The Mental Health and Social Support You Need During and After a Divorce

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There are plenty of people who go through a divorce even if it’s not what they want. If this is your story, you are not alone. And even if the decision was mutual, it’s OK to grieve and feel the loss deep within your soul because it is a loss. No one died, but the overwhelming feeling of losing something that you thought would last for the rest of your life can sometimes feel like it.

If you find yourself blindsided by a sudden divorce, you don’t have to go through it alone, especially if children are involved. You need people and all the support you can get now more than ever. Here is a list of people and the kinds of social support you need to seek during this time.

Legal support

A divorce attorney‘s primary duty is to help you divide the assets and debts. When children are involved, divorce lawyers also help establish the terms for child support and child custody. Oftentimes, so much research into the marriage history is required to gather the facts and the evidence in each case so that the court can decide which assets will go to whom and who will gain custody of the children and even pets. These cases often required detailed paperwork, which will be submitted to the court as evidence. Here are some tips for finding the best divorce lawyer for you:

  • Find someone who listens attentively and without judgment. They must know how to look at the facts objectively to assist you and promote your best interests throughout the proceedings.
  • Find a lawyer who has excellent interpersonal skills since they will be dealing with a lot of mediation, and they need to be able to advocate for you and your rights. Alternative dispute resolution skills are also part and parcel of what they train for in law school.

With the right lawyer, you might be able to get everything you’re due as your marriage ends.

therapist and a client

Mental health support

A study found that while going through a divorce does not necessarily trigger depression, those who already have a history of the mood disorder might be triggered to experience another bout or episode. So consider your mental health history when looking for a mental health professional who can work with you during this difficult time. Consider consulting with your doctor if you think your mental health issues are getting difficult to manage. They will surely connect you with a psychiatrist who can help you understand and deal with your symptoms.

But if you don’t have a history with mood disorders or you have never been diagnosed with a mental illness, a counselor might be a good fit for you. Counselors are qualified and licensed individuals trained to help people overcome various types of mental and emotional issues. Counselors help their clients come up with treatment plans and tools to cope in healthy ways.

If any spousal abuse was involved during your marriage, consider hiring a trauma-informed counselor or psychiatrist to help you deal with the aftermath of what you went through. Trauma is incredibly prevalent in society, and even if it’s something you went through before your marriage, you still deserve to find healing and recovery.

Trusted family and friends can also play a crucial part in your healing. Invite them out to dinner, be open and honest about how hard it has been. Don’t filter your thoughts or pretend to be OK during hard days. The right people will love you unconditionally and support and validate you instead of condemning you.

What about the children?

Observe your kids for the following symptoms:

  • Panic attacks
  • Detachment or languishing
  • A sudden dip in grades
  • Angry outbursts
  • Or any behavior that’s out of the ordinary

The first step is asking your kid upfront how they feel about the divorce. Be patient, kind, and compassionate as they grapple for words for how they’re feeling. Consider consulting with their teachers as well. But no matter what, don’t invade their privacy by reading their diaries or asking their friends. Consult with your own counselor about the best way you can help your kid and if they might need mental health support as well.

Going through a divorce is difficult, and you deserve every bit of help and kindness you can get. Know that you are not alone and that there are people who can help you navigate this challenging time. You deserve help and healing.

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