As Elizabeth Kubler Ross explained in her book, “On Death and Dying” there are several distinct stages that people traverse when they experience the death of a person, or a highly valued thing in their lives. This definitely includes marriage. Marriages end. But, whether they end with a fizzle, or a roar, their end constitutes the death of something that was meaningful and very important to the ones in it. Grieving is understandable. But, eventually both members of the original union do have to dust themselves off and move on.
This can be particularly difficult for the one that put the divorce proceedings into motion. Moreover, if infidelity was a factor, that too can add a huge element of guilt to the already brimming package of remorse, anger and fear that each is already living with. In fact, if going forward feels akin to impossible, it’s probably guilt and shame, not fear, anger, or sadness, that’s making the one foot in front of the other process near to impossible. In the end the only thing that really works is forgiveness and letting go. If that does not work than a therapist may be able to help.
- The end of a marriage is very much like a death, per Elizabeth Kubler Ross, who writes about the end of meaningful things and death itself in her book, “On Death and Dying.”
- There are five distinct stages people go through when dealing with the end of something significant in their lives.
- The stages help people deal with the anger, fear, sadness, remorse and guilt that wells up in the aftermath of such an event.
“The life story you spent all of that time and energy co-creating together is over.”