In many cases, a divorce is a stressful and traumatic time. Even in a "smooth" divorce, the experience of divorce is an emotional one. Throughout the legal process of a divorce, the divorcing spouses are often caught up in their disagreements, and have become focused on the next step in the legal process, and then the next one and the one after that. Before long, the attention that should have been paid to the individual's well-being has been taken up by the attention paid to the divorce process.
This is not only unhealthy for the individual, it may be counterproductive even in getting through the divorce itself. A well-rested, reasonably well-adjusted individual is going to survive a divorce better than someone who is tired, angry and distracted by negative emotions. One part of the year in particular can point out to a divorced spouse how much stress a divorce has put them under, and that is the holiday season. However, it is possible to get through a post-divorce holiday season by following some simple advice.
One thing that is important for divorced people to remember during the first holiday season after a divorce is that it is normal for this particular holiday season to be difficult. Holidays are often associated with traditions, so no other time of year has quite the same effect of forcing the recently divorced to confront how much things have changed. The changes may be unpleasant, and just the mere fact of the change itself can be unsettling.
Many divorced people find it helpful to remember that this is just one holiday season out of many, past and future. This one may not be so great, but it is not the last one they will ever have. If there was ever a year when someone should give themselves permission to step back a bit from holiday traditions and celebrations, this is it.
In the next post we will continue the discussion of surviving a post-divorce holiday season.
Source: Health News Digest "How to Survive the Holidays During or After Divorce," Rose Sweet, Nov. 28