Divorce and Depression : the impact on men

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Were you expecting to feel a sense of relief once your divorce was finalized? Perhaps you did, but now that initial relief has faded and you are feeling a little off —not your usual self. Divorce can be one of the most stressful life events a man can endure. It is not uncommon for men to experience post divorce depression. In fact, a Canadian study revealed that while both genders are at risk for post divorce depression, the risk for men is greater.

Men express symptoms of depression differently than women. After a divorce men will focus on the financial impact and external factors that have changed due to the dissolution of their marriage; they are less likely to address the emotional impact. The stress of divorce can be further compounded by the loss of contact with children due to custody arrangements. But just because they aren’t as forthcoming about their emotional state doesn’t mean that they aren’t grappling with emotional adjustments to the loss of intimacy, decreased self-esteem, and other contributing factors and symptoms of depression.

If you feel you have post divorce depression, it is imperative you seek help from a Portland mental health professional. And while there is no substitute for seeking professional help, there are a few things you can do to help cope with the symptoms of post divorce depression.

Find an outlet.

Finding a hobby or pastime to focus your time and energy on can be a positive way to distract your mind from too much ruminating. From reading a book to learning to tie fly fishing lures, anything that keeps your mind and your hands engaged will help you funnel your energy into something positive.

Get organized.

You know how frustrating it is to not be able to find something when you need it. Reduce your stress by organizing. Taking the time to sort through your belongings will help bring some order into your life. This is especially helpful if things seem chaotic post divorce. Set aside time each day to de-clutter your living space —but remember you don’t have to do it all at once. Small steps are often more effective than one massive organization effort. Trying to take on too much will have the opposite effect and will increase your stress.

Focus on positive relationships.

A football team can’t win if the quarterback is the only one on the field. Just like the quarterback, you need the help of loyal and dependable teammates to get the next first down. Having friends and family on your team is
essential —and don’t forget to enlist the help of a few expert coaches. People like counselors and therapists can give you the guidance you need to get you back to your A game. Another area to find like minded people is support groups. Think of support groups like spring training— an opportunity to work with people in your same situation and will help you improve your skills.

Depression can be a challenging topic, one that some people have difficulty acknowledging and discussing. But you don’t have to struggle alone. Recruit supportive people for your team, find an outlet for your energy, organize your living space and you be headed toward a more positive outlook.

Disclaimer – The materials posted in this blog are for informational purposes only. The information presented is general in nature, and may not apply to particular factual or legal circumstances. The information presented here does not constitute legal advice or opinions and should not be relied upon as such.

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