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Getting Over the Loneliness of Your Divorce

by Becky Swain

You demonstrate your innate survival skills over and over again during the course of your divorce. Even though nothing prepares you for the incapacitating emotional, financial and social upheaval that can accompany a divorce, you rise to meet each new obstacle. Getting over the loneliness of your divorce is a unique obstacle, as you adjust to building a new life in the absence of your former life partner.

Caring Shoulders

Some of the loneliness you experience is directly related to losing the companionship of your spouse. However, it’s natural to feel alone and isolated when working through agonizingly painful emotions in the grieving process. Sharing these feelings with others is crucial for diminishing your feelings of loneliness, and promoting emotional healing, recommends HelpGuide in the article, “Coping With a Breakup or Divorce: Moving on After a Relationship Ends.” Spend time with people who exude positive energy, and can listen without dispensing judgment or advice.

Get Out There

Defy the inner voice that prompts you to stay cloistered away behind closed doors, and deliberately place yourself in the path of new people. You may not be ready for a dating relationship, but new friendships can help you to focus on the future, and the good experiences that lie ahead. Eat breakfast at a diner instead of at your kitchen counter, enroll in a night class at a community college or volunteer to serve on a committee that spearheads community projects.

Say No to Quick Fixes

When you seek relief from the discomfort of loneliness, resist diversions such as alcohol, drugs and food. Quick fixes provide a temporary escape, and fail to remediate the cause of loneliness. These options can be tempting because they medicate loneliness, but abusing alcohol, drugs and food can create health problems. Loneliness and painful emotions can make you physically and psychologically vulnerable to stress, so commit to making choices that safeguard your health. Incorporating adequate sleep, exercise and good nutrition into your lifestyle ensures that you can enjoy the new opportunities that lie ahead.

Additional Support

Loneliness can be a formidable adversary during your divorce. And maybe you are already taking constructive steps toward healing, and doing everything within your current realm of possibilities to feel better, but still feel deeply wounded. Perhaps you feel as though you are simply following a script, or just “going through the motions” each day. The professional guidance of a counselor can provide another layer of support during a time when you need it most.

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