When you’re going through a divorce, you have to question some of the most important decisions and aspects of your life up until this point. This can leave anyone feeling drained and stressed out to the point of helplessness. A big part of your life is being affected and it’s perfectly understandable that you might not be handling it all that well.[Read more…] about Useful Tips For Dealing With Divorce Stress
5 Ways to Rebuild your Life and Be Happy Post-Divorce
Divorce is one of the ugly realities of life. The pain and anguish are intense even for the one initiating it, more so if the split is contentious and involves property and child issues or infidelity. It is also a complicated litigation process. Emotions are high and the battle for child support and custody, and division of assets is mentally draining. Then there is the anxiety of facing life alone again and wondering if you can adapt to the changes in financial and social circumstances. [Read more…] about 5 Ways to Rebuild your Life and Be Happy Post-Divorce
Why You Shouldn’t Be An Absent Father And How To Avoid Being One
The typical father of earlier generations was seen as the breadwinner and the disciplinarian. He may be an absent father in the sense that he worked all day and only came home at night. This is true both in the Eastern and Western hemispheres. The traditional father figure in China, for example, is one who can be trusted to provide for the family’s needs and the new-age dad who gets involved in child-rearing is seen by older Chinese men as weak and effeminate.
But times have changed. Modern women choose to have children without marrying the fathers. The absent father is now defined as those who are not married to the mothers of their kids and those who are divorced. Divorce too is accepted and allowed in almost all countries. In other words, we are talking about fathers who are physically absent from the home on a regular basis.
While unhealthy relationships should not be continued only for the sake of the children nor should pregnancy be a reason for a couple to marry, it is also true that kids who grow up without a father around generally are more problematic than those who have a good father figure to guide them.
The Negative Effects of an Absent Father on Children
They have more likely to have emotional and behavioral problems.
They are more aggressive than children in two-parent households and are three times more likely to have problems with friendships. They are prone to exhibit more antisocial behavior.
Boys are more hostile towards adults and other children and destructive of property.
They are at higher risk for depression and low self-esteem, and are more irresponsible.
They do not do as well in school as children who are living with both parents.
Children who grow up without a father figure fare worse in tests on reading, mathematics and thinking skills. They have difficulty with teacher-student relationships and get poorer grades. But children living with biological fathers, stepfathers and single fathers do better in academics than fatherless kids.
They have an increased risk for getting involved in crimes and getting themselves in jail.
A study of juvenile offenders showed that most of them live in mother-only households. Teenagers also have a 25% higher chance of committing offenses.
They are more likely to become parents themselves at an early age and have higher chances for divorce.
Girls who grow up without a father figure have a higher chance of teen pregnancy and early marriage while boys become fathers by the age of 22.
They are more likely to start smoking and drinking alcohol earlier than children in two-parent households. They are also more likely to do drugs.
Children who grow up without their fathers start smoking at 15 and 16 years old, drinking alcoholic beverages at 16 and 18 years old, and twice as likely to have tried drugs at 15 years of age.
They have more health problems.
Children from one-parent homes suffer more from obesity, asthma, headaches, gastrointestinal problems and have lower immune systems than their peers living with both mother and father.
They are more likely to be poorer in their adult lives.
Children without fathers are poorer as adults. They have less employment opportunities because of lower educational achievements and poorer psychosocial skills.
How to Solve the Father Absence Issue
Unless legal issues are involved, the solution to father absence is easier. Fathers who are not living with the mothers of their children because they are not married or are divorced from their wives should reach out and develop a good relationship with the mothers so that they are allowed more involvement in raising their child. In divorce cases, shared parenting should be the goal and the child’s needs should be the priority so that parent absence is minimized as much as possible and children grow up in homes that mimic a two-parent arrangement.
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How You Can Be The Helping Hand That Your Suffering Friend Needs
Sticking out your neck for your friend in trouble or having their backs in their time of need is a true sign of friendship.
But offering your helping hand will do just fine as well.
If your friend is going through depression, divorce, loss, or others, then the best way to help them is by reaching out. A simple gesture that acknowledges that you are there for them is a testament to your friendship.
Below are examples of ways how you can lend your hand to your suffering friends.
It’s one thing to say that you’re there for your friend. It’s another to actually be there.
