Divorce is rough on everyone involved. We all know this. While there might be a preconceived notion that it is women who have more of a difficult time during a divorce, this is certainly not always the case. While it used to be true that women would often be in deeper financial issues than men after a divorce, that’s not the case quite as often.
Not only that, but more and more, we’re seeing that men simply have a harder time truly coping with the divorce. It’s always been this way, but it’s getting acknowledged more often now.
Keeping Emotion and Worry Hidden
Why don’t we hear about this more often? It’s because one of the main factors common among men who are getting divorced is that they don’t talk about it. They keep everything to themselves, and they bottle up their emotions.
Women, generally, tend to be more in touch with their emotions. Many men still cling to the antiquated and dangerous belief that they need to keep everything bottled up inside. This just leads to more problems, and it can take a mental, emotional, and physical toll.
Women will usually take the time needed to mourn the loss of their marriage before they move forward. They know and expect certain emotions to follow, and they go through the five stages of grief, so they can come out stronger in the end.
Men don’t. They tend to skip the mourning period, pretend they aren’t upset, and push through. This ends up leading to issues like depression and anxiety in a lot of men. They aren’t fully aware of just how much damage has been done that they haven’t dealt with yet.
This is one of the first things that men need to correct if they want to better cope with divorce. However, it’s not the only issue that men have.
Men Sometimes Have “Trouble” Fending for Themselves
Let’s be honest. This isn’t just a fault of the divorce. A lot of men don’t know how to handle certain things on their own, or they don’t want to know how. So, it can appear as though they have trouble doing the basic things a human would need to know how to do to survive.
They might eat poorly because they claim they don’t know how to cook or that they don’t want to learn. They might say they don’t know how to do their laundry or pay their bills, etc. If you have a partner who is telling you these things, or they demonstrate these things by not taking care of themselves, it’s not your fault. They are adults. They should know or learn how to handle at least the most basic functions of living in today’s society.
Men, if you are feeling this way, it’s because you are depressed or you are shocked that you have to do more for yourself again. You shouldn’t rely on anyone other than yourself. You can and should grow up.
Health Issues in Men
Divorce can sometimes cause health issues for men. They might suffer from issues like anxiety and depression mentioned above. However, they could also have a host of other health issues. Some might stop eating correctly. They could have weight fluctuations, or they could develop eating disorders.
When suffering from stress, some might eat too much and others not enough. They might have raised stress levels, which will be bad for the heart. Others might even try to self-medicate to start feeling better. While this can happen with women, too, it happens more often with men.
Some Men Jump Into New Relationships
Again, men don’t always properly grieve a lost relationship. They instead feel as though they need to get back in the dating game as soon as possible for some unfathomable reason. It could be because they don’t like being alone. Maybe they refuse to fend for themselves as we mentioned above. They want someone else to act as a wife and mother to them. It’s unhealthy all around.
Men need to stop and rethink getting into another relationship right away. While it might be tempting, it’s better to take the time to grieve the last relationship and think about what went wrong. Knowing where there were problems in the last relationship could help you to ensure those issues do not repeat themselves.
Men tend not to get out and meet new people as often as women do after a divorce. Men who are no longer part of a relationship and who aren’t encouraged to get out, do things, and meet people will often fold in on themselves. They will maybe have one or two friends they hang out with sometimes, but they tend to spend a lot of time on their own, at least until they start dating again.
While it’s good to have time to yourself, you should still get out and form some new friendships. Find other people who have similar hobbies and meet up with them. Learn new activities and hobbies. Divorce is a good time to find yourself before moving onward.
What Should You Do?
If you are a man who is going through a divorce, it doesn’t automatically mean that everything we’ve discussed will apply to you. After all, everyone is different, and you might be well-adjusted enough to work through the divorce on your own and come out healthy on the other side. Avoiding the issues mentioned above will surely help with that.
However, don’t feel bad if you are going through and feeling a lot of the frustrations and issues we touched on in this post. It happens to a lot of men. What you need to do is make sure it doesn’t get too tight of a hold on you. Consider the things we’ve discussed and find people to talk with about your divorce. Having a group of others who are going through the same thing or talking with a therapist can help you immensely.