Divorce is one of the most stressful events in life — capable of inducing symptoms of PTSD. Without self-care, divorce can have long-term mental consequences.
Almost 50 % of American marriages end in divorce. Most people get through this experience unscathed, but some develop depression or PTSD, with symptoms such as hyperarousal (being permanently on edge), numbness, distancing oneself from people or places that remind them of the person who has left, inability to feel hope or happiness and constant nightmares.
PTSD occurs not only in armed combat but also after negative life events. For this reason, suicide rates are three times higher among people going through a divorce.
Meditation can help calm and re-centre those going through it. It is a tool you can use to soothe, relax and take back control.
10-day meditation retreats are a good ‘pick-me-up’ for anyone going through a divorce. Participants can learn the benefits of mindfulness or guided meditation in beautiful surroundings and take these new coping skills back home with them when they leave. It’s also an opportunity to make new friends.
The Power of Meditation
Meditation is a way to induce a relaxed state of being. There are various techniques to achieve this, for example, loosening all the muscles in the body, controlling the breath and emptying the mind of distracting thoughts.
Meditation stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, part of the autonomic central nervous system that controls resting and feeding activities. It also dampens the sympathetic nervous system that is responsible for the “fight or flight” response.
This “fight or flight” response gets triggered permanently in cases of PTSD, so meditation is an effective therapy to restore calm.
Depression after divorce is common, but meditation can help people get through it and come out the other side healed and with new confidence.