5 Commitments To A Compassionate Divorce

26 comments

Today find me in Divorced Parents Magazine from the UK! Here’s the beginning to whet your appetite… 

5 Commitments To A Compassionate Divorce

Lovely people, who you’ve known for years as kind, thoughtful, and put together can sound like raging lunatics if you hear about them from their ex. Divorce seems to bring out the worst in us, and it usually has us seeing the worse in others. It is a devastating, convoluted time. It would be really helpful if everyone could suspend their judgments during it. Yet, judgments abound even greater during this heartbreaking event.

For example, my friend Steve is the kindest man I know, and his soon to be ex-wife Theresa is generous and ingenuitive. But they have rarely recognized this in each other since separating, and probably long before. She accuses him of being unfair and critical. He sees her the same. In his defense, he has bent over backwards for her, but none of it is appreciated. In her defense, he has a condescending voice that he uses when he is defensive. It imbues power and sounds intimidating, (but really reflects his inner insecurity.) I call it his “Theresa-Voice” and hate when he uses it with me.

Is a compassionate divorce an oxymoron or an invitation?

Anger, resentment, and disappointment create walls around us getting in the way of seeing our exes for who they are. In a guise of protecting us, they hurt us more by creating unnecessary conflict. They keep us from being our best selves.

How do you turn our back on anger, resentment and disappointment? You commit to not letting them run your lives and rule your divorce. Divorce doesn’t have to be nasty. You take control!

Read the 5 Commitments To A Compassionate Divorce on Divorce Parents Magazine online. My article is pages 16-19!

Please share!


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26 Comments

Nikky44

I loved the article, and I loved the 5 commitments in general. I never thought about divorce, but I guess it’s not very different from the situation now. I have many friends who went through divorce so many years ago, and I always wondered why they are still so aggressive talking about their ex. Why the need to hurt the person the way we’ve been hurt? I think you answered these questions. because they need their hurt to be validated? they need to know someone believes them and can see and understand? I know I don’t deal with the situation very well, but one thing is sure. I would never “feel happy’ to cause any harm to anyone. I can’t and I really don’t see how it can bring any kind of satisfaction.
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

You are a true gem in the world, Nikky!

Kelly Hashway

Unfortunately, this is advice many end up needing. I hope that won’t be the case for me.
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

I hope not, too, Kelly!

Lisa W. Rosenberg

Jodi, it is so hard to see the anger and sometimes ugliness that can come from otherwise wonderful people when their marriage is collapsing. I’ve worked with several couples who came to therapy “to decide whether or not to stay together.” So much pain involved. I do believe you are right, though, that a compassionate divorce is possible, though only if each partner feels the empathy, either of the other partner, or at least a supportive therapist.

I’m going to read your article right now. And many congratulations!!
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

It is totally possible! And better for everyone.

My Inner Chick

~~~Jodi,
So many nasty divorces out there…Unfortunatley, My sister’s ended tragically.

But I do believe we must “TAKE CONTROL” of our lives. This is the most important thing, isn’t it?

Xx Love you today.
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

I see you taking the bull by it’s horns every day, Gorgeous!
Xoxox

Robert

Interesting article which hopefully I will never need!

I know a few who have divorced over the years and it has made a few mild calm people into monsters who seemed to think the whole world is against them.

Generally I never bear malice against people, life is too short to be bitter, I normally say my piece and that’s it, I hate unpleasant things that drag on and on.

Though thankfully never having had to go through a divorce I don’t honestly know how I would react.
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

Robert, I hope you’d act like a stand up gentleman!

Robert

Could I sit down whilst I do it? (British Humour Alert!!!)
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

hahaha!!

Seth Mullins

This article gets down to the crucial points – I wish I could’ve read it years back when I went through my own divorce. Instead I had to learn many of these the hard way. I think the commitments are spot-on, particularly the advice about taking personal responsibility for our emotional reality and refusing to take on others’ stories and descriptions of us.
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

I’m glad you liked that, Seth! Knew you’d understand!

kirri white

Jodi – Your first line “Lovely people, who you’ve known for years as kind, thoughtful, and put together can sound like raging lunatics”had me smiling as that is exactly what I have felt when observing a few close friends and family members going through a divorce!

The 5 commitments you listed in the your article were great too and I think “Taking responsibility for yourself” is something we all need to be reminded, every day!!

Jodi Lobozzo Aman

Thanks! Kirri!
I think this is what we all can do to improve the world. Take responsibility!
We are all we have to worry about!

Cindy Brown

Well, I can attest that a divorce can be compassionate. I was that way when I divorced – to a degree. I gave him half of everything whether I thought he wanted it or not and gave him anything I thought he might be the slightest bit interested in fighting for. Nothing was worth making the divorce more messy with fighting. I just wanted OUT! You do have to be careful though. He clung too much because I was being nice and eventually I had to be almost mean to get him to leave me alone. It’s a tightrope!
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

It is a tightrope as is so many thing in life. We just be as flexible as we can, do something in a way if it works, then change it once it is not any longer. Setting limits can be hard during a divorce, there is no script. We all just have to figure it out on our own…

Louise G

Great articles. Like you, I believe divorce can contain respect, a mutual desire to support eachother and if children are involved to create a loving environment that supports children through the challenges of divorce.

I had that when my ex and I divorced but it fell apart when he remarried — it was too hard for his wife to accept that we were friends. And that was the sad part. My daughters lost so much when their parents could no longer talk to each other, or when we could no longer have special occasions together. it took me awhile to not play the ‘victim’ card when talking about her, but that wasn’t helping me — so I’ve let that go and go back to my place of ‘bless her. forgive me.’ I had some really not nice thoughts about her! And that is definitely not what I want to put out into the world.

Thanks Jodi for this. Job well done!
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

I love that practice of bless her forgive me. We are always so concern about setting limits to protect ourselves but sometime the compassion for others is not emphasized. i am not talking about letting people walk all over you, just forgive to free ourselves! Great comment, thank you!

Monica

I just visited Divorce Parents Online magazine. Congratulations. I love your tips. I know exactly what you’re saying, having been through the Big D myself. Though I’m not sure I would have had the wherewithal to be so compassionate. I was reeling from shock that I was going through divorce, that my ex had cheated and was still cheating, that my life was being wrenched from me in more ways than one. That the man who once professed to love me forever, was treating me like dirt, with no compassion whatsoever. My therapist called him a narcissist. I feel it takes two to commit to being compassionate, and with not an iota coming from him, I had to fight in order to protect myself. Something I wasn’t quite used to, but would soon become quite adept. Divorced changed me. Transformed me into something else. And I think, for the better.
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Jodi Lobozzo Aman

Monica,
I knew you wrote some about your divorce. These kind of times always invite us into new ways of being. We can stay bitter or we can change ourselves for the better. Transitions are a time to reinvent ourselves! YOu look beautiful, my darling!

Bridget

Congrats on the article! My parents had a very civil divorce – but then something happened, I don’t know what. Now they hardly speak. Weird.

Jodi Lobozzo Aman

Oh< I had just gotten done reading about them! They sound so cool. I am sorry that they don't talk, I hope this is OK for everyone.

Greg

It’s been a little over 10 years since my divorce and to be honest, I am totally convinced these will help me – right now – to create a more productive relationship with my former-wife. And that will be SO much better for the two of us AND our kids. Better late than never. Thanks Jodi.

Jodi Lobozzo Aman

Greg! Thanks so much! I’m tickled by the reaction to his article! I am so happy to have put it out there! Let me know what happens, of you notice and differences!


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