Nigella Lawson and Charles Saatchi Divorcing Nicely

Nigella and Charles choose to divorce nicely

It is comforting to see that Nigella Lawson and Charles Saatchi have decided to divorce nicely in contrast to many other celebrity couples whom have chosen to air their grievances in public.  According to reports today, they have been granted their Decree Nisi, the first part of the divorce whereby the Judge confirms that there is no reason why the couple cannot divorce:  Keeping matters amicable will certainly save both of them a great deal of stress and time and leave them in a position to be able to move on much quicker.  Many people take their examples from celebrities and it is a welcome change to find a couple willing to lick their wounds in private and retain their dignity rather than recording every last detail of their breakup.  I am sure that both are suffering immensely and both will need emotional support from friends and family for a long time to come.

Divorce and Grief

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross identified five stages of grief in her groundbreaking book On Death and Dying (Macmillan 1969):  denial; anger; bargaining; depression; and acceptance.  When couples separate and divorce, they can also go through all five stages of the grief process, or through some of those five stages or backwards and forwards between the stages.  Regardless of who decided to finally split, both parties will need to mourn the end of the relationship in the best way that they can.  This may involve seeking assistance from a professional such as a counsellor, or working through the issues themselves, or seeking the support of family and friends.  It is important to know that this is a natural process and you may both be dealing with a variety of losses including:  loss of companionship; loss of financial security; loss of emotional support; and loss of your dreams.  The uncertainty that divorce brings can sometime seem overwhelming.  Allow yourself to grieve as this is part of the healing process. Time does heal and the grief will not last forever.

Moving on from divorce

It does help to surround yourself with positive people that support you such as good friends or even joining a support group so that you can talk to people in similar circumstances.  Taking each day as it comes is a good tactic and setting yourself small goals will help you to focus on the future without feeling overwhelmed.  Don’t permit well-meaning friends and family to dissect every aspect of your relationship and try not to dwell on the negative aspects.  There were good times as well as bad for both of you and becoming stuck in emotions such as blame, anger and resentment will keep you from moving on.  You will both learn from this experience and can take many positive aspects from it.  You can resolve to take better care of yourself and look to the future in a positive way. You can learn more about yourself and how you both contributed to the break-up. You both have an opportunity to grow from this experience if you want to.  When you are at a point in the grieving process where you can look back at why you made the choices you made, how you handled any conflict in the relationship, how you handled any insecurities that you had, you will be able to learn from mistakes so that you do not continue into the future in that way.

Get yourself into new routines – sometimes a relationship becomes a habit – it may not have been perfect but you knew where you were.  Take some “me” time – look after yourself for a change and do things that you have wanted to do that perhaps you may not have been able to fit in when you were in the relationship.

If you find that your social network has decreased with people taking sides, don’t waste time dwelling on that.  Get out there and form some new friendships: join a gym or dance class; join a walking club or take up a new sport; revisit that friend that you may have neglected when you became a couple; visit family; resolve to have fun!

Try volunteering as there is nothing like helping other people to pull you out of yourself.  When other people are relying on you, you haven’t the time to dwell on your own problems.

Do whatever makes you feel that life is worth living!