The term ‘good divorce’ is an interesting phrase and, in some ways, it is contradictory. A natural precursor to a divorce is the fact that a relationship has broken down. This can increase tension, especially when faced with legal proceedings.
The idea of a good divorce is to try and reduce conflict between the parties and the impact it has on children and the wider family. The ultimate goal is for parties to come out the other side of the relationship breakdown amicably, with respect for each other, putting their children’s needs first, and limiting the overall impact of the breakdown on their children and the family.
29th November 2021 saw the start of Good Divorce Week, an annual campaign organized by Resolution. The main initiative of this year’s campaign is to raise awareness about how parents can embrace a child-focused approach to divorce and separation.
Through my work as a therapist working through family law firms, there is now more information and options than ever before on how to reduce the negative effect of a divorce.
Situational stability is the first call when working through the family dynamic but a missed step is making sure mental health stability is achieved for all family members. If one person is left struggling mentally after the divorce then the long-term impact tends to strike back at a later date. Common examples of this is when children hit the age of 13-16 and release anger which is anchored to divorce-specific emotional neglect.
There are a few structured protocols when it comes to clearing mental health matters relating to divorce, they do get cleared with help. Ideally the thought process towards the mental impact should be assessed prior to the ‘Good Divorce’ implications kicking in. The root cause of the biggest pains after divorce is people being left with the question ‘why did a [certain person] do a [certain something]?’ If you are no longer on good terms with the person then you are left to your own assumptions which can lead to a mental health breakdown.
It’s a hard topic amongst our Asian community to discuss openly and therefore the pain people go through in silence is immense. Modern-day approaches are in place to help people but there is a lack of awareness and a negative perspective on divorce which leaves people not talking to the right people.
Feel free to reach out to me with regards to mental wellbeing around divorce or dysfunctional family situations. I’ll be happy to answer any questions.
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