Even uncontested divorces are difficult emotionally. You have to decide that you want to work on forgiving your spouse and possibly yourself. The benefits of forgiveness are numerous including having a more amicable divorce, more easily working out a marital settlement agreement and being able to more effectively co-parent your children in the future.
Keep in mind that forgiveness is a process. In a high technology era we often want things to work instantly, but feelings and forgiveness during and after a divorce may take longer than you anticipate.
On of the first keys in forgiveness is to understand and empathize. For a moment, try to put yourself in your spouse's shoes. Is there something exceptional that was going on during the ending of your marriage? For example, some soldiers have difficulty dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD) and can act out in aggression towards their loved ones. In addition, have you committed similar wrongs as your spouse? Think about your spouse's better qualities and the reasons you married him/her.
Look into a form of stress management. Divorce is one of the most stressful times you will go through in your life. A few ways to manage your stress is to walk, exercise, yoga, garden, take an art class or join a group online at Meetup. Find an activity which takes you out of your day to day environment and helps you refocus on something you enjoy.
Start reprogramming your thinking. Don't dwell on negativity that can so easily filter into your thoughts. Think about all the wonderful things you have in your life, for example a pet cat or your beautiful children. Try to get out of the victim mentality as quickly as possible, leave the poor me attitude behind, and look for ways to self-empower yourself.
We have mentioned this in previous blogs and cannot stress it enough, write. Get a journal to get your feelings out where you can see them on paper or a computer screen. Journaling is a great way to start processing past hurts and moving on to a happier life. Also, write down each day what you are grateful for. We have been blessed in some many ways that we sometimes forget about them.
Include writing words of affirmation to yourself about yourself and your divorce. Stay positive. Don't worry if you don't feel totally positive when you first start out. Just start the process and trust that the rest will fall in place in due time, because eventually everything will.
Remember you are Remember that you are ultimately forgiving your spouse for selfish reasons. It's rare that an individual from an uncontested divorce will get an apology, don't look for one. Forgiveness is your way of feeling whole again without an apology. Work on YOUR future of joy and happiness.
If you find yourself struggling with your emotions and/or forgiveness we advise you seek professional help. This is especially true in traumatic, abusive and negative reoccurring behavior. It's hard to forgive when you have been severely hurt. Don't beat yourself up when you feel that you are regressing. The key is to keep trying because one day your painful divorce can be just a faint memory replaced by happy and healthy new life.