21 May, 2020
In China, almost 50 per cent of married couples have filed for divorce post the lockdown. Stressful situations like living under quarantine can highlight issues which have been pushed under the carpet. If the couple is deeply connected, they become even closer. However, if they have drifted apart, lost their love and attraction toward each other, or they have unresolved issues from the past that create conflict, they may grow even more frustrated with each other when locked down together for a long time. Kavita Panyam, a Psychologist and a Relationship coach discusses why divorces are on a rise globally, should you save your marriage or let the masks fall off, and how to heal through it.
The burden of ending a toxic marriage
When a person is trapped in a toxic marriage for a long time, even if both the spouses are financially independent, the thought of being alone post a divorce, taking charge of your life, taking responsibility for children and carrying out financial responsibilities single-handedly seems like an uphill task. However, you should not be scared of ending a toxic marriage.
Do not act on impulse to get divorced
If the connection between a couple was positive before the lockdown, then wait it out patiently till the lockdown is lifted, since most likely the experience of feeling frustrated is temporary. Do not act impulsively to seek a divorce.
Quarantine, a good time to end marriages of domestic violence
Panyam suggest that there is no point in staying in a marriage where a spouse is assaulted, thrashed and physically or mentally violated . If the marriage has drained you emotionally, mentally, physically, financially and spiritually, it needs to be dissolved. Staying in a dead marriage for the sake of children or out of fear of stigma, to put up a false show to the society is a farce, that turns out to be very costly and you alone have to pay the price for it. Understand what you truly want from your life and gracefully part ways by filing for a divorce.
Privately deal with the divorce proceedings
Some people get so frustrated, they go public with name calling their spouses and their families. Do not put it out on social media or go overboard by dragging others into your personal affairs.
Plan your finances, job and well-being of your children
You should find supportive groups, friends, a lawyer and a psychologist who will help you to amicably get through the divorce by proper legal and emotional counselling. Before getting divorced, ensure you have a stable job and a steady income. While seeking alimony, be reasonable and do not extort money from your spouse in order to seek any kind of revenge.
Emotional care for children during the divorce
Do not drag your children into your problems while dissolving your marriage. Children should be counselled in a loving and friendly way and they should be made comfortable to approach both their parents during and post the divorce, irrespective of who gets the custody of children.
Do not simply threaten to file for divorce
If you want to end the marriage, do it once and for all in an amicable way. Do not simply threaten for divorce to have your ways with the other person or if you are feeling angry or emotional during that moment.
Do not allow other family members to interfere with your divorce
You should seek support from practical people who will not throw emotional drama, tantrums or play blame games with you over your decision to get divorced. Do not approach parents, siblings and other family members who may attempt to talk you out from your decision of getting divorced since it may threaten their personal image or family status. Instead, reach out to friends who will help in an unbiased way to review the situation and also correct you, if your approach is incorrect.
Do the inner work to remain composed
While dissolving a marriage, you may go through regrets of not filing for a divorce earlier, self esteem issues, pain, anger and resentment. Do the inner work and stay calm and composed. Divorce is not the end of your happiness. It is just the beginning of a new life. Put your self-care on priority.
Be cautious of entering into rebound relationships
If you have not completely healed post a divorce, chances are you might get into rebound relationships, since you may need a shoulder to cry on. Do not repeat patterns of abusive relationships from the past. When you heal, your relationships heal. Take your time to develop a healthy self esteem until you are ready to attract a perfect life partner.
“The wound is the place where the light enters you”- Rumi
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