The moment I heard the words, "Your Mother and I are getting divorced," my heart skipped a beat.  It skipped a few, I am sure of it.  It was the last thing in the entire world that I was expecting  to hear and I was totally unprepared to grasp its true meaning.  I didn't scream, I didn't cry, I stayed silent.

I was in shock.  My body sat still but my heart was overloaded with emotion.  Soon after, I entered into a stage of grief know as Denial.  Although, at the time, it didn't seem like denial because my relatively tranquil life was suddenly exploding with unknowns.

Denial went something like this:

This can't be happening, not to me.  Not to my family.  Maybe my parents didn't have the perfect marriage, but nothing terrible enough to merit divorce.  

My Dad is simply having a mid-life crisis.  He is crying out for help.  He is having crazy thoughts but he will come down to earth eventually.  He will realize that divorce is a huge mistake, I am positive.

My Mom will figure out a way to fix this situation.  She can't be weak now, I won't let her, and together we will overcome these setbacks and create an even better family.

No, this is just a rough patch in life, but everything will turn out okay.  My parents will be fine.  Better than fine.  Now that everything is out in the open, all their marital issues, everything that was held back for lack of communication over the years will help them develop an even healthier and happier marriage.  So really, this is a good thing. 

If I analyze the situation enough, rip every little detail to shreds and piece it back together coherently, my parents will see something they hadn't seen before and fall in love again.

I fought the idea with my head hoping that I could will the situation away if only I squeezed my brain hard enough.  My head was spinning in search of a solution.  I was supposed to let my parents work out their own issues but I couldn’t control the urge to somehow find a way to take control of the situation and mend my broken family back together.  I thought my parents just needed help.  I felt sorry for them.  Although, this all changed.  As each week passed and my parents remained en route to divorce, I began to feel something uglier.  I exited the land of denial and felt for the first time in my life, intense and uncontrollable anger.



  1. Totally can relate to this right now...thanks for another great post!

  2. I, too, felt strong initially. I felt like I would help my mother, who was the unsuspecting, hurt, betrayed individual, find counsel and I felt like I would talk with my father and see his point of view and that my parents would see the value of saving their relationship. I tried, it didn't work. I went to counseling to have the counselor help me know what my role should be to help my family, she told me I couldn't do it alone. I believed and prayed that God would restore the things that had been so wrongly taken away from us all, and for now God hasn't answered that way. Denial in many ways is necessary, because had I known the future, or the pain that the past few years has brought, I wouldn't have had the courage to try the things I have. The trying and the hoping and the counsel and the praying has been a way to restore my soul, and maybe that is the most important thing! Denial made the fall into the deep pit, just a bit softer, and as denial has faded and acceptance has gained more ground, I am climbing out of that pit little by little.
    Denial and acceptance have been my friend in different points in this journey. I have needed both.

  3. Still in the denial phase...I can't believe my parents are getting divorced...I can't believe I've had a thanksgiving without my dad there because that side of the family didn't want to see him...I can't believe I'm about to have a christmas without my parents together...without an intact family...I can't believe this is my life.

    I keep hoping one day he will come home and say that he made a mistake, that he was scared, and he realizes how much my mom means to him and that it is worth fighting for...and more than being in denial, I'm just terrified. Maybe that's what denial is: fears manifested in disbelief. What if he doesn't come home? What if my parents really do get divorced? I think of how many big moments I still have in my life and will have to face what feels like alone. When I get married, my parents won't be married anymore. When I have kids, they will have to visit two grandparents houses.

    I always relied on I don't know where to turn. I'm just hoping it works out somehow. Denial.

  4. That makes me so sad I don't even want to think about it. I have certainly thought of the wedding moment, the reality that my parents won't be together. But grandkids without a set of grandparents intact, that is really sad to think about... I wonder why people read this blog, I read your comment and I feel like crying...

    I don't mean that in a bad way, I am happy I read it, I just had that flash moment of, "arghghsghgsajgsd."

    I hope your parents don't get divorced. I really do. I know how it feels to want something so badly. Keep me updated and hang in there.