Too many people see divorce as an enemy. If you're a staunch catholic or have a family history where divorce is seen as taboo, then divorce becomes an evil.
Coping with divorce is often about coming to terms with what it truly is and what it means. Marriage is a wonderful thing. There is no doubt about it. I have a wonderful woman that I love and I would give my life for in a second.
Yet marriage is a legal bond recognized in different ways. In some cultures marriage is recognized as part of religious tradition, one that is forever and to remain unbroken because it is sanctifed by god, or nature, or budda, or creation, or the energy of the spirits. In other ways marriage is a civil ceremony bound merely by an officiant who has the power to bind people by law as husband and wife to enjoy certain benefits afforded by law to those who are joined in marriage.
Sometimes when coping with the breakdown of your marriage it becomes more than simply the breakdown of a relationship but rather it becomes a person's own struggle with the idea of failure or breaking cultural morays or traditions in one's family or one's faith.
Yet coping with divorce means realizing that divorce is not one's enemy. Too many people fight divorce as if it were a destroyer of relationships, families, children and family custom or religious tradition when it is merely a word connoting one's recognition of a relationship that simply doesn't work anymore as a loving spousal connection.
It is the separation of the contract between the people in a legal way such that it is understood that the relationship no longer works between the two spouses in a loving and productive husband and wife relationship.
Coping with divorce in the truest sense is not a giving up or a giving in, but rather I see it as a coping mechanism . . . a recognition in ourselves that we have done all we can do to achieve harmony with our spouse.
Coping with divorce through infidelity and betrayal becomes more in its aspects of coping. It goes well-beyond recognition of two parties, once in love, who have done all they can do to rekindle and understand what went awry.
Yet a start begins in your coping process when you begin accepting that you are not the enemy, that divorce is not an enemy nor a destroyer .. . it is merely a process to bring you to a different tomorrow.
People destroy relationships. People destroy themselves. People destroy their futures. Divorce does nothing more than provide a remedy to an existing problem that sometimes needs a solution... when a relationship as husband and wife simply no longer works it is merely a journey ... hopefully .... to a better tomorrow.
Having been through this journey and guided others tomorrows of their own making.... I offer you consolation in knowing that divorce is not the enemy . . . it is the solution to an existing problem. It is your choice to feel guilted by tradition and religion and family and peer pressure into whether you utilize a solution made avaliable to you or not.
If two birds mated for life are happy in their bird cage and their needs are each fulfilled then no remedy is needed. They should continue as they are. Yet if those two birds, whether mated for life or not begin to pick each other apart and pull the feathers off one another and starve the other from food and affection to give and receive equally, divorce is only the clasp which holds the door closed.
The clasp is simply a plausible way out, not a required one. It is your choice to press the clasp or not. Divorce is your option. In the end, it would be wrong to blame the fact that the door is given a clasp to allow an avenue to remove ourself from an unhappy situation.
The clasp itself does nothing to the relationship . The clasp, like divorce, is merely there as an option.
Consider the foregoing analogy... because life is not black and white... it is a million shades of every color contained in the rainbow and a million more. Keeping divorce in perspective as merely an option will keep it from being the ominous destructor people make it out to be.
It is far from the easiest thing in the world to find our perfect loving mate the very first or second or even third time in this world of millions of people from thousands of cultures while still trying to honor our different beliefs, histories, traditions, religions and every other facet that goes into who we are today. It is, perhaps the hardest thing we will ever do in our lives and yet often we are expected to get it right the very first time. Perhaps if we take a realistic step back, we will realize that this just doesn't make sense.
My best to everyone who is coping with divorce. My heart goes out to you as do my skills for those who care to take advantage of them.
All my Best to All Who Go Before the Rhode Island Family Court,
I am Attorney Christopher A. Pearsall and I am "The Rhode Island Divorce Coach."