Divorce is never easy, and many people feel great regret, sadness and anger when their marriages end. However, there are some unexpected upsides to getting a divorce, and acknowledging them is healthy. If you were unhappy in your marriage, if you felt trapped, if you were betrayed or unappreciated – once the divorce is over, you may be pleasantly surprised at what is in store for you.
So what are the unexpected “perks” of divorce? Here are a few:
- More “Me” time. Now that the arguing, negotiating and the court dates are in the past, you will have plenty of time to focus on re-discovering what makes you happy. If you have children, you may miss them in the beginning when they spend time with their other parent, but soon you will realize the opportunity to focus more time on the things you love to do, and to find new projects and hobbies that inspire you.
- Financial autonomy. Learning how to live on a single income might be challenging at first, but soon you will find pleasure in being able to make financial decisions without consulting with anyone else. Was your partner the one who handled the finances in your marriage? Use this opportunity to take a personal finance class and increase your knowledge about how to handle your money and plan for a solid financial future for yourself.
- The chance to reinvent yourself. If you were unhappy or unfulfilled in your marriage, your newfound freedom will give you the chance to decide who you want to be and start living your new life.
- Improved health. While some research studies have shown that married people live longer, that applies to people who are happily married. The stress of living in conflict in a relationship doomed for failure creates tremendous stress which can wreck your health. Once you have stepped away from the stress of a bad marriage, you can start pursuing a healthy lifestyle.
- The chance to start dating again. You may feel intimidated about getting back out into the dating pool especially if you have been married for a long time, but if you give it a chance, you can start having fun again meeting new people, forming friendships and developing a vibrant social life.
- A clear understanding of what you want and do not want in a future mate. The struggles that you went through getting out of a bad marriage will now serve to enlighten you on what you want in a future mate if you plan to marry again.
- Happier children. It is not the divorce that will make the children happier, but the end of the conflict. Now, they can settle in to their “new normal” and adjust to life with two parents who are happier and more fulfilled living apart.
You may not begin to be able to appreciate these perks immediately while the pain of the breakup is still fresh. As the passing of time does its healing work, you will be better able to appreciate the sweet things in life. A study published in the journal, Social Psychological and Personality Science, “From Tribulations to Appreciation,” wanted to know if there was any truth to the old adage, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” The researchers set out to discover whether experiencing adversity enhances a person’s ability to appreciate life’s small pleasures. They found after surveying 15,000 adults who had suffered adverse events such as divorce or the loss of a loved one that people who were still struggling were less able to savor positive events. Those who had dealt with adversity in the past seemed to have experienced a higher capacity for savoring the pleasures of life.
Hopefully, this bit of positive news will give you some hope if you are considering divorce, or if you are in the midst of it now. Life really does get better, and the difficult and often painful process of divorce may help you appreciate the good times that will come your way.
Working with a skilled Annapolis divorce attorney can help you feel more empowered as you move through the divorce process. If you are considering divorce, an experienced lawyer from Cynthia H. Clark & Associates, LLC can help. Please call us at 410.921.2422 to schedule a consultation, or complete our contact form. We proudly represent families throughout Maryland.