When helping someone cope with divorce it is always a good practice, to begin with, prayer; for them and wisdom for you. It is hard to find the right things to say when they hurt so badly and feel hopeless. When a person is going through a divorce, it is difficult for them to stay focused and often their emotional, physical and spiritual health suffers. Sometimes life can get downright overwhelming leading to feelings of despair they are unable to see that they will be okay. Divorce can also cause a person to feel ashamed or embarrassed preventing them from reaching out for fear of being judged.
- Listen – listening is probably one of the most important things you can do for someone struggling with divorce. It may be difficult for you to hear and you may get sick of hearing the same thing over and over again, however, talking about their thoughts and feelings is critical in the healing process.
- Encouragement – sometimes people want to stop going to work, stay home and never go out. During this time, emotions are running high but encouraging them to get out can help them deal with the divorce by taking their mind off their troubles and giving others the opportunity to possibly support them.
- Reassurance – “This Too Shall Pass.” Remind them that they will be okay and over time they will feel better, and life will get back to normal.
- Take Care of Yourself – as much as you would like to take their pain away and be there for them all the time it may not be possible. You need to take care of you and your family as well. Don’t let their emotional demands overwhelm you. If possible get additional help for them and you.
- Be Genuine – you don’t need to have all the answers, and it is okay to say, “I don’t know what to say.” Often just listening quietly is the best thing to do. This isn’t the time to take sides or tell them this is all part of God’s master plan. Genuinely communicate with them and see if there is anything you can do to help.