There is a perfect winter storm of depression brewing.  Got the blues?  You are not alone.  There are good reasons you may be feeling sad right now.

Holiday Depression

You may get depressed at this time of year because it reminds you of bad experiences of past holidays.  Or you may get depressed because you have had better holidays in the past.   Or you just may be comparing this holiday to an imagined holiday like the ones in the Norman Rockwell paintings or the happy holidays you think your friends are enjoying.

Seasonal Affective Disorder

At this time of year I’m driving to the office in the dark and driving home from work in the dark.  The days are shorter.  There is less sunlight.  We feel good when we are in the sun.  We feel bad when there is a lack of sunlight.

Divorce Depression

It is usual for people separating and divorcing to feel depressed.  The future is uncertain and scary.  Finances are usually a mess. You may be heartbroken.

So, what can you do, if all three events are hitting you at the same time?  Ride out the storm.  It will take time.  You will have grief.  And pain.  But eventually, the storm will be over, and your new life will make all this seem like a distant memory.

Divorce is such a depressing life event, the pursuit of happiness can seem pretty far away.

However, Craig Harper has some interesting thoughts about happiness today at

“Could it be that happiness lies not in the chasing, but rather in the choosing?” asks Harper.

Is happiness joy and contentment, or is it the absence of fear or pain?

Harper says he found happiness when he stopped looking for it in the chasing, acquiring, accumulating and even planning.  He learned to let go, and when he did, he found that he already had happiness.

If you are divorced or separated, where do you look for your happiness?

Madonna considered killing herself during her divorce from Guy Ritchie reports the London Mirror. Madonna, 51, told Rolling Stone magazine: “It was a challenging year. I may have thrown myself off a building.”  She says that a busy work schedule was the only thing that stopped her.

Divorce, even for superstars, is a traumatic, stressful and emotional life event.  It represents the end of future dreams and your identity as a married person.  Depression, anxiety, fear, anger and suicide are not uncommon feelings.

What is impossible to see, in the heat of the moment, is that divorce is also a learning experience.  It can be the beginning of a new life that is frequently better than the old life.   Over the year or so that I work with my clients, I get to see many of them go from sad and uncertain at the beginning to happy and confident by the end.

So if you are contemplating suicide, better stick around.  The future may surprise you and be better than you think.

?“I remember clearly those awful days during my divorce where I would literally feel sick to my stomach. It seemed like the pain would never go away. The divorce consumed my life at the time and wondered if I would ever feel good again.” – Christina Rowe

Anxiety is a common human emotion. People will find something to worry about even when times are good. When going through a divorce, you will find many things to worry about, and you will have good reason to worry. Even if I tell you not to worry, you will worry.

Depression is another fairly common experience in divorce. If you are going through a divorce and you feel uncertain, insecure, or depressed, then you have a normal problem. But if you are going through a divorce and you feel no uncertainty, insecurity, or depression, then you may have a bigger problem.

Divorce is crazy time. When going through a divorce:

Your ears don’t work.
Your eyes don’t work.
Your mouth doesn’t work.
Your head doesn’t work.

You may not hear or understand everything that is said, you don’t always say what you mean, you may not perceive things correctly, and you may exercise poor judgment.

So if you are feeling depressed right now, or anxious, or crazy, welcome to the club. You are not alone. In fact, you may be joining the majority. And while this is not a particularly pleasant life lesson, you will survive it, and become much stronger and wiser in the process.

Divorce is difficult and costly. Avoid it if possible.

Sometimes you have no choice. It takes two people to get married, but only one to get divorced. If your spouse wants a divorce, then you can slow it down, but you cannot prevent it altogether. Someone determined to get a divorce is allowed by law to get one even if one of the parties does not want a divorce. Or maybe you just made a mistake in marrying the person you did, and you need to correct it and get on with your life.

If you do have a choice in the matter, then the first question you have to ask yourself is do you really want a divorce. The answer may not be clear to you right now. The decision to stay in your marriage or leave it is a significant one. It frequently takes time, sometimes years, to make this decision. So it is alright to stay in the inquiry stage for a while. Here are some of the things you need to think about before you decide to get a divorce.

Sometimes the devil you know is better than the devil you don’t know. Although you may not get along with your spouse, you may dislike being alone even more. Eating by yourself, watching television alone and sleeping by yourself can be difficult.

If you have been away from the singles scene for awhile during your marriage, you may find it to be an uncomfortable situation. You are older now. You may have children to deal with.

Two may be able to live as cheaply as one when they are married. But in a divorce you are trying to pay for two separate households with the same money that previously supported one. This usually means there is not enough blanket to cover the cot. Sacrifices must be made and your standard of living might go down.

Divorces involving custody fights over children are the worst of all. The stakes are the highest they can be. The children are right in the middle of conflict between their parents. Children usually bounce back from divorce with time. But that does not mean the bounce does not hurt. Children experience regret, blame, depression, anxiety, guilt and anger during a divorce. Their lives will change forever. The family is breaking up. The family home may be sold. Visitation and child support have to be established.

The decision to obtain a divorce is a difficult one. There are more decisions to make as you move through the process. Some will be hard to make. While these decisions are important, you will survive your divorce and move on with your life.