This is the third blog in a slightly different series focusing on you and your separation and what might help you at any given moment. In this series we’ve looked at the grief of divorce and we’ve taken a more holistic focus looking at the energy of divorce and the link between thoughts, emotions and mental and physical health problems.
To watch the video talking about what to do in the immediate aftermath of a separation click on the link below:
We recommend you check out the other blogs in this series if you are currently going through a separation because together they are designed to help you look at, and make the best you can, out of your current situation. In the last blog we talked about the link between ex partners piling their stresses onto each other and the effect this can have on mental and physical well being. We explained the importance of focusing on what you can change because you cannot change someone else’s behaviour. Family mediation can be a great place to talk about what happens next when you recognise that changes need to be made. If you feel your situation is complex and emotionally charged then family therapy may help you to unpick some of this – or each of you having individual therapeutic support. Please get in touch if you would like us to recommend local therapists as we network and talk to a lot of people and are always happy to put people in touch with people that will help them. We don’t get referral fees for this – it’s just part of what we do to help support those going through a separation.
We like this graphic because it neatly sums up what we’re talking about:
It’s tough going through a separation and it can be easy to try to pass certain responsibilities to the other person rather than taking a deep breath and saying “what can I do about this”. Some of the things we see people not taking responsibility for are:
• Conflict – it takes two people to make an argument and just changing the way you react can have a huge impact on what happens next. Don’t wait for the other person to do this.
• Finding a solution – we see clients in mediation who feel the responsibility for finding a solution to a problem (be that related to money, to your children or to something else) is on the other person and not them and they won’t make any suggestions.
• Creating a new life – losing the life you thought you were going to have is so hard and this is something we talked about in the first blog in this series on grief. It can knock you for six and take time to recover from. Part of the recovery process is starting to carve out what your life is going to look like instead. You might start with really small ideas like what colour you want your lounge walls to be, or how you might spend evenings when your children aren’t with you; but it’s your life and you should be the one to start thinking about what it should look like. This is not somebody else’s job. Why not think about creating a picture board (you can cut out pictures or use a Pinterest board) with ideas for what you want the next chapter of your life to involve. It might include home decor ideas, hobby ideas, travel plans or an alternative career. It’s your new life so put in it whatever feels right to you!
Part of taking responsibility also means recognising that the decisions you make about your separation are your decisions and no one else’s. It’s sensible to get legal advice about anything which you feel unsure about. It can also be really useful to get support with decision making if you feel you lack confidence in this area. This could be a counsellor or a coach or even a financial adviser if you just want to understand more about finance to help you to make decisions. But you are the person who will have to live with your decisions so it’s important YOU feel comfortable with them and confident in them.
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