Divorce can hit you like a ton of bricks. You know divorce is common, but you never thought it would happen to you. Now that you’re here, you may be feeling alone and unsure of how to pick up the pieces.
Talking to friends and family can help, but you may be apprehensive about opening up and sharing personal details of your marriage. You may also be worried that those closest to you would not understand what you’re going through.
Seeing a therapist is one avenue to take (and a good one at that), but that will cost you money. Chances are, you’re already spending more than you want on your divorce.
In cases like this, joining a divorce support group may be helpful.
What is a Divorce Support Group?
Divorce support groups are exactly what they sound like – groups of divorced individuals (or people going through divorce) who meet regularly to help one another get through this difficult time.
A support group will give you the opportunity to share your experiences and difficulties with other people who have been down the same road and can relate to what you’re going through.
Depending on the group’s mission, you may also be provided with resources and a list of professionals that can offer you additional assistance.
Some groups simply offer education on the divorce process, while others offer sponsored seminars on divorce topics. And yet others will bring in speakers to meetings to offer guidance and advice.
But at the heart of it all, divorce groups are there to allow members to speak about their experiences, difficulties and pain – without judgment.
Should You Join a Support Group?
There are divorce support groups for everyone. Some groups are for women, others for men. Some are faith-based, while others are online-based.
No matter your situation and the circumstances of your divorce, you’re bound to find a group of other people who are going through the same thing you are.
But do you really need to join one?
Many people who do join these groups say it makes their divorce easier. Having an outlet to speak freely about your pain and the challenges you’re facing (mentally, financially and everything in between) can help lessen the impact of the emotional toll divorce often takes on people.
A support group can also serve as an educational experience. As others share their stories, you learn what to do, what not to do and how to handle a variety of obstacles you might face.
And if you have children, you can gain insightful advice on how to manage issues that may arise during and after your divorce.
Support groups can also provide you with honest feedback from others, which is something friends and family may be reluctant to give. You may blame your spouse for the divorce, but it’s likely that both of you played a role in the breakup. Honest feedback can help you avoid making the same mistakes in the future with new relationships.
By nature, humans are social creatures, and we find comfort in knowing that we’re not alone in our personal plights. A support group allows you to be a part of a community that will cheer on your accomplishments and serve as a shoulder to lean on during your darkest hour.
If you have a solid support system at home (i.e. highly supportive friends and family), you may not need the help of a support group. But if you don’t, a group can help you work through your emotions and complete your divorce with a sane mind. A group will also help you feel as if you’re not alone when going through your divorce.
The great thing about support groups is that they are free to join, and you’re free to attend meetings with different groups until you find one that suits you.
Ultimately, anyone who is going through a divorce can benefit from joining a support group. Even if you have a solid support system of friends and family, it helps to have an outlet where you are free to speak about your experience without fear of judgement. Support groups also help you gain new perspectives from others who are not involved in your life or marriage.
The Micklin Law Group, LLC is a New Jersey law firm specializing in family law and estates. Attorney Brad Micklin was recently named to The National Advocates list of Top 100 attorneys from each state. Brad has a special expertise in working with high asset divorce. You can read more on this topic by visiting our divorce blog. To set up a consultation, call 973-562-0100.