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Coping with stress during a Little Rock divorce

Everyday life in Little Rock includes emotional, physical and social stresses that require coping skills. Parenting frustrations, work deadlines and even anticipation of something wonderful like a celebration are stresses you may have learned to tolerate. Life-changing stressors can throw you for a loop -- marriage, parenthood, death and divorce.

Not all people respond the same way to divorce, although many Pulaski County spouses react with strong emotions. You may feel lost, hurt, disrupted, sad, worried or angry all at once. At the same time, you're asked to make very serious decisions about the future and, in many cases, your children's future.

The divorce process can seem endless, although attorneys and counselors assure you it isn't. It can be hard to imagine the chronic stress will come to an end down the road, because the end isn't in sight. Additionally, the unpleasantness of divorce can be prolonged when spouses can't come to terms about support, custody and property division issues.

Not everyone can "consciously uncouple" in complete agreement. So, how can you avoid feeling constantly tense during divorce? Look beyond immediate problems and plan for the future by realizing that bad times have end dates.

Your stress will spill over onto children, so it's important to step out into an atmosphere that doesn't include talking about marital problems. Spend some time away from the tension, with and without children. Pay attention to your physical and mental health, appetite and fitness and seek therapy, if needed.

Approach the divorce, as much as possible, in a businesslike way. Emotions can drive negotiations for a settlement. Compromise achieves fair results, without the stress and costs of having to battle a spouse in court.

Following these suggestions may help you but may have no effect on a spouse unwilling to cooperate. This is when the advice and guidance of therapists, financial advisers and legal counselors can be invaluable.

Source: The Huffington Post, "5 Tips to Keeping Your Sanity in the Divorce Process" Debbie Burgin, Jun. 20, 2014

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