DIVORCE: Are you ever ready?

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Divorce, is almost always, a fact of marrried life.

I have had the pleasure of meeting happy couples married for decades. Seeing them still truly affectionate with each other and have that true bond is enviable. 

Love stories will always sell. Whatever the outcome, there is always a story to tell and people want to hear and know about it. It is human nature for the desire to be loved.

The disintegration of the marital bond, however, is still inevitable for a large population.

The National Center for Health Statistics under the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) indicate that in 2014:

  • There were 2,140,272 marriages in 49 reporting states and D.C.; That is 6.9 per 1000 total population. 
  • There were 813, 862 Divorces in 45 reporting states and D.C.; That is 3.2 per 1000 population.

More recent claculations reveal that 50% of marriages, whether it is the first, second, or third marriages end in divorce. This is why divorce attorneys are, and will always be in business!

Divorce is not, and is never easy. This is not just for either spouse, but for the children as well especially younger ones. There are too many devastating implications with the aftermath. This include physical, emotional and most of all, the financial repercussions for the whole family.

This topic is so broad that a book alone is not enough to cover this very relevant subject. I will however, skim over the focal and most obvious facts.

PHYSICAL CONSEQUENCES

It is a known fact that people who go through divorce, men and women alike suffer from these physical consequences. This can include weight loss or weight gain, sleeplessness, difficulty concentrating, nausea, increased blood pressure, headaches and migraines. Some people have reported dizziness, heart problems and worsening of other ailments.

It is crucial to take care of yourself during these times no matter how wearisome this might be. This is also essential for the health of the children in the marriage, especially younger ones.

It is advised to drink a lot of water, exercise, get enough sleep as much as feasible, take quiet moments and take time to talk or hang out with trustworthy friends and family. The truly caring ones will know how to support you. Take time to prepare and organize your affairs. Plan ahead. 

If the divorce is already culminated, this is even more important to take time to take care of yourself. I am sure you, a friend or someone you know have something to share about how they dealt with this harrowing experience.

EMOTIONAL CONSEQUENCES

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Divorce brings out feelings of insecurity about one's self worth, the feeling of failure, sadness, loneliness, depression, anxiety, guilt and even anger. This can lead to irrationality and desire to hurt the other.

It is of the utmost importance to take into consideration the young souls who are likely to be most hurt and affected. We cannot allow the scar to break them and ruin them for future relationships. It is even imperative to shelter them from the raging storm of divorce no matter how the parties at war feel. This is between two adults and it should be kept that way.

I understand it is almost impossible to stay civil when you feel shattered yourself. Although it was traumatic enough to know that you were never loved and your spouse is in love with someone else, I myself had to gather all the courage to do what is right for my beloved children. I did not come out of it unscathed.

But I am very blessed that my children were able to recover by showing them that this was not their fight, and it is not their fault. Both brother and sister today are very close although the sister has to divide time between two homes.

I am sure many of us have been in this road before and we found different ways to deal and cope with it. Most of us came out bruised, but we picked ourselves up and brushed the dust from our knees and stood again. Humans have the gift of resiliency. It is just a matter of forgiving ourselves and looking ahead instead of looking back.

FINANCIAL CONSEQUENCES

A very noteworthy consequence is financial. Many jokes and quotes have been made about the financial effects of divorce.

"Love is grand; Divorce is a hundred grand" (And can even be more!) - Unknown

There are a few lucky and affluent individuals in this planet where the setttlement check they have to pay can never make a dent on their fortune. However, a vast majority would feel the financial ramifications. This can include having to file for bankruptcy, losing health coverage from a spouse's health insurance, being left with enormous debts, having to pay alimony and child support, or even being left homeless and penniless post divorce.

Being a single income earner can be difficult especially for the non-working spouse in the marriage. Even returning to the workforce after being out of it for years can be tough. It is even worse when one does not have a specific skill that is desirable for employment. Child support more often than not, is not enough to sustain a single parent family with young kids. Family members are only willing to help out to a point.

Self reliability is a must.

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There is a myriad of ways to recover after the annihilation of a divorce. It doesn't have to be catastrophic. I have met and admired single parents in my profession as a physical therapist. It is often difficult to stay detached when you see them ever so often treating their aches and pains. 

These are single moms and dads working their way out of the pit for the sake of their children. There are a few of them having to work two to three jobs to make ends meet. They could hardly afford the co-pays for treatment. But I see them keep on.

Having been through the financial consequences of divorce, I fully understand the need to explore options for another stream of income.

I was just fortunate that I always have my profession to fall back on and start over. I handed over a fully paid domicile just to get away from that marriage fast. I gave up my Physical Therapy clinics because I was emotionally devastated and lost inspiration. The feeling of inadequacy, being unattractive, undesirable and compared myself to the other object of the other party's affection. Everyday I did not want to get up, did not want to eat and did not take care of myself. At worst, I even contemplated just giving up everything, even my life.

What kept me going was the love of my very loving and caring children. They huddled and hugged me everytime and were very vocal about how they love me no matter what. My faith was revived and got up again.

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