Top Five Emotional Effects of Divorce

Top emotional effects of divorce on womenMany women are not prepared for the emotional effects of divorce, especially if they are the one that initiated the separation and divorce. The so-called divorce support they receive from meaningful family and friends often wind up being an “ex” bashing session, which makes her feel worse about herself and her situation.

Top Five Emotional Effects of Divorce

During all stages of divorce, you might feel intense anger towards your ex. You may be angry with him for leaving you, for not understanding you or for having an affair. At other times, you may be angry with yourself for not seeing the signs, or for allowing him to hurt you, the way he did. It is important to realize that if his actions are continuing to anger you that you have not let go. Even though anger is one of the common emotional effects on divorce, holding onto pent up anger is not hurting your ex at all. He could probably care less that you are angry. You need to forgive him and yourself for the roles each of you played that lead up to the divorce. Forgiveness is the only thing that can set you free to build a happy and fulfilling life.

Women are filled with guilt during and after a divorce regardless if they initiated the separation or not. Guilt is one of the common emotional effects of divorce as you might constantly ask yourself if you did everything in your power to make your marriage work. You might be banging yourself over the head on whether or not you made the right decision. If he left, you could be asking yourself what you did wrong. You may feel guilty that you have disrupted the home life of your children. Guilt serves no purpose. Guilt focuses on past events, which are impossible to change. By learning to let go of the past, you are able to look to the future.

Many women are terrified during divorce. Fear is one of the emotional effects of divorce that women feel in a variety of ways. There are many faces of fear, including fear of the unknown, the fear of making ends meet, the fear of being a single mom, the fear of what other people will think … and the list goes on and on. An acronym for fear is “False Evidence Appearing Real”. This tells you that fear is something you are making up in your own mind by conjuring up a thousand “what ifs”. When you begin to feel fearful, ask yourself what you are thinking and turn the thought around. For example if you are thinking being a single mom is going to be hard, ask yourself why is being a single mom going to be easy. With practice, the fears will dissipate and you will begin looking forward to a wonderful future.

Anxiety and stress is a mixture of many negative emotions, including fear, guilt and anger. Reduce stress by letting go of the fear and learning to deal with what is happening right this moment. Learn techniques to deal with anxiety such as deep breathing, meditating and exercising. Eating healthy also plays an important role in reducing anxiety. Build structures to support a stress free environment such as getting up earlier to get the kids to the bus stop, or cooking enough dinners to last for a week on Sunday. Take responsibility.

It is natural to be sad and to be sad when your marriage ends. Grieving over the death of your marriage can be a very painful experience, but it is a healthy response. By allowing yourself to go through the five stages of grief; denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance you will be able to “let go” and be free to create your own future. Get assistance on dealing with the emotional effects of divorce support during this emotional turmoil.

Though the emotional effects of divorce are many, allow yourself to feel each emotion separately. Feel it and then let it go. Schedule a complimentary “Getting Unstuck” call with Cindy and get some techniques on how you can deal with the pain of your specific challenges. You’ll leave the call with more hope for a happy and fulfilling future.

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  1. MC says

    My girlfriend is in divorce process with her ex husband. She is trying to make her best to pass through this hard life step, after passing through different step she is now depress. She try to fight but it is really hard, I am giving my support but it still complicated. I will be thankful if someone can help me to make it easier for she, I asked what she need, how I can be helpful, but it is complicated same for her to really know what she need. Give space or stay close? Try to push she out of that or just be comprehensive and let time? I should give my point of view or just listen she? I know there is no miracle solution but I really want to do everything to help she the best that I can.
    Thank you

    Like you saw, English is not my mother tong, I am sorry for the mistakes.

  2. Unkown says

    I’m a year into my divorce and I am not sure what is more painful, losing someone or divorce. They feel equally painful. I have a therapist and on my second lawyer. I have an infant and at times I feel I cant handle life anymore. I hope this feeling ends someday. I feel crazy, lost, unattractive, sad, angry.

    • Nicole Luffman says

      Hi, I am Cindy’s (The Compassionate Divorce Coach) assistant. I am so sorry to hear that you are going through so much pain. I promise you that it does end. You have to remember that you ARE Beautiful & Strong!! I think you would really benifit from joining us for one of Cindy’s free webinars. Our next one, “reClaim Your Power,” is coming up soon. Sign up at

      Also, check out this great free gift that Cindy offers… It is The “Divorcee’s Guide To Happiness”

    • Perry says

      I am also going through a divorce. I feel the same way. The divorce process is so difficult. The demand for producing documents to be questioned, judged, awarded, denied, cross-examined. It’s like when I was married before deciding to divorce. Like I can’t do anything. Depressed, emotional, unworthy. Less than. I know all of the right things but can’t dig myself out of this pain. I made the right decision. Lord knows. But I’m struggling, worried, stressed, losing my hair, gained weight. Feel ugly and thrown away. I pray it will be over soon. Don’t know how much more I can get through.

  3. Matthew Cassady says

    It irritates me how we’ve been made to believe divorce is an answer.

    Aside from physical abuse and adultery, divorce should NEVER be an option. Too many people get hurt. First, the couple who call it quits, their children (if they had any), extended family, and finally friendships (as some have to take sides). If children are involved and still under 18, the couple will have to co-parent. If they could not get along to the point they felt divorce was necessary, how likely is it that they will get along living separate lives? Plus, it demonstrates to our kids that a divorce is an option.

    Why do we say, “for better or for worse”? Nowadays, we’re trying to define what “worse” means. When things are good, heck yes marriage is awesome and we made the right choice. However, when the marriage hits rock bottom, it seems people stop investing in each other and begin to ask the question, “What about me?”

    Think about this, how often do children drive their parents crazy? The bring a lot of joy into their parents lives paralleled with a lot of challenges. Of course, how many parents just quit on their kids and DIVORCE them from their family due to the hard times? Very small percentage. Parents will usually hang in there for their children in a demonstration of love. With your children, you are in it “for better or for worse”. Parents will change their routines, environments, how they spend their money, and how much time they will dedicate to their child.

    So why don’t we do that for our spouses?

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