Your Self-Esteem After Divorce


“You literally become in real life the kind of person your mind tells you that you are.” ~ Daniel C. Steere, I Am I Can: How to unlock all the potential in your life through the miracle of POWER-FAITH LIVING

Our Self Image

A great majority of women who attend the RADiCAL support groups say that “a desire to develop greater self-esteem” is one of the greatest reasons for attending the group.

A midlife divorce is a significant blow to a woman’s self image. Having your life partner decide that you are not fun enough, or pretty enough, or smart enough to live with is absolutely devastating to a woman.

It’s Him…

Women are too eager to blame themselves first. Think about it. If your wasband has made the choice to have an affair or leave you for someone else, that choice is truly NOT about you. It’s most often about his own lack of self-esteem.

He is trying to enhance his self-confidence by finding a pretty, sweet young lady that is all too eager to give him the ego strokes he desires because he doesn’t value the man he knows he should be.

A counselor once told me that midlife men almost always choose a woman below them in economic and professional status; an office secretary, a waitress, or a nurse in the doctor’s office. The man feels superior and the woman loves the attention from the “powerful man.”

But the truth is, if a woman is willing to sacrifice her integrity to have an affair with a married man, she, too, is not a woman of character or high self-esteem. She is most likely looking for someone who can give her ego strokes that she has not earned, but stolen.

… Not You

But still … good, dedicated, fun, beautiful, faithful wives are often the ones who think they somehow caused the divorce, and if they had been different it wouldn’t have happened.

The truth is, if your wasband is the kind of man who has affairs (and there are usually more than one), it is he who has the problem, not you. If he does not have the courage to come to you and say he is not happy, or “let’s fix our marriage,” but sneaks around in the dark, being deceitful, and breaking all the promises he made to you and to God, he is the one who should feel the pain of low self-esteem, not you.

So today, continue to be the best and most loving woman you can be. Hold your head up. Stand up straight. Understand that you are a beautiful unique woman of God, and that tells you more than anything else who you really are.

“His name was Nabal and his wife’s name was Abigail. She was an intelligent and beautiful woman, but her husband, a Calebite, was surly and mean in his dealings.”  ~ I Samuel 25:3 (NIV)

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About the Author:

Suzy developed Midlife Divorce Recovery as a safe refuge for people healing and surviving the overwhelm of divorce. Starting her first RADiCAL support group in 2003 she's been helping women navigate the journey of divorce ever since.


  1. christine February 10, 2017 at 5:19 pm - Reply

    Yeah do you have a divorce Midlife self-esteem course for women who were left for a transsexual and emotionally beat down for 6 years..

    • TuffyBuchanan February 12, 2017 at 1:18 pm - Reply

      Christine, you have found a place of support and encouragement, one where women have been beaten down and left for all sorts of things. Let us walk beside you and help you heal.

  2. Suzy February 11, 2017 at 5:15 pm - Reply

    Yes, in fact we do! Set up a conversation and we can talk: Here’s a link:

    Schedule a Free Conversation

  3. TuffyBuchanan February 12, 2017 at 1:16 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this reminder, Suzy. Even years later, it is sometimes easy to fall back into the idea that somehow it was my fault…but I know I could not have done anything to deserve the way I was treated.

    • Suzy February 12, 2017 at 5:44 pm - Reply

      I know, for some reason, women usually keep trying to figure out how we could have done better or been different. When in reality, most of us could have been a perfect wife, and their own insecurities would have led them to this same dead end road. By the way, at some point most of them continue their behavior with the next woman.

      And I agree, I think it’s crucial or women to get connected with other women going through the same thing, because people who haven’t been through it, just don’t get it. (I didn’t either, before I went through it myself). Now, I think all of us want to encourage those coming along behind us and share what we’ve learned. Thanks for your generous sharing, too.

  4. Numila Alvarez December 23, 2017 at 2:10 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this article . It is very validating And I too agree there is great value to sharing your story. We all have our own generous sharing that will empower others and help them towards healing and moving on healthily !

  5. Debi Wood December 24, 2017 at 6:35 pm - Reply

    I needed to hear this today.
    Thank you.

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