Kaitlyn Ishler

How to cope with separation

February 24, 2020

About this time, last year, my parents decided to get a separation. This was something I had never anticipated or something I never thought I would experience. It was hard to wrap the idea that my parents were physically and emotionally becoming separate and eventually, divorced.

My family has always been inseparable, but my last sibling left for college at the beginning of last year— leaving me alone with my parents.

Throughout this experience I felt very isolated, which can be scary. I found ways to grow and learn from this experience instead of letting it negatively affect me.

In fact, it was this hardship that made me stronger than I have ever been. Here are some methods that helped me through my parents’ separation that I want to share.

1.Journal and write to let out feelings
This was the most beneficial method for me when my parents’ process of separating began. I felt like I could not talk to anyone because they did not deserve to be involved, and I started bottling up my feelings — which is not healthy. Journaling was a really nice way to decompose and let out my feelings without feeling like I was involving someone in my own problems.

2. Seek a role model and mentor to talk to
My oldest sister, Kyle, is the main reason I was capable of getting through the hardship. When I felt alone, my sister was the one who made me feel loved and reminded me that I had help. It is important to have someone in your life that you can trust completely and look up to.

3. Spend time in places you love
I love the water. This is where I feel the most calm and anytime I feel overwhelmed, I just sit by the water whether the beach, marsh or lake. Going through my parents’ separation, I would find myself by the water often just focusing on my breathing and letting my thoughts float away in the sea.

4. Call old friends and mend relationships
It is nice to find and reach out to old friends because it reminds you who you love and where you come from. It is a great reminder and it is nice to know that people who you may not have talked to recently are still there for you.

5. Get busy with your hobbies
Soccer and basketball is a great way for me to get my issues off of my mind. Sometimes I feel so trapped in my own thoughts and head, but hobbies — like sports for me — relieve my stress. Find something you love and take time to just enjoy that moment while you are doing it, nothing else.

6. Draw or paint what you feel
Sometimes words don’t help or explain how you feel, and only painting or drawing can show it. Whenever I paint something, there is a different feeling of relief that I cannot find in many usual activities.

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  • H

    hollyFeb 28, 2020 at 11:29 AM

    great job