I like to read relevant articles on divorce. I read them to help me learn about issues involving divorce, and many times, I can apply them to my current life or see if they were true in the early days of my divorce. The article I am looking at today is called Ten Helpful Ways to Move on When Going Through Divorce By Anita Yok Sim Ho.
My Youtube Version
Here the author is speaking of moving on after infidelity. I don’t believe every marriage must end due to infidelity, especially if it is a one-time “mistake.” I don’t consider it a mistake if this act of distrust continues, and every case is different.
I will look at this article from the perspective of a woman going through a divorce. So I would rename it 10 Productive Ways to Move on After Divorce. Let’s take a look at the article.
(My opinions are in red:-)
By Anita Yok Sim Ho
Here, relationship expert Anita Yok Sim Ho offers her top 10 tips on dealing with the aftermath of infidelity. The author’s words are in black, and my response to her productive ways is in red.
1. Accept that the marriage is over. Stop emotionally investing in the past. The more you hold onto the past, the more you will recreate it in your present moment and in the future. Go through the logistics of separating your lives. Take off your wedding ring. Ask yourself honestly: Are you stalling the divorce process? Why? Do you feel scared to let go?
(Initially, I did not want to accept the marriage was over. I prayed that God would work in X’s life to see that he had broken a promise to God and me. Several weeks down the road, I realized this was not going to happen, and even further down the road, I realized why it should not happen. I pawned my ring because the painful realization that it was not a promise, but a lie became clear).
2. Allow yourself to feel. You cannot heal what you do not recognize consciously. Be aware of your thoughts, bodily sensations, and reactions. This is a time when you may think you’re going crazy with mood swings and harsh self-criticism. Feel and dive into the pain without denial of its presence. It won’t go away if you constantly shove it aside.
(The initial emotions are awful. I do not have the words to adequately describe them. My first response was that I could not handle such deep emotional pain. I wanted to escape. I tried to find bandaids to ease the pain. I soon realized that these bandaids just covered a festering wound. The pain had to be faced so I could move on. This is a process. The time frame is different for everyone. I am slowly getting better:-)
3. Know that feeling afraid is normal. Learn to face and overcome your fears by taking a close look at your anxiety over the marriage ending and ask yourself if it is truly valid. Usually, the majority of what you think you’re afraid of has no real basis. If you are afraid your next partner will cheat on you, ask yourself if you are just telling yourself this because it’s what you experienced in the past.
(My fears center around my family. The impact this will have on my daughters and my grandchildren. My future and finances are also a concern. I have learned to turn to God for wisdom).
4. Learn what nurtures you. Accept yourself completely — all that you are, and all that you are not. Spend time alone joyfully by journaling, reading, and meditating. Now is the time to do that one thing you always meant to do but kept putting it off. You have the power to create a life of your own making. Be proactive and take full responsibility for your happiness.
(The things that nurture me are my faith, friends, photography, blogging, and helping others).
5. Learn to express emotions instead of just talking about them. Deal with the anger constructively, without harming yourself or others. Find a support system with a trusted friend or professional who can give you space to just be with your feelings.
(From the start, I was able to share my feelings, my emotions, and my story. If anyone asks me a question, I will answer it. Sharing my story and listening to others’ stories inspired me and gave me strength.
6. Express yourself authentically. The energy it takes to keep up pretenses is not worth it. By being real with people, you will find yourself connecting to others in a way you never had before, which speeds up the recovery process. If you feel betrayed by your spouse’s infidelity, express that honestly and constructively. If you feel scared or relieved, do not be ashamed to talk about that, either.
(I do express myself. I blog and write my story. I will answer any question asked about my divorce, and I will answer it honestly.)
7. Forgive. Realize that forgiveness is more for your benefit than the other person’s. As the famous saying goes: “Holding onto anger is like drinking the poison and expecting the other to die.”
(I agree with her that you must forgive to move on and that it is about you, not them. Don’t get me wrong, forgiveness does not mean forgetting, but it is letting go of the anger but does not mean trusting the one that damaged you.
8. Trust the process. Keep going. Every step, no matter how small, is moving you forward. It may not always seem that way, but you’re making positive progress toward a healthier future without infidelity.
(Baby Steps. Initially, it was an effort to just get out of bed. Soon I would discover that if I forced myself to do the things I used to love, I would find joy in them again. We must keep pushing on even when we don’t feel like it.)
9. Set long-term goals for yourself. This is a real indicator that you have let go of the past and are ready to move on. Start to sow the seeds for your future, and create some exciting plans for yourself.
(I agree it is essential to set goals. At the beginning of my divorce process, I set short-term goals. The goals I set for myself helped me survive each day. As I progressed down the path, I could think a bit clearer, and I began to set long-term life-changing goals. I believe this, too, is a process and is different for everyone. I think we need to push ourselves to do this to benefit our future.).
10. Realize you always have a choice. Life can seemingly throw stuff at you out of left field. With every circumstance that comes your way, you have a choice in how to deal with the situation. Where there is life, there is always hope and possibilities to come.
(I do have a choice, and I choose hope:-)
Hope you enjoyed the article and that you could apply some of it to your life situation. Hold unto your faith and to your friends. Remember, God loves you and stands beside you, and he will never leave you or forsake you!