Keeping a Divorce Diary Could Mend the Heart

Going through divorce is tough, but writing the story in a journal may help mend a broken heart. Researchers found good news in a study of the recently divorced who were asked to tell the story of their relationships in a narrative framework with a beginning, middle and end. Study participants who wrote about their emotions in this framework showed improved health not only in lower heart rates but also in greater heart beat variability, which also reflects the body’s ability to adapt.

They were among 109 men or women who had separated or divorced from their partners on average three months ago. Researchers divided participants into three groups and assessed their physical and psychological health before the study and at two follow-up visits.

One group that did not show health improvement was asked to write deep feelings about their relationships and experiences. Those in a third group who wrote non-emotionally to describe their daily activities also did not show improved health. All wrote 20 minutes a day for three consecutive days.

“To be able to create a story in a structured way – not just re-experience your emotions but make meaning out of them – allows you to process those feelings in a more physiologically adaptive way,” said study author Kyle Bourassa from the University of Arizona.


Linda Parham

Linda Parham is a journalist and writer who enjoys creating entertaining blogs. She started out as a newspaper reporter before moving on to editing magazines and newsletters. Linda specializes in writing about beauty, health, fitness, business and politics.

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


Your locale for the best advice on
fashion, health, and beauty


Subscribe to our newsletter to get exclusive information on today's trends in fashion, beauty, and more!

By clicking submit, I authorize Think Glamor and its affiliated companies to: (1) use, sell, and share my information for marketing purposes, including cross-context behavioral advertising, as described in our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, (2) supplement the information that I provide with additional information lawfully obtained from other sources, like demographic data from public sources, interests inferred from web page views, or other data relevant to what might interest me, like past purchase or location data, (3) contact me or enable others to contact me by email with offers for goods and services from any category at the email address provided, and (4) retain my information while I am engaging with marketing messages that I receive and for a reasonable amount of time thereafter. I understand I can opt out at any time through an email that I receive, or by clicking here.

Skip to content