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How to Deal With the Emotional Components of Divorce

Emotional maturity is needed to maintain the minimum level of civility and respect for co-parenting. Going through something as difficult as divorce can be an emotional rollercoaster ride. A lot of good and bad things will be rehashed during the divorce that can cause immaturity of both parties. The parties should keep in mind that they are two consenting and mature adults when they married. It should follow that they be the same two consenting and mature adults in the divorce proceedings. 

Emotional maturity varies from person to person. Each and every one of us has a different perspective of what maturity should be.  However, the following are essential things in a divorce process:

Be accountable for your own thoughts, words, and actions. 

Whatever you do or say matters in this situation. Emotions are all over the place and everyone is a bit more sensitive than normal. That is why it is important to be mindful and considerate. The results of hurtful and negative actions and words are not easily shrugged off even after years’ time.

Own up to your points and faults in the marriage and divorce.

Every situation is a two-way street. Both parties have their own points and faults. It takes two to tango so there should be no room for playing the blame game or playing the victim. It is important to acknowledge the positive and negative things you have contributed to the relationship. Own all of it. 

Stop dwelling on negative thoughts and emotions. 

Emotions are fleeting and they can be controlled by our own thoughts. How we deal with our emotions is up to us so challenging your thoughts to achieve the emotion you want to feel should be a practice. If things get heavier than it should be, get help, if necessary. Don’t resort to lashing your negative feelings out on yourself or others.

Train your mind to respond rather than react.

Responding to situations entails comprehension because they are more well-thought while reacting, on the other hand, it can lead to aggression because they are more instinctive. Divorce is not about who wins or loses, or who is right or wrong. 

Do not compare your situation to that of the other spouse. 

In a divorce, both parties are hurting, disappointed and grieving. It may seem like the other party is just fine from your own perspective because you are so focused on your hurt, but going through a divorce is an already hard enough situation to go through and comparing your situation because you think it is much worse than the other will just add fuel to the fire. Acceptance and compassion should be resorted to instead of comparison.

Apologies can go a long way.

A sincere apology, even though it would seem moot because what’s done is done and the marriage is already over, can actually help in making the process a bit more bearable. A sincere apology is not present if the “I’m sorry” is followed by a “but”. Apologizing sincerely means owning up to all of the things that happened and regretting all the pain that you or your partner may have caused to each other. Forgiveness does not necessarily follow because it all depends on the gravity of each situation, but apologizing should still be done out of respect and repentance.

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Mr. Hutton is a Divorce and Custody Lawyer based out of Round Rock, TX. His background is with child psychology at Arizona State University where he received a B.S. in 2006, and he continued this by working with the Children’s Right’s Clinic at the University of Texas School of Law where he received his J.D. in 2009. Throughout his practice, he has been a strong proponent of utilizing modern technology to improve his practice and the representation of his clients. He currently is the technology chair of CAFA of Travis County and is committed to improving and modernizing the practice of law in Texas. If you have any questions you can contact him at timothy.hutton@austintexaslegal.com

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