Is Divorce Affecting Your Mental Health?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

orange county divorce attorney; The Maggio Law FirmThose who have been through a divorce actually realize that it is hardly a picnic. At least, the statement is true for most of the divorced couples. Both the emotional as well as the legal process can take a toll on your physical and mental well being. When you find yourself entangled in a divorce that is full of drama and high conflict, your case may drag on for an indefinite time period. Further, your mental health can suffer due to your emotional turmoil. Research has proved that a divorce can even affect your heartbeat and sleeping habits.

Plus, there is plenty of uncertainty, which comes as an additional baggage with your divorce making you feel insecure today or even in the future. Based on your unique circumstances, it is possible that you need to move all of a sudden, resume work after many years when your sole focus was on your home and kids. You may even have to survive with fewer funds than before. When you are aware of the mental health issues that may pop up during your divorce, you can be in control over your emotional and physical health and are able to take all such steps that can prevent excessive damage.

Divorce and anxiety

There are ample case studies to prove that divorce may expose the involved parties to a higher risk of a mental state such as anxiety. This emotional state may be reflected by chronic worry, increased physical agitation, panic attacks, restlessness or fearfulness, and irritability. It is normal to be busy with the various details and intricacies of your divorce, relationship issues with your former spouse and thinking about those negative issues that you may have to cope up with next. Anxiety can lead to a feeling of obsessiveness while causing havoc to your everyday function, sleep, and concentration. In case you feel that you are suffering from high degrees of anxiety while your divorce proceeding is still going on or after your divorce, you should either get in touch with your physician promptly or try out any or all of the following natural remedies.

Search for support groups or a professional counselor

  • Pursue some new hobbies
  • Exercise regularly
  • Form new friendships
  • Get engaged in meaningful work
  • Volunteer to help others
  • Get in touch with your friends and family for support

Divorce and depression

Depression occurring due to a painful life event such as divorce is not same as clinical depression. The former is referred to as situational depression of adjustment disorder. However, both situational depression and clinical depression may manifest in a similar manner.

Depression after a divorce may also happen due to some other factors. These are as follows:

  • Avoiding one’s friends and family
  • Staying away from responsibility
  • Engaging in conflict or fighting
  • Performance becomes poor at workplace due to inadequate or no focus

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Tips To Ensure That Marriage Counseling Works

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law Firm, Inc.There is a common perception among many that when a couple goes for marriage counseling, it is not a good sign for the marriage. However, in several cases, it does not signify that there is a breakdown in the marriage. Rather, it could mean that the couple could be still united. At least, they could be still willing to work out on certain issues in their marriage. Thus, it may not be the case of a marriage going bitter when partners go for marriage counseling. For many couples, marriage counseling has definitely made things work for the better. But how to ensure that marriage counseling works out successfully for the spouses!?  The following are a few tips to help ensure that marital counseling has a chance to be successful.

You need to seek out the right marriage counselor

Do not be in a haste to select a counselor or do not depend on your insurance company to help you with that. You can use search engines like Google to search the details of some counselor in your neighborhood. Try using Google reviews and go through them to know how good a counselor is. These reviews will give you a fair idea about how effective he or she has been with previous clients. Find out some referrals from your friends and colleagues. Alternatively, post your exact requirements on the social media and ask whether anyone has a good referral or not.

While it is possible that you may feel embarrassed to get in touch with a counselor initially, you will be really surprised to find out that many couples go through such sessions. Finally, when you get in touch with a marriage counselor, ask them whether they would be gracious enough to conduct a complimentary half an hour session with you and your partner so that both of you can meet him/her and decide whether you should finalize him or not. In case they are not ready for a free session, you can request them to consider the first appointment as a consultation.

Both the spouses should be thoroughly committed to the counseling process

While both you and your spouse may not see eye to eye on various issues, if you agree on the idea of counseling, the process may be a successful one. The process may not be an effective one whenever one of the partners does not show interest or is skeptical about the entire process of counseling.  You may not get success in a marriage counseling as a couple when one of you is doubtful about the effectiveness of the process or foes not want to give it a try. It is definitely not worth it to try and convince your partner that counseling may resolve the differences you are facing in your marriage. It is a futile exercise when somebody is doubtful about the process.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

How to Cope With Mistrust After Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

orange county divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmCheating is the first thought to haunt the minds of many when they think of the impact of mistrust in any marriage. A big question that also comes into one’s mind is whether a person who cheated on his or her spouse should be trusted again or not. A partner who was betrayed has a tough time in deciding whether the relationship can sustain or not. When a person divorces the spouses who cheated on him or her, it becomes difficult to enter into a new relationship. The reason is simple.

Coping with mistrust can be really difficult, especially after a divorce.  Trust has a wide scope and it is not only about catching a partner lying or speaking the truth. Trust is also all about believing that the other spouse has the best interests in their hearts for their partners. On the other hand, mistrust is all about leaving a lingering doubt in one’s mind that his or her partner does not love them truly and can even leave them. While your spouse may proclaim his or her love send undying devotion for you, do their actions echo what they keep saying?

