David Arquette has made some poor decisions in his life—Eight Legged Freaks, anyone?—but entering into a tailspin of constant booze, strippers, and sex following his recent separation from wife Courteney Cox ranks among his worst.
Thankfully, Arquette checked himself into rehab on New Year’s Day. But how did he let it get so bad in the first place? And how can you learn from his mistakes?
According to Stephan Poulter, Ph.D., author of Your Ex-Factor: Overcome Heartbreak and Build a Better Life, most guys miss a crucial step that you must take in the post-divorce process: recognizing that it wasn’t just your ex who killed the relationship—you probably had a big hand in it, too. (Surprisingly, Arquette’s accepting responsibility. He’s already confessed to Howard Stern that he was largely to blame for the breakup. Perhaps Arquette came to the realization a little too late?)
Here’s how to avoid the downward spiral: Make a list. Write down what went wrong. Look at your part in it. We know it sounds like the last thing you’d want to do, but trust us—it allows you to own up to your mistakes and keep a cooler head after the split. “Dealing with what you’ve done helps you detach and move forward. And then there might even end up being a chance for reconciliation,” Poulter says.
And it turns out divorce isn’t all bad. A recent study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology showed that while marriage might have its own health benefits, men who get divorced actually see a fitness boost—meaning Arquette might end up super-buff after his rehab stint.