HERE IS A LIST OF THE THINGS I WISH SOMEONE WOULD HAVE WARNED ME ABOUT BEFORE I GOT DIVORCED…
There is nothing so eye-opening as leaving a relationship or getting divorced. Never in my life did I think that the people that I called friends and family would become possessed by the devil and leave in droves. Talk about finding out who your real friends are.
Leaving a relationship or marriage is hard enough. But dealing with the shit storm that follows can break you unless you are prepared. And that is why I have put together this list of things that I wish I knew before I got divorced. It’s a simple list, but trust me; it will help you in the long run.
1. If you have a joint bank account, take half the money out and open your own account. Money does crazy things to people. I’ve seen it and lived it firsthand. Money can be used as a weapon in the splitting up process, so don’t be a victim of that.
2. Figure out if you are staying in the house and if not make plans to move to a new place. I say this because I have seen too many women live with their ex in the same house because of financial reasons. You know what I say to that? Are you out of your fucking mind? Unless the house has a totally separate living quarters, living in the same space is a terrible idea. The mind games it plays on you. Where’s he going? Who’s he going with? etc. I know that often money is tight but if you are serious about leaving this is something that you must do to ensure your sanity and really try to make a clean break.
3. Expect to lose friends and family. For some reason, people think that they have to choose a side when a relationship ends. That’s not true though. But it’s human nature. Those friends will show themselves, soon enough. Your calls and emails won’t get answered as will your texts. Eventually, they will have the balls to tell you that they feel loyal to the other half. Bla Bla Bla. To that, I say let them go. If they don’t want your friendship to continue, were they really your friends? And then the family. Again family feels like they need to side with their own, even if they have cheated or been a plain piece of shit for the entire marriage. So be prepared to lose that part of your life. That is hard for sure. But try not to take it personally. It’s not about you.
4. Make an appointment with a family lawyer before you leave, to see what your rights are and what to expect. It’s amazing to me to see how many men, tell their spouses, what they are entitled to and what they are going to give them. That’s an intimidation factor. Knowledge is power and arming yourself with information is key. So when he’s spewing about what you are entitled to, or not, just ignore him or nod along or whatever. The law dictates what you both get, not one party.
5. You may self-medicate. I can tell you that when I first split with my hubby, I and wine got really friendly. Then came the rum. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not an alcoholic, but booze seemed to dull the pain and I was able to sleep, or rather pass out. This form of destructive behavior may not happen to you and if not, I applaud your strength. But know this. As long as you don’t make this a habit and turn it into a problem, it’s ok for now. But remember booze is like a downer and it can make you feel worse. Rather than taking a drink when you are feeling bad the best thing you can do is get outside, go for a walk or hike or run. The natural endorphins will make you feel better and the best part, no calories, and no hangover.
6. You are going to feel bad, really bad. Even if your ex cheated on you or did not treat you the way you deserve to be treated and even if you were the one that asked him to leave you are going to feel bad. You will be sad and lonely; you will cry a million tears. That’s ok….for now. You are grieving and it’s ok to grieve, after all your life as you know it is over and it’s like you are experiencing a death. Know that in time it will get better. And when you are feeling really bad, you tend to focus on the good parts of the relationship. Right? Well when that happens, ask yourself this. Why did I want to end this in the first place? That’s right sister, pull up all the reasons you wanted out. All the hurt you felt, lack of love, lack of disrespect etc. and before long those tears will dry up.
7. Don’t let yourself go. It’s really easy to let yourself go, especially when you feel like shit. But you have to make you a priority. When you look good (by good I mean hair brushed, dressed and teeth brushed) you feel better. The day seems a little more tolerable. Don’t fall into the rut of not taking care of yourself, eating poorly, wearing dirty clothes etc. This will literally kill your self-esteem. You will look in the mirror and you will say “Fuck nobody is going to want me looking like this”. Right? But it’s the truth. Make time to make yourself look presentable even when it’s your darkest day. Your reflection will set the mood for the day. It’s a simple trick and it works.
So there you go. 7 things I wish I knew before I got divorced. And since then I have learned a million more and I will be sharing those later. Because I don’t want anybody to have to feel any worse than they do during this process, for any longer than they have to. Onwards and upwards!!!
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