Saturday, February 21, 2015

Divorce & Loneliness: 7 Tips

February 2015 

names have been omitted in this post 


What time was it? I stirred and shielded my face from the bright sunlight streaming in the bedroom… squinting, I peered at my iPhone through bleary eyes and saw it was eight o'clock in the morning. It was midweek and I had the day off work…stretching, I was so relieved to have the day to do whatever I wished. The night before I had stayed up late with my mother watching a movie starring Sandra Bullock… Hope Floats… that had to be the most sad, depressing movie regarding divorce yet sadly reality for so many. The movie had entailed lots of tears, Kleenex and discussion afterward.

I heard my mother busy in the kitchen making breakfast… the scent of pancakes with fresh blueberries and maple syrup from Vermont wafted throughout the house. Rising from bed and pulling on a black PINK sweatshirt emblazoned in white with 1986 on it and fixing my hair back into a new and improved messy bun I wandered into the kitchen where she was busy at the stove.

"Hey!" She greeted me cheerily, busy ladling another spoonful of gluten-free pancake batter onto the hot griddle… the batter beginning to pop and sizzle.

"Hey, good morning…" I told her with a smile, reaching for a box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal, milk and then a bowl and spoon.

"Did you message that guy?" She asked me, referring to some guy who a dating site had alerted me to via email that had reached out… a dating site I had discontinued using months ago but for whatever reason still received occasional alerts from. Late last night I had taken the time to log back in and check out his profile.

"No… I checked out his profile but didn't respond." I told her.

"Why didn't you? I thought you were going to." She said with surprise.


Finally I spoke… "I don't know why, really. I mean, on paper he sounds great. Everything looks good thus far. The first guy I can say that about. I don't know…" I trailed off in thought. Since being divorced, aside from work, life had been primarily breakfast with friends, play dates for my daughter, meeting my sister for taco's, lots of movie nights in, exercise and naps…  life had been a continual loop of the warm, familiar and comforting… and the thought of deviating from that known cycle seemed comparable to being released into the wild, being yanked from a cocoon of sorts and it somewhat terrified me quite frankly.

She looked over at me, then sliding her spatula under the warm and golden pancake on the griddle to flip it… "Is everything okay? I mean, I don't care if you message him or not… I'm not saying to message him, I'm not saying not to… I'm just wondering why you seemed like you were going to and now you seem like you don't want to."

"Yeah…" I exhaled, "Ughhhh… I don't know… he's sending smiles and questions and I'm just...." I trailed off and poked at the cereal swimming in my bowl and shrugged, "I'm torn…. part of me, I just don't want to go to the effort because I'm enjoying doing my own thing right now. Then part of me is like… it would be nice to have someone of quality character with a daughter or two to hang out with..." I told her, thinking of my daughter. "Maybe at the end of the day I'm just apprehensive."

I planned on thinking it over… the truth was, I was incredibly cautious as I should be… my walls were up and careful scrutiny was high regarding anyone these days, as hindsight is 20/20. These days I listened much more carefully, observed actions and listened to my intuition… learning to trust our own gut instincts again is vital in the recovery of narcissistic sociopathic relationships… as the sociopaths weapon of choice is to make you doubt yourself in all interactions with them and others. I knew it was vital for anyone who had been in such a toxic relationship to take the time needed to become healthier, more confident in relying on those internal warnings our instincts gave us regarding others who have hidden agendas.

In Divorce Care classes we had discussed the issues regarding dating out of loneliness post divorce… how that proves to be catastrophic to anyone in the aftermath of the dissolution of a marriage… the truth is… only once we are securely happy with being on our own can we begin being with someone else... otherwise we never know if we're choosing someone to merely fill a deep internal void. I loved being on my own so if I dipped my toes in, friendship would be pursued, not a romantic relationship… as I believed what the experts said… that pursuing friendship first sets the foundation for a successful relationship long term.


It's perfectly fine to make your kids your number one priority post divorce along with your healing process. Many seem to give divorced folks well intentioned advice to "get back out there" pronto,  yet that advice can often deliver quite the disservice. The truth is… we need time to figure out who we are sans husband or wife… it takes time to figure out just what we want, to grow individually, to heal from wounds inflicted by our ex and to recover financially to stand on our own two feet.

