Guide to Divorce Counseling
Seeking a divorce is never a decision couples take lightly. If you are considering divorce or have recently divorced, you may be feeling intense emotions of grief, sadness, or anger. Your children may have started behaving differently, even destructively. You may feel like you don't recognize yourself, your spouse, or your children. For parents and kids having a hard time coping with the effects of a divorce, divorce counseling may be a solution. This guide will help you understand if you or your children may need counseling, and what kind of counseling you can likely find in your local area.
Do I Need Divorce Counseling?
You may be experiencing many emotions surrounding your divorce: sadness, anger, guilt, relief, or even joy can all be part of the process of healing from the dissolution of your marriage. However, some people react in a way that begins to impact their job performance or abilities as a parent, and if you find yourself exhibiting these reactions, you may need counseling.
If you find yourself exhibiting signs of depression (including sadness, a feeling that you can't go on, obsessive thoughts about the divorce, or suicidal thoughts or actions), you should make sure to get divorce counseling as soon as possible. Depression is a serious mental illness that can make you and the people around you miserable—and it's very much treatable and manageable for most people with counseling and medical care.
You may also be experiencing extreme anxiety or fears. These fears may not, at first glance, even seem related to the divorce. If you have experienced anxiety or panic attacks soon after your divorce, divorce counseling may be an option that can help you get your life back.
Does My Child Need Divorce Counseling?
Spouses aren't the only ones going through extreme emotional stress when a divorce happens. Children commonly need divorce counseling when their parents split up. Many times, children may act up as a result of divorce, resulting in strained relationships with parents, a reduction in the quality of their schoolwork, and alienation from their peers.
Your child may need divorce counseling if their behavior suggests that they are angry or sad over your divorce, especially if these feelings have been taking over your child's life at home and in school. It is important to remember that children and adolescents sometimes need someone to talk to who isn't one of their parents parents, as children may feel like a divorce is a personal betrayal.
What Kinds of Divorce Counseling Are Available?
Both individual and group sessions of divorce counseling are available for spouses and their children. Support groups and group therapy can be inexpensive options for people who primarily just need to be able to express their conflicting emotions in a safe space with other people going through similar problems.
Individual counseling is important for children or adults who are having intense psychological problems. Getting divorce counseling one-on-one from a trained professional can help to alleviate depressive or anxious symptoms and give you coping strategies for dealing with your fears or problems.