Woman’s Guide to the Year After Divorce

Unlike the river, everything isn’t smooth-sailing for the divorced woman. Immediately after the divorce, there is a feeling of being ‘single’ again. Depending on the reasons for the divorce and how she fared monetarily at the end of the divorce proceedings, the divorcee feels a sense of relief or a feeling of loneliness. In marriages littered with abuse, the woman who is normally at the receiving end of the abuse, heaves a sigh of relief and usually is focussed on getting on with the job of living, despite the fact that she may have been dependent on the male partner.

A calculative woman, who uses divorce to settle scores and to enrich herself financially or to make her spouse a lifelong sponsor, just can’t wait to get into the social circuit and partying. The husband was just deadweight on her happiness. Careful planning usually precedes such calculated divorces.

In almost all other cases of divorce, the loneliness of divorce and the thoughts regarding the mechanism of survival seep into the mind of a divorcee. A drastic change in all her normal routines and the chaos of establishing new routines and coping with new situations on her own zap the energies out of the grieving woman. Her world feels like it has been turned upside down. Nothing can be taken for granted and her world cannot feel the same again, as in marriage.

Immediately after divorce, distraction from the divorce and proper nourishment for her body (along with exercise) are absolutely essential. Both help to uplift the sagging mind and body. They make her fit for the battle ahead. She needs to multiply her energy levels, if she has child custody.

Don’t let the past haunt you. It isn’t worth it. It creates doubts, a feeling of guilt and makes you want to give up on life. No guilt trips please, because the divorce has been mutually agreed upon, isn’t it? On the other hand, the anger at having been subjected to a divorce that you did not need, may urge you to hit back at your ex-husband in some other way. Let go of your anger and the unwanted past. Instead of the negative thoughts and the use of negative energy, channelise positive action and thoughts into the task of rebuilding your life.

It’s okay to be divorced. Divorce is not a stigma to be carried pensively on your forehead. Every minute, some married couple somewhere is filing for divorce. Though there is no comfort or safety in such statistics, divorce is a safety valve for the individuals concerned. The fact that divorce is on the increase, gives a fair picture that the institution of marriage needs a serious overhauling because individual perceptions and attitudes have changed. Today, there are less damaging ways of obtaining male companionship, without being exposed to their darker side. Divorce is an opportunity presented to you once again, for you to regain your life the way you want to. You are solely responsible for the direction of your efforts and the outcome.

Make an effort to be pleasant and friendly. Your ex-husband may not deserve it, but your children do. Strive for deep lasting friendships. At the same time, don’t flit into relationships, with a vengeance. Remain single and think single down the road (for a short interval at least) to discover yourself, about situations and relationships without getting hurt or entangled, in the process. Decide what you want out of life and achieve it. Learn to listen to your inner voice or rely on your gut feel before getting into relationships or situations. Analyse and then act.

Organise your finances, your lifestyle and your work. This is your insurance in old age or during any other relationship disasters. Normally, getting organised and establishing the routine are a great ‘feeling-divorced’ buster. It decreases your dependence on your ex-spouse and gets you respect, all round.

Divorce is a milestone on your journey. It is a permanent reminder not just to you, but to the world at large, that ‘here is a survivor of the shipwreck, who has learned and can sail the sea of life with the experience gained’. You can go far in life.