Divorce

The New Relationship After Divorce

The New Relationship After Divorce

My BF stayed the weekend at my house and no one died – so, there’s that.

It was awkward, but not lethal.

In the making of my new life, I’ve taken my time to decide what I want and lay down its foundation. I’ve come to the harsh reality that a new relationship, and inviting someone else in, needs to be a part.

We’re not meant to do life alone, even though there are places in me that scream it would be much easier that way.

My post-divorce checklist looks something like this:

After the Storm

After the Storm

I was insecure and a little scared, even though this wasn’t my first rodeo.

As a native Floridian, hurricanes are par for the course. Hurricanes can also be a terrifying experience - howling winds, blowing transformers, storm surge, and falling trees. But mostly it’s terrifying because of the unknown. No matter how you prepare, you’ve never quite sure – should we stay or go? Have I done enough? You mitigate your risk compared to your time, energy, and resources. You watch the news – you watch too much news.

It is a debate that presents itself repeatedly, no matter how experienced you become.

Forgiveness After Divorce… and Beyond

Forgiveness After Divorce… and Beyond

Love hurts.

Sometimes it’s beautiful and lovely, of course. But sometimes it just effing hurts.

People offend, they do hurtful things – this cannot be avoided. I do it, you do it – we all do it.

So, let’s talk about how we handle the hurt that comes our way.

It is so easy to take offense, hold a grudge, lash out in anger.

Holding a grudge is another way to avoid feeling pain – and living this way will stunt your growth. If you’re not growing and changing, then you’re not on the path the becoming who you were created to be and this results in a perpetual cycle – of becoming angry at every offense.

Taking Your Best Steps After Divorce: An Interview with Life Coach, Suzy Garber

Taking Your Best Steps After Divorce: An Interview with Life Coach, Suzy Garber

How do you know you’re ready to date after divorce? What steps should you take to overcome fear? What can be done to prevent past mistakes and set you up for future success?  This week I sat down with certified life coach, Suzy Garber to discuss how to thrive during (and after) life’s transitions.

Life coaching can benefit many. Suzy is offering 1 free coaching sessions for any readers of Unchained who are curious about the differences life coaching can make.

How Divorce Has Made Me a Better Mom

How Divorce Has Made Me a Better Mom

Some days in life -- some moments in time are forever etched in your memory, stamped on your brain like a polaroid set there to revisit time and time again …  sometimes, those moment are centered around unique experiences and fun.  But more often than not, they come as defining moments – the ones that aren’t triggered necessarily by a joyous occasion, but instead a drop of life that hits you and changes you forever.  

Surviving the Bitterness of Divorce (Guest Post by Meghan Mercer)

Surviving the Bitterness of Divorce (Guest Post by Meghan Mercer)

There is no question that divorce is an emotional process. Sometimes it feels like your emotions can change in an instant from anger to pain to even brief moments of joy. While it is important to experience and acknowledge all of our feelings, we must remember the importance of how we choose to act based on those feelings.

I once was taught that most anger is a cover of raw pain. Think about that for a moment… Sometimes anger is easier to feel than pain. To me, anger lulls shame, invokes control, and ultimately makes me feel as if I'm coming from a place of power instead of falling victim to my circumstances and feelings.

Finding Your Way to Happy

Finding Your Way to Happy

Letters from readers, it’s one of my favorite things about this writing project - knowing that sharing a piece of my story and a bit of my heart helps others. Mostly, the comments come from people I don’t know personally, but occasionally, I get a nice note from someone in my past.

This week found such occasion, it was good to hear from an old friend.

 

Embracing Your Resurrection Moments

Embracing Your Resurrection Moments

Love and death and waiting and new life. It is the Easter season. I think a lot about these things during this time of year and as such have found myself in a state of melancholy over the past few days.

There has been death – both around me and in me. I am in a transition, another shift of my being. This fills me with excitement and a little disappointment – as I always envisioned my next new thing being dovetailed into a new relationship.

But sometimes the change that needs to happen within you comes in ways you least expect. That’s when you know you’re on to something good.

Finding Your Tribe During Divorce

Finding Your Tribe During Divorce

I woke to the familiar scratching at the door. I am lucky enough to own the world’s most amazing dog (I know your dog is cool, but sorry, mine gets the prize) – I am her person. She wants to be close to me, but sometimes she finds a closed door between her sweet self and the one she seeks.

I got up and groggily opened the door to ensure I didn’t fully awaken, it wasn’t time to get up. I value my sleep. In that blissful state between sleep and awake, I gently thought to myself, ‘she is counting on me – she’s depending on me.’ To love her, to provide for her, to care for her. Same goes for those sweet souls sleeping down the hall and the other one who is away at school. 

Letting Go of Love

Letting Go of Love

It had been weeks – months even, since I had known -  since I had made the final decision in my heart and my head I guess – but I just couldn’t seem to pull the trigger.

