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Healing Your Emotions After Divorce

Blech! You may be so sick to death of your emotions right now that you can barely stand to read the word!
(2 minutes 31 seconds read time)

Lori Denman-Underhill
Lori Denman-Underhill uses the power of the press to raise awareness about endless causes.

Blech! You may be so sick to death of your emotions right now that you can barely stand to read the word! Divorce is incredibly emotional.

Yet, sometimes you see people who seem to be handling it really well. They are detached, logical, and very matter-of-fact about the whole thing. I’ve got news for you. They are either hiding their emotions from the world, or they have switched to auto-pilot, stuffing their feelings because they are just too big to face. In the courtroom, fabulous. Outside of the “job” of divorce, not so much.

Either way, it’s not good. Of course, you don’t want to walk around like a blubbering idiot all day; it’s pretty tough to be productive in that scenario! But pretending to everyone, including yourself, that your divorce is no big deal or that it’s not really affecting you is going to blow up in your face.

Denying your emotions ALWAYS comes out somehow. Illness, temper flare-ups, addictions, reckless behavior, depression, numbness—these are all symptoms of denying your emotional state. I can recall with crystal clarity telling people that I just wanted my life to be boring for a little while. The level of drama, intense sadness, and sheer terror I was experiencing throughout my divorce was so extreme that I just was completely bulldozed by it.

As I went about rebuilding my life—moving far from home, settling into a new career, dating and then marrying my current husband—I felt like I had had enough of all the crap. I was focused on the good but demanding new life I had and just ignored the fact that I had been through some very disturbing situations.

But when you don’t pay attention, your lessons will show up again. I had thrown myself into my career, so much so that it was really a big part of my identity. Imagine my surprise when I realized I wasn’t really happy with it any longer. I wasn’t moving forward. I wasn’t learning and growing. Then, as my company was reorganized due to an impending sale, I was out of a job. Suddenly, once again, something I had totally invested myself in was going from frustration at a lack of growth to the panic of being gone altogether! It was my marriage all over again.

Time for a meltdown! At first, I couldn’t really understand why I was so hard hit emotionally by what happened. After all, it wasn’t like I was red for incompetence. Lots of people at the company lost their jobs.

Then I started meditating. At first, it just felt like nothing was happening. It was some nice quiet time. But gradually I began to get little ashes of understanding. I began to see the parallels in these events in my life. Most importantly, I finally allowed myself to feel the emotions from the end of my marriage and subsequent crisis of faith. I began to heal. I began to find my way back.

And it only took 11 years.