Mistrust and cheating may not be related always

Once your marriage breaks up; it can lay down a foundation for the birth of mistrust even in your new relationships. Mistrust may pop up even if your partner has not cheated on you. It can happen due to the emotional baggage a person carries after getting divorced for the first time.

You need to understand an important point while exploring this issue. It is highly likely that your partner is not the only person to take the entire responsibility of creating mistrust in you. There are several scenarios where you may also have to own up some kind of a responsibility so that there is an atmosphere of security, safety and loyalty in your relationship.

Some questions to be considered while overcoming mistrust

  • Do you feel uncomfortable while asking for what you require and permit yourself to be vulnerability in the process?
  • Does your apprehension of loss confuse your original perspective and ends up overreacting to your partner’s actions?
  • Do you permit yourself to be respected, loved and pampered?
  • Are you in your best possible self while interacting with your partner? 

You should take lessons from your past mistakes and try acquiring trust

You can learn and nurture trust like any other skill though many people do not regard it as such. While many people discuss about proving their trust, rating trust and restoring trust, very people talk about learning to trust. However, if you develop a viewpoint that you are loved by your partner, trust will automatically come up in your married life.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.

Did Your Childhood Lead to Your Divorce?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmMost of us who have gone through a painful divorce or separation often ruminate as to why we ended up with our partner. Once the marriage is broken, we realize that it was our fault in the first place, to have developed an alliance with a person who was absolutely unsuitable for us.

Extensive research and studies indicate that the adults we evolve into have a lot to do with the past experiences associated with our childhood. As per studies, we often develop notions about life and relationships that are in conjunction with what we have witnessed in our early years. We tend to gravitate towards people and relationships that resemble our parents and the alliances formed by them. The psychology behind this can be explained by our low self-esteem and a desperate effort to fix past mistakes. There are a few explanations as to how an individual’s unhappy childhood often leads to his/her divorce.

Drifting towards relationships that do more harm than good

More often than not, those who frequently find ourselves trapped in abusive and painful relationships, tend to follow a pattern of repeating the same mistakes time and again. They keep getting involved with people who treat them with hostility and apathy, and then beat themselves up for not learning from their past blunders and doing the same thing again.

Getting involved with people who remind them of their parents

With the kind of anguish that children of divorce may have suffered, they can find themselves developing into insecure and under-confident adults. In a bid to find solace in familiarity, they can tend to be attracted to individuals who appear similar in personality to their parents. If one of our parents was an alcoholic or physically abusive, we would most probably end up with someone who exhibits similar traits. 

Growing up with skewed beliefs

Adults who witnessed a parent separation in their childhood might end up with a distorted notion of the sacred institution of marriage. Influenced by their parents’ deeds and how they dealt with their personal marital issues, such children grow up with the notion that marriages are indispensable. They believe that the only fix to all their marital disputes is a divorce. As a result, they never really put in any efforts to save their marriages and end up separated from their partners, just like their parents.  The divorce of an individual’s parent might leave him/her scarred for life, and he/she might end up developing into an emotionally unstable adult, with a warped viewpoint of life.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Survival Strategies for Coping with a Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce lawyer; The Maggio Law FirmAfter a tumultuous marriage and a devastating divorce, most of the people find themselves stuck in a perpetual loop of self-loathing and depression. The painful fights, the never ending disagreements and the exhausting court proceedings may leave you scarred for the rest of your life. However, one must not forget that separation is a part of life and it does not imply that their life has ended. There is a life post-divorce, which is full of possibilities and hopes of resurrecting your old self and building a new you. Read on for a few strategies that might help you survive the trauma of a devastating divorce.

Allow yourself to grieve your loss

Grief is the nature’s way to handle the pressure of a loss. The sorrow inside your heart makes its way to the outside through every drop of tear you shed. Divorce involves a loss of companionship, emotional support, and even shared hopes and dreams. The agony of losing someone may wreak havoc to both your mental and physical health. Therefore, it is absolutely essential to drain out all the pain and negativity from your body by allowing yourself to grieve your loss.

Seek outside support from friends and family

When in distress, most of us tend to isolate ourselves and ruminate over our failures and losses. However, staying alone and constantly revisiting old times and related sorrow, would eventually make us more depressed and wound up in the memories of our dark past. Seeking support of your loved ones is critical to the healing of your injured soul. You may reach out to people who would actually listen to you and offer you positive advice. In case you find it difficult to open up with your own family, you may seek outside help of professional counselors or psychologists, who would help you in dealing with your mental crisis.

Take care of yourself and indulge in activities that make you happy

A divorce marks a huge life changing event in your life that divides your life into the ‘before’ and ‘after’ phases. The enormous levels of stress involved in a divorce might leave you devoid of any desire to live or take care of yourself. However, this is the time that both your body and mind demand more attention and care than ever before. Take plenty of rest and try to limit all the other sources of stress in your life. Indulge in hobbies that you might have given up for a long time now. Read a motivational book, go for leisurely walks in the park, join a new baking class or indulge in gardening.

The most important thing to understand here is that life doesn’t end with a divorce, it merely takes a detour.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.

