Getting divorced is likely going to be one of the most difficult experiences of your life. This is something that is going to change the status quo for you in a major way. If you aren't careful, this could even lead to severe issues with your mental health such as depression. It's easy to feel overwhelmed when you're going through a divorce, but you can get through this while putting yourself in a good position for the future. Take a look at the following pieces of important divorce advice for men so that you can have the easiest transition possible.
1. Make Sure You Have A Support System
When you're getting divorced, it's going to be very easy to become overwhelmed with emotions. You might even feel like your entire world is crumbling around you. During this time, it's going to be crucial to have a support system in place. If you don't have people that you can rely on, you might have trouble staying strong. You also might be wondering how divorce changes a man?
You need to have friends and family that you can speak with in order to vent. Sometimes you might even need a shoulder to cry on. Even if you're the type of guy who normally holds in emotions, it's important to understand that everyone has a breaking point. This is your life that you're talking about and a lot of emotions are going to be wrapped up in the divorce process. You shouldn't hesitate to turn to your support system when you need help getting through the day.
Some people take this a step further and enlist the help of a skilled therapist. Depending on what you're going through, this might wind up being a really good idea. People need to be able to work through issues and talking to someone who cares is very helpful. A therapist will understand certain things on a deeper level and can also help you come up with useful coping mechanisms. Whatever you do, just make sure that you have support.
2. Show Your Children Lots Of Love
Kids can wind up having a really tough time when their parents are getting a divorce. Even when the divorce is happening for a good reason, it can be tough for children to understand what is going on. Some kids worry about whether their moms and dads are still going to love them with everything that is changing. If you have children, then do your best to show your kids lots of love during this difficult time.
Your children might need some extra attention and assurances during the divorce process. If you can get along with your spouse well enough to cooperate on certain things, then your children should be your top priority. You don't want your kids to start struggling in school or to become depressed due to what is happening. If you can both let them know that you're going to love and support them no matter what happens, then it will make a difference.
Don't be surprised if your kids do struggle in certain areas even when you are trying your best. Things will eventually stabilize but you will need to make sure that the kids understand what is happening. You and your spouse might not like each other very much during this process, but you're always going to be the parents of your children. Try to work together for the sake of the kids and do what is right for your children so that they can feel stable.
3. Avoid Being Mean Or Spiteful
You might be tempted to be mean or spiteful toward your ex during the divorce process. Whether they are at fault or if you're both to blame for your marriage failing is irrelevant. It simply isn't right to be mean or spiteful toward someone just to try to make yourself feel better. You need to find the inner strength to be the bigger person and show kindness.
This is especially important if you have children with your new former spouse. You're going to need to work together on certain issues in regards to custody and other things involving the children. Being kind and reasonable can also make the process of dividing assets easier during the divorce process. A bit of civility can go a long way, so try to be nice when you can.
Also, you should never say bad things about your ex in front of your children. You might not like them very much as a person right now, but that is still your child's parent.
4. You'll Need Time To Heal
Healing after going through a divorce is something that takes a lot of time. You shouldn't expect to magically feel better after the papers have been signed. You might wind up feeling a bit relieved once the process is over, but this doesn't mean that there isn't any emotional baggage to deal with. Divorce is complicated and your feelings about not being married any longer might be equally complex.
Working through these problems might wind up taking you quite a bit of time. If you need to try to understand what happened, then working with a therapist is going to be smart. They can help you to unpack everything that you're going through so that you can come to an understanding. You'll be able to see where things went wrong and hopefully, you can use this information to avoid similar problems in the future.
A therapist can also simply help you to move on at your own pace. It's normal to feel sad or lost when you're going through a divorce. In fact, some men wind up getting divorced when they very much wanted to try to make the marriage work. It can be tough to accept that things turned out the way that they did. You don't have to try to deal with this all by yourself when there are professionals who can help you.
5. Dating Someone New Shouldn't Be Your Priority
Many men wind up feeling a strong urge to immediately start dating someone new once they get divorced. Of course, you might just be lonely and you could feel compelled to try to satiate your physical need for affection. The problem is that dating someone new too fast could wind up leading to another bad relationship. If you don't take the time to get over your ex before meeting a new person, then that isn't really fair to this new person.
