The Power of Divorce Support Groups

divorce support groups

By Leah Hadley, AFC, CDFA, MAFF, Divorce Mediator

Do you ever wonder if there’s a shortcut to navigating the challenging and difficult journey of divorce? If there’s a hidden secret to achieving a happily ever after in a post-divorce life? If you’re curious, allow me to share some enlightening insights that may not have crossed your mind:  divorce support groups.

Gone are the days when divorce was shrouded in shame and secrecy. In today’s society, where the divorce rate among Americans ranges from 40% to 50% for first marriages and 65% to 70% for second marriages (depending on the study you consult), divorce has become as normalized as enjoying a slice of birthday cake. Interestingly, it seems that some individuals actually have more reservations about indulging in cake than they do regarding the topic of divorce itself. But I digress.

A Shortcut to Navigating the Emotional Stress of Divorce

Let me assure you, my friend, that there is indeed a shortcut to help navigate the emotional challenges of divorce. Divorce support groups can provide solace, understanding, and a sense of community during this transformative phase of life. Through shared experiences, compassionate guidance, and a network of fellow individuals who have endured similar journeys, you can find the support needed to heal and thrive beyond divorce.

So, if you’re seeking a path to healing amidst the pain, consider embracing the power of a divorce support group. It’s an opportunity to embark on a new chapter, discover personal growth, and ultimately find your way to a fulfilling life beyond the complexities of divorce.

Banding Together

With so many people finding themselves on the other side of the matrimony altar, it is no wonder that women especially (men do too, but in far lower numbers) have banded together to give voice to their pain and bolster each other through the difficult times during divorce. Many of us feel lost and isolated throughout the divorce process. Whether you are contemplating pulling the trigger, your spouse pulled the trigger, you are in the murky, muddy middle of the process, or even are on the other side of divorce with your head spinning, joining an online divorce support group may be just the thing to help you along the road to happiness.

Divorce Support Groups Provide Emotional Support

Remember when you were 14, and the boy you loved with all your heart told you he was going out now with the new girl in school, and he just wanted to be friends with you? Remember the great relief you felt in letting all of the heartbreak out while sobbing on your best friend’s shoulder in the sanctuary of her bedroom? How it was even better when a few other besties joined in to listen to you and helped you plot your revenge? Divorce support groups serve the same purpose without the revenge component (usually).

 

Intentional Divorce Solutions - Leah Hadley

 

This is now grown-up grief, but the concept is the same. There is comfort and healing when sharing your pain with others, especially when they are in the same or similar situation. A divorce support group is a nonjudgemental place where you can safely express your jumble of emotions, begin sorting through them, discover commonalities with other group members, and, most importantly, move forward. You can gain new perspectives from others dealing with the same sorts of issues, and this can also help you look at things differently and find ways to move forward.

Divorce support groups provide empathy and validation, letting you know that what you are going through is normal. Making the experience normal is hugely important, as now you know that you are not the only one going through this. Others can share how they dealt with, or continue to deal with, the many aspects of divorce that are inherent to this journey. Fear of the unknown? Everyone raises their hands. Overwhelmed with the paperwork? All hands raised. Guilt over choosing your happiness over keeping the spouse calm? Check. Feeling like this will never end, with all the delays? Yep. Confusion over entering this brand new phase of your life? Welcome to the club. You are not alone!

Validation and Empowerment

As mentioned before, divorce support groups can have a profound impact on your healing journey. Not only do they provide validation for your feelings, but joining one of these groups also reassures you that what you’re experiencing is completely normal, given the circumstances. By listening to others’ experiences, you forge a deep connection and draw strength from witnessing how they navigate the various stressors that come with divorce.

In this safe space, there is so much to gain from each other. Sharing your strategies, triumphs, and even setbacks feels liberating. It’s equally inspiring to witness the creativity and perseverance of others as they overcome the challenges dealt by their exes. Some may even appear as if they’ve survived a zombie apocalypse, but their mere presence in the group is a testament to their resilience.

For those who are currently struggling to get out of bed and fulfill their daily responsibilities, it’s a lifeline to know that hope exists. Imagine knowing that two other group members have been exactly where you are this week and have managed to survive. Picture three other members who have mastered the art of preparing lunches the night before, allowing them to focus on ensuring each kid has the correct backpack in the morning. This knowledge empowers you with the certainty that you, too, will not only survive this challenging time but also thrive.

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed and uncertain about the future, remember that you’re not alone. A divorce support group can provide the support, guidance, and community you need to navigate this chapter of your life with strength and resilience.

Others have been through the fire and are sharing their stories with you now, right when you need it the most. When it is your time to share your victories, that is a feeling that can carry you through the next week. Just in time for the next group. You are not alone.

Information and Resources

Support groups provide an invaluable platform for individuals to share vital information and resources. Within these groups, members can offer valuable tips on finding top-notch attorneys, share effective coping skills, provide insightful parenting advice, and exchange other timely gems of knowledge. Moreover, support groups serve as a gateway to a wealth of connections with trusted professionals, including attorneys, mental health professionals, and financial advisors, to name a few. In addition to this, participants can freely exchange helpful books, articles, or other relevant materials, all for the greater good. Remember, you don’t have to face it all on your own when support groups are there to lend a helping hand.

Online Support Group for Divorce

The great thing about technology is that it has opened up new avenues for support during difficult times, such as divorce. Intentional Divorce Solutions understands that attending a support group in person can be challenging, which is why we now offer online divorce support groups, conveniently conducted via Zoom.

With our online divorce support groups, you no longer have to worry about finding parking or spending time on travel. You can join from the comfort of your own home, wearing whatever makes you feel most comfortable. All you need is the desire to connect with others who are going through similar experiences and an hour of your time.

Support groups are truly invaluable when it comes to navigating the complexities of divorce and finding your way to a more stable and fulfilling future. At Intentional Divorce Solutions, we believe that no one should have to go through this journey alone.

We offer online divorce support groups for both women and men, providing a safe and non-judgmental space to openly discuss your challenges. If you’re interested in joining our online support group, please reach out to us. We are here to support you during this transformative time in your life. Remember, you have nothing to lose and so much to gain.

Leah Hadley
Leah Hadley, AFC®, CDFA®, MAFF®, Divorce Mediator, Founder, Intentional Divorce Solutions

As the Founder of Intentional Divorce Solutions (formerly known as Great Lakes Divorce Financial Solutions) and Great Lakes Investment Management, Leah Hadley is committed to guiding clients to financial independence through thoughtful and strategic planning.

An influential voice in the financial community, Leah is a sought-after speaker and expert in overcoming financial setbacks and navigating the financial complexities of divorce. She’s a frequent guest on podcasts and has contributed her insights to numerous books and online platforms. Leah is also the author of “When It’s Just Not Working: A Practical Divorce Guide for Stay-At-Home Moms.” At the heart of her practice, Leah finds genuine satisfaction in empowering her clients to achieve their most heartfelt financial goals. 

In her leisure time, she enjoys reading, hiking, and spending quality time with her husband, three children, and three dogs.  

Professional Credentials:

  • Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC)
  • Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA)
  • Master Analyst in Financial Forensics (MAFF)
  • Collaboratively trained Financial Neutral
  • Mediator trained through an Ohio Supreme Court-approved program with 100+ hours of continuing education in alternative dispute resolution

Professional Associations:

  • Member, Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts (IDFA)
  • Member, National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts (NACVA)
  • Member, Association for Financial Counseling & Planning Education (AFCPE)
  • Membership Chair, Center for Principled Family Advocacy

Director of Corporate Partnerships, National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) Cleveland Chapter

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