In the first few days, weeks and months following a divorce, you may experience a great deal of sadness, grief and pain as you try to process the end of your marriage and focus on beginning this new chapter in your life. Regardless of whether this was an uncontested divorce, with both you and your ex-spouse agreeing to end the marriage, or whether you were the initial one to file for divorce, it’s still possible, even expected, to experience moments of sadness or loneliness when it truly is over. Then again, perhaps you’re looking at your newly-divorced status as something to celebrate, and are excited and happy about the future now that you are no longer married. It’s quite natural to feel either way, or a mixture of both, once your divorce is finalized; after all, each marriage, like each person, is unique and we all process events like a divorce in different ways. If the end of your marriage has left you feeling angry, depressed, hopeful or elated, one thing is certain: taking a trip once you have finalized your divorce can help you process the roller-coaster of emotions and bring closure to this chapter of your life.
Where Should I Go?
Your post-divorce travel destination is entirely up to you, but before you book any vacations, try to take inventory of your current feelings and overall state of mind. If you are heartbroken and vulnerable now that your divorce is final, for example, you may not have the time of your life on a wild weekend in Vegas. On the other hand, if you are over the moon about your newly-divorced status and want to celebrate, a secluded cabin in the woods may not exactly be a blast. Let your mood dictate where you should go, and focus on enjoying yourself in your own way once you arrive at your destination.
Should I Go Alone or With a Group?
Because different people may enjoy different things, there is no one right answer to this question. If you are dealing with feelings of isolation or loneliness following your divorce, or you just want a travel companion to share in the fun, you’ll likely have a better time if you bring one or more friends along for the ride. If, on the other hand, you just need time to quiet your mind, or if you want to see the world on your own after being part of a couple for years, it may be a better idea to take a solo voyage. Be honest with yourself and what you need most right now, and you will arrive at the best decision for you.
Not only can travel jumpstart the emotional healing process following your divorce, but it can also be a practical thing to do. Your ex-spouse can have the time he or she needs to move all of their belongings out of the home you shared, if they haven’t done so, without you having to be there to see the physical evidence of your marriage coming to an end. Also, neither of you will have to deal with the awkwardness and pain that can come from the final parting of the ways if you are off on the post-divorce trip of a lifetime when your ex stops by. No matter how well you think you are handling your divorce, and regardless of how amicable your uncontested split may have been, it’s possible that seeing your ex actually leave for good will cause a good deal of sadness; having fun travel plans to keep you occupied while your ex-spouse is moving out may be a good idea.
According to Chris Griffith of the Chicago Mediation Service Split Simple, when your marriage comes to an end, taking a trip can help define an endpoint to the old chapter of your life while welcoming in the changes and new beginnings that await you. Over time, you will have healed enough from your divorce to be able to fully enjoy your new life- a post-divorce trip might be the first step towards your next big adventure that awaits you!