My dad died when I was 21 years old. He was afraid to die. And he was angry at God and the world for allowing his death to happen. He was no longer angry at me. He was no longer capable of being a scary figure in my life. He was small, curled up, and very angry. But like today's man, he was no longer capable of hurting me with his anger.
Divorce, once mentioned, is a slippery and difficult journey. As you pull apart the lives you’ve built together, there will be anger, resentment, frustration, and even joy, and ecstasy. But the divorce is hard on everyone. Listen for who needs support and then give your love and attention. Always.
POSITIVE DIVORCE (is a concept, an alignment, an intention I use as I go through life as a single dad.)
- START HERE: Transformational Divorce
- Dear Custodial Parent: We Are All Still Together After Divorce
- Porcupine Mode: Expressing Dissatisfaction In Your Relationship
- In All Cases Be Kind, Unless You Can’t Then Be Assertive
- Reflecting On My Ex-wife’s Rage Nine Years After the Divorce She Wanted
- The Double-edged Sword of Divorce: Happier But Alone
- My Single Parent Slogan: Every Day At a Time
- Fathers and Daughters: Divorce Affects Us Differently
Divorce is one of the most disorienting events in my life. Everything was lost. I have made a point of trying to turn the bad points into positive information. I am here support you as best I can to lessen the impact on your children. Divorce is the beginning of a new journey. You can make it better for everyone by paying attention to what matters. Your anger at your ex needs to be handled on your own.
I look forward to having another opportunity to learn about myself "in a relationship" at some point. I'm happy and patient right where I am. But I believe by having my priorities clear and articulated I can do a better job of finding and sorting through the process of finding that NEXT RELATIONSHIP. I wait enthusiastically.
Live your life as you would like to see your kids living theirs. Show them the adults they can be, by demonstrating the best that you can be. Anything less is a miss. Parenting and co-parenting resources come and go, theories of parenting and how do recover from divorce will change from season to season, but this truth never changes.
There are a lot of details to work out. And rushing into that process while throwing your kids and current family structure under the bus is not a good idea.
There are not fewer things to coordinate when you become a single parent, in fact, there are more. The things you once traded equitably, now fall 100% in your lap when it is your parenting time. This new cadence can be jarring, frustrating, and make for some upset campers on all sides unless you plan ahead and go 100% Positive.
There is no time like the present to flip your anger into absurd, cackling, fake laughter. It's a known fact that your physical body doesn't really know the difference between real laughter and fake laughter. So if you give a big ol' Pee Wee Herman laugh, your body really thinks you are laughing. The endorphins and physical joy comes back into your system, fires up the happy side of your brain, and can bring you part of the way back to center.
So much of co-parenting is about negotiation and compromise. We no longer have the same loving emotional ties to our former partners. We no longer have to make their urgency and priorities our own.
There will be time for anger. There will be moments when anger is the only way you can find to stand up for what you believe to be right. But the rest is up to you.