Bitter divorces hit front page this week and I keep thinking about the aftermath. To couples that reach a quick amicable divorce, I applaud you. For the rest of us, it’s rough, exhausting, and sucks. Usually, divorce results from years (or 72 days) of an inability to compromise, so why would people become agreeable just because you agreed to divorce? If you insist on hanging on to prove you’re right, take your crazy sweet time. If you bore children, you need to suck it up and move beyond the divorce to prove that upending the children’s lives was “worth it.” I don’t mean by bad-mouthing the other parent. Contain the emotional pain and start growing immediately.
This week a horrible divorce went tragically wrong, leaving children without parents. According to lawyers, friends, and family quoted in the articles, the divorce dragged through court for years. If they think the kids weren’t affected – that’s malarkey. You may not bad-mouth your ex to the kids, but it shows in other ways. Sadly it appears that things were bad enough that restraining orders extended to the exes’ families.
I have the advantage of sharpened hindsight and six years of advice learned, yet the taste of how crazy divorce gets lingers. I remember some days felt so ridiculous when both redefine boundaries yet nobody respects them. I refused to speak about them hoping that they’d lose power, fueling healing instead.
I didn’t know them, two sides exist for any story, and they’re not here to defend themselves nor share what they wanted. What the kids really want should be the focus now. I am angry that the father put having the last word above all else. It bothers me that this ending doesn’t bring closure. This immediately threatened to roll into another war as the families continue battling trying to “win”. Haven’t the kids endured enough? Drawing this out because both families hurt more than humanly imaginable and want to blame each other will not make either side feel better. The kids need help learning how to live with this for the rest of their lives, but they deserve the chance to start the healing now – protect the kids.