When couples divorce they may experience more than the loss of their primary relationship. Also many of the friends which they had as a married couple may also be lost. It is not uncommon for those who have gone through a traumatic divorce to find that it also has affected many other relationships in their life. This may include your partner’s family but also may involve friends that you believed you had in common, who begin to drift away. Some divorcees begin to wonder how important they are to these friends, and are often confused by strained emotional responses to their desire to maintain a friendship.
After divorce we may reach the conclusion that we are not as important to certain friends as our ex-partner is, even though we may hold those relationships in high esteem. It is important to recognise that these feelings may also happen to ourselves. After divorce you may no longer care for someone who used to be an important part of your social life.
During a person’s life-time we adjust and change the importance of the significant relationships in our lives. We grow closer to some for a while, and then we may drift away from them.
In contrast there are those friends who do care but find it increasingly difficult to express the importance you have to them. This may be in part due to poor communication skills or they may lack the courage to show their feelings. It does take someone who has a good understanding of the importance of relationships to recent divorcees, to express that ‘I do care and understand that you are now feeling alone in the world.’
As recent divorcees we all walk a fine line of either talking to much about the separation, or not talking at all. We may need to reach a happy balance where we acknowledge that we are experiencing a difficult and emotionally challenging time in our life. Talking helps our close friends understand what is happening, and then they can make the choice if they want to be supportive or distant during this time.
If you are experiencing emotional difficulties after divorce then therapy may assist you.
Christopher Swane - Relationship Counselling And Psychotherapy - Wellington New Zealand