A Few Common Myths about Divorce
DRCC would like to thank guest blogger, Jenny Arribau, for this piece. Jenny is a presenter with the Second Saturday series through Divorce Resource Denver, an affiliate of Divorce Resource Centre of Colorado.
Myth #1: Getting a divorce means you didn’t try hard enough.
When I left my marriage, I didn’t leave because I didn’t try to fix it first. I did. I left because I realized that I was the one that wanted to change, so there was no way for either of us to be happy and stay in our marriage. By working with people as a divorce recovery therapist, I have found that this is true for most couples that divorce.
In my view, if one person does not want to change and the other one does, there is simply no way to grow together, and ending the marriage is the healthiest option for both people.
Myth #2: Divorce is just a transition, not a major loss.
Another story I told myself during my divorce (and my clients often catch themselves believing this too) is that divorce is not a major loss that we grieve, like the death of a loved one. Not true. Divorce is a major loss, often just as, if not more difficult than the loss of a loved one. We might tell ourselves that it’s not so we can push away our pain; I know I did at times. Divorce is the loss of not just our spouse, but our marriage, our family unit if we have kids, our home if we move: our life as we know it. If you are going through a divorce and you are grieving, it is to be expected. It is normal, and knowing that we are not alone is the first step to getting better.
Myth #3: If we loved our ex-spouse, we can never really get over our divorce.
Like many people who divorce, I was in love with my ex-husband throughout our marriage. We had many wonderful times together, and I have no regrets. I learned so much about myself by addressing and resolving my grief, and I wouldn’t be who I am today had I chosen another path. Working on myself, and everything my divorce brought up for me freed me to stop asking someone else to make me happy, and start giving myself the life that I have always wanted.
Healing was a challenge and a gift; I worked hard to go inside myself and resolve my grief, and as a result, I know how strong I am. It has also helped me show up more fully in all areas of my life, especially in my romantic relationships. Now I get to teach others to do the same for themselves.
If you are going through, or have gone through a divorce, I hope that you’ll get the support and the tools you need in this challenging time. Asking for help is a sign of strength… I could not have healed myself without the guidance of my amazing teacher. If you want it, there is a new life, and a new, healthy way to do your relationships just waiting for you. If you do the work for you, I think you’ll find that you are far too valuable, and too amazing a gift to miss out on.
Jenny Arribau is Licensed Professional Counselor specializing in divorce and breakup recovery in Denver, Colorado. You can find out more about her services here.