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4 Common Reactions Among People Who Are Getting Divorced
Not all people who get divorced react the same. There are several acceptable - but not necessarily healthy – ways to respond to divorce. You should get an idea of some of the most common reactions, and decide if you have displayed any of this behavior during divorce.
People in denial think the divorce will never actually happen, even after their spouse tells them they want out of the marriage. They think some counseling or simply some extra TLC will stop the divorce, which is why they do not hire a lawyer or tell anyone what is going on. Meanwhile, their spouse is way ahead of them, having already hired a lawyer and on their way to moving out.
The Victim Mentality
Some people take divorce harder than others, and they end up blaming it all on their spouse. They might cry, scream, and complain to anyone within earshot. While grieving is a normal part of the process, these people are more dramatic than most, and may whine to anyone who will listen, not just their friends and family. Sometimes this attitude seems warranted, such as after domestic violence or infidelity, but it can be hard for others to put up with for long.
Lack of Any Emotion
On the other side of the coin, there are those who accept the divorce a little too quickly. They try to be practical about things, and do not show any emotion throughout the process. Not only does the complete lack of feelings make people uncomfortable, but it can also lead to an unexpected blowup of emotion once the divorce is complete. Such people are not dealing with the divorce while it is going on, and all the feelings are bottled up until they are completely alone. Unless these people have simply seen the divorce coming for years, and therefore had time to come to terms with it, this kind of response is not healthy.
The Smug Attitude
This person is usually the one who initiated the divorce. Once the process is underway, people like this often act like they won a game and have gotten their desired ending. However, even when it seems like everything is going right for them, there are probably some emotions they are not dealing with. If they were, they would likely not be quite so happy since most people feel some amount of pain when ending a long relationship. It is normal to at least reminisce about happier times in your house as you pack your bags, and long for the better times in your marriage.
You probably know a few people with these attitudes, and perhaps you even have one of them. Many of these reactions to divorce are unhealthy, though they are common. If you feel like you have one of these attitudes, you should consider talking to someone about your feelings as you go through divorce. Even talking to friends about your emotions can help you deal with it in a healthy way.
As of October 2010, New York became the final state to enact no-fault divorce. Prior to October 2010, one (1) spouse would have to invoke grounds against the other, such as accusing the other of abandonment or cruel and inhuman treatment; or they could live separate and apart for one (1) year or more based on a written separation agreement filed with the court. There are several different New York Grounds for Divorce.
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