Chartered psychologist Felix Economakis famously said, “The end of a relationship has a number of stages, similar to those of grief, namely denial, anger, bargaining, depression then acceptance.”
I might contend the order of a couple of them, but essentially I’d say he was right on the money. I would also add how lovely it would be if you could add ‘relief’ to the end of the list; oh, if only life were that simple!
My time analysis of his theory is thus: (a) there will likely be many wasted hours cogitating the first one, shaking your head as you would a snow globe. (b) If you are an emotional soul, realistically there are probably going to be a good half dozen Vesuvian explosions as you deal with the components of anger during an ensuing divorce. (c) Bargaining generally kicks in when the mediators and solicitors sink their teeth into the embers of your marriage. What’s funny is if you stand back and look in on the conversations you’re likely to have, it will seem laughable as you brawl over TVs and kitchen implements, so 4 days is a good estimate at the time you’ll throw down the pan here if things get hairy and sticky. (d) D for depression. It’s the only toy in the playpen that’s impossible to weigh. The data I’ve gathered on this indicate 12/18 months from the point at which you graciously accept you are covered in it, to planning a countdown from your medication, but it can easily carry on for many years following a tortuous divorce; how long is that piece of string? I wish I could tell you. Then finally, (e) acceptance. I’ve seen that take 2 seconds flat to wash over somebody once they’d been asked the question directly, following a night of turmoil as they chewed over what went wrong. For others, like a ghostly night bus, it quite simply never comes.
Timetabling your divorce is as tricky as nailing jelly to the ceiling, but I bet you give it a good try.