Go Ahead and Blame – Just Don’t Count On Healing And Moving On If You Do!

Okay, so your Ex just really pissed you off and it is all you can do to keep yourself from jumping in your car, screeching up in front of her house, stomping to the door and screaming in her face when she opens the door. Grrrr…how could she do that after all the times you’ve told her it wouldn’t work for you if she did!? Unbelievable, right?

Image courtesy of graur razvan ionut/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of graur razvan ionut/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Your blood is boiling and you can barely think about anything else as you move through your day. What can you do short of launching another all-out battle? Feelings are natural. You don’t have to suppress them or tell yourself you’re bad AND you don’t have to act them out on your Ex, either. Rather, let yourself really feel those feelings WITHOUT acting on them.

Maybe not while you are seething with anger, but at some point when you’ve cooled down from the heat of the moment, look at what about that anger is about you. Learn from your emotions, and in this case, your anger, because, truth be known, if you only blame, judge and criticize, you will end up short circuiting your own healing in the relationship with your Ex.

Once you are able to turn around and point the finger back at yourself (but not in blame); you find out anger at someone else is really about being angry at yourself – for your failure to pay attention to yourself, to take care of yourself, to stand in your power.

Here are some questions you can ask yourself to get an idea of what you might be wanting or needing that the blow-up with your Ex made abundantly clear.

How is your anger a reflection of what’s going on inside you?

What are you angry at yourself about?

Have you been giving up your power?

Did you not speak your truth?

What did you choose to do?

Did you put up with abuse?

What can you do differently?

If you take some time to answer these questions, something amazing happens. Little by little, your energy of rage and blame diffuses as a (hopefully) gentle version of self-examination takes the focus off your Ex and on to how you dealt with that same situation you blamed her for.

After I got divorced I “married” myself. I made an oath with myself that I would never put peace and harmony or ease in the relationship above my truth. I would never put fear of losing a relationship above speaking my truth. If the relationship could not hold my truth and have space for my truth and honesty then it was not a relationship that was worthy of me.

So now, when I am feeling torn about speaking my truth, asking for what I want, saying what is in my heart, I look at my “wedding” ring and remind myself that I married myself and owe it to myself to be honest. Not only I am worth it, but so is the relationship. Speaking my truth is an act of respect – of myself and the other person. It shows that I trust that the other person is an adult and can handle my truth and engage in a discussion with me, even if it is difficult.

What that means for me is that if I neglect to speak my truth, if I choose to stay in a relationship out of fear of losing it, then I am responsible for that choice – no one else. I can reflect upon that choice with compassion – perhaps I stayed for the kids, for financial security, out of fear – all valid reasons to make that choice. But that is MY choice and I will take responsibility for that choice and hold myself with tenderness and compassion and understanding – life is complex and there are not always easy answers or solutions and I’m doing the best I can in any given moment. But still, it is my choice and no one, including myself, is to blame.

Life goes on after divorce but blaming others keeps you stuck in the past; it doesn’t allow you to see your own stuff and heal and grow. The only person you can change is yourself. So stop worrying about and blaming your Ex and tap into your feelings of regret, sadness, anger and allow yourself to grieve and mourn. I promise it is a much better use of your time and energy than blame!

Please share your thoughts, comments, experiences below.


In Service and Support,

Signature for Cat J. Zavis, Coach for divorced parents




CatProfileCat J. Zavis is an Attorney, Mediator, Child Advocate and Coach for Parents co-parenting their children after divorce. As a divorced mother of 2, she deeply understands the challenges, trauma and opportunities divorce provides. She has been practicing Nonviolent CommunicationSM, Mediation and Collaborative Law for 7 years. She conducts workshops and trainings in Nonviolent CommunicationSM for parents, lawyers, teachers, students, spiritual centers and professionals. In 2009, she was awarded a Peace Builder Award for her business. Her combination of personal experience and professional expertise give Cat a unique perspective and ability to help co parents learn to communicate effectively and powerfully to transform their relationships and interactions with their former after divorce so they and their children can thrive.

Cat can be reached at clientcare@parentingwithyourex.com

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