Going Through The Emotional Process of Divorce

Man and woman separate representing divorce

Your divorce may be one of your life's most emotionally disruptive events.

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. You must rely on friends, family, and your social community to cope. The support they offer is essential 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 and successfully regroup.

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

5 Emotions During the Divorce Process

There are five common emotions people experience during the divorce process. They are often referred to as the five 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 significant time in the denial stage. Sometimes, it may cause a delayed response to divorce papers *. Denial provides comfort, allowing people to distance themselves from an overwhelming reality.

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


Both parties frequently visit the anger stage. 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 essential 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 your family's interests, 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 battling is doubt and guilt. As they weigh the odds, they 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 essential to lean on your support system and accept help when offered. It’s important to seek counseling for children struggling with depression. A trained and experienced therapist can be a worthwhile investment in long-term healing for all parties affected.


Most people find what they consider peace during this phase. Beyond dealing with their reality, they can embrace it with hope for the future. You may still experience some negative emotions. It’s also common to briefly revisit one of the prior stages at this stage. Except, those feelings no longer consume you. 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 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 have been served with divorce papers, you need an experienced St. Louis divorce lawyer. At the Galmiche Law Firm, P.C., we help clients 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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