DIVORCED MEN AND FINANCIAL PROBLEMS
Quite often when recently divorced men find themselves having problems paying rent or mortgage, utilities, support and buying food it can exacerbate the emotional problems of divorce. When divorced men who are ordered to pay child support are unemployed and having a tough time they may feel depressed, suicidal and helpless. They may not be as aware of women are about food stamp benefits or assistance paying rent or mortgage payments.
If you are a divorced man having these problems, check with your mortgage lender if you own a home. If not, check with a community services agency in your county for help with rent and food assistance. Many men are too proud to ask for help but they don't need to be. Tough times are tough times - period. You can also petition the court for a reduction in child support. This is not always a guarantee, but it doesn't hurt to help.
Divorced men are not as likely as women to reach out for social help, but it is important they recognize that they are going through a grief process that involves sadness, anger and depression. It will help if you talk to other divorced men about how they are coping. If you have no friends who are divorced, consider joining a divorce support group. You will find other men there who are dealing with the same feelings and circumstances of divorce, and their support and advice will make it easier for you to get through the tough emotional and financial times of divorce.
Our society is not very supportive of men and anger. We condition little boys to "be a little man", fathers call their boys "little men" which discourages them from expressing anger. Is it any wonder then that men often do not deal well with the anger they are experiencing after divorce. If men can recognize that and allow themselves to feel angry when it comes up, they will be doing themselves and their children a favor. They will also be less likely to spout off in anger at their ex wives.
The financial problems they have after divorce can add to the anger, and quite often can cause depression, which is understandable when a person feels helpless to solve a problem. If more men understood the emotions that come with divorce they would give themselves permission to experience them, and would also understand that they are temporary and can occur off and on for a year, they would be better able to cope with the financial problems after divorce.
Let's do a review of the grief process in stages:
*Denial: a feeling of unreality, shock and numbness.
*Sadness:feeling down,uninterested in things that are important to you, or that you need to do.
*Anger: this often involves feelings of blaming yourself or your ex for the things that led to divorce.
*Bargaining: you may bargain with yourself that you can turn things around and avoid divorce.
*Acceptance: at this stage of grief you have finally realized that it is not going to go away.
Financial problems can increase the tendency towards angry feelings - anger at your spouse, anger at the situation. They can also increase the feelings of despondency about financial obligations. The most important thing you can do is to get support for yourself from friends, family and other divorced men. Support will help you get through the grief process and be a better father to your children.
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