I am highly intuitive – and, even though she wasn’t supposed to have an official opinion, I could tell my therapist’s patience was growing thin.  This was the 3rd – 4th – 5th? time we’d had the same discussion in as many weeks.

My kids, what about my kids?

I didn’t want them to be a product of divorce – this was my top priority – or maybe it was an excuse. An excuse to avoid making the hard decision – the difficult circumstance – it would take me out of my sacred avoidance cycle. The avoidance cycle that was as comfortable as my favorite pair of sweatpants.

The Art of Keeping up Appearances: and How I Became a Prostitute in My Own Marriage

The Art of Keeping up Appearances: and How I Became a Prostitute in My Own Marriage

“Smoke and mirrors, baby. Smmmoke and mirrors.” We were discussing the art of keeping up appearances and those who contrive to live the perfect life.

Huge houses, new cars, extravagant vacations with no real money in the bank.  Picture perfect holiday cards while chaos, abuse, and broken relationships dominate the family dynamic. Obtaining the latest gadget for the sake of acquisition without consideration of its actual need and usefulness.

Bigger, newer, faster – often digs another layer in the hole of our discontent. Because everybody knows these things can’t make you happy. Yet, we all try and see if they will.

I get it, I am that person – or I was that person. To some extent, we are all that person. 

An Open Letter to My Friend Considering Divorce… (Part 2)

An Open Letter to My Friend Considering Divorce… (Part 2)

I know you are worried, and I know you are scared. When we met the other day, you told me you were considering divorce - you and your spouse have fallen out of love. Yesterday, I wrote part 1 of an open letter describing my own experience of divorce and shared some insight I thought might help you. Today, I promised a deeper look at some of the specifics that often contribute to the end of partnership. I hope it helps. 

An Open Letter to My Friend Considering Divorce… (Part 1)

An Open Letter to My Friend Considering Divorce… (Part 1)

It was great seeing you last night, I love it when we get together – with our busy lives, those opportunities are few and far between. You have come to me, as many do, to ask about my divorce, to see how I’m doing. You say it is something you’re considering for yourself. You say you and your spouse have ‘fallen out of love’ and are merely co-existing.

Rediscovering You

Rediscovering You

I told him it always felt like I was disappointing someone; my employer, my kids, my family, my friends. There just never seemed to be enough of me to go around. He had asked me to describe the most difficult thing about being a single mom. At the time, I thought that answer was true – but looking back,  I think maybe the hardest part about being a single mom – or a mom in general is that it’s easy to lose yourself a little bit. He told me he wished I needed him more. A lot of people in my life say this.

Wrecked!

Wrecked!

It was a very bad day. 

He was fired and upon release of the news, the company stock increased by 21%....

She looked into her checking account and realized he had taken everything and had gone himself, leaving her with the house and the kids and all the explaining that goes along with such a matter…

After years of an empty and volatile relationship, she had come to the realization that the life and the world she had built for herself needed to come to an end…

What Makes Them Stay?

What Makes Them Stay?

She had been in a loveless marriage for years – decades maybe. If asked, she talked about it openly, and even those who didn’t know somehow knew. A mutual friend approached me, “it’s become the elephant in the room,” she said. “She can’t see how much this is impacting her.” Over the years, this relationship had stolen her joy, her beauty. It was making her bitter and angry – her sense of self was seeping out at the seams. There is nothing quite as lonely as being in a lonely marriage.
 

​When It’s Time for a New Beginning…

 ​When It’s Time for a New Beginning…

I spent a week this year living in one of the most amazing 1300 square feet I’ve ever stepped foot in. The private residence was meticulously finished with every detail carefully thought through and even though the physical space was essentially tiny, you never felt like there was too little room. When something is right, it’s just right. When something is right, you want to put yourself in park and stay there forever.

Being Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

Being Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

“I just want to be certain – I want to know what’s going to happen, and I want to make sure I don’t get hurt.” I was silent, listening to my friend as she was carefully spelling out the details of a new romantic interest. Her voice was filled with enthusiasm and a little dread. New relationships are scary and she was afraid of the unknown.

In life, there is so much uncertainty.

The Gift of Time

The Gift of Time

Would you rather have an infinite amount of money or an infinite amount of time? This question was posed to me by my 14 year- old son earlier this month. Without hesitation I knew the answer, he knew my answer – it was time.

For whatever reason, money has never been all that important to me, but I love time - time to myself, time to contemplate, time to sit and be still, time with no agenda. I breathe it in like some sort of hyper-charged oxygen.
 

​When You’ve Done All That You Can Do

​When You’ve Done All That You Can Do

It had been a long day.  Fatigue was wearing on all of us as we stumbled through the marathon of the typical suburban Saturday. Lessons, baseball, play practices, hair appointments, gym appointments, laundry and shopping – the list seemed endless. There was an issue with my son – in that he simply could not ‘remember’ to put his laundry away in spite of my incessant pleading.