Name Your Divorce Tigers

When I was pregnant, I read a book called Birthing from Within. What I remember best from the book is the idea of a birth tiger, which points out: a woman’s labor is designed to stop when she encounters a tiger. This is a built in survival mechanism. Since women today don’t often encounter literal tigers while birthing, the book invites pregnant women to conjure their metaphorical tigers—the thoughts and fears and actual events that they anticipate terrifying them into impasse while birthing. Using this method, you engage with those fears in the hopes of releasing them—so you can prepare your mind and your circumstance for the type of surrender required in the birth process.

What if there were also divorce tigers? What if you were to name your absolute greatest fear about going through your divorce and follow it all the way to your imagined, most terrible end? How terrible is that end, really? What resources do you have or could you create to cope with such an outcome? What steps could you take to avoid that tiger altogether and find, perhaps, a divorce antelope instead? Fears gain momentum inside of us when they are not examined. Brought in the light, they can look very different—often a lot more manageable.

What if you were to choose to honor your fears for the ways in which they are trying to protect you? What if you were to thank them for pointing you to the doorways where tigers might enter? What if you were to introduce yourself to those tigers when they arrive and ask them what they have come to help you learn?

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