Whether you were married or not, you had a plan! You were supposed to be parents together for your children! You were supposed to raise them together, make decisions together, and be there for each other and for the kids.
Now you're not.
My co-parent and I had plans for after our divorce. We were not going to be co-parents who fought, argued, or put each other through hell. We were going to be there for the kids.
Then it changed.
Are you in the same boat? Did you have plans like this? Are they gone now? It sucks.
Let's talk about it for a bit. Let's get through it together. Here's my list of ways to get through it:
- Be angry. It's ok. Anger gets a bad rap, but it's a perfectly normal emotion to have. In fact, in this case, it's a justified emotion to have. You have my permission to be angry about this! Here's the trick, though, you cannot let the anger come out in communication with your co-parent. That brings us to the next step.
- Figure out a way to manage your anger. After you go through these steps, anger will subside, but it'll come back, too. Figure out what works for you. A song, a walk, writing, a workout, quiet space, candles, whatever it is, make sure you use it.
- Grieve. The loss of the plans you had is something to grieve over. This means starting over! You had it all figured out and now you have to simply trash those plans and start over? No, I don't think so. Take the time to grieve what you had planned, then move onto the last step.
- Make new plans. This is acceptance part. Accept that what you had is gone, but it's not the end. It's a new beginning, so take the lesson learned in this and make a new plan. It's not ideal, but it is reality. How do you make the best of the situation.
That's it, those are my tips for moving on with grace. It's not a magic pill to bring back the plans that are gone, I can't give you that. It is a step towards happiness, though. When you're stuck in the anger that comes with the loss of what you had, you can't be happy. This is propelling you forward.
How do you move on? Share your tips in the comments below.