Submitted by: Mark Banschick
Grief is the natural, psychological response to the loss of a marriage, and you need to go through it in order to come out of your divorce healthy and strong. Let’s understand grief more deeply. It will help you go through it in a healthy way. Fighting grief usually makes it last longer, like going back to a sport before an injury has really healed. This is how you get hurt, yet again
Take a look at the chart below. It will help you visualize your mind’s immune reaction:
|Physical Pain||Psychological Pain|
|Tenderness||Tender feelings/Need to self-protect|
|Bandage||Protecting Yourself/Setting Limits/ Seeking Help|
|Healing over time||Healing over time|
The body has its wisdom in healing, and so does the mind. You can literally see the pain of a physical wound and watch as the immune system takes charge of the healing process. Psychological wounds heal in the same way, you just can’t see it. There are two lists below. The left enumerates the stages of the body’s healing process. For each stage on the left, there is a corresponding stage on the right, describing the mind’s therapeutic equivalent for psychological wounds.
Grief slows you down so you can appreciate what you had, digest your hurt, and ultimately, focus on the future. Towards that end, it may even affect you physiologically. You may lose your appetite or become ravenous, or have difficulty falling or staying asleep. This is your mind telling you that it needs time to heal, and by managing your divorce intelligently—perhaps with guidance from a minister, pastor, rabbi, or therapist—you will heal. It bears repeating: grief is a positive thing.
Mark R. Banschick, M.D. is a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology with over 20 years of experience in child and adolescent psychiatry. The Intelligent Divorce course evolved from his work as an expert witness in custody disputes. Dr. Banschick has appeared on the CBS Early Show and has been quoted in The New York Times, The Huffington Post and firstwivesworld.com.
Dr. Mark Banschick’s book, The Intelligent Divorce, is a powerful and inspirational self guided resource that will change your life and the lives of your children.