The following is an excerpt from 9 Secrets a Man Needs To Know to Survive a Divorce, best-selling e-book on men and divorce by E. James Marsh.
It is quite understandable that you don’t want to tell your close family and friends about your separation and pending divorce. Most men have incredible pride. So if your wife cheated on you or left you because you weren’t “successful” in her eyes, you feel some shame. And you’re not likely to want to blast your situation out to your inner circle.
But that could be a big mistake. The classic male pattern is to internalize everything … and your health pays a huge price. Heart problems, strokes, ulcers are all well-known by-products of keeping things to yourself.
When you tell your family and close friends, you feel awkward at first … but afterwards you feel a sense of relief as if a giant boulder has been lifted off your shoulders. In today’s world, just about everyone knows someone who has been through a bad divorce (Is there such a thing as a good divorce?) If they are true friends, they will not judge you. You will only receive unconditional love and moral support.
Personally, I remember telling my own mom and dad. They had been married over 40 years at the time. My mom in particular had strong beliefs about divorce. But she told me everything would be okay … said to go ahead and cry if I felt like it. And I had nothing but full and unconditional love and support from both of them.
Telling your work associates is a bit trickier. You want to be careful who you inform about your pending divorce. Some people might immediately think your job performance may be affected. (In all likelihood, it will.)
Best idea would be to just tell your immediate boss in confidence. Let him or her know you are working through it and don’t plan the divorce to be a distraction to your daily duties on the job. They might even encourage you to take some time off, if your company offers sick leave or you’ve accrued vacation time. It’s a good idea if you can make it work financially.
If there are children from your marriage, you and your soon-to-be-ex need to tell them about the divorce. The best idea on how to discuss that would be to seek advice from your therapist. Even if the sight of your ex makes you sick to your stomach, you need to try and be united in the message you tell your children.
During my divorce, my sons were in their young 20s and I felt they needed to know their mom was having an affair. I told them in as non-judgmental way as possible. The funny thing is, they already knew about it, as did my stepsons.