Tips for dealing with low self-esteem
When going through a difficult separation, your self-esteem can hit rock bottom.
A lot of harsh words can be thrown around by both parties, but some of them can really sting and fill you with doubt over your ability to be a good parent and a supportive partner to future love interests.
If your separation is the result of your ex-partner being unfaithful, your confidence can also be affected and leave you feeling like something is wrong with you – either physically or in terms of your personality.
The risk of low self-esteem
Low self-esteem, although not recognised as a mental health issue, is closely linked to mental health problems. Negative thinking brought on by low self-esteem (such as assuming you’re a bad parent because you don’t have as much contact as you’d like with your child) can develop into problems such as depression or anxiety.
When your self-esteem is low, you may find it difficult to complete tasks or try new things. As a parent going through separation, this could make the whole process even more difficult to deal with.
How to deal with low self-esteem
- Spend time with supportive people. When you are going through a separation, you really do need a strong network of people who you can rely on for emotional support. If you don’t have anyone you can talk to, why not join our Listening Room or post on our Forum?
- Try to stop comparing yourself to other people. If your ex-partner has left you for someone else, it can be very easy to compare yourself to them. You may question what it is they have that you don’t? The same might happen if your ex-partner has what you perceive to be a ‘better deal’ in the divorce negotiations.
Instead, focus on the positive aspects of your personality, your achievements, the things that you do and your role as a parent. It might be worth keeping a list somewhere and adding to it every now and then. If you ever feel low, find the list and remind yourself of all the good things you’ve done.
- Embrace a healthy lifestyle. Eating right and getting regular exercise can really help to lift your mood and make you feel better both inside and out.
Further help and advice
Mental Health charity Mind has a great list of useful contacts which may be able to offer you additional support. Visit Mind for more information.