10 Tips For Coping With Divorce

Updated November 18, 2022by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Having a marriage end in divorce is something that can affect your mental health. Even if you believe that getting divorced was for the best, it doesn’t mean that you can’t be upset about the separation. Mourning your marriage can be a common aspect of divorce and you may need time to process everything that happened. Coping with divorce is possible and support is available to help you navigate this new chapter.

Coping After A Divorce Is Possible

The following tips for coping with divorce can help you to move forward in life rather than possibly feeling stuck in the past. You may decide to try all of 10 tips, or you could make use of just a few that you think will apply the best to your life.

1. Acknowledge Your Feelings

You may feel solace by first acknowledging your feelings. Many people who get divorced or separate from their partners, may feel it’s too fresh to think about moving on. Therefore, sitting with your current feelings can be beneficial. Crying can also help release stress and emotional pain and help to cope with a difficult situation—as opposed to repressive coping where people bottle things up.

2. Talk To Your Kids

If you have kids with your ex-partner, it’s important to support them during this time too. Kids don’t always understand terms like separation and divorce so it can be a good idea to help them feel safe while you’re transitioning into a new chapter as a family. You can do this by being honest with them about the process of divorce and answer any questions they may have.

3. Get Rid Of Your Ex’s Belongings

Having your ex-partner’s belongings sitting around your home may be upsetting or even frustrating. Coping with divorce may be easier if there aren’t constant reminders around the home.  

Many people may find it healthy to start over and purchase new belongings that don’t have any ties to the marriage. For example, you may decide to replace the couch that you both bought for your first home together. 

4. Spend Time With Friends

Spending time with friends can help you to get your mind off the separation or divorce. The support you receive during complex issues like divorce mediation and divorce negotiations can be valuable to you as you heal. 

These can be tough times but coping during a divorce can be easier if you have a solid support system such as people who care about you and who are willing to help you feel better when you’re down. You may not always want to socialize and engage in fun activities due to life responsibilities, but social interaction can go a long way, according to one study.

5. Surround Yourself With Family

Family can be crucial when you’re dealing with a separation or divorce. Some people might need to stay with family while divorce mediation and divorce negotiations are underway, and you may decide to use this time to ask for support and assistance. 

Divorce may lead to feelings of vulnerability but having people who love you in your corner can help you feel seen and heard. You may want to ask your family to be a listening ear while you embrace your emotions, or you may decide to ask them to help you with moving your belongings if that’s a task on your list.

6. Find A Hobby

Hobbies can be a great way to relieve tension and emotion during a separation or divorce. Take some time to consider what types of hobbies interest you the most and research classes or groups that you can take part in. Some people may decide to learn a musical instrument while others might be more interested in playing games, making arts & crafts, and competing in sports. Picking a hobby and dedicating some time toward it can be good for your emotional health while also taking your mind of the complexities surrounding a divorce.

7. Exercise Regularly

Exercising is good for your overall physical health, but research also attests that exercise has a myriad of mental health benefits too. According to Mayo Clinic, exercise has even been linked to improving the psychological wellbeing of people experiencing depression and anxiety by “easing their symptoms.” Exercise can provide you with more energy, but it’s also known to help you to feel happier in a natural way. This is due to the endorphins released in your body that provide a natural “high.” 

8. Religion May Provide Comfort

For many people, religion can help them to find solace. People who are religious may want to seek guidance from faith leaders in the community. For those who aren’t religious, turning to a mentor for advice may be a suitable alternative. Seeking counsel from a religious figure or mentor may help to center yourself during the intricacies of divorce.

9. Explore The Dating Scene

Following a divorce, you may find yourself at the stage where you look forward to connecting someone romantically. Studies have even found flirting to be beneficial for reducing stress. You may decide to embrace casual dating instead of looking for something serious right away as you process your emotions following the divorce. Or perhaps you meet someone who you’re compatible with in the early stages of your separation and embrace this new connection. There are many ways to meet other singles such as online dating apps or meeting people through friends or family. The most important thing is to embark on this experience at your own pace and when you’re ready. 

10. Seek Therapy

Seeking therapy can be beneficial when you’re experiencing challenges during and after a divorce. A therapist can help you work through your emotions while giving you various coping mechanisms to use when you’re feeling confused, upset, and even angry. Qualified counselors can help people who are going through complex and emotionally draining situations. According to a study published in the American Psychological Association, online intervention can help with mental health issues as a result of a divorce. 

Internet-based therapy has many perks for clients including accessibility as there is no requirement to commute to an in-person appointment. Plus, it’s typically more affordable than traditional counseling because participants don’t need to travel for a session with their therapist.

Coping After A Divorce Is Possible

Takeaway

Divorce can be a stressful experience emotionally, financially, and mentally. A therapist can help you to learn the skills for coping during this time and embrace this new journey in your life.

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