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Divorce Journal – Memory Lane

Looking back is dangerous. You cannot move forward very efficiently if you are constantly looking behind you.  There is certainly an argument for being aware of what is behind you.  However, the goal should always involve putting yourself far enough out of harm’s way that your past has very little impact on where you are going.

Divorce Journal – Memory Lane
Some memories are worth having and sharing with others. I recently learned that good memories are an aid used with dementia patients.  Sharing positive memories through stories and photographs reversed a period of steep decline for my grandmother when she seemed to be willfully transitioning.

Good memories can also bring on the onset of depression.  Consider someone that has lost a valuable career or position in society due to a mistake in judgement.  The times may have been the best ever experienced.  Any reminder of that season compared against less fruitful and current circumstances could have detrimental results.

Walks down memory lane will be difficult to avoid.  The hope is that those memories fuel you toward a better future, not trap you in a perpetual mental spin of “what ifs.”  These are accompanied by the rhetorical “what went wrongs” and “if I had it to do over agains.”  If you are not strong enough to use the memories for good, then move on.  And live free.

Divorce Journal – Moving Backward

There are times when the appropriate direction is backwards.  The goal of reversing on a current course is the hope of creating new opportunities or understanding.  This action is most valuable when the current course seems to either come to a close or has all of the wrong signs.  But, it takes a great deal of awareness of your surroundings to identify the signs early enough to prevent committing to a path of failure.

Divorce Journal – Moving Backward
The purpose of moving backwards is to gain a better perspective of a situation.  It allows those in the position an opportunity to assess or analyze the available options.  The willingness to step back and assess is arguably one of the most value attributes for success.

Moving backwards is not a natural response.  Most everything we are taught involves moving forward.  No matter what you face in life you must keeping pushing and keep driving towards the goal.  There is no middle ground for stopping or resting.  Any even hesitating is ill advised.  The goal is never behind us, always in front.

Just because your momentum is going in the opposite direction of your goal, it does not mean you take your eyes off of the prize. Focus is the secret ingredient that keeps the game plan in motion, especially when a detour is necessary.  Life is never as easy as a straight line.  Straight and narrow paths and consistent forward progress only exist in fairytales.  In the real word, be prepared for circumstances, unforeseen and uncontrollable.  Allow for flexibility in your plans, so that you remain more committed to the goal than how you will get there.

Divorce Journal – On Counseling

Before committing to divorce a couple should pursue all methods available to repair their marriage.  One of the obvious resources available is martial counseling.  I would argue that counseling should be sought prior to and during a marriage.  A couple should seek the services of a counselor or relationship coach on a routine basis to prevent a marriage from getting to the point where divorce enters the conversation.

Divorce Journal – On Counseling
My wife and I would encourage other couples and singles to seek counseling / pre-marital counseling, ‘Before You Even Ask’ or  ‘Before You Even Answer’ (#BYEA).  Unfortunately, we did not take the medicine we prescribed.  It is still unclear why we did not pursue counseling before or during our marriage.  I am uncertain whether we felt that the answers to our challenges were more readily available to us due to our degree work, training and life experiences.  Or, could it be that we did to think it worthwhile to pursue counseling, because relationship was just too far gone.

It would certainly be a difficult task for any professional that was retained to assist our marriage.  Primarily, our education, training and skill sets in the science of relationships would allow us to be more critical of another professional’s process for counseling.  In addition, I had suggested and/or offered to attend counseling prior to the separation.  My wife agreed, but an appointment never seemed to materialize.  Could it be a matter of chance that after I declared that I was filing for divorce that my spouse located a counselor that she felt comfortable with?

I believe it is safe to say that we would still support any couple attending counseling; despite, the lack of satisfaction we experienced in our first attempt.  It is always helpful to have an independent review of your marriage as a whole, and specifically, how each of you participate in the marriage.  It is the equivalent of having a talented editor review your writing – no matter the level of your writing proficiency.  You owe it to yourself and your spouse to submit to the process of counseling or relationship coaching.

Divorce Journal – Goodbye Sex

Even before I had it I did not understand the concept of goodbye sex. (Divorce Journal – Goodbye Sex)  I mean I tried it once in high school, but it was an act of revenge on a cheating girlfriend.  I assumed that goodbye sex was some sort of parting gift to each other, not a malicious act to declare the end of a relationship.  But, I struggle with understanding the purpose of sharing in intimacy with someone you no longer want to be in a relationship with.

In some regard, I can understand the partner that is requesting one last moment of itimacy before the door closes on a relationship forever.  Forever is a long time.  It stands to reason that the emotions involved in this final act will run high; therefore, making the love making experience that much more special.  But, what about the negative consequences?  For instance, I have come to understand that sexual intercourse is deeper than penetrating flesh.  Souls are intertwined as a result of the connection.  What are these parties to do with this connection once the relationship has dissolved?

The dissenting partner has th greatest challenge.  It would be cold and malicious to deny your partner the opportunity to spend  few last and lasting passionate moments together.  It is certainly not like this would be the first time the couple had shared in intimacy.  But the consequences on the partner that wants out may be greater.  The physical, emotional and spiritual connection maybe to involved for the other person to simply walk away.

Whoever decided that it would be a good idea to lay with your partner on the way out needs to provide clarity on what exactly is the goal.  From limited personal experience, it only seems to make matters worse.