"Who is this person?"

It isn't uncommon to see a side of your spouse you don't like during this most stressful time imaginable.  Both are making big decisions that affect most things and people in your lives, right down to who gets the house, couch and IRA.  Along with these decisions, most of you are dividing time with your kids, marital assets & living expenses, all while managing your new life as a separated couple.  It isn't easy and you will both be affected.  

So, as you're judging the other person on his or her changes since you were in love, it's a promising idea to show a little latitude.  Neither of you are at your best.


If the other person is starting to behave in such a way that makes it difficult to communicate or get anything done, then it may be a good idea to seek an intermediary or court appointed liaison who can help you settle things without long legal battles that can be costly and emotionally draining.

The only person you can change...

If the problem goes further into general relationship issues, you'll need to accept that the only other adult that you can change is yourself.  You can neither take responsibility for his/her negative changes or hope your spouse changes back to a "normal" person.  

The more you seek them to act as you would like, the more you fail to see the negative changes in yourself you make to compensate for their unacceptable behavior.  It just makes you bitter and wanting.

Ignorance is bliss

You shouldn't ignore your problems.  But your soon-to-be-ex is no longer your problem.  Accept and, when necessary, ignore the new person he/she has become since your relationship has changed.  This includes lifestyle, attitude, love interests, etc.

What is your problem anyway?

It's never easy to realize your spouse is easily taking on his/her new single identity.  Even if you are also beginning to identify with your new single self, it may still bother you.  It may leave you dumbfounded as to why you even have these feelings.  

..could be, but not limited to...

Usually, it has less to do with your spouse and more to do with your fears that your spouse will find happiness he/she was unable to achieve when in a relationship with you.  What would this mean about you?  

While you may not outwardly think this way, it's an example of how your disconcertment about your spouse can really be about you and your problems with self-esteem or assuredness.  

It's not a competition

You'll both go through some transformations.  One of you will do better than the other.  But a lot can be said about what makes either of you a better person. 

One may make a lot more money, start a great new relationship and/or appear to be happier than ever.  If you are not that person, then life is gonna be terrible for a while until you find what makes you happy.  The good news is things can turn around overnight with one good thing.  Ironically, the best new things in life may be completely different than the things you may have once wanted or think you want now.

What's wrong with your life?

Once you realize what really brings you happiness, things will get easier.  At that time, you must take every opportunity to continue your positive path to secure your happiness.  You need to be proactive about finding the right people and taking actions that will get you to the life you really want.  First, you need to get an idea of what that means.

Take the time to discover your potential, develop your goals and make a plan to achieve them.  The plan doesn't need to be written or specific.  Start with a vision of what you consider success. Think of people you consider successful.  This will help you determine what success means to you.

Consider what you feel you lack and need.  In some ways, the greatest way to achieve success is to recognize the things you do and don't do or have and don't have that you feel are in your way of good health, wealth, and happiness.  We can't fix our problems if we don't recognize them.

No excuses

Make every attempt at success a one-person challenge.  Make yourself your only opponent.  If someone treats you unfairly, instead of blaming that person, take action to solve the problem.  The only time you fail is when you fail to do everything possible to overcome obstacles.  The only person to hold accountable for a solution then is yourself. 

This doesn't mean someone else may not be to blame for your problem or in cases where action needs to be taken against someone, to find the solution, is wrong.  But when actions taken to get them to right their wrong prove unsuccessful, move on. 

Enough of the, "It's not fair.  My ex, the judge, the attorney, the collector on the phone, the dog who snatched my newspaper - the world is so unfair." stuff.  The unfair bandwagon is an excuse that holds most of us back at one time or another.  Let. it. Go.

This exercise is about changing your attitude and perspective in order to get out of your own way.  You're not accountable for what others do, only how you disallow their actions from affecting your motivation to fix the damage they caused in your life.  This means that you're accountable for any lost momentum because of the mistakes others have made that have affected your life.

Take out fault 

In theory, moving on immediately after certain incidents, hardships or tough life events is best, but the hard part is finding a way to get "fault" out of your head.  But, just like many states have changed their laws regarding fault in a divorce, much can be said regarding solution-based problem solving.

One way to overcome issues of hindrance is to consider everything that happens bad to you as, "an act of nature".  If a tree falls on your car, you still need to fix it.  No, it's not fair, but blaming the tree or lightening isn't going to solve your problem.  

I dislike the cliche' that life is just a game, but if it were, it would be a long one.  It has many twists and turns that one can neither completely expect nor predict.  What we can predict is that if we don't grow past what holds us back, we will never find what drives us forward.  

So let go of how much your ex has changed and make the changes in yourself that will produce a happier “you” which leads to a better life in the future. ∞  



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