way that you can fail by filing for a divorce is by getting divorced after your first minor argument as a married couple. Instead when it comes to marriage, choosing to stay in an unhappy, unhealthy relationship for years or decades, is a sign of failure.
The failure to recognize that you are worth more than the life that you’re leading in a loveless or toxic marriage. Remember in life, that you can only fail if you fail to take care of yourself and to put your needs, wants and feelings first.
Sometimes, things don’t fit anymore and that is okay. It means that we are growing.
As Pamela Smith sets it very clearly:
Marriage isn’t a test to pass or fail. It is a commitment, a bond. An experience that may or may not last forever.
A marriage where your needs aren’t being met teaches you the importance of self-care.
Long gone are the days were people would stay on marriage no matter how detrimental or terrible it was for their mental health. Now we know that if it is not working, it is better to let go and take care of ourselves. And that this is not selfish, but necessary.
You Might Become A Better Parent After Divorce
Doing any task when you are miserable is not easy. That includes parenting. If you are in an unhappy marriage, you will not be able to be the best parent that you can be.
Even if you might not live in the same household all the time, your children will notice if you are feeling happier and more like yourself. It might mean a little more effort in other areas, but you can definitely be a better parent after your marriage ends.
By going through with a divorce and leaving an unsatisfying marriage, you’ll also be a role model for positive values to any children that you may have. As you will show your children that it’s okay to leave a situation that makes them happy. As a result, your children will be more likely to put themselves first and to leave any unhappy relationships that they find themselves in as adults.
As they will remember how you thrived after you went through a divorce with their father or mother. Whereas if you choose to stay in an unhappy relationship, you will demonstrate to your children that they should stick it out if they ever find themselves in a similarly unfulfilling relationship or marriage.
For this reason, if you want to do everything that you can to ensure that your child doesn’t feel stuck in a dead-end marriage in the future, it’s well worth opting for a divorce.
Your Friends & Family Members Have Your Best Interests At Heart
If you are worried about what some of your friends and family members may think about your divorce, remember that the people who truly love you and have your best interests at heart, will want what is best for you. As an example, it’s highly likely that your best friend will be ecstatic about your divorce as it’s likely that they will have picked up on how unhappy you had become about life, due to your marriage.
If there are friends or family members who think negatively about divorce or who don’t see divorce as a viable option, remember that their opinions are formed based on their own upbringing and experiences and that their values shouldn’t prevent you from doing what is best for you and your family.
After all, the only one who has to live in your shoes is you. So there is no point staying in a disappointing marriage in order to impress other people. As in the end, you are the one who will have regrets, not the family members or friends who you are worried about placating or impressing.
Through divorce you can learn about the type of marriage you are looking for:
Through going through a divorce, you’ll become clearer on some of the qualities that were missing from your marriage, so that you’ll be able to make wiser decisions on how to date and marry in the future.
So, if you know in your heart that divorce is the healthiest option for yourself and your family, you should never look at divorce as a form of failure as it’s simply an opportunity to grow as an individual and to set a great example for your kids.
It’s not an easy process, but with the right family law attorney, you can leverage the ways that the situation is treated and come through the experience more financially prepared. Talk to a professional in The Law Offices of Charlotte Christian and Associates by calling us at (256) 769-0508 or contacting us through our contact form.