Should You Divorce or Attempt Reconciliation?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmMarital relationships can sometimes last a lifetime, but only if the people that are involved in it are in it with love, commitment and dedication. Yet sometimes, especially in relationships between a husband and a wife, things just don’t work out. There may be a variety of reasons for things not working out which may include a lack of intimacy, misunderstanding, lack of compatibility, etc. Whatever the reason though, when things aren’t working with your spouse, you have only two real options in front of you:  to repair your marriage and reconcile, or otherwise proceed with divorce.

The decision of whether you should go for Orange County divorce or reconcile with your spouse is an important one since it will dictate the kind of future that you will have. But the fact that divorce has a social stigma attached to it means that even if a spouse is not willing to live with the other spouse it is not a decision that they can take willingly.  That however should not be the case. If you are not able to live with your spouse, divorce may seem a viable option.

Reasons to go for Reconciliation

·         Giving it another chance

Anybody can make a mistake. One mistake or even a few mistakes should not spell the end of anything, much less a marriage. If you think that things are not working between the two of you, you can always talk to your spouse and go for a therapy session where both of you can work on your marriage instead of opting for an Orange County divorce.

·         For the children’s welfare

For a child one of the worst possible things to experience in life is to have their parents go through an Orange County divorce and see to their family break apart. This will change the way life has been for them altogether.

Reasons to go for a divorce

·         Start afresh

If you feel that your life is stagnant and any and everything that you try between you and your spouse is not working, you need a fresh start that start will be given to you by an Orange County divorce. Getting a divorce will rid you of your spouse and the shackles of being married. Once you out you can start new and single, doing all things you wanted to do and achieve.

·         For the sake of the children

There is reason in the reconciliation section that is for the children. In most cases an Orange County divorce is also for the best interest of the children. The worst thing for the child to witness and one that can ruin their life forever is witnessing their parents fight out against one another, leveling allegations and displaying open hate. The only way to put a stop on it is to go for a divorce.

·         For safety and security

If you can prove that your spouse is an illegal drug addict or that they abuse you or the children or both mentally, physically and emotionally either or all, you can and should opt for a divorce. No relation is bigger than human life and well being. If you and your children fear for your safety with your spouse, an Orange County divorce is your protection from all such problems.

Men Dealing With Divorce Should Consider Counseling

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmWhile generally women are more willing to seek counseling with a therapist to deal with issues both during and after divorce, men are often much less comfortable with admitting that they may need such support and assistance to work through their issues and feelings associated with separation and divorce.  Men are also generally much less likely to discuss divorce issues with their friends and family, leaving them emotionally isolated and feeling alone.

Men should consider individual counseling to help work through their issues in order to be able to effectively move forward in their lives, and perhaps avoid problems they themselves may have caused in their marriage. If that is something that seems daunting, another option is to seek a men’s support group near where you live or work devoted to issues associated with the effects of divorce and separation.  One such men’s support counseling group is offered by Orange County therapist Lawrence Marquez, Psy.D.  Dr. Marquez leads a small men’s divorce support group in Irvine, California on a weekly basis that provides continuing support for men caught in the crossfire of divorce.  The members of the group collaborate with the other men to help each other navigate the effects of divorce.

Dr. Marquez states that “the purpose of the group has been to provide a safe and supportive environment where divorce-related issues can be shared and explored. As the group leader, I provide insight for the men as they each work through their process. However, I must admit the most impressive aspect of the group has been the support that I see from each member of the group towards one another.”

Some of the topics discussed in this men’s group include the men’s court and legal experiences, the restructuring of the family following the divorce, how to deal with the ensuing emotional & financial stresses, and common or unique circumstances or struggles as they are presented.   Dr. Marquez states that his role as group leader is to “encourage self-awareness, the ability to process, understand, and deal with feelings appropriately, foster improvement in areas of communication, stimulate growth and strengthening of parenting skills &  healthy parent-child relationships, promote healthy boundaries with ex-spouse and others, provide guidance through issues of grief, and help renew personal focus and self-direction.”  

The benefit of such men’s support groups is to show men of divorce that they are not alone and that there are many other men out there that are going through the same experiences.  They are able to help each other with their feelings and with some skills to move forward with their lives.   Another benefit is that such support groups are often moderately priced.  Such support groups should not necessarily take the place of individual counseling that may also be needed, but it can be a healthy component to any counseling plan.

If interested in more information about men’s support counseling or in Dr. Marquez’s men’s support group, Dr. Marquez can be reached at (949)633-5355 or by email at [email protected]

For any legal information about divorce issues or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce attorney Gerald Maggio of The Maggio Law Firm, please call (949) 553-0304 or visit  The Maggio Law Firm is an experienced and compassionate Orange County divorce and family law firm serving the Orange County and Riverside areas and neighboring counties, serving clients with legal issues including divorce, legal separation, prenuptial agreements, divorce mediation, and other family law issues.

No Legal Advice Intended: This website includes information about legal issues and legal developments. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These informational materials are not intended, and should not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. You should contact an attorney for advice on specific legal problems. Full disclaimer.