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How to Overcome Divorce Shame 

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How to Overcome Divorce Shame 

How to Overcome Divorce Shame 

Divorce is a traumatic experience for everyone involved. Even when both sides acknowledge that the marriage was clearly failing, it is common for one or both parties to feel a sense of shame about how things ended. While feelings of shame are understandable, it is important to try and work through them as part of the process of moving on with your life after the end of your marriage.

As psychologist Seth Meyers noted in an article about the psychology of shame and divorce, “In general, I have found that shame is usually not a productive emotion.” One reason for this is that shame is often a byproduct of the outdated notion that divorce is immoral or subject to social stigma. But it can also simply reflect a feeling of personal failure or worthlessness.

What can you do to overcome divorce shame? Here are a few basic tips to keep in mind.

Do Not Look at Your Divorce as a Failure

Despite the fact that most wedding vows promise you will remain with your spouse “until death do us part,” the reality is that not all relationships are meant to last forever. Yet many people consider a divorce a failure because it means they have failed to live up to the promise of those vows. Yet it is important to keep in mind that most couples do not rush to divorce at the first sign of trouble. Rather, divorce is the final step of a long journey that includes multiple attempts to keep the relationship going. Just because those efforts did not succeed does not mean you should look at the attempt as a failure.

Allow Yourself to Experience Shame in Your Own Way

That said, it is not wrong to acknowledge feelings of shame over your divorce. It is always important to be aware of and honest about your feelings. But how you process those feelings is just as important. This can take many forms. Perhaps you just need to have a couple of good crying sessions. Or maybe you want to keep a journal of your ongoing thoughts. You may also want to consider seeking professional therapy or counseling. The critical thing is that you need to experience shame in your own way and not feel pressured to “get over it” before you are ready.

Forgiveness is Important

The most dangerous aspect of shame is often that it prevents us from forgiving ourselves for our perceived shortcomings or failures. Once you have taken the time to acknowledge and address your feelings of shame, it is critical to your own long-term mental health that you are able to forgive yourself for what has happened.

Contact a Rolling Meadows Divorce Lawyer Today

No divorce is ever easy, even if it is uncontested and relatively free of legal drama. The important thing is that you seek professional guidance and assistance during this difficult time. If you need legal advice or representation from a qualified Illinois divorce attorney, contact SAM LAW OFFICE, LLC today to schedule a free consultation.

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