Making Completions After a Divorce
By Susie and Otto Collins
As difficult as the breakup of your marriage was and as
eager as you might be to feel good about your life again,
you could be having a difficult time getting over your
No matter how hurt you felt and how betrayed you might have
been by your ex, it may be that you are still holding on to
the relationship that recently ended.
You are possibly continuing to grieve your marriage and the
good times you two might have shared long ago.
Even if you can only remember pain and betrayal when you
think about this past relationship, the intensity of your
make your breakup seem present rather than past.
Dan would like nothing more than to finally move on after
his divorce from Shannon. When Dan thinks back to the years
they shared, he mostly remembers the pain he felt when he
discovered she'd been cheating.
Her betrayal seemed to blot out the happier times they spent
But for some reason Dan can't seem to let go of his ended
marriage and the hurt of Shannon's affair. He sees other
people who have gone through divorces and how they pick up
the pieces of their lives and begin to feel happy again and
even start new relationships.
He'd like to follow a similar healing path but something
always holds him back.
Sometimes people hold on to a past marriage because it's
been what they've known for a period of time.
As difficult and even unhealthy as your ended relationship
might have been, it was your reality and way of being-- it
was the "norm" for you even if you were dissatisfied.
Clinging to the false "comfort" of what you've known seems
somehow safer to some people. To turn toward this new life
as a single person-- possibly a single parent-- may feel
unnerving and even scary because of all of the unknown
Explore what's still unresolved about your divorce.
There might also be unresolved issues for you about your
Perhaps you would like to gain a better understanding of
what led your partner to have an affair, for example.
Or it could be that you don't feel like you had a chance to
honestly communicate your feelings about what happened.
Go within and ask yourself if there are any unresolved
issues you'd like to act upon. Getting a clear idea of the
completions you need to make can be helpful in releasing the
pain and the hold of the past.
If you aren't sure what is still unresolved for you, find a
quiet space and tune into your feelings about your ex, your
past relationship and the divorce.
When you notice yourself tense up or you reach a "tender
spot" in your emotions, stop and explore what's true for
Inquire within to find out what needs to happen so that you
can make a completion about this topic.
Dan feels like he wasn't completely honest with Shannon as
they went through their breakup and divorce. He was in such
shock to find out she'd been cheating, he couldn't formulate
words to match his emotions.
Now that some time has passed, Dan would like to be able to
share with her how it felt for him.
He doesn't want to make Shannon feel guilty and he isn't
interested in getting back together again with her.
would like to tell her face-to-face how it felt for him to
discover her infidelity and to go through ending their
Move toward making completions.
When you are more aware of what's unresolved for you, choose
one thing upon which you will take action.
recommending that you impulsively call up your ex and
unleash your anger about the divorce.
Instead, we advise you to decide one step toward making a
completion that will truly serve you.
Dan knows that he still harbors a lot of anger toward
Shannon about the affair. He doesn't think it will really
help him feel better to scream and yell at her-- even though
a part of him wants to do that.
So Dan finds some ways to release his anger that don't hurt
himself or another.
Next, Dan writes a letter to Shannon in which he tells her
how hurt and devastated he felt by her actions.
mainly on his feelings and self-perceptions and less on
guessing what she might have felt or thought at the time of
the affair and their breakup.
At this point Dan feels confident that he can read or
paraphrase this letter to Shannon.
He also knows that even if she won't agree to meet and
listen to him, just writing out his feelings and practicing
reading the letter have been a huge release.
Keep yourself focused on your ultimate goal. It's not to get
even with your mate. And it's not to make him or her feel as
bad or hurt as you might have felt (or still feel).
Your ultimate goal can be to resolve and make completions
about your past and experience a sense of release and
From there you can continue to move toward feeling better