Cancel all your appointments and find a way to get to where your friend is. Travel light or book your flight and inform your friend when you will be arriving to meet him or her. Bring them something that gives comfort to your friend or makes them happy in an effort to cheer them up. Bringing them comfort food is the good place to start.
For your friends going through a divorce, it’s tempting to pass judgment on what they should have done as a couple. For that, they can just speak to a divorce lawyer. If you’re not one, don’t act as if you are by suggesting things that your friend should do.
Here’s the thing: it’s not always about giving advice that makes you a friend. Instead, just him or her do the talking and get off some steam. Let your friend express their emotions and allow them to process through it. Your role as a friend is to be the buffer and support in all of this. Hear them out with everything they have to say and only share your thoughts when asked by your friend.
Offer to do an errand
The saying, “If there’s anything I can do for you, let me know” applies here.
If there’s paperwork that needs to be filed or even children who need to be looked over in a day, be gracious enough to do this to your friend. Even offering to do menial tasks such as household chores can be of great help to them, given that most people don’t like cleaning.
If these tasks will bring a smile to your friend or help them lighten the burden they’re carrying, then unconditionally do these for him or her.
Be strong for them
Don’t let their grief affect you. As their support system, it is your duty to remain their rock in all of this. They will lean on you and the best thing you can do is not fall.
You can refer to these quotes about strength of the human will to not only inspire them with the challenge in front of them, but also yourself.
Treat them to something nice
Most grieving people are brought down a couple of notches due to the devastation brought by their loss. As as friend, you want to give a lending hand to bring them back to their normal self.
Doing something with your friend together can bring wonders. Going to bars, getting a massage therapy, going on a road trip, travelling abroad , or following these tips should help your friend get out of a funk.
Before doing these, it is important to talk your friend into doing these with you and your other friends. Don’t force him or her to do any of these things with you but make your friend understand the importance of this activities for his or her well-being.
At the end of the day, there’s so much you can ask from your suffering friend. But leading them to choose happiness and showing them that life is indeed beautiful despite everything is the best thing that you as a friend can do.
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Using Meditation and Mindfulness to Deal With the Aftermath of Divorce
With divorce comes the inevitable jumble of emotions that you can’t seem to sort out. From the moment the topic of divorce is brought up, the emotions start raging. When you and your spouse start the process with a divorce lawyer – and all throughout the proceedings – everything will even become more tangled; and after everything’s said and done, those emotions will continue ebb and flow.
It may even seem that you can’t see yourself getting back up, much less being happy again.
You will keep analyzing, overthinking, and in all likelihood live a disrupted life that just doesn’t make sense to you. This will result in a feeling of being overwhelmed.
“I’m going to try anything to feel better.”
That’s a mindset that can go either way. You may find yourself going out every night to forget, and to tire yourself out so that when you come home, you just crash.
On the other hand, you may want to try this suggestion: look to meditation and mindfulness to deal with the aftermath of your divorce.
How exactly do you do this?
The essence of mindfulness is consciously choosing how to think and act. Consciously being the operative word.
In the context of divorce, here are some concrete steps to take.
1. Make a decision.
With all the emotional turmoil you are experiencing, how can you expect yourself to make a sensible decision? I’m telling you now, you will probably make a wrong turn or two, but one decision that will definitely be right is this: To take steps to see things from a different perspective, and believe that you WILL be better at some point.
That is a very broad statement, to be sure, but it is a start. Once you have made that decision to start sorting out your ragged emotional state, you can proceed to even more concrete actions that will ease the aftermath of divorce.
2. Start a meditation routine.
If you’ve got experience in meditation, then it should be a bit easier for you. You know how to calm yourself down and center yourself during those panicky moments when you feel overwhelmed.
If you’re new to meditation, start slowly.
First, begin your day by meditating. Don’t rush around to get things done. Instead, set aside a bit of time to gather your thoughts, calm yourself, and get ready for the day. Start in small increments – 5 minutes is enough.
Here is a good step-by-step guide for people who do not meditate.
Meditating doesn’t have to be limited to the start of the day. The chances are that you will feel those emotions rage in the middle of day, especially when you don’t expect it. When this happens, if you can find a quiet spot to meditate – even if only for 5-10 minutes – then do so.
3. Live by the day, even by the hour.
Sometimes, it’s by the minute. When my husband left me, often, I didn’t even know what I was going to eat for dinner – if I was going to eat at all. When I started to think about the next day, or anything further than that, I would get panic attacks so bad that I thought I would suffocate.
