Coping with Depression
Photo Courtesy of Pixabay
By: Daniel Sherwin
Though getting a divorce is seemingly effortless these days, the trials and tribulations of separation are anything but, wreaking havoc on the lives of everyone involved, including your children. However, life doesn’t have to full of despair. Here are some ways to cope with the ups and downs of divorce and manage melancholy as a newly single parent.
It’s Ok to Be Sad
According to Harvard Health, depression can result in unstable mood imbalances to a stressful life event. Divorce can also trigger melancholia because it’s a huge deal to lose someone you’ve once loved, which can also affect your quality of life once that person is no longer there. Additionally, if you have children, the task of managing their emotions, trying to hold it together and maintaining a sense of normalcy can trigger symptoms of stress, which also causes a breakdown in how you respond to your circumstance, known as situational depression.
SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder can also be rampant coming out of the winter months and can even affect those with normal emotional health. Watch for signs such as heavy feeling in arms and legs, excessive sleeping and certain foods that lead to weight gain, as these can also hurt your mood. Engage in a supportive group or surround yourself with supportive family and friends can help to take your mind off of the negativity of what’s happening. To further deter symptoms associated with SAD, make sure to get plenty of exercises, vitamin D, and proper nutrition as the weather gets warmer, which will help to counteract any feelings of gloom.
There’s no time quite like after a hard divorce to surround yourself with those you love most, whether it’s family or friends. Though many couples never rekindle their friendships, it’s essential you at least attempt to get along as a healthy means of getting over a traumatic experience, such as divorce. If you have children together, maintaining a level of cohesiveness can also lessen the challenges of co-parenting.
Children can be one of the biggest causes of stress within a marriage, according to Good Therapy, and even if you are no longer together, it’s essential that you learn to accept what has taken place so that you may move forward productively. Keeping this idea in mind will prove to be especially beneficial when the stresses of family life can take hold.
Make up a game plan of how you will co-parent, so things run along smoothly. Never make your children decide with whom they want to spend the majority of their time. Avoid vilifying the other parent in front of the child and make sure that your children spend equal time with both parents so they may maintain a healthy, loving relationship.
Consider the Children
Encouraging honesty and open community will undoubtedly help your children work through their troubles, which can also benefit you too. Talk to your children about what is going on and what is to come. However, a small child may not comprehend such relationships, so take care to explain any questions he or she may have.
Just because you are divorced doesn’t mean you should also miss out on fun. In fact, this may bring you out of your slump. Partake in neighborhood festivities, go for a bike ride, invite friends and family over for a fun party- all ways to help battle any depression and maintain pleasure and love within the family.
Keep in mind that the best gift you can give your children is kindness, patience, and love. Though finances tend to weaken after divorce, the special memories you can make with your kids will be what they can remember in years to come.
Though it can be tough for a newly divorced parent, it’s all about how you cultivate love and warmth. If you are coping with depression, keep these tips in mind to invite more joy into your life.