Police Psychology: Divorce Part 3
by Gary S. Aumiller, Ph.D. ABPP
“At first I was afraid, I was petrified. Kept thinking I could never live without you by my side.”
So starts the 70’s anthem song about the breakup. Gloria Gaynor in 1978 found silver, gold and platinum, and became the singer of the only song to ever win a Grammy in the Best Disco Song of the Year category (it was only given one year before disco died in the charts). It spoke to every woman “thinking how he did me wrong” and she “grew strong” and learned she had to survive. It was excitement, passion, and most of all, something a large part of the record buying population could relate to. And it was for men too. Not too shabby for the “B” side of a small record by a Newark “New Joisy” girl.
Why did so many people relate to it? It was a theme of recovery from a bad breakup and the mantra “I Will Survive” rang out for anyone who has had the experience of the severe wrenching pain when love turns into despair. Survival is the most important thing through divorce. Survival through terrible emotional ups and downs, through some severe depression, through grief. What happens when you don’t survive? You become bitter towards others. You check out at work or overemphasize the role of work in your life, and you may not be ready for another relationship in your whole life. Most suicides, especially in police populations, are stimulated by relationship breakups or relationship problems. So, surviving a divorce is very important, in fact it is paramount to your future as a healthy individual. How do you survive and how do you help your friends or a person that works for you survive during this most critical time in their life? Let me give just a couple of principles of survival during divorce. (more…)