It might be difficult to avoid the temptation, but you should wait a little while to start dating again. How long you should wait is really up to you. Some people feel fine after a couple of months and others might not get over a divorce for years. Just remember that if you need help with dealing with your emotions, you will always be able to turn to a dedicated therapist. Either way, you'll be able to move on and start dating when you're emotionally ready for it.
Avoid being promiscuous if you can help it, too. It might be best to just be alone for a little while and then try to find someone nice when you're feeling ready. Sex is an important part of life, but it isn't something that you should use as a band-aid for your soul.
6. Take Time to Enjoy Being Independent
Taking time to simply enjoy being independent is also very smart. If your marriage was bad for quite a long time, then you might want to simply enjoy being you for a while. Some people feel as if they have been stifled by a marriage that simply isn't working out. Being on your own can feel liberating and you should try to take advantage of your newfound freedom.
Spend more time with your friends and try to get back to enjoying life. Your marriage might have kept you from participating in hobbies that you're passionate about. You should have more time on your hands now and this is a good opportunity to focus your attention on positive things. Play basketball with your friends at the gym and start going to concerts again. Life is short and you should be enjoying it.
Just remember that it's possible to enjoy being independent while still feeling emotional about your marriage at the same time. Emotions don't always make sense and you shouldn't beat yourself up about feeling conflicted. Eventually, you should be able to get back to just enjoying being you. If you need help to get to that point, then you shouldn't hesitate to reach out to professionals.
Consider Online Counseling
Online counseling might be a good resource for you to take advantage of. There are licensed online therapists who can help you to get over your divorce. They will be able to work with you while you're trying to deal with all of the emotions that are wrapped up in the divorce process. You can rely on these counselors to help you deal with depression, anxiety, and anything else that you might be going through.
If you decide that you would like to try to save your marriage instead, then you can also get help with that. Online couples counseling is very convenient and it has helped many people to save their marriages. You can work with a compassionate therapist who understands how to get to the root of relationship problems. This can all be done without you even having to leave the comfort of your own home. If you want to work on your relationship issues, then don't hesitate to sign up for online couples counseling.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How Should A Man Prepare For Divorce?
Preparing for a divorce is an incredibly difficult task that requires care and thought; it can also be very emotionally taxing. Here are some tips for men to help prepare for a divorce:
Even after you’ve gone through all the logistics of divorce law, divorce settlement details, and worked with divorce lawyers, things will still likely be challenging. Living a healthy life after divorce or coping with divorce are things that many individuals struggle with over time, especially in the beginning.
No matter how prepared you are for divorce divorce is very emotionally taxing and draining. Divorce court and legal battles aren’t all that should be on your mind - even when your divorce is final, prioritizing self-care (mental and physical) is important. Consider what you need for aid in difficult times. For example, do you prefer to be around people and feel distracted? Do you prefer to be alone so you can work through things in private? Consider what you might need to get through this tough time, and prioritize that personal care as well as your finances, budget, property, and belongings.
What Are A Man's Rights In A Divorce?
When you file for divorce, there are a lot of assets and details to consider. No matter who you are, it’s important to speak with a divorce lawyer or divorce attorney to discuss the details of your specific situation.
For the most part, a man’s rights in a divorce are tied to this very idea: protecting and dividing up various assets. Through the proceedings of divorce court and divorce law, child custody may also come into question, if relevant. Laws surrounding which parent gets custody in which scenarios vary from state to state.
Some laws feature language that can favor mothers in the case of child custody, so a unique challenge for divorcing men may be to settle these sorts of details in divorce court. For the most part, though, the challenges a man may face during divorce settlement proceedings are similar to those of women.
Because advocating for your assets and rights is so important during this divorce settlement process, it’s crucial that you speak with a divorce lawyer. Divorce lawyers can not only guide you through the legal process, but can also be great resources for other related questions you might have.
