Getting Over Your Break-up
Spirituality: Questions to Ask About Faith-Based Divorce Recovery Programs
If you are considering a faith-based program to help you get over a broken relationship, here are a list of questions you should ask to help you decide whether this program will work for you.
What is the focus of the program? Does it offer practical tools to deal with the many issues surrounding divorce or is it a constant gripe session about the evil ex? If the group is not helping you move forward, if it’s just helping you stay stuck, find a different group,” says Suzy Brown, author of R.A.D.I.C.A.L. Recovery.”
What are their views of getting a divorce and remarriage? Ask for a copy of their statement of faith, which tells you about their religious beliefs as well as their views on what Scripture teaches about divorce and remarriage. Some programs, such as Fresh Start Seminars, and some churches believe divorce is a sin and those divorcing can not remarry, unless the divorce is for the reason of adultery or occurred before those divorcing became Christians. If you find these views limit your ability to heal, seek another program. Some people in churches may be alienated from you because they don’t understand what it means to go through a divorce. That’s not how our church feels,” said George Robinson, who along with his wife, Debbie, runs a DivorceCare group for Hopewell United Methodist Church in Downingtown, Pa. People going through divorce are very much accepted in our church. We keep telling them, God loves you.”
Is there a program for the children? Your kids are hurting, too. Some programs such as DivorceCare offer a program for kids. DC4K (DivorceCare for Kids) is a program for five to 12-year-olds that runs concurrently with the adult program. Through song, play, and fun, interactive videos, your children will have their questions and concerns about what’s happening to them addressed. The parent’s workbook gives tips on how to discuss these issues with your children. Fresh Start Seminars offer Fresh Start for Children of Divorce for children aged six to 16. If the church doesn’t offer a program for your kids, does it offer childcare while you attend?
Have the facilitators been there, done that? Let’s face it before you went through yours, did you get it?
Who can I speak to who’s been through your program? Ask to speak with at least three people who’ve found the program helpful. Find out what it was in the program that worked for them. Listen for authenticity and enthusiasm. When something really works, people want others to know how much it helped them. Also, if this isn’t your home church, ask to speak to someone who attended who was not from that church or faith, did they feel pressure to convert?
Is there a confidentiality agreement? The last thing you need is to find out is the junk you vented at last week’s meeting is out on the street. Make sure the leaders enforce a what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” policy.