Please consider this fact: dads and moms are equally important in a child's life. Yes, there are exceptions. And these days those exceptions cut both ways. So when you are considering divorce and thinking of "going for it" because having more time with your kids would feel good to you, please consider the kids over and above your own needs. Our kids need both of us.
I have a deep appreciation for my ex-wife and her own personal struggles in the divorce. I do hope you find happiness. And as our last child exits your house, I hope you are able to enter a new chapter of your life, where I am not the bad guy.
I don't have to get it right, here, or anywhere. Somedays I'm angry about the divorce. Other days, I see how my ex-wife released me from her sphere of influence, and for this I am grateful.
I was sad from Nov - Mar, but I was not clinically depressed. I was doing all the healthy things I could do to get my energy and spirit back on the right track in my life. And while I was not immediately joyous as a result of these efforts, I learned that by sticking with the program, my program of healthy and conscious living, I could have all the things I wanted in my life.
We've been divorced for over eight years. Our son has just turned 18 and is heading to college next year. We're not really co-parenting, but our kids are doing just fine. And as they grow older, they are seeking a renewed relationship with me.
Some of my depression is sadness at the massive amounts of my kid's lives I'm missing. That's real and that's going to make me sad. I don't have to dwell on it, but when it comes up I feel it, acknowledge it and thank my heart for feeling so strongly.
I agreed to be a part-time dad. I learned to focus on my own life and rebuilding my hobbies and passions outside of being a parent or a husband. It has been a difficult journey. I celebrate my kids when I can and as best I can, but a huge portion of their lives was given away when I agreed to less than 50/50 parenting.
I'm not perfect. I don't have the answer to this question of how to be happy all the time. But I am learning to see my emotions, my feelings, as something that are a part of me, but are not all of me. That's my meta-view.