Being Single After Divorce Isn’t Easy

I received this comment from a guy who wants to know how to be happy being single after divorce.

My wife of 6 years told me she
wanted a divorce a few months ago. It came out after much pleading on my
part to figure out why she seemed so unhappy. It was a shock to me and she
moved out very quickly and our divorce will be final soon. Short cause of what actually happened was included in a medical
bill that was sent to the house after she moved out. She was having an
affair and became pregnant with her lover and had an abortion. It was
actually good for me to learn the truth. It made it very easy for me to
accept the outcome and get past the shock.

Today I am not feeling anger or regret and I understand my shortcomings in
the process that lead to the final outcome, but I also realize that in the
end this is for the better as it could be worse if we had children or
stayed married longer into the infidelity and unhappiness. It is also
helpful that we are not fighting during the divorce process.

This is all new to me and the one thing that seems hardest right now is
the loneliness/sadness and the ability for me to “find myself” as a single
person, i.e. being happy as a single person. The support I get is through
other people who are married and although it has been good support, I find
that there is a need to branch out and meet new people to help me find
myself, but I am not sure how to proceed. Any advice you can provide would be
greatly appreciated.

Before I give you any advice, I just want to say I’m so sorry for what you are going through. I am sure it is brutal and gut-wrenchingly sad. I get it. Been there. Divorce is really, really hard.

I want to say a couple of things to you that might help you. The first thing I want to address is :

“Today I am not feeling anger or regret, and I understand my shortcomings in the process that led to the final outcome.”

What?! How can you not be angry? You have every right to be really pissed that your wife had an affair, got pregnant and had an abortion! I don’t think it is healthy to NOT be angry. Now, I’m not saying you should go up to your wife and punch her in the face, but acknowledge that you are angry. Scream and shout about it (in private, of course.) Go to the gym and do a kickboxing class and punch the bag, or just vent to your friends and family. And why are you saying that your shortcomings led to the final outcome? Knowing none of the specifics about your situation, I can already tell you that no matter what you did, that didn’t give your wife a green light to go ahead and cheat on you. She was dishonest. She deserves some of the blame.

I’m actually finding myself a bit angry because you aren’t! You need to let yourself feel your anger before you can move on.

Next, I want to address this:

“I find that there is a need to branch out and meet new people to help me find
myself.”

New people can’t help you find yourself, YOU have to find yourself. How do you do that? Through therapy (which you are doing, and which I commend you for,) through faith, through yoga, meditation, physical exercise, but more importantly through self-reflection. Just by spending time by yourself.

I’m not saying you should sit home every night alone. I think you should go out and meet other men and women, make new friends, do fun things that make you happy, pursue passions you have for art, music, hobbies, volunteer work, sports, whatever it is.

And if you want to go on blind dates or online dating sites, I think that’s great. You don’t have to get serious right away, just make friends. Platonic friends (women too) are great gifts! What I’m saying, though, is that no person is going to help you discover who you are. YOU will discover that by really thinking about what makes you happy, and then doing it. By reflecting on your marriage, what went wrong and why, and then figuring out what you want in life, and in your next relationship.

Being single after divorce is really hard at first, but you’d be surprised at how little time it takes to adapt to it and become happy again. I remember feeling sad and alone a lot, and then after a few months, I started to feel good again. Really good.

It sounds like you need some self-confidence, which is very normal for someone in your situation. You need to find a life that brings you happiness and peace, along with self-assurance and self-love.

Try to focus on all of your good qualities and being your best self—making really good, smart, ethical decisions, but also letting yourself feel the pain of what happened to you. It’s scary to feel pain and to acknowledge that you are devastated. But that is part of the road to recovery.

I will be wishing you all the best and hoping that you are happy being single after divorce very, very soon.

 

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Jackie Pilossoph

Editor-in-chief: Jackie Pilossoph

Divorced Guy Grinning is a blog for men facing divorce and dating after divorce. It's kind of like hanging out with your platonic female divorced friend and hearing her perspective on your divorce and your love life issues.

2 Responses to “Being Single After Divorce Isn’t Easy”

  1. Wes

    Wow. I can relate with the man who sent the email and your advice is great.
    I was feeling the need to go and meet new people too thinking that was a way to help discover who I am.
    I have also been denying my anger and resentment. I told my therapist that I pretty much only feel sadness these days and she asked what other emotions I could feel. I was stumped! What she was getting at was showing myself to feel anger and resentment and any other emotions that go with a break up like this. She also said not to beat myself up over feeling sad.
    She’s right and so are you. It’s OK and warranted to feel anger and resentment, and I do feel that way!
    Great article, thanks!

    Reply
  2. Gary Mathews

    Has someone who just wrapped up a nasty unwanted (at first) divorce. I can relate with this email, feel fortunate that you didn’t have to worry about any children while going through this rough time.

    Reply

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