Divorce is a difficult time for everyone involved. Emotions run rampant, decisions are tough to make, and the entire process can feel overwhelming. One of the most important aspects of navigating divorce is taking care of your mental health. However, seeking mental health support during divorce is often met with stigma and misunderstanding, leading many to avoid help altogether. In this article, we will explore why seeking mental health support during divorce is essential and give tips on how to overcome the stigma.
Divorce and Mental Health
Divorce is a significant life event that often leads to a range of emotional responses, such as grief, anger, and anxiety. Experts affirm that approximately 20% of individuals who go through a divorce experience major depression or anxiety. Additionally, individuals experiencing divorce may struggle with adjusting to changes in their day-to-day routines, finances, and social supports. All of these factors can contribute to the development of mental health issues.
Moreover, the stress stemming from divorce may interfere with one’s ability to function in daily life. It could affect their job performance, their ability to take care of their children or themselves, and result in difficulty sleeping, eating, or exercising. As a result, seeking mental health support can be highly beneficial both during and after the divorce process.
Overcoming the Stigma
Despite the huge benefits that engaging in mental health support during divorce can bring, it’s often accompanied by stigma. The societal view that pursuing mental health counseling is a sign of weakness or inability to cope with stress permeates many individuals’ thinking. This attitude makes it difficult for people to come forward and seek help, leading them to suffer in silence.
To overcome the stigma, start by understanding that mental health support is nothing to be ashamed about; it does not make you weak or inadequate. Instead, it acknowledges your bravery and strength in facing your problems and taking care of yourself. Other effective ways of dismantling the stigma around mental health support include opening up the conversation with a trusted confidant or a licensed therapist, educating oneself on mental health, and participating in advocacy events and projects.
Why Seeking Mental Health Support During Divorce is Essential
The value of mental health support during divorce cannot be overstated. By seeking counseling or therapy, it becomes easier to process the various emotional experiences that result from the end of a marriage. Therapy also provides individuals with a non-judgmental space to voice their feelings and receive guidance in navigating the countless life changes divorce presents.
Seeking mental health support during divorce boosts one’s coping skills and self-awareness by helping them to remain mindful of emotions and thoughts. With the help of counseling, individuals can develop positive coping mechanisms, create healthier perceptions of the future, and make healthier life choices. Most importantly, seeking support from licensed therapists and mental health professionals can significantly reduce the development of long-term mental health issues like depression, anxiety disorders, and PTSD.
In summary, divorce can be a difficult experience that can lead to mental health complications. However, seeking mental health support is an essential process that not only assists with better understanding one’s emotions but also equips individuals with the tools to manage their emotions healthily. Overcoming the stigma that comes with seeking a mental health professional’s help is an important step in prioritizing your wellness during the divorce process. So, if you’re encountering challenges related to mental health issues during or after a divorce, know that you are not alone, and there is help available.