Dealing with anger during your divorce

I recall once during the most stressful time of my divorce talking to my dear Aunt. She called me once a week to support me. In this instance, I was not receptive. My head was full of the noise of fear and anger crowding in on me, and I could only live, literally, moment to moment. I could not think straight.

She was talking about the future and things I should do, but I could not hear her. In fact, she was increasing my stress. Finally, I cut her short and told her I would be ready to talk another time.

I would call my mother every day, sometimes three times a day, for support. At the beginning she would tell me how much better off I was than other women in my position, and how I was better off without a husband who didn't want me. Did her statements help? No. They devalued my anguish and pain. I would beg her to stop and just listen. I needed to vent. I needed a way to release my pain in a safe environment. I needed - RELIEF!

After weeks of begging she finally understood me and began to listen - just listen. And I was able to let my anger out. I had a safe way to let off steam and say the most ridiculous and hateful things, and still be in the presence of a loving person.

Letting go of all my anger and rage helped me to move on. It was a vital and crucial step in my healing. Mom would remind me, "Five minutes on your pity pot and then you must get off." Those daily five minutes prevented me from saying harmful things to Bob as we negotiated the divorce settlement. Those daily five minutes saved my ASS.

Dealing with your anger during the pain of separating is crucial. Hiding your feelings and soldiering on with your chin up are self-defeating measures. At some point your attempts to hide your hurt and anger will come back to bite you. So get your rage out early. Get it out with someone you can trust. Deal with it.

But I caution you: Though letting go of your anger is crucial, you have only a limited window of time. There is nothing less attractive than a divorced person who bashes their ex spouse for years and years after the papers have been signed. Always bringing up your divorce and spewing vitriol is a sure fire way to lose friends and supporters. Let it go. Don't allow your ex to have such power over you that your life is filled with thoughts of hate and revenge. Move on. Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger should take my advice.

Here are a few other resources that will help you re-emerge from your divorce relatively unscathed:


Find Happiness... said...

Hi Vic,

I came across your blog doing research for links to my website for my upcoming book - "Finding The Right Man For You: Dating Advice for Women." I have an early chapter entited 'Defeating Hurt and Anger'that I think you might find of interest.I'd be glad to e-mail you an attachment of the book if you wish. It's a man's perspective on helping women find the right man. I also have caused some hurt myself a number of years ago, which I have mentioned in the book. The book's website is: www.FindingTheRightManForYou.com. It contains a detailed Table of Contents. The book will be out in June and is currently listed on Amazon.com as a pre-order. My e-mail address is HelpfulMedia@yahoo.com
Best wishes,
Larry Danks

Anonymous said...

I came across this while researching anger management (custody issues after divorce - am well rid of the plonker I was married to).

Check out Bella DePaulo's book on loving single life. You don't need a man to be happy, so don't buy into it, and especially, don't bother buying books written by men that try to make you feel incomplete. At our age, they just want a nurse and a purse anyway! Make good girlfriends and enjoy your golden years without the bad feelings that men give you.