Common Questions of the Person Not Wanting to Divorce

Person who doesn’t want divorce

By Jeannine Lee

The parent who is surprised by divorce, whom I will call the Heartbroken, will have similar questions to those posed in this blog article [Common Questions of the Person Who Wants to Divorce] about the person who wants the divorce, but the difference is that the answers will have to be discovered while in the throw of all the emotions. There is no processing time. The stages of grief must be fast-tracked adding to the need to slow things down in order to process it all. Additionally, s/he must process the loss of the relationship and all the adjustments while dealing with all the tangible things like splitting assets, determining a parenting schedule. I tell people that their insides are being rearranged as much as their outer world. It takes time to make sense of it. This is the time to be gentle with yourself.

  • What happened? I thought s/he was happy in our marriage.
  • Where did we make the wrong turn?
  • Why does my spouse seem so happy about this?
  • How did s/he move on so fast? How can I catch up to where s/he is?
  • Can I get him/her back?
  • She/He is acting really nice. Does that mean s/he wants to get back together?
  • I can I possibly be ok only seeing my children part time?
  • What will our friends/family think?
  • Will I ever feel normal again?

Unlike his or her spouse who has had time to mentally prepare to divorce, the one on the receiving end has not. Grief for this parent/person is like being hit by a bus. Everything happens fast and intensely and has to be processed all at once. “Wait What? What just happened?”

The most important thing for you to do is to be gentle with yourself. Did I say that before? Yes. It’s important. That includes not “shoulding” on yourself. There are no rules that say you shouldn’t cry or be angry. Or you should be over it by now. The answers to your questions will be resolved as you work through the process. It will become clear to you over time. Reach out to your (honest) friends who will give you perspective. (Not the friends that will just make your Ex all bad.)

You will adjust. Your life will adjust. Your children will come through. The road is hard. I wouldn’t kid you, but you will get through it, and most people are stronger on the other side.