7 Tips for Getting Past a Traumatic Divorce

Accepting that your marriage has come to an end is the first step to discovering a new future before you. After a traumatic divorce, it's time to get to know yourself better and prepare for your new life with optimism.
7 Tips for Getting Past a Traumatic Divorce

Last update: 27 May, 2022

A traumatic divorce is a loss and therefore involves a grieving process.

In reality, it’s the death of a life, time, and feelings that were meant to be shared as well as dreams of the future together.

It’s not easy to get past, but if you consider following these tips, the grief over a failed marriage might be more bearable.

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Tips to get over a traumatic divorce

Many reasons could lead a couple to divorce, whether it’s a mutual agreement or one-sided. In fact, each couple is its little complex world.

Therefore, there are as many reasons for divorce as there are for marriage. Infidelity, abuse, incompatible personalities … Whatever the reasons are, it’s never easy to overcome a breakup.

However, once you’ve decided to divorce, it must be done. You cannot force anyone to remain by your side or continue a relationship that is no longer fulfilling. 

Next, we’ll take a look at some of the steps to help you overcome a traumatic divorce.

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Accept the divorce

Sad woman having coffee traumatic divorce
Accepting the reality of divorce will help us overcome the grieving process and see the positive aspects of the situation.

Marriage is the beginning of a life together, with dreams of the future, expectations, and plans. It is our vision for the future that makes us want to go to the altar and commit ourselves to the other person, believing that it will be for life.

Essentially, it’s also an investment. In fact, we invest in our spouse and in that life together in every way: financially, psychologically, emotionally, etc.

Therefore, it’s normal for it to be hard to accept that so many things she or he has invested and dreamed of are not going to come true.

That’s why many people go through a denial stage. In other words, they refuse to admit that it is over and insist that the marriage can be saved somehow. Sometimes, people even risk their own dignity and health in trying to make it work.

However, we must be honest with ourselves and accept reality. Of course, a grieving process will be necessary to overcome the breakup.

Therefore, we must be gracious and kind to ourselves: give it some time.

Don’t isolate yourself

During the grieving period of a relationship that has ended, many people tend to isolate themselves. They may lock themselves up at home, reject their social life and contact with others, even their closest friends.

However, it’s best to share how you’re feeling with people who love you and whom you’re close to. Expressing feelings is always something positive that will help you feel better and more relieved. By doing this, you can help process your pain.

Therefore, don’t reject the help of family and friends.

Stay optimistic

Happy woman after a traumatic divorce

Although at first it seems impossible to visualize, it’s time to imagine a new life with new dreams and goals.

Whenever one door closes, another opens. After a breakup, a new future is born that you may not have even imagined until now.

As you gradually overcome the grieving process of your marriage, you will be able to imagine more and dreams, goals, and plans for your new life. Additionally, you’ll be able to imagine yourself doing what you want to do.

This is the perfect time to be optimistic and to imagine a future full of personal growth and fun activities. This is the time to start taking great care of yourself and living your life the way you want to.

Learn from a traumatic divorce

You’ve been through a lot. You’ve suffered, you’ve cried and you’ve almost reached your breaking point.

That means that, among other things, you’ve also probably gotten closer to yourself and come to know yourself better. You have had the opportunity to come in contact with yourself more deeply.

Now you know your limits better and have learned to channel your pain and negative emotions. Now you are stronger and safer.

Take advantage of this energy and to start planning a new life and a new future.

It’s time to prioritize yourself

Yoga pose peace and happiness

It’s time to think about yourself and try rediscovering new interests and hobbies.

While the marriage lasted, everything probably revolved around your marital relationship: the day to day, how to spend the holidays, your supermarket purchases, what to watch on TV, etc.

Now, however, you are not limited by anyone else’s needs or preferences and you can now give priority to yourself.

Therefore, try to do some activities that are pleasant and enjoyable for you. In other words, rediscover your hobbies and your interests.

You don’t have to look for another partner

Also, it’s time to understand that happiness is within yourself and that you don’t need a relationship to make sense of your life.

Therefore, don’t believe that finding another partner will solve your problems. You must learn to feel that it’s only necessary to relate to yourself. Only then will you truly be prepared to find the right person, as a more complete and fulfilled individual.

Get professional help after a traumatic divorce

Woman in therapy

When grief overcomes us and it’s hard to visualize a new life, professional help will always be the best option.

If, in spite of everything, you feel that you cannot overcome the traumatic divorce and the grief is more intense than you can bear, don’t hesitate to go to a professional.

In fact, if you think that depression is lurking around the corner and you don’t feel capable of doing anything, a psychologist can effectively help you overcome it.

Therefore, be gracious with yourself and accept that you need help. Then, ask for it.

A specialist will help you manage stress and your feelings. He or she will teach you to channel them properly and help you visualize that new future.

Everyone is different

Throughout this article, we’ve shared with you some tips on overcoming a traumatic divorce.

However, you should always keep in mind that every divorce is different. Every divorce, just like every couple, is very complex and unique to deal with.

Thus, you need to be especially strong and mature when the marriage involves children or abuse. In fact, poor management of the situation or the emotions and wounds can make the breakup even more traumatic in the future.

Therefore, seek professional help whenever necessary.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Gee, T. (2001). The grieving process in separation and divorce. Grief Matters: The Australian Journal of Grief and Bereavement, 4(1), 6.
  • Cáceres, C., Manhey, C., & Vidal, C. (2009). Separación, pérdida y duelo de la pareja: Reflexiones imprescindibles para una terapia de divorcio. De familias y terapia, 27, 41-60.
  • Yárnoz-Yaben, S. (2017). Grief due to divorce: relationship with attachment style and effects on subjective well-being and co-parenting/El duelo ante el divorcio: relación con el estilo de apego y efectos en el bienestar subjetivo y el ejercicio de la co-parentalidad. Estudios de Psicología, 38(3), 667-688.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.