What do I do with my wedding and family pictures now that I’m divorced with children?
If you have loose pictures hanging around that need to be put in albums, perhaps you can put them in a box until you are ready to go down memory lane and organize them. By that time, you will be in a better frame of mind to decide if you want them in an album, a labeled box or give them to your children.Your wedding album might find its new home in a box or closet. A word of advice, don’t throw them out or burn them in anger, you might come to regret it. Give yourself some time and then maybe there will be a few you want to shred, but my guess is you will probably keep them for your children.
I am throwing a birthday party for my daughter; do I need to invite my ex-husband?
It depends on the age and type of party. If your daughter is younger, it might be nice for her to have her dad there. In which case, think of parties that can happen in a big space (i.e. gymnastics or a park). That way he can be there for her and you have the space to distance yourself. You come up with the party ideas and then let your daughter choose one. If she is older, it might be that she just wants a sleep-over with friends. Dad wouldn’t have to be there for cake and ice cream. There are times it will be unavoidable but get creative with the venues and be the “hostess with the mostess” and you won’t even notice.
My girlfriend’s husband doesn’t want her to hang around me now that I’m divorced. Should I talk to him?
I would let that discussion remain with them. Remember, it is not about you; it is about their relationship. If their marriage is on unsteady ground, he might feel threatened that now his wife might be seeing life through the eyes of a single woman. I would act the same way you have always acted around him; let them talk it through. Hopefully, you and your friend can maintain a friendship even if it takes a different form than before.
Would it be a good idea to join a divorce group? What can it offer me that I can’t do on my own?
Structure and accountability. Divorce can make one feel overwhelmed and not sure which direction to go. If you are in a group, you will have a built-in support system and a schedule. There usually is assigned reading and homework. Don’t stop doing things that you are already doing, but the group just adds another dimension.
Debbie Martinez is a Certified Divorce Life Coach. She has given workshops on divorce and women’s issues and has offices in South Miami. For more information, go to www.thepowerofdivorcecoach.com.