A divorce is one of the toughest things that life can throw at us. It can really knock us around. The common challenges that women found were parenting children as a sole parent or co- shared parenting and the responsibilities that it brought – Dealing with the pain of divorce, while still having to put a roof over their head and food on the table for a start, answering their children’s questions why they were not together as a family anymore, reassuring them through the process in a healthy way. Also having to deal with their ex in a civilised manner.
- A roof over your head and food on the table – Some women had to find fulltime jobs for the first time in a long time, some had to change jobs, some had to get two jobs.
Going it alone planned or unplanned it can be a bit of a shock on the finances. I know in my situation I was forced to get flatmates in once I found a place to rent as I couldn’t afford to rent a place on my own on one income with my two children.
In this day and age most families barely survive with two incomes let alone one income. Many women ended up having to work two jobs to keep their heads above water.
Some divorces can be strung out for a few years before any money from the family house, estate etc gets divided especially if a business or investments are involved, during that time a woman and her children still have to survive somehow until money is released. The government can help for a small amount but you also need a big income to make ends meet.
- Healing the pain after the divorce – This affects every one of us differently. Whether it was your choice to leave or not, everyone will experience some sort of pain. Staying stuck in a holding position of old pain stops us seeing new doors that are open, the new opportunities that surround us.
Making the decision to move on starts the healing process. The past is the past and we cannot change what has happened, so putting our energy into creating a new life for ourselves makes a lot more sense. We then have a choice of how we want our life to be, going forward.
- Parenting on their own – Going from a couple to being a solo parent or may be co-parenting is a big change for your children. So leading them through the divorce process in a healthy way is important. They rely on you and this is the time when they need reassurance, to know that you are there for them and that you love them no matter what and that it is not their fault that their family has broken up.
- Finding who they are as a person again – The divorce left them with no self- esteem. Many women found it took them a long time to feel good about themselves again, they lacked confidence and inner strength. Some felt quite free as if a weight had been taken off them, they needed to find themselves again and others felt really lost not knowing who they really were anymore.
- Dating as a single divorced women – The challenge was building the courage to go out as a single divorced women and to have the time to do so. It can feel strange at first especially if you had been married for a long time. Then keeping your relationships secret and separate so as not to upset the children in anyway. Some found that their children were good at passing on stories to their ex.
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