Navigating Your First Valentine’s Day After Divorce

Life after divorce is challenging enough without facing the holiday devoted to the Hallmark version of romance, Valentine’s Day. Enter any store the day after Christmas, and there’s already pink and red shiny cellophane and wrapped hearts up and down the aisles. How can you grab your groceries or do a pharmacy run without being bombarded with reminders that you’re entering the next chapter of your life, newly single? Your first Valentine’s Day after divorce might be the roughest one you’ll face, so here are some coping skills to help get you through it.

Who Loves Ya Baby?

Even if Valentine’s Day wasn’t significant during your marriage, you probably made an effort to make sure you celebrated your spouse and made them feel loved on that day, whether they did the same for you or not. This year, why not beam all that love at yourself? Turn V-Day into Me-Day! Order your favorite food for dinner, fire up Netflix, and watch whatever you want. The plus side to being single is someone else doesn’t need to agree on what you’re in the mood to have for dinner or what to watch. Enjoy your new-found freedom!

Treat Yourself!

There’s definitely more to self-care than pampering, but it’s a good place to start. You can use Valentine’s Day to focus on doing something nice for yourself. Whether you have the means to do a lavish spa day, or just create some home spa time, with some affordable sheet masks, using some pedicure supplies, or taking a bath, while sipping some wine, or champagne, you can create some “me time.” You could also invite a single friend over for a girl’s spa night to lounge around and bond.

Self-Care is an Inside Job

Women can fall into the bad habit of self-neglect during marriage. If you have children too, your energy may be spent on running a household, raising your kids, working, and you end up putting yourself last. You can take some time on or around Valentine’s day to put yourself first for once. You might want to get a sitter and then do something you enjoy, such as yoga, meditate, write in a journal, curl up on the couch with a good book, engage in some retail therapy, or go to a coffee shop alone and just take a deep breath.

Time for Bromance

If you’re a guy facing your first Valentine’s Day post-divorce, this may be a great time to catch up with your boys. If you weren’t a fan of the whole roses and chocolate thing, this is your chance to ditch it all. You can order some food, grab some snacks at the market, hold a gaming night at your place, or hop online for networked gaming. You can head out to a sport’s bar, hit the gym, shoot some hoops, or do another activity that you wouldn’t have done with your ex on Valentine’s Day.

The Man in the Mirror

On the other hand, you may eschew stereotypical dudebro pursuits, or you’re just versatile and want to pamper yourself. Go for a fresh haircut, treat yourself to a steamed hot towel barber shop shave or beard clean-up. Whatever would make you a little happier and help keep your mind focused on the present and looking to the future and all you stand to gain in your new chapter as a single guy. Spiffing yourself up can do wonders for your self-esteem and might even be a precursor to putting yourself back out there if you’re planning to start dating again.

Getting Through It and Moving Forward

Valentine’s day doesn’t just have to be a day of sadness. However, you may take some time to mourn for your marriage and the loss of the future you had planned. Do yourself a favor, though, and stay off social media, where you might see pictures of your friends with their mates, and avoid going to places with couples out to dinner together. Allow yourself to feel all your feelings, but try to minimize inflicting further pain upon yourself. Give yourself some TLC. The day will pass, and you’ll wake up the next day, single and stronger than ever.

And, if Valentine’s Day has you thinking you need a divorce this year, reach out to the knowledgeable Atlanta divorce attorneys at Family Matters Law Group. You can schedule a consultation to discuss your unique situation and decide upon a course of action that best fits your needs. We’re here to answer any questions you may have and help you through the entire process.