After Separation


Restored Lives was founded to support people going through divorce or separation. You are not alone. In this second article Founder Erik Castenskiold tells how Restored Lives was born from the pain he went through, and how even such devastating pain can be turned to good.

After my wife had said that she was having an affair I suppose there were so many things that changed in my life. Everything got turned upside down. It was a bit like having a Category 5 hurricane storm through your world your life: your possessions, your friends, everything really.

 And the debris! Going through the storms of that disaster caused so much pain and anguish in so many different ways. I was surprised at how many different places I would find pain. Be it in the places I would normally go and feel comfortable I suddenly felt out of place.

Alone In A Crowd

 I normally had this wife that would come with me and I felt alone isolated, sometimes in big crowds.

 I wouldn’t get invited to the same parties. Some of my friends said they didn’t really want to talk to me anymore. I got bad calls from people. I had really aggressive conversations with friends. It was odd.

 It left so much pain and hurt in different places it was really surprising.

 How did I deal with it?

I suppose there were so many ways that I dealt with it. But one of the things I found out was that this pain leaks out at any sort of trigger which happens in your life. It can come out for no reason.

Time Is Not A Healer; You Need To Act

For me it was often when I was commuting to work I would get frustrated and would build up this anger.

Or otherwise it was depression. I often felt this dark cloud of depression, a blackness, come over me.

What I realised was that just as much as with physical pain that I might go and see a doctor about, this emotional pain needs action. We have to do something about it. For me and for all the people I talk to it’s not that time is the healer. Time isn’t the healer. These triggers happen throughout your life and I’ve seen these in other people where it’s happened years later; it can be 10 years later or 20 years later.

The triggers of something in the past can happen so it’s best to find a way of dealing with this emotional pain.

Hope: You Can Deal With the Pain

And the good news is that there are ways of dealing with this emotional pain. You don’t have to just live with it and just hope that it disappears tomorrow. There are lots of small tools and skills that you can use.

For me talking with people was one of the most important things. Having one person that you can trust and who’s a wise counselor, a wise friend, you can talk to and just offload all those feelings and emotions and stuff is really really helpful.

So I really encourage you to find someone that you can rely on and talk to. Some friends are great for going out to the pub and having a drink with. Or maybe you know someone that you go running with.

Find the Listeners

But there are some people who will listen well and will help you to talk. And those are the people to really get around. Find them. Find those people. They are out there. Find your friends that you can rely on to listen to you.

In the worst case scenario find someone else Talk to your GP. Talk to someone else that is around. There are people who have been through this who are really willing to hear and listen to you.

The Divorce and Separation course, Restored Lives, is both practical and supportive, giving any divorced or separated person the opportunity to discuss the challenges they are facing and the tools to deal with them effectively.

Find Restored Lives at

Who is the Course For?

The course is for any person who is separated, or who is currently going through a divorce or is already divorced, either recently or at any time in the past. Based on Christian principles, it is helpful for any person with or without a church background.

What’s involved?

 Each evening begins with supper followed by a talk, with opportunities for discussion in small groups. The small groups are led by people who have gone through divorce themselves. The setting is welcoming, relaxed and unthreatening. Topics covered include: 

  • Facing the effects of separation and divorce 
  • The importance of good communication 
  • Resolving conflict 
  • Forgiveness 
  • Divorce – the legal issues 
  • Parenting issues 
  • Moving forward with hope 

 As Erik mentions in this article, the Mental Health Crisis of Depression, Anger and Anxiety is very real. If you are experiencing these PLEASE talk to your doctor…they are very aware how real this pain is.