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My divorce story - how to do it amicably

28 May

Why do I do what I do? A divorcee myself, the impact of my own experience has led me to the career I have today, this is my story.

Close up of Nichole Farrow in a white t shirt and glasses

I am a product of Divorce and I’m also a divorcee, I believe the two situations are related.

My parents were loving and caring towards me, but it did not prevent the breakdown of their marriage having an impact. My sister and I were the casualties of what became a toxic situation and we witnessed first-hand what can happen when children become pawns. But it wasn’t just us, my dad had been divorced before and there were outcomes for my half-siblings too. It’s not unrelated that in my family - all four of the siblings have gone through a divorce and separation themselves. And why is this the case?

I have given this some thought. My own upbringing, like so many people, in a blended family, and my parents’ divorce defined my perspectives (as well as that of my siblings), and my perception of divorce. I lost my Dad at 21 and, looking for stability, ran too quickly into a toxic relationship, thinking I knew best. I was married at 25 despite having serious doubts about what I and others would think. I repeated the same mistakes as my parents and found myself confused, frustrated and disappointed.

In hindsight it would have been financially and emotionally a lot less costly if I had walked away. My boundaries on what was right became sorely tested, and eventually I knew I had to divorce. Realistically, my ex husband and I weren’t suited and would never have lasted. In an attempt to prove I wasn’t my parents I had recreated the same outcome. 

Despite knowing this was right, I still faced the same elements of shame that so many divorcees face, the fear of what others think, being a failure, the backlash from work. I only wish someone had been there to help and give me advice. 

Today I am a very different person, I have married again and my marriage is completely different to my first and that of my parents. Why? Because I follow my advice and allow for self-reflection, taking responsibility and the healing that is required to truly move on and allow myself to succeed. 

Below is what I have learnt and I hope it’s helpful to you so you too can move on and succeed:

What I discovered in my own divorce is this –  

  • Unless you make peace with the past and deal with your own emotional baggage you will carry it with you into the next relationship. You had a part to play – own it, learn from it and, move on. 
  • Looking for other people's approval and validation is futile. How you view yourself  is more important than anything else and the superficial trappings of everyday life can come and go.
  • Your future is defined by you. This is your legacy..  Regardless of whether it is your decision or not, this is part of your story but only you can choose the narrative and the legacy it leaves on you and your children. 
  • Getting outside objective support is key. Your friends and family mean well, but they are not objective and they will not always give you the best advice. 

I don’t regret getting married, or divorced. My own experience and healing has led me to a career I love – helping people to divorce amicably so that they can move on and form new successful relationships which benefit all. In my time I have learnt that divorce wasn’t an end, it is a beginning and everyone deserves to have the same opportunity.

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