Whether you initiated your Michigan divorce or not, no matter what side of the equation you stand on there is bound to be anger that arises throughout the process. It could be anger at the situation, at your soon-to-be ex-spouse, at the way things have worked out with spousal support or child custody. The thing to know and understand is that anger is normal as you grieve your marriage and recover from your divorce.
Productive Ways to Manage Anger
There are good and bad ways to deal with your anger. Stuffing this emotion down isn’t wise, but allowing it to rise to the surface and stay there is also unhealthy. It’s important to honor your anger, as long as you don’t harm yourself or others because of it.
It’s possible to manage anger in productive, healthy ways:
- Work it out. Exercise, that is. Invest in a punching bag. Take a kickboxing class. Run. Join a baseball team or take up tennis (healthy hitting is good). Moving your body, sweating, and releasing feel-good endorphins will help you release anger and anxiety surrounding your divorce. And exercise will at least put your mind in a different place for a little while.
- Shout it out. There are a number of ways you can verbally or physically release your anger without hurting anyone in the process. If you need to, scream. Go in your basement, let it out in your car, or head to a wide-open field and just yell. You’ll get tired soon enough, and might even find yourself chuckling as your rage diminishes.
- Talk. You may never have envisioned yourself as the support group type, but knowing that others are feeling the same emotions as you can help you feel better about the pain and anger you’re experiencing over your divorce. Then again, you may discover that the group setting doesn’t benefit you and only reinforces your angry emotions. In that case, one-on-one time talking with a counselor may be the right choice for you. You can talk to friends as well, but sometimes it’s better to let your feelings out around an impartial third party – no judgment, no regrets about what you say.
- Write. For some people, journaling is one of the most therapeutic measures possible. It helps reduce anger during a divorce because writing requires you to focus as you get your thoughts down on paper. There is no right or wrong way to journal – just write whatever you need to get out, whether that’s cursing or complaints or dismay. Journaling can also help you make decisions throughout your divorce, giving you an outlet for thinking through situations from every angle with no repercussions.
Ultimately, the goal is to let your anger have its day in the sun (or days, as the case may be). You want to avoid toxic explosions of anger in inappropriate situations. Acknowledge that you’re angry so that you can deal with this powerful emotion in productive ways.