There is no such thing as a cure for a broken heart. No prescriptions or therapy can alleviate the excruciating pain you feel inside.
You will mourn for your tormented heart every single day as you constantly wish for the pain to go away. But no matter how hard you cry, the heartache just stays. And no matter how hard you try to forget, the burning memories remain.
Needless to say, every heartbreak is painful. More so when divorce is tagging along.
Divorce brings an indescribable sorrow and anxiety to broken couples. It’s not simply painful, it’s confusing and crushing. It’s the death of a marriage, the end of a dream you shared with your husband, a crippling challenge for you and your family.
But what if divorce is served while you’re pregnant?
Well, pregnancy is a great deal of happiness and pain rolled into 9 months. The mood swings, the body aches, the weight gain, and all the changes in a woman’s life make pregnancy challenging for every soon-to-be mom. Adding divorce to the mix is a hell of a punishment.
So, what do you do to cope with divorce while carrying an unborn child?
Do not Feel Guilty.
A woman’s role in a family stretches from nurturing her marriage to taking care of the whole kin. Though the husband has his own duties to take on, the responsibility of keeping the family together usually falls on the wife.
Further back in history, it was the women’s primary role to look after her kids and the home as men went hunting for food. Wives were left in their caves to cook, do chores, and keep children in safety while their husbands were off at work.
But although men and women’s roles in the family have changed drastically over centuries, wives are still left with a principal duty: to keep a safe and happy family. That is why when everything seems falling apart, women tend to blame themselves for the grief and suffering that each family member is going through.
A woman facing divorce often feels the same instinct. She starts feeling guilty about failing to keep her family intact. She doubts herself and her capability to be a good wife and a mother. She has all this guilt and doubt no matter what the reason for their divorce is.
Nevertheless, divorce makes women feel guilty. And throwing pregnancy hormones into the formula makes everything more difficult to handle.
Some wives who are dealing with divorce during pregnancy feel guilt over breaking up with their child’s father. They believe they are doing wrong by their children, as the babies would have to grow in a broken family when divorce is served.
However, an interesting insight from clinical psychologist and author Shoshanna Bennett should change this mindset. Bennett says that women need not feel guilty about moving on from an unhappy marriage because of the kids. In fact, children would be happier if they grow up with happy parents.
Therefore, if you are struggling with divorce while pregnant because of all the guilt you feel inside, it’s time you shrug it off. Do not feel guilty, and be happy instead. Your baby will be happier growing up with a happy and loving mom.
Take Care of Yourself.
Divorce plus pregnancy can throw you onto a rollercoaster ride of problems, but no matter how rough the situation gets, you have to take care of yourself and the baby. Your emotions are normally heightened at this stage and your mind and body are going through a lot.
Your heart aches every single night as your cramps gets worse every week. However, you have to be stronger and make yourself and the baby a priority despite all these pains.
Though divorce can be complicated, it is you and the unborn child that matter most. The growing baby inside you needs extra nutrition to support her/his growth and prevent complications. So, make sure that you eat a well-balanced diet and get enough rest and sleep.
Additionally, you need to take extra care of your emotional health. Your hormones can make you a little crazy during pregnancy, but you must resist the temptation to give in to loneliness by thinking happy and positive thoughts.
Your terrible past in your marriage may be hunting you right now, but whenever it presents itself, shove it away by listening to your favorite music, watching a movie, cooking or baking, and doing anything that can make you happy. Never let yourself drown in sorrows.
It will surely be difficult to move on from a bad marriage, but just look at the brighter side of it. Soon, your child will be born who’ll give you a new light of hope. Focus on that and everything should turn out well for you.
Find a Support Group.
Having a support system increases an individual’s level of well-being. For pregnant women going through a divorce, accepting help and counseling from people who understand and support them is imperative.
Breaking up is hard to do. What if you’re breaking up with the father of the child you are currently carrying inside your womb? Needless to say, mothers who are in this terrible situation need better coping skills and a healthier lifestyle.
But in face of all the pressures and anxieties brought about by divorce and pregnancy, it would be hard for women to overcome the pains and struggles alone. That’s why it is highly recommended for wives to seek a support groups that will listen and provide honest feedback.
Studies revealed that having a social and emotional support system can be protective for health. It can reduce depression and anxiety and lowers the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Having said that, a support group is definitely beneficial for a pregnant woman undergoing a stressful life change. It makes her feel less lonely and helps her improve her coping skills by openly communicating her thoughts and feelings. It also helps her gain a new sense of hope and gives her a big boost of empowerment and confidence, which are important in facing her life challenges.
See a Therapist.
If you can’t find a support group that can help, go and seek counseling. Counseling provides the same benefits you get from a support system, but sometimes, personal therapy works better than a support group.
Support groups can be disruptive at times because of some of their members. Confidentiality is not ensured, and giving or receiving unsound medical advice is highly likely. If this is the case in your support group, you can instead inquire professional help from a divorce therapist or counselor.
A licensed counselor underwent extensive training to provide professional aid to individuals who need it. They are legally tied to client confidentiality, which is observed as a requirement for all mental health professionals. Their fundamental goal is to help clients while ensuring that their right to privacy is protected and that everything that is communicated in therapy remains confidential.
Therefore, you can trust that all the worries and problems you share with a professional therapist will only be between the two of you. You won’t have to bother about your issues going public and you are assured that none of your conversations will be relayed to other people without your consent.
Additionally, professional therapists have a mastery of how to handle personal and health problems. So, you are sure to get sound medical advice backed up by science, research and studies.
Find a Good Lawyer.
Making the decision to split up with your husband is one of the many complicated steps to gaining your singlehood back. You have to get a good lawyer that can guide you through the process.
According to Divorcemag, it is anticipated that emotions of betrayal, depression, rage, confusion, and resignation will intensify during a divorce process. All of these can be a hindrance for spouses in working productively to finish the case the soonest time possible.
Moreover, such heightened feelings are all unhealthy and too confusing for a pregnant woman, which can make her vulnerable and weak. That is why hiring a good lawyer who can keep a clear and sound judgment about divorce terms is highly recommended for women going through a divorce while pregnant.
Having a good lawyer at your side is also beneficial for your well-being. Like a counselor, a lawyer can help you keep your emotions in check when your emotions are running high.
A good lawyer should be able to protect your case from yourself as well. He/she can make sure that you do not do anything that can sabotage your case because of your heightened emotions.
Lastly, with a good lawyer by your side, you won’t have to write and file a mountain of paperwork. You don’t have to stay up late at night to finish studying the papers and submit them the next day. All of these will be done by your lawyer, and all you need to do is review them.
Coping with divorce while pregnant is not for the faint of the heart. It requires patience, courage, and a hundred percent determination.
It entails sleepless nights of emotional torment and figuring out how to divide your properties and child custody. Who gets to keep the first car you bought together as husband and wife? Is the dog staying with you or your ex-husband? Then, there come your Braxton Hicks contractions as well as your leg cramps and headaches.
But all of these are worth your struggles once the divorce process is over. You’ll get the opportunity to reset your life and put all the marital distress you had behind. And the most exciting part is, you’ll have a tiny baby to love and care for, who’ll be your hope to a new and better life ahead.