Divorce can be a difficult experience whether you settle it through mediation or in a Michigan courtroom. If you deal with mental illness, the stress and trauma caused by the end of your marriage could trigger or exacerbate your symptoms. However, there are actions that you can take to manage your condition before and during the process of terminating your relationship.
Build a support network
Friends, family members and mental health professionals can all work to help you cope with the stress and anguish caused by a divorce. In addition to allowing you to vent, your support team can help you deal with extreme feelings of loss or abandonment that those with mental illness often experience. Your therapist may be able to prescribe medication or provide referrals to others who may be able to do so. Your therapist may also suggest acts of self-care such as a trip to the spa or a night out with friends.
When your spouse has mental health issues
Your partner may accuse you of child abuse or other acts of domestic violence during a manic episode. Your spouse may also try to take the children, drain money from a bank account or otherwise act irrationally during the divorce process. Ideally, you’ll keep records of everything that is said or done, and if possible, alert your own divorce team about any concerns you might have while the marriage is being terminated.
Mental health issues may play a significant role in a child custody case or if your spouse is asking for financial support. This is because a judge will generally not grant custody to a parent who might pose a danger to a minor. Furthermore, a spouse’s mental illness may make it harder to work and generate an income.