Then I realized that the only way to handle it was to take it slow. Just do what you can for the day. If that’s too much, do what you have to for the next hour. Once that’s done, go on to the next hour, and so on.
On bad days, that span of time could be by the minute!
My mantra back then was:
First do what you have to do,
then do what you are able to do.
Pretty soon, you’ll be doing what you want to do.
It wasn’t easy. It took a while. But being more aware of what I did each minute, each hour, and each day helped me get through the most difficult time of my life.
Remember: Meditation and mindfulness can ease the burden of a divorce or separation.
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Healthy Divorce: Tips and Help for Getting Divorced and Reclaiming Your Happiness
photo credit: the queen of subtle
Moving house, losing a loved one, getting fired and getting divorced. These are the most stressful times in a person’s life. And other than the death of a loved one, divorce is by far the worst. It tears apart lives, damages relationships and affects everyone in the family. But as horrible as divorce is there are some things you can do to make the process a little bit healthier. In this post I am going to give you some tips on how to get divorced and how to reclaim your happiness after the event.
Just to be clear, this post will be broken in to two main sections:
- How to have a healthy divorce; and
- How to reclaim your happiness after the divorce.
Why is divorce so damn hard?
If you talk to someone who has been divorced they will tell you that it is the worst thing you can go through. It is especially hard if you do not want to get divorced and it is your partner that is initiating the process. But why does this hurt so much?
I believe that the reason divorce is so hard is because of habit. After many years of loving and caring about a person you finally have to say goodbye. And when you say goodbye to the person you also have to say goodbye to the little habits that every marriage has. A kiss on the cheek before work, a cuddle in the middle of the night, a glass of wine while watching TV before bed. There are hundreds of little things that the two of you do everyday that you are not going to do any more. And that is hard to accept.
Breaking these habits hurts so much because we are attached to them. We are attached to our way of life and we don’t like change. When it comes to our partner every single one of us has a lot of attachment.
But divorce is made harder by many things. If you have children then it is very hard. You don’t want the children to get hurt but at the same time you don’t want to lose custody of them. And divorce is made even harder if it is happening because your partner cheated. When this is the case it seems that the pervading emotion is anger, not sadness.
How to have a healthy divorce
photo credit: scott_48074
So you have made the decision to try to have a healthier divorce. You have made the decision to try and make the process less stressful, less harmful and more productive. Good for you! Here are some tips that you can try to apply to have a healthier divorce.
1. Speak honestly
It is extremely important in a divorce to say what you feel. Speak the truth. Many people hold back their true feelings because they think there is some small chance that the marriage flame might rekindle and you will get back together and as such you don’t want to say anything confrontational. This attitude does not help anyone and often you will come out of the divorce worse off than your partner. Make sure you speak honestly about how you are feeling and about how you want the divorce to run. Only with honesty will the right outcome emerge.
2. Don’t be angry – be clear
If you are going through a messy divorce then chances are you are angry. You are angry that years of marriage and love has come to this and you want revenge. Fair enough. But you need to stop for a second and consider whether anger is really the best option. Will anger get you what you want? Or, will your anger just make your partner angry and create a situation ten times worse than it was before?
I think it is important to set anger aside during the divorce and just be clear. Be clear about your assets and your legal requirements. Be clear about what the kids need during the process. And be clear about what you need in the process. Anger will not make things any easier. If you need to be angry then save it for when the divorce is over and you start grieving. But during the divorce you need to be clear, not angry.
3. Get some good support
During this time you are going to need support. Don’t try to do it alone. You need to be able to open up to someone about what you are feeling. If you don’t have a close friend you can turn to then go and see a counselor at least once a week to get some advice.
The reason this is so important is because it allows you to get things off your chest that might otherwise manifest as anger and hatred and cause you to blow up in your partners face. And every time you do that to your partner they are going to do the same thing to you. Make sure you get some good divorce. And don’t seek support from your children. They already have enough going on.
4. Be an adult
When I watched my parents getting divorced I would often listen to my mom or my dad having a whinge about how hard done by they were and think to myself, “Are your serious? What are you like 12 years old? Grow up!” [Read more…] about Healthy Divorce: Tips and Help for Getting Divorced and Reclaiming Your Happiness