The worst thing we can do post divorce
 is cave into dating someone out of loneliness.
 It is the kiss of death for a relationship
 before it's even begun. 

If we are experiencing loneliness it may very well be an indicator we are not spending any time or not enough time with God. Will God allow us to feel lonely when He knows we need to spend time with Him? Yes, quite possibly. Even if we try to fill our loneliness with social activities, with dinners and gabfests on the phone, God will always be there desiring his turn with us. He is a jealous God who loves us. Even if we turn to others to fill that gap, that void in our lives, so we don't feel quite so alone... in the depths and darkness when night falls, it's just us with our own thoughts and the crickets chirping outside our window... and God...  people only provide temporary relief here in this life… like a bandaid they are not a complete and total fix. God is ever-lasting, all en-compassing and an endless resource to us when it comes to companionship, affectionate love and comfort.

A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me.

When we feel lonely we can turn to God, not out of guilt because there isn't any sin in experiencing loneliness… like many other feelings; disappointment, sadness, etc, we can absolutely feel a full range of human emotions… it's when we begin to make poor choices that stem from loneliness that causes the issue. God wants us to turn to him for comfort and support when we are suffering, as there is zero shame in admitting to him we are struggling whether it be loneliness or depression, etc in the aftermath of a break-up.

Only God can satisfy our aching 
longing heart within, no one 
else no matter how they try. 

When God created Eve he created companionship for Adam… God saw that man should not be alone… but we also aren't to date or marry simply out of loneliness. We must be able to enjoy being on our own and only after having Christ be first in our life can we then even think of joining with someone else in marriage. Instead of trying to find someone here on earth to assuage our loneliness we can turn to God, pour out our hearts to Him and reveal all our feelings however negative allowing Him to fill any gaps, provide comfort and healing.

Trust him, turn to him in faith that he will fill the inner aches within and that his promises for you are for good not harm. Only once we put our trust in Him, when we look to him for companionship, for comfort, strength and to share our heart, our life, our innermost yearnings can we then be complete to love another.

©  ~ 2015

Things To Remember 
Regarding Loneliness: 

1. According to experts it takes roughly 3 years to heal from a divorce. When we put ourselves on a quick timeline to heal we rush the process and possibly stunt it.

2. When we allow others in our life however well meaning to dictate rushing into another relationship, setting us up on blind dates, seeking a romantic connection we risk making poorly suited choices out of loneliness. 

3. Post divorce we may receive calls and messages from well meaning folks of the opposite sex saying if they were single they'd be with us/marry us in a nano-second. These well meaning comments possibly meant to raise our spirits can often can make us feel more alone behind closed doors. Remember that each of us is worthy of love and Christ showed us the ultimate act of love; dying for us. 

4. When we're lonely the worst times may be at night when couples are sharing their days, cuddling, watching tv together and going out. Now isn't the time to dismiss any loneliness. It's better to admit we are lonely and embrace it than push it away, making the healing process longer. 

5. Abstaining from alcohol is wise when we're lonely.

6. Sometimes we're loneliest when we're in social settings when everyone else is coupled off. You are not the odd one out, the rejected one; don't listen to the lies of the devil... you are a valuable person who is fully capable of love, who did love and can do so again. 

7. It may feel like life is just passing us by if we're lonely simply because we don't have someone to share it with. But this time right now is precious. One day you may be married again... take advantage of this possibly fleeting time to do some things you've wanted to do. 

Related Posts:

Divorce: 6 Practical Tips For Healing 

Healing Post Divorce & Beginning Again 

Saying Goodbye To Your Ex & Yes To Love Again 


  1. Thank you for writing this post. I just started my divorce and I am feeling very lonely. It seems no matter if I go out or I am at home I feel alone. I will get through it though and be stronger for it.

    1. You're so welcome, thank you for reading. I'm sorry to hear about the loneliness and my hope is the divorce process is as short and painless as possible for you. Prayers, Jen