Hillary Rodham Clinton once said, “It takes a village to raise a child.”
Abigail Trafford claims “It takes two to get married, but you get divorced by yourself.”
I believe it takes a village to get divorced.
Here’s my list of the supporting cast necessary to help you through divorce, or any major life crisis:
CHILDREN. If they still live at home and are under 18, their very presence is life-affirming. One sweet hug can heal a day’s worth of pain. If they are adult, they can provide an ear to what only they will truly understand: the dynamic between their parents.
FAMILY. There is nothing as deeply bolstering as the support of loving family members.
FRIENDS. The gift of friendship, insanely unbalanced support, and humor while navigating the turmoil of divorce is like finding a well in the desert.
MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS. Whether it’s your doctor, dentist, or acupuncturist, they can be a literal life-line to health and wellness through a physically trying time.
ALTERNATIVE HEALTH PRACTITIONERS. A massage therapist, Reiki practitioner, yoga teacher, or meditation master can be invaluable as you sift through your relationship with yourself and your Higher Power.
PSYCHOTHERAPIST OR COUNSELOR. If you are lucky enough to get a knowledgeable and compassionate therapist you will have an extra dimension of support and guidance.
ACCOUNTANT. Getting your financial house in order is crucial to feeling secure.
CLERGY. If you are lucky enough to have a Priest, Rabbi, Imam, or Minister with whom you feel safe, meet with them. They can offer some extra sanity and perspective.
MATRIMONIAL LAWYER, OR MEDIATOR. A necessary part of the divorce process, unless you are so amicable you can do everything yourselves online.
COMMUNITY. Whether it’s your gym buddies, fellow congregants at your house of worship, or seeing the same people every morning at Starbucks, feeling part of your community will ground you differently from anything else. If you have been struggling with an addiction, this is the time to try a 12-step program. Immersion in a community of people who can understand your particular demons, will support you like nothing else.
STRANGERS. Will Rogers once said, “Strangers are friends I haven’t met yet.” Every anonymous smile, whether at the grocery store, library, or on the street is worth its weight in gold. The gentle openness of a stranger renews your faith in humanity, reinvigorating your optimism for a better life ahead.
Copyright Nicole S. Urdang