Going Through The Emotional Process of Divorce

Man and woman separate representing divorce

Your divorce may prove to be one of the most emotionally disruptive events of your life.

It’s a tough call to make. So when you choose to end your marriage, you’ll journey through conflicting emotions, ranging from relief to doubt.

Most people describe divorce as a roller coaster. To cope, you’ll need to rely on friends, family, and your social community. The support they’ll offer is important to your healing process and you should welcome it.

Knowing what to expect won’t obliterate the negative emotions you’ll feel. However, it will help you navigate the complexities, so you can successfully regroup.

If You Are Dealing With the Emotions of Divorce, Let us Help You Cope, Call Us Today to Learn More!

5 Emotions During the Divorce Process

There are 5 common emotions people experience during the divorce process. They are often referred to as the 5 stages of grief. They include denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Naturally, these expand to more nuanced emotions that vary based on your circumstances.


Those who didn’t initiate the divorce often spend a significant amount of time in the denial stage. In certain cases, it may be the cause in a delayed response to divorce papers *. Denial provides comfort as it allows people to distance themselves from an overwhelming reality.

Related Reading: What Happens When You Do Not File an Answer to the Petition?


The anger stage is frequently visited by both parties. It is heavy with blame, rage, and cynically dissecting events in your marriage. Because people suppress their emotions while in denial, emotions unleash when they evolve to this next phase. It’s important to be patient with yourself, and encourage your spouse to do the same. Otherwise, it can become consuming. Hostile and vindictive decisions are often made in this phase. To best serve the interests of your family, allow yourself time to cope with the stress of the situation so you are not making decisions purely on emotion.


The initiator is often surprised that they struggle with the bargaining stage. For those individuals, what they’re actually battling is doubt and guilt. As they weigh the odds, it leads them to question their decision and analyze the consequences. However, going back and forth during this stage is common.


Truthfully, the length of this stage is often long. It can also be the most difficult. It is the darkest period of the night right before dawn. At this point, the reality of the situation has settled in for both sides. This wave of understanding is often overwhelming, sometimes debilitating. During this phase it’s important to lean on your support system and accept help when offered. It’s important to seek counseling for children if they are also struggling with depression. For all parties affected, a trained and experienced therapist can be a worthwhile investment in long-term healing.


Most people find what they consider peace during this phase. Beyond dealing with their reality, they are able to embrace it with hope for the future. You may still experience some negative emotions. It’s also common at this stage to briefly revisit one of the prior stages. Except, you are no longer consumed by those feelings. Though you are not getting your old life back, you will feel a sense of joy. Reclaiming some of your old self and welcoming the oncoming changes is empowering.

Whether you are the initiator or on the receiving end of divorce papers, you will experience some degree of these stages of grief. Understand that it’s normal and allow yourself to move through each in your own time.

Contact Galmiche Law Firm, P.C. for Personalized Counsel 

If you are considering divorce or if you have been served with divorce papers, you will need an experienced St. Louis divorce lawyer on your side. At the Galmiche Law Firm, P.C., we work to help our clients to pursue the best possible outcomes for their divorce and family law cases. To speak with someone on our team and get a free case evaluation, call (636) 552-4841 today.

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