I limped away from my marriage of five years with two young children and emotional issues up to my eyeballs. I never looked over my shoulder, not even a glance. I was going into post divorce recovery, making a clean break and stopping the codependency and addiction once and for all.
Sometimes a bad marriage is like an alcohol or drug addiction. You don’t know why you need it, but you do, then you hit rock bottom. You can’t do it anymore, because if you do, your soul will be sucked out and you will become an empty shell.
I keep coming back to how much recovery from divorce and recovery from addiction can run parallel. In fact, I wrote an article called “12 Steps for Divorce Recovery,” based on the 12 step program for addiction. But, for the sake of this article, let’s look at the Serenity Prayer, just for example. My personal comments are in the parentheses.
God grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, (your ex spouse)
the Courage to change the things I can, (yourself and your situation)
and the Wisdom to know the difference; (remaining calm in the wake of co-parenting calamities)
Living one day at a time; (that is all you can do)
Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace; (being a single parent and just being single)
Taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is,
not as I would have it: (having a happy healthy marriage and life, and realizing that with this person you can not!)
Trusting that you will make all things right if I surrender to your will; (trust that you have made the best and right decision)
that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with you forever in the next. (looking out for your own happiness and gaining back your empowerment)
Need I say more?
Acknowledge, accept, empower and heal.