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Dealing with the Aftermath of a Divorce

Divorce is certainly a word that no married couple ever wants to hear or consider as they are preparing for their marriage. But, the reality is still that 50% of marriages will end in divorce. The recent statistics taken from a 2013 poll show that 41% of first marriages, 60% of second marriages, and 71% of third marriages end up in divorce. So, for people that divorce in thinking that there is marital bliss ahead, this is often not the case. Jesus spoke about the topic of divorce in Matthew 19:8 in which he labeled it as a condition that results because of the hardness of a man’s heart to his wife.

The top reasons from this recent study indicated that the main reasons that people get divorced are; poor communication, financial problems, abuse, no longer attracted to their spouse, and infidelity. Because divorce does happen, a person needs to know how to deal with the aftermath of it. Listed below are five ways that people can turn towards healing when it comes to their divorce.

  1. Join a Recovery Group – There are several Christian based divorce recovery groups that will be offered by churches in the area. The program, Divorce Care, is one that is popular and will engage individuals with others who have also struggled through divorce. Some of these programs will last for several weeks and be more educations while others will attempt to be on-going and will provide more Christian fellowship in addition to the educational and healing component.
  2. Go to Individual Counseling – People will typically attempt to engage in marriage counseling as their marriage is struggling and falling apart, but usually do not invest in the necessary individual counseling after the divorce has taken place. It is highly recommended to engage in regular individual counseling for several months as they heal. This will allow them to process not only the issue of the present divorce, but also examine their past and make plans for their future.
  3. Do Not Make Any Major Decisions – It is advised that a person should not make any major decisions on their own for at least a year (ex. New career, moving far away, dating someone new, etc.) When making major decisions, it is encouraged to rely on your natural supports (friends, family, counselor, pastor) for help in making choices.
  4. Do Not Begin Any New Dating Relationships – It is quite common that a person tries to fill the void left from the broken relationship with another person. This is a mistake and the primary reason why so many second and third marriages fail. Allow God to be the one who fills that void and emptiness in your heart. Wait at least a year before you begin seriously dating again.
  5. Get More Involved in Positive Activities – Seek out friends and family who are positive and supportive. Reconnect with hobbies and activities that you enjoy. Find opportunity to serve others and serve in the community.

Michael Linn is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Pennsylvania and a Nationally Certified Counselor. He is the owner of Resolute Counseling, located in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania.  He can be reached by calling 717-264-0450 or visiting www.resolutecounseling.com.

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