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Swiss born Elisabeth Kubler-Ross is the well-known psychiatrist that first came up with a way to define the stages that someone goes through when facing death: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

These stages are very often found in someone who is going through a divorce on the road to re-invention from a past married life.

These three stages are more commonly known as ‘EX’ syndrome - EXile, EXpress and EXplore, which we hope to explain more in this article, and once you are aware of them, hopefully this will provide some reassurance to how you can overcome each stage:

Exile – This is often the first stage of a divorce where a painful reality sinks in and trust is the first thing to disappear ‘This is not happening to me’ swirls around in your mind. You beat yourself up for every slip-up and often have trouble making the simplest decisions. You tend to cry a lot and deep, raw emotions are only a memory away.

Consider working with a counsellor or join a divorce support group. This stage of EX is often most difficult and you have to start designing a new single you, you need to start trusting others again and realising that you have people around you that deeply love and care.

Express – After time to grieve, you will come back into the sunshine, and start to feel the twinges of anger and begin to obsess about what went wrong and assign blame. Feelings of frustration start to dominate your life and you ask 'why me' and spend countless hours analysing your ex's flaws and feel it your obligation to contact them and explain your point of view. Don't!

In this stage, you need to understand its normal and that you’re allowed to lose control and vent to realise some tension and work towards building a new roadmap for your future.

Explore – Sometimes this is a long time after your separation, when you start to appreciate there is life after divorce and you can build yourself back up and start your new single life.

It’s time to let your ex go, and move onto new leisure activities and dreams that you have kept still throughout your relationship, now is the time to start ‘doing’ what you want.

If you are concerned about staring divorce proceedings and would like to discuss your position with our friendly team in Chesterfield, call Vines Legal on 01246 555 610 for your free consultation.

By Claire Clark on 15 Aug 2013, 10:54 AM

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