If you cannot afford an attorney, and your case involves issues regarding protection issues, visitation, or custody, then you may be assigned a lawyer pro bono. You might also be able to get a lawyer from Legal Aid in your county. Try giving them a call and seeing what your options are, although they are often quite busy so you may need to wait before getting in touch with someone. For both Legal Aid and pro bono lawyers, you may have to present your income to prove you are below a certain threshold. If your income is above a certain threshold then you may not qualify for free or discounted legal services.
However, if your divorce is uncontested, as in, you and your ex-partner are already in agreement about the logistics of your separation, then you should be able to represent yourself with no problem.
It’s stressful to plan out the details of a divorce, participate in divorce court and other legal proceedings, and to just go through the divorce itself. Even when you’re well-equipped to handle divorce divorce inevitably changes your life significantly. Life after divorce is often very different from life before.
Fortunately, with a strong support system (including a mental health professional), you can be prepared to not just manage these challenges, but overcome them.
How Long Does It Take To Get Over Divorce For A Man?
Some psychologists say that getting over divorce will take about a year for every five to seven years that you were married. However, divorce is like grief in the sense that it is not universal. Getting over divorce takes a different amount of time for everyone, and some may never fully get over it. Remember that even if it appears on the surface that someone has moved past a relationship, that does not mean that they have, in reality, done the difficult work necessary to process and overcome the complex trauma that divorce often represents.
No matter what the case may be, it is possible to manage and cope with the challenges of divorce (even if they can’t be eliminated).
Here are some tips for men coping with divorce to help make the emotional burdens more bearable:
Our tips for men coping with divorce can be applied to anyone, and the list certainly isn’t exhaustive; we all handle stress and other emotions in different ways, so whatever helps you in a healthy manner is appropriate. If you are in the throes of a divorce, take a moment to consider how you typically handle difficult situations and prepare yourself as such. For example, do you prefer privacy and alone time to work through things on your own time? Do you prefer to be around friends and family who distract you? Does exercise help? Can you take some time off work? Make a plan and try to stick to it even when your situation becomes increasingly complicated.
Even if your divorce is final and the relationship is over, you still deserve to take deliberate steps to help yourself heal; life after divorce can still be positive, productive, and peaceful. In fact, you may come to recognize your divorce as one of the best decisions of your life.
What Questions Should You Ask A Divorced Man?
If you know or are meeting a divorced man, an important thing to keep in mind is privacy (and boundaries). It’s appropriate to ask questions that are divorce related if you’re beginning a romantic relationship, and it’s fair to want to know more about your partner’s romantic history even early on.
Still, it’s important to be sensitive. For those coping with divorce divorce can be a touchy subject, and it can be a reminder of bad, painful memories of the past. Here are some examples of questions you might ask a divorced man about his past:
More important than the questions you ask is how he answers. Pay close attention to his reaction, not just so that you can know him better, but so that you can know if he is uncomfortable speaking about his past experiences yet. For example, if he becomes uncharacteristically quiet, then it might be best to not press the issue further.
If he speaks very harshly about his ex-partner, using name calling or hateful accusations, then that may be a red flag.
Consider that separation and divorce are two very different things, and although this man and his partner are separated, that does not necessarily mean that they are legally divorced, i.e. he may still be married in the eyes of the law. If you are genuinely uncomfortable dating someone who is still legally married, then that’s a perfectly valid concern to make clear from the start.
Is It Worth Dating A Divorced Man?
Of course. Many people have the misconception that those who are divorced come with more emotional baggage or difficulties than others. This isn’t necessarily true - though divorce and divorce related issues can be traumatic and stressful, they don’t automatically predispose someone to being unstable or any less dateable in the future.
If you’re interested in a man who happens to be divorced, it’s absolutely worth pursuing him - that is, so long as the two of you are mutually interested in each other and have the same relationship goals in mind.
It is true that when you’re coping with divorce divorce becomes a large part of who you are, but it doesn’t define you completely or permanently. Divorced men, though different, are just as loveable and worthy of care as men who have never been married.