One of the most difficult things for me to admit was that I was going through a divorce. Initially, I sought out support from people who had never experienced it. They were my friends and I’m certain they honestly thought all the things they said to me would help. But it really made things worse for me. This is partly because while they were sympathetic to my situation, they couldn’t emphathize with it. They didn’t know what it was like to be torn apart from a unit. Sure many will argue that if you’ve experienced a breakup, you should be able to handle a divorce. But I had been through several breakups and nothing compared to the feeling of losing a spouse.
My minister recommended that I join a Christian support group, Divorcecare, which was dedicated to helping people heal from divorce and separation in a healthy way. While living in MS, I took his advise. On my first visit, I was completely nervous. I didn’t know what to truly expect. To my surprise, there were men and women. For some reason, I didn’t think there were men who wanted their marriages to work. Nor, did I think about the fact that men suffer from a divorce or separation also. As the facilitator started to talk about the program I began to feel more at ease. The first step was to state your name and admit that you were going through a divorce or separation. There were so many emotions that poured out from just the first step. There were some who cried, some who smiled, and some who chose not to say it yet. But for those who couldn’t admit it, there was no pressure. It’s a difficult thing to admit. But because it consisted of people who were going through it, the pain seemed a little lessened for me.
It was a 12 week program. Each session consisted of discussions on footage from real people in various phases of the divorce/separation. In addition to the discussion at the meetings, there were assignments for us to take home and complete before the following meeting. While the program was 12 weeks, you’re not expected to be completely healed by its conclusion. But they provide you with a tools and the group support that makes you aware that you’re not alone. It’s really what I needed to know.
When you’re going through divorce, it’s important to understand that you’re not the only one. Divorcecare was the place that those who were going through divorce/separation could meet and help each other cope, free from speculation and embarrassment. And because it’s a Christian-based support group, you’re provided with scriptures of encouragement to also ease the pain. It was a refuge for me, because when I expressed what I was feeling I wasn’t being told to just get over it. The people there empathized with me. They didn’t uphold me in my wrongs, but did admit that the feelings I had were ones they once felt. The men in the program shared their feelings, which was truly enlightening. It was great to get a man’s perspective on the subject.
There’s so much greatness and beauty in the support group. I contribute a great portion of my healing success to the support group. We cried together. We laughed together. We checked on each other throughout the week. I actually took the program twice. And it was even better the second time around. I was able to share more freely with new members and be an even greater supporter. I highly recommend this support group. For more information about it, go to www.divorcecare.com. You will be able to find your local support group, and the dates/times they meet. The program is completely confidential, so you don’t have to worry about what you share being discussed outside of the program. God bless you in your healing endeavors.