When I was getting divorced 11 years ago, it was the center of my universe. Like almost everyone getting divorced, I basically couldn’t think about anything else but my divorce. My life was consumed by a wide range of emotions that stemmed from all kinds of stress—everything from young kids, to finances, to fear of the unknown, to loneliness, dating, and of course, a broken heart. As hard as that was, I can’t imagine getting divorced during Coronavirus.
Today, during this bizarre and scary time of Coronavirus (COVID-19), I was thinking, how would I have felt getting divorced while trying to manage the stress of Coronavirus?
The added concerns of staying healthy, my kids’ health, and the effects of the virus on the economy might have sent me over the edge. Then again, maybe a person gets so wrapped up in their divorce that this world issue is further from their mind than the average person. Maybe everyone’s different.
I don’t know exactly how I would have felt getting divorced during Coronavirus, but here are some things to think about.
First, if things are really heated between you and your ex, this may have to be a time for a cease-fire. Think about this. Your ex is just as scared as you, he or she is just as upset about health, health of the kids, and the economy. The fear of the unknown is hurting everyone.
I’m not saying you should forget about what he or she did to you (or is doing to you), and I’m not saying you have to be best friends. But during this time of such uncertainty, maybe just let the anger go, and show your kids that you are united in the fact that safety is your number one priority. When this is all over, you can go back to hating his guts. Or, maybe a softness and not focusing so much on petty stuff will become permanent in your relationship.
Secondly, under the circumstances, maybe try not to be so regimented with the visitation schedules. Maybe your ex is working from home and has time to take your kids for more time than usual. What’s so wrong with that? If the kids like it, that’s one small positive in all of this horrible stuff.
Also, let’s talk about how important patience is at a time like this. Anyone getting divorced wants their divorce to be finalized as soon as possible, right? We wish we could go to court yesterday to get this effing divorce behind us. Well, getting divorced during Coronavirus, (COVID-19) might have you waiting even longer.
Divorce attorneys’ offices, mediators’ offices, and the courts might end up closing and further delaying your case. So, exercising patience is a good thing right now. It sucks. I get it. I understand your frustration. But, it’s not in your control.
The thing is, no one knows what’s going to happen and honestly, I feel like I’m living in a bad dream. I’m really scared. And truly, isn’t that how people feel during a divorce? But as my 81 year-old mom says, “This too shall pass…” and that comforts me.
But before this passes, my strategy is to take each day as it comes. Tackle the things I can control, and try not to worry too much about what I can’t. Learn to slow down and to accept that you can’t be as efficient as you would normally be. Certain things are unavailable to all of us right now. Try to deal with disappointments—like cancelled trips, social events or work opportunities by appreciating little things, like more time with the kids, being home more, and just slowing down.
Like the stock market that seemed to be roaring upwards at a fast pace, that’s what our lives have been like for a long, long time. Maybe during this time, this very difficult and scary time, it’s time to take things slowly, sit and read, laugh with others in the comfort of your home, look through old photo albums, journal, meditate, do yoga on your living room rug, or Facetime with your BFF while having a glass of wine.
COVID-19 won’t last too long, and neither will your divorce. Get through both journeys by living in the present, doing what you can to enjoy your day and feel productive, and looking at the future in a hopeful, happy way.
In closing, please pray for anyone who gets the virus, that they recover as quickly as possible. In the meantime, take care of yourself and your kids. I know this is added stress that is contributing to your already painful time. God is with you. You’re going to be fine when it comes to both things.
My (reluctant) house sale, (reluctant) divorce and all my social plans to distract myself from the divorce sh1t are on hold thanks to this virus. It’s hard not to feel personally affronted but as this is a global pandemic, it’s important to keep it all in perspective and know that it WILL all be over eventually. Deep breaths everyone, walk in the fresh air when you can … and remember you are a goddess and he is a shmuck!
Today was supposed to be the day I got divorced. Finally free. Monday I got a call and now it’s in May. My ex is a diagnosed Narcissist who is abusive to me and our kids and is currently under investigation for child abuse. And yesterday I got a call that our appointment with CPS/Cares is postponed indefinitely. In the meantime, the monster gets to see the kids until CPS makes their decision. Sending our son home with bruises isn’t enough. Our house is in foreclosure because he cut me and the kids off financially. And I’m in the high risk group because of my cancer. He refuses to talk to me, the kids, his parents for over a year. Just hate. How I wish Covid19 were my biggest concern.
Mine is supposed to happen in a little over two weeks. I was to make the last payment to the attorney and now I can’t afford it. My spouse is an undiagnosed narcissist as well. To choose between paying the attorney or having finances during this time. Hard choice, but I agree… this too shall pass.
Married for 10 very happy years my wife fell ill with depression 3 years ago, subsequently cheated on me 2 years ago and suddenly became very toxic. I tried to reconcile for a year but couldn’t deal with it anymore so a year ago we separated. I am still going through a court process to gain more custody of my two beautiful children which in itself is very stressful.. and then coronavirus hits.
However – my bubble has already burst – my beautiful family life with my then beautiful caring wife, my two children and a 4 bedroom house in the countryside with the sweet smell of roses and children laughing in the sunshine – that bubble has burst and for the past six months at least I have very much been dealing with reality.
The interesting thing is, Coronavirus is very much likely to take my home, my income and the future that I thought I had secured through hard work in my job and the relentless hard work I put in at home to ensure my wife and children were always happy, contented and provided for..
The fact is, my divorce was already taking that. I had prepared myself a few months ago to lose everything – and I do mean everything; [children] through my wife dictating the limited time I can now spend with them along with parental alienation and the archaic law system that still leans towards the mother, [house and home] due to split of assets [income] due to the most ridiculous of child maintenance equations calculated by the CMS which regardless of the mothers income, is solely taken on the fathers gross income….
So I am already very well prepared for this to happen, at least mentally and coronavirus is just another way in which that may well happen.
I have no idea what will happen in the next few months – I may lose everything and end up homeless – I may recover from the economic effects of coronavirus but still lose everything in divorce and through my soon to be toxic ex.
What both divorce and coronavirus has taught me though so far is that nobody can take away ‘me’ – through all of this I have stayed strong, stayed healthy, focused on just doing the next right thing – and if I come out of it with nothing I will hold my head high and still do the next right thing. staying positive is key.
As for my two beautiful children – my ability to stay positive in such difficult and uncertain times, and by doing the next right thing, they have already seen this in me and their respect for me grows each day I do get to see them, and to me, that is the only thing of importance regardless of money, homes, wives, status & pride. Happiness comes from within.
Stay positive, what will be will be – but above all, do what is right.
I think your attitude is amazing, I hope you don’t lose anything.