Divorced and Angry at God


broken-family

I remember very clearly when I was in the middle of my divorce: I met with a lawyer, went to court, tried to get to work on time and also stayed up until the early morning hours with my daughters who were trying to process this new phase of their lives. I thought it never would end; I couldn’t see myself through this time of my life which had crumbled around me.

I speak often about taking the time needed to heal if you have been through a divorce.  And it is so important to make that a priority in your lifefor yourself and for your family. If that thought is overwhelming to you and you need a place to start, I highly recommend the book Divorced. Catholic. Now What? by CatholicMatch’s own Lisa Duffy and co-author, Vince Frese. This book is an outstanding step-by-step guide to building a solid prayer life and confronting those things about your divorce that each person needs to address: from anger, to children, to forgiveness.

I remember despising the idea that I needed to pray for my former husband. I was hurt and angrynot only for myself but for my children, who were caught up in all this ugliness. I struggled to pray both in general and for the situation in specific. This is probably one of the largest stumbling blocks there is, so it is no surprise to me that this book begins with a chapter on prayer: Prayer During Times of Distress.

In this chapter, the authors share a case study and also some insight from the saints of the Church. They discuss what prayer is (a conversation with God) and different ways to pray. When you are struggling with prayer, you don’t need to confine yourself to reciting an entire Rosary on your knees when you are feeling like tearing your hair out. A simple song or a quick walk down the garden path in search of peace can also qualify as prayer.

But even more importantly, Lisa and Vince outline why prayer is important and best of all, give solid, concrete examples to help build a prayer life of your own. This is a tremendous blessing to those of us who found themselves in a state of limbo during the divorce, just trying to figure out how to put our lives back together.

The second chapter addresses what I believe is the most important emotion to master during the divorce process: anger. Those of us who work to have faith lives are not only angry at the disintegration of our marriage. I would hazard a guess that we were equally angry at God. How could you let this happen?!

Again, the authors use a case study and then outline various ways to help come to terms with the anger that accompanies divorce.  They give concrete examples of ways to help overcome your anger. Together with the first chapter, the writers show their readers how to build a solid foundation of prayer and anger management which will help each person to overcome the difficulties that divorce entails.

The rest of the book is equally accessible and helps the reader to follow specific steps to work on the healing necessary to move past the trauma of divorce. Topics covered include annulments, forgiveness, dealing with children, and staying close to the sacraments. The writers help readers know they are not alone while walking down this difficult road.

I strongly encourage any of you dealing with your own divorce or that of a family member or friend to get your own copy of this book. Lisa and Vince have overcome the difficulties of divorce themselves. They are not just another couple of contributors to the self-help market. They are strong, devotedly Catholic people who have lived the experience of divorce and have found real, concrete ways to overcome the tragedy.

If you have had the chance to read this book yourself, which sections did you find the most helpful? If you have read other Catholic books on divorce, which would you recommend?






4 Comments

  1. Jeannie-822585 August 8, 2014 Reply

    Good post. I have never been married (or divorced) but when things don’t go your way it could apply in the larger sense you mention about being angry at God. Whenever I am tempted to get angry at God, I know that it is not God but the enemy who steals, kills, and destroys but we have been all power and authority over him in Jesus name and nothing shall by any means hurt you–Luke 10:19, and then I ask God to keep my heart tender toward Him always and forgive me for having such unfounded thoughts. I have learned to immediately rebuke that thought. God never takes away the free will of people –even your ex so continually ask God for the restoration that you need and to become better, not bitter. Say, “I forgive ____ in Jesus’ name” and the work has begun in your heart for God to heal you. To not forgive will only hurt you. It doesn’t mean that you forgive the wrongdoing by justifying it, but that you forgive the person who A priest said in a sermon once that really helped me, “God is setting you up for something greater.”

    Another priest, Fr. Diorio, a priest in MA who has the gift of healing said, “it’s alright to get upset with God–He can handle it.” This is not my first choice of practice though. Think, say, and do, the word of God and do whatever He tells you–advice from Our Lady to the guests at the wedding banquet. “Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God and all these things will be added unto you.” t’s a journey but God is with you and has made you more than a conqueror in Christ. Prayers, Jeannie

  2. Richard-76477 August 10, 2014 Reply

    My marriage ended, too, but I was not angry at God. Why should I have been? Why should any divorced person be? God was not the one who picked out our mates. We were. It was our mistake, not His.

  3. Claudia-999685 August 13, 2014 Reply

    I am in the divorce process, but for many years I am really happy and I thank God because I stopped.my pain, of course I still have problems , because he is so angry. I pray for him, ask God to touch his hearth and pray for my two daughters because he fills their mind with poison against me. GOD is with me I feel him besides giving me streth and more patient. Thank you my good Lord

  4. Michelle-1078361 August 14, 2014 Reply

    I read a book on forgiveness by a lady who was abused by her father for many years. I checked it out because my priest had delivered a sermon once that it is not the person you hate but the devil working through that person and standing beside him. In the book she retold countless cases of forgiveness of murder, infidelity, etc. How these people were freed by this forgiveness. My mother disagreed that you should forgive everyone who has wronged you. I also see how she has not gotten past the years of my father’s infidelity. They stayed together but I think it was like a rose thorn that festered over time. I did not want that for myself. I see the hate in my ex for leaving and do not want to be that person. I do pray for him and my children. I am learning to put it in God’s hands when I struggle through the difficult times. I am feeling my burden has lifted and I am letting my self be happy.

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