Monday, June 18, 2012
Isn't it funny how we ACOD's feel like we have to apologize? We feel sorry for crying about our parents. Maybe we feel sorry for reacting strongly to an intense situation. Or we're sorry for checking out of our friendships momentarily as we collect our thoughts (and try to regain our sanity) after we've heard our parents have divorced.
The truth is, we shouldn't be sorry for anything.
I was amazed by the intense, raw guilt I experienced after my parents' divorce. I felt guilty if I chose to go a few days without talking to them. I felt guilty for being angry. I even felt guilty for feeling like half a person during one of the darkest times of my life.
You may experience guilt too. Maybe you feel like you should be handling the news of your parents' divorce much more smoothly since you're an adult. Maybe you're mad at yourself for falling apart when you least expected it. It's important to realize the source of these feelings. Are they self-inflicted? Or are others telling you how you should feel? In either case, the feelings of guilt are actually causing you more damage. They're forcing you to try to bury your true feelings and act like everything is okay.
That's what did it for me. Here I was, acting like everything was okay. Finally I said to myself, "this is so not okay." My parents got divorced after 27 years of marriage, subsquently breaking our family apart. How is that ever okay?
So take that guilt and chuck it in the trash. It's completely useless and will only work against you. Give yourself the freedom to react how you want to react, not how anyone else expects you too. And like everything else in life, you can't always please everyone. In fact, you never will. So just try to please yourself and leave it at that. Try to give yourself allowances each day. Allowances to feel what you want to feel...sad, angry, frustrated, happy, whatever it may be. You'll probably feel all those emotions at varying points (yes, even happy). That's what part of makes you human. And it's what shows you that life really is worth living.