How Mental Health Counselling Eases the Challenges of Divorce

In this article, we’re looking at how mental health counselling eases the challenges of
divorce in 2024. (Guest Post)  


Divorce is a life-altering event that brings about significant changes, both emotionally and practically. The dissolution of a marriage often involves complex emotions, legal processes, and adjustments to a new way of life.

Amidst these challenges, mental health counselling emerges as a crucial support system, providing individuals with the tools to navigate the emotional roller coaster that accompanies divorce. Between counselling professionals and Cardiff divorce solicitors, separated Welsh Families can receive all the help needed to get through a difficult time.

In this article, we explore how mental health counselling can play a pivotal role in easing the challenges of divorce.

How Does a Divorce Affect Mental Health?

When a marriage ends – particularly if it has been a long one, it can have a devastating effect on mental health and can result in serious conditions such as:

  • Depression – The prospect of starting again without your ‘wing man’ can be isolating and lonely as all of the plans you have made turn to dust. For some people, sadness at the end of the marriage can quickly spiral into depression which can have long term effects on your mental and physical health.
  • Anxiety – During and after a divorce, it’s common to feel extremely worried about what the future might hold as you navigate your new circumstances. In many cases, this will include concerns about money, childcare arrangements and accommodation. While it’s natural to feel unsettled during this time, this can sometimes lead to anxiety which will require medical intervention.
  • Sense of failure – We are often told that you have to ‘work at a marriage’ and, while this may be true, the danger is that if the marriage ends despite your putting in the work, it can lead to a very real sense of failure which can corrode your self-esteem.

How Can Counselling Help With Mental Health?

In the past, there was a certain amount of stigma attached to therapy and counselling with those seeking help being perceived as weak. In actual fact, the exact opposite is true – taking care of your mental health is an investment in your future and, in this section, we’re looking at how counselling can help during your divorce:

A Safe Space to Grieve

The first – and simplest – way that counselling can help is that it allows the opportunity to talk about how you’re feeling without judgement. During and after a divorce, a lot of people feel that they are ‘boring’ friends and family by talking about the divorce, leading to a pressure to ‘get over it and move on’. Counselling takes away this pressure and allows you to grieve for your marriage in a safe space.

Change of Perspective

One of the very real benefits of speaking to a professional about your divorce as it can help you to gain some important perspective. In some cases, a divorcee will find that he or she is mourning the idea of the marriage rather than the loss of the marriage itself.

Gaining an understanding of this can really help to look at the marriage in a more objective light which, in turn, can help you to gain closure.

Fighting the Fear

Going it alone following your divorce can be scary and the thought of finding yourself somewhere to live, managing your finances and dealing with childcare on your own can leave you, quite literally, frozen in fear.

A counsellor can help you here by arming you with the tools that you need to deal with these issues one at a time. By compartmentalising the different aspects of your post-divorce life, you’ll be better equipped to move forward.

Another fear may be the idea of a new relationship. If your marriage was abusive or manipulative, it’s natural to suffer a lack of trust and to feel that any new relationship will be the same.

A counsellor can help you to recognise the fact that the abusive or controlling behaviour in your relationship was not your fault – and that you deserve to find happiness with somebody else.

Providing Practical Tips to Self Care

If you’ve never been divorced before, there’s a good chance that you simply won’t know where to start when it comes to securing practical support such as financial assistance. In some instances, divorced people will also find that their friendship group is significantly diminished due to the fact that friends were ‘shared’ with their spouse.

A counsellor will be able to provide some extremely valuable assistance here by putting you in touch with council and government agencies who will be able to support you while you get back on your feet.

They will also be able to provide you with details of local groups and forums through which you can meet people who are going through the exact same thing as you are; thereby helping you to make new friends.

Seeking help with your mental health following a divorce…

Marriages end for all sorts of reasons including infidelity, abuse, growing apart and recurring arguments about issues such as money. When entering into a marriage, we begin a partnership of shared homes, finances and hopes and dreams and, when it ends, it can be life-shattering.

Securing the services of a qualified counsellor can help you to see that there is life beyond divorce by focusing on the positives while dealing with the negatives. If you feel that you would benefit from counselling during or after your divorce, your GP or local council will be able to point you in the direction of a reputable professional.

Image credit

About the author

Bob Brotchie is a counsellor, mindset consultant and creator of "Conscious Living by Design"™. He writes for Anglia Counselling, is featured on various other websites and introduces us to many guest writers all covering topics related to mental health and wellbeing.

Bob provides bespoke counselling services to individuals and couples in the privacy and comfort of a truly welcoming environment at his Anglia Counselling company office, located near Newmarket in Suffolk, England. Bob also provides professional online counselling, for local, national, and international clients. The therapeutic models offered are bespoke to the client’s needs, especially those in receipt of 'childhood emotional neglect' (CEN), whilst integrating a mindful approach to psychotherapy and cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) principles. For clients experiencing trauma and/or phobia, Bob offers EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing).