The papers are signed, you live in separate places, and after months of going back and forth, you have finally determined who gets what and have made arrangements for your kids to see each of you. The moment you thought would never come has finally arrived, and it’s time to move on with your life. While you are standing on the edge of your past, about to take your first step into an uncertain future, you can’t help but wonder: What will my life look like on the other side of divorce?
You May Have Good Days and Terrible Days
Even when you and your ex were able to part peacefully and on relatively good terms, divorce can be painful and sad. When you have a hostile divorce, you can feel emotionally exhausted when it’s done. You may be numb or unsure of how to feel for a while. There will probably be days when getting out of bed can seem impossible. However, there will also be days when you can breathe a sigh of relief that you are out of the wrong relationship and done with your divorce. You may have to take it moment by moment for a while but trust that you can get through this, and eventually, there will be more good days than bad.
There Can be Unexpected Joyful Moments
You may be nursing emotional wounds for an extended period, but there can be times during your recovery when you feel true happiness about the marriage being over. The sheer relief of not sharing a home filled with the tension and stress of a failing relationship can be of tremendous comfort. Additionally, having your own space, and feeling like you can finally be yourself again can be liberating. You now have time and freedom to focus on your growth and goals.
Having Kids Together Means Continuing to Work on Your Relationship
Divorcing your ex when you have children together means you will always be connected. If you are sharing time and decision-making, your relationship will continue as you try to co-parent effectively. There are bound to be frustrating moments when you feel like your ex is being unreasonable, unfair, or irresponsible. It’s hard when you are done with your marriage and you still have to see your ex or deal with their personality issues. It’s even more so when they have a say regarding the most important people in your life. Ideally, you both will be ready to put your differences aside for the sake of your children. Even then, it can be challenging to maintain this relationship. However, this change can be an opportunity for you to evolve from being an unhappily married couple into parents who are more focused on being there for their kids.
You May or May Not End up Friends, but it Can Get Better
Some marriages end because two people are just not right together, but after their divorce, they may end up as good friends. There are also divorces that involve so much hostility that it’s for the best if each person goes their own separate way. Making peace with the past is different for everyone. The important thing is that you take the time you need to heal and get support as you work through your experience. It won’t happen overnight, but with time, each day can get a